Annual Report

Exciting change coming for the Fall 2021 semester!! Current active duty service members, reserves, and national guard members are now eligible for tuition to be capped at $250 per credit maximum and have all students fees waived*

*Does not apply to course or lab fees. *Does not apply to graduate tuition. *Does not apply to dependents

 

Military and Veteran Student Brief: November 2020

Anchorage Campus

UAA is proud of our long-standing support of military personnel and their families throughout the UAA service area. With two locations on Joint Base Elmendorf/Richardson (JBER), UAA offers courses for active-duty, National Guard and Reserve personnel, spouses, dependents, and Department of Defense (DOD) civilian personnel. For the eleventh year in a row, UAA is a Military Friendly® School, recognizing UAA as a top tier institution with opportunities for military service members and spouses.

UAA Military and Veteran Student Services

Military and Veteran Student Services (MVSS) is dedicated to providing high quality and comprehensive support to military and veteran students and their families by encouraging, promoting and advising students to be successful. The goal of MVSS is to ease the transition from military into college by providing students with the tools needed to succeed while also fostering a receptive, knowledgeable and understanding community within the university. For more information about MVSS resources and events, see the MVSS homepage or visit the MVSS Resource Center in the Student Union, Room 102.

Air Force Master Sergeant and UAA Student Shawn Mackey listens as Professor Eric Murphy reviews material for the final during Psychology of Learning and Cognition (PSY A355) in UAA’s Social Sciences Building. Photo courtesy of UAA University Relations Office.
Air Force Master Sergeant and UAA Student Shawn Mackey listen as Professor Eric Murphy reviews material for the final during Psychology of Learning and Cognition (PSY A355) in UAA’s Social Sciences Building. Photo courtesy of UAA University Relations Office.

Seawolf Boot Camp

Seawolf Boot Camp is a faculty and staff training program designed to familiarize the UAA community with the military and veteran student experience so that UAA to create a military and veteran friendly environment, and available resources. Seawolf Boot Camp participants learn information about military and veteran culture, challenges military and veteran students encounter, VA benefits, how to create a military and veteran friendly environment, and available resources. Participants receive a Seawolf Boot Camp t-shirt, decal, and magnet. The items serve as an incentive to faculty and staff to become better informed on the issues faced by this large student population. The items also signify to students, staff and faculty that the individual displaying them has learned about these student experiences and as a result is better equipped to support and assist military and veteran students.

Veterans Appreciation Week

 Veterans Appreciation Week is an annual standing celebration at UAAsince its inception in 2011. The week in November includes In a variety of events which in past years has included panel discussions on teaching student veterans, panel discussions on student experiences by student veterans, and the National Roll Call event on November 11.  

Veterans Work Here

MVSS provides staff and faculty members who have served with a “Veterans Work Here” sticker to place in their office. This displays what a large portion of the UAA community has worn the uniform and offers student veterans examples of veterans who successfully accomplished their academic goals while transitioning into their civilian careers.
Veterans Work Here Sign
 

Graduate Honor Cords

UAA Chancellor Cathy Sandeen is pleased to offer the Military and Veteran Honor Cord to any graduating active duty, guard/reserve or veteran student. These cords signify the appreciation that UAA feels toward our military and veteran community for their service and sacrifice.


Collaborative Partnerships

Veterans Affairs

UAA works closely with local personnel in Veterans Affairs (VA), the State of Alaska Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA), the DOL, and education officers from the military. This collaboration allows for UAA to stay on the leading edge of trends that affect military and veteran students.

VetSuccess on Campus

The VetSuccess on Campus (VSOC) program, sponsored by the VA, was introduced to UAA in 2012. The VSOC program aims to help veterans, service members and their qualified dependents succeed and thrive through a coordinated delivery of on-campus benefits assistance and counseling, leading to completion of their education and preparing them to enter the labor market in viable careers.

Council of College and Military Educators

The Council of College and Military Educators (CCME) works to provide educational programs and services and to facilitate communication between the membership and the DOD educational support network. UAA representatives annually attend the national CCME conference to exchange ideas and information to better serve the educational pursuits of the UAA military community.

Military and Family Life Consultants

UAA collaborates with and receives services from the Military and Family Life Counseling (MFLC) program. MFLC is a licensed group of professionals who provide situational, problem-solving consultations anonymously and confidentially for students and employees. The group also provides trainings on topics related to the military lifestyle and the stressful situations created by deployments and reintegration.

