(Story written by Michael Newsom – University of Mississippi)
The University of Mississippi’s efforts to support its thriving community of military veteran students has led to the university being ranked among the nation’s best places for vets to pursue a degree.
UM is the No. 53-ranked public university in the Military Times “Best for Vets: Top Colleges 2020.” It’s also one of only five Southeastern Conference schools recognized in the ranking.
The recognition means work to support veterans is paying off at Ole Miss, said Andrew Newby, UM assistant director of veterans and military services.
“We still have so much to do, but the fact that we are being recognized for our work is remarkable,” Newby said. “We, as an institution, continue to find ways to make meaningful impacts in the lives of our students, and making the Military Times ‘Best for Vets’ list again helps to show our investment in these student veterans.”
Newby is part of the university’s Office of Veterans and Military Services, which serves student vets. The university also has a Veterans Resource Center, which opened in 2018 in the E.F. Yerby Conference Center. It gives student veterans a variety of benefits to improve their quality of life on campus.
The center serves active military, veteran and military dependent students by providing a space for them to study, receive support and camaraderie from other veterans, and speak with university representatives about veteran issues, such as GI benefits and treatment.
Military Times asked U.S. institutions of higher education to complete a detailed survey of about 150 questions, which included their operations involving current and former service members and their families. The publication used colleges’ survey responses based on what veterans have told the magazine is important to them, as well as the editors’ own editorial judgment.
Institutions were scored in five categories: university culture, student support, academic policies, academic outcomes/quality, as well as cost and financial aid. University culture and student support carried the greatest weight in the rankings, while academic outcomes/quality, and cost and financial aid carried the least weight.
Many factors other than those listed in the chart were considered when developing the rankings. For more on the ranking, click here.
For information on the UM Office of Veteran and Military Services, visit https://vms.olemiss.edu/.