Eastern Michigan University offers a lot of perks, benefits and scholarships to veterans.EMU
According to Shaftone Dunklin, the director of Veteran Services, veterans are eligible for an application fee waiver, priority registration and a full-time veteran advisor.
Dunklin considers Eastern a veteran friendly school.
“Eastern goes out of its way to make sure people have a smooth transition to college,” he said. “There is a new veteran services office and advisory board to help veterans.”
There are 27 scholarships available to a variety of veterans at EMU.
Examples of these different scholarships include the Air Force Aid Society General Henry H. Arnold education grant program, Military Home’s scholarship, American Legion scholarship, Armed Forces Association scholarship and the Army Emergency Relief assistance program.
The scholarships available for veterans can range in amount from $1,000 to free tuition for the duration of the student’s time in college.
Dunklin said EMU has seen an increase in veterans attending the university.
“There are over 400 Eastern Michigan students that take advantage of veteran services,” Dunklin said.
“There has been an increase of veterans from last fall to this fall. It is hard to say how big this increase is because veterans keep getting deployed so it cannot be larger than a one or two hundred veteran increase.”
The Veteran Services Office also offers services to help students understand the Post 9/11 GI bill.
The GI Bill covers graduate and undergraduate degrees and vocational/technical training offered at institutions of higher learning.
Tutorial assistance and licensing and certification test reimbursement are also approved under the Post 9/11 GI Bill.
The amount of money veterans receive under the new GI Bill is determined by the length of active service duty.
In order to receive GI Bill benefits at EMU, veterans must complete an initial application for benefits with the Department of Veteran Affairs.
After being accepted to EMU and registering for courses, veterans must complete an EMU GI Bill Notification Form. The form must be completed every term the veteran intends to receive benefits.
The office also helps veterans understand what to do if they are deploying or returning, help them with their military transcripts and provide a host of other services.
Students can calculate their tuition and how much in scholarships and aid for which they are eligible.
Information is also available for tuition assistance for people in the Army Reserves and National Guard. There is even information for spouses of veterans and for students whose parents are veterans.
There is also a student organization group, the Student Veterans of America at EMU, which has been organized to help unite student veterans on campus to provide them with a social network of people with similar backgrounds and experiences.
The group also aims to educate the campus community about military life.
Most students have positive attitudes toward veterans and the aid they can receive from EMU.
“I think that it is great that Eastern provides a lot of support for veterans,” La Shawna Mounts, a senior and biology major, said.
“Veterans served their country, so I think that Eastern should do everything they can to thank them for their contribution to making the United States a safer place.”
Latoya Alls, a sophomore and an undecided major, believes veterans deserve everything they get.
“I did not know that Eastern did so much for veterans,” she said.
“I think that they should get a lot of scholarships and money for their sacrifice.”
Sierra Cummings, a sophomore and psychology major, believes more funding should be made available for the general student body.
“I wish that there was more aid for us regular students,” Cummings said. “We make up the majority of the student body and therefore, should get more scholarships.”