Student Veterans of UAA

Student Veterans of UAA (SVUAA) is a chartered member of the national organization Student Veterans of America. The SVUAA chapter is highly active and plays an important role in raising awareness about issues facing military and veteran students. SVUAA members have participated in the Center for Advancing Faculty Excellence (CAFÉ) and Seawolf Boot Camp training sessions to help faculty and staff be better prepared to address the needs of military and veteran students. SVUAA activities this year include participating in the Arc of Anchorage Trunk or Treat event and a Spring BBQ.

Military & Veteran Benefits Specialists Alexander Casanova and Makenna Edgington host an information table at Howl Days. Photo courtesy of MVSS.
Military and Veteran Benefits Specialists Alexander Casanova and Makenna Edgington host an information table at Howl Days. Photo courtesy of MVSS.

 


Additional Campus Support Programs

Veterans Student Orientation

New Student Orientation hosts a Veteran Student Orientation session during the summer to facilitate the integration of new students who identify as active duty military, veteran or dependent into the academic, intellectual, and social culture of UAA.

Student Clubs and Greek Life

With about 100 student clubs and fraternity and sorority organizations, student organizations present the opportunity to incorporate the leadership and values of the Armed Forces in their student experience. Clubs like the Seawolf Cadet Club and Student Veterans of UAA offer direct connections to students, faculty and staff with shared experiences and opportunities for military and veteran students to engage with purpose.

Disability Support Services

The Care Team receives reports about students of concern and develops plans to provide support to students by helping remove barriers to students’ progress and linking them to support services both on and off campus. The Care Team Coordinator and Care Team Case Manager are trained in issues and resources impacting military and veteran students, specifically trauma, traumatic brain injury and suicide/depression—destigmatizing seeking help in these areas.

Student Health and Counseling Center

Mental health counselors in the Student Health and Counseling Center (SHCC) are trained to support post-combat veterans in their transition into and through college. The SHCC offers confidential individual counseling appointments as well as physical health appointments and free flu shots for military and veteran students.

Care Team

 The Care Team receives reports about students of concern and develops plans to provide support to students by helping remove barriers to students’ progress and linking them to support services both on and off campus. The Care Team Coordinator and Care Team Case Manager are trained in issues and resources impacting military and veteran students, specifically trauma, traumatic brain injury and suicide/depression—destigmatizing seeking help in these areas.

Career Services

Career Services (CS) supports military and veteran students and alumni through student-centered appointments for resume and cover letter reviews, mock interviews, career exploration, and job search assistance. CS recognizes the valuable skills that military experience provides and assists with translating those skills for civilian positions. CS offers military and veteran students the opportunity to explore thousands of job and internship opportunities with local and national companies through Handshake, the University of Alaska’s career management platform, and network with employers through events including career fairs, panel discussions, career treks, and interviewing events.

U.S. Army soldiers hiking through Alaska winter.
Photo courtesy of the U.S. Army: flickr.com/photos/soldiersmediacenter.

 


Military Credit

Evaluation of Military Credit

UAA follows the guidelines in the American Council on Education (ACE) Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services. This guide identifies military training/courses that are comparable to college training/courses. ACE military training and courses are categorized into four levels: vocational, lower division, upper division and graduate.

UAA accepts 100% of the training/courses within the lower division and upper division levels. In order to ensure that students are not disadvantaged with excessive elective credit, students work with their advisors to request the transfer of specific training/courses. Graduate level training/courses are accepted if listed on a student’s approved graduate studies plan or successfully petitioned to fulfill specific degree requirements. Professional level training/courses are not accepted. Less than one percent of military transcript training/courses that UAA evaluates for transfer are at the vocational level, which UAA does not accept.

Elective credits may be awarded to students who have completed military training/courses in accordance with the ACE Guide. Additionally, credits may be granted for formal service schools and the most recent primary MOS/Rating as recommended in the ACE Guide. For more information, see the UAA Catalog, "Nontraditional Credit Policies: Military Credit."

UAA accepts DSST (formerly DANTES), UExel, and CLEP exams as outlined in the university catalog and evaluates military training for admitted degree-seeking students.

 

Transfer of Military Credit

UAA follows the policies articulated in the Joint Statement on the Transfer and Award of Credit, developed by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO), the American Council on Education (ACE), and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

UAA has entered into an agreement with the U.S. Department of Defense whereby UAA agrees to recognize, accept and award credit where appropriate from the Joint Services Transcript (JST), Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) and the Coast Guard Institute. When processing an individual’s documented educational plan, transcripts from these institutes are considered the official sources of military training and experience documentation that correspond with college credit recommendations.

UAA accepts transfer credit from regionally accredited military institutions, including: U.S. Naval Academy, U.S. Military Academy-West Point, U.S. Coast Guard Academy and U.S. Air Force Academy. UAA maintains a military credit website to better inform students of opportunities for transferring military credits.

What Does Not Transfer

Many courses that transfer in as elective credit may not apply to
specific degree programs. For example, how would the military
college course “Missile Loading” fulfill the requirements for a
UAA history degree? Each degree represents a specific body of
knowledge and/or skill particular to the discipline, and program
requirements are developed to maximize a student’s mastery of
the required body of knowledge. If a transfer course does not
contribute to the body of knowledge needed to complete a specific degree—even if accepted as elective credit by the university—it is not used to meet that degree’s major requirements. These
credits are often interpreted as being “not transferred” or “not
accepted” or “lost” when they are actually accepted as transfer
credit but not applied to a particular major requirement because
they are not applicable to the degree. Students have the option
to petition these credits if they think they can demonstrate
that the credits do, in fact, apply to the body of knowledge of
the degree.

Policies

The following policies are taken from the UAA Catalog, “Academic Standards and Regulations: Course Performance.”

Class Attendance and Absences

Students who receive short-term military orders or obligations are responsible for making advance arrangements with faculty members to enable them to meet course requirements.  Students participating in official intercollegiate activities on behalf of UAA, including but not limited to athletic competitions,debate and performing arts, are responsible for making advance arrangements with faculty members to enable them to meet course requirements. Faculty are encouraged to make reasonable accommodations for such students. In some cases accommodation may not be possible.

Military Students Called to Active Duty or Deployment

Students who are called to active duty or are involuntarily activated, deployed or relocated during an academic term may be able to make arrangements with their faculty members to complete their courses via e-learning. In those cases where this is not possible or desirable, these students are eligible for the 100 percent refund of tuition and fees and a prorated adjustment on housing and meal plans. Returning military students are not required to reapply for admission and are welcomed back as in-state residents for tuition purposes. Military students who return after their admitted catalog expires should meet with an academic advisor for assistance.

 

Financial Support

The Office of Financial Aid (OFA) has several informational videos focused on veterans education benefits through the FATV partnership. These videos can be found at uaa.financialaidtv.com/browse/types/veterans-benefits.

Administration Scholarships

To increase UAA’s ability to more fully benefit aid recipients, including veterans and service members, “Academic Tuition Award/Waiver” funds are no longer restricted to pay only Anchorage campus tuition. The funds have been renamed as “Administration Scholarships” and are now fully payable to student accounts to assist with tuition, course and other student fees, as well as additional expenses related to a student’s Federal Cost of Attendance such as books and supplies, room and board, etc. This allows students receiving tuition benefits from the VA or DOD to receive Administration Scholarships from UAA for either merit or financial need purposes without negatively impacting their service-related tuition benefits.

State Tuition Assistance

OFA works closely with the Education Services Specialists for the Department of Veterans Affairs to administer the State Tuition Assistance Program for members of the Alaska National Guard and Naval Militia. Just over $400,000 is set aside annually by UA to augment existing active duty and veterans benefits for eligible members, supporting their academic goals with reduced debt.

Tuition Assistance

UAA signed the Department of Defense Voluntary Education Partnership Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), which provides overall guidance and policy for provision of education to active duty, guard and reserve soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines as well as their dependents and allows UAA to participate in the Tuition Assistance (TA) program.


Contact

Military and Veteran Student Services

Peter Clemens
Program Director
Student Union 102
Phone: (907) 786-1532
Email: pcclemens@alaska.edu
Dr. Gwendolyn "Brenda" Hoskins
Alaska’s VetSuccess on Campus Coordinator and Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Counselor
Student Union 102
Phone: (907) 433-1014
Email: gwendolyn.hoskins@va.gov

Enrollment Services

Craig Mead
Assistant Director of Admissions
University Center 105
Phone: (907) 786-1467
Email: cimead@alaska.edu

Office of Student Affairs

Bruce Schultz, Ed.D.
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs
Student Union 204
Phone: (907) 786-6108
Email: brschultz@alaska.edu