Military Times ranks Campbell the top private university in N.C. for veterans

BUIES CREEK — Campbell University was the only four-year private college or university in North Carolina ranked in The Military Times’ “Best for Vets: Colleges 2015,” a list of the 100 best schools in the U.S. for veterans released Nov. 10.

Nationally, Campbell ranked No. 88 among both public and private schools in the U.S. and No. 15 among private universities.

Only two other four-year colleges or universities in North Carolina were ranked among The Military Times’ Top 100: the University of North Carolina at Pembroke (No. 72) and Western Carolina University (No. 89), both public universities part of the University of North Carolina System. No other private school in the state was ranked.

“I am proud to be part of Campbell University, which supports veterans and their family members and helps them attain their college education,” said Joy Cox, director of veteran’s affairs at Campbell. “We also alleviate some anxiety of funding, because we participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program.  I am especially proud that our Veterans Club members now have a specific place to meet to study, talk and relax with each other.”

The Military Times, which Gannett Government Media publishes, evaluated the schools considered for “Best for Vets” list on five criteria: university culture, academic quality, student support, academic policies and financial aid. The most weight was given to university culture and student support.

“We factor in what is, to our knowledge, the most detailed school-by-school data on veteran students’ academic success anywhere, including graduation, retention, persistence and course completion rates,” said Amanda Miller, editor of “Bets for Vets.” Two years ago, only 11 percent of the hundreds of schools surveyed could provide that level of detail. This year, that figure is up to 45 percent. “By recognizing only the schools that do the most, we believe we’re helping to raise the bar in veteran student services.”

Campbell offers educational programs for military personnel and veterans on its main campus in Buies Creek, through its online programs, and on extended campuses at Camp Lejeune, Fort Liberty/Pope Field and the Research Triangle Park. These programs provide flexibility to military professionals who are deployed or stationed overseas and their spouses.

Each campus has a VA certifying official who serves as a liaison between veteran students and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Several offices across the university also work together to assist military personnel and veterans, and a Student Veterans Club supports students with military ties.

In addition, the university is a member of the Yellow Ribbon Program, which helps veteran students incur less out of pocket expense when paying for tuition and fees. Campbell also provides tuition assistance and scholarships to veterans and to active duty, National Guard, and Reserve personnel.

Based on the 2014 enrollment data submitted to The Military Times, Campbell enrolls 1,327 students who receive benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Defense.

The “Best for Vets” ranking is the second time in recent months that Campbell has been recognized for its ties to the military. In September, the university was named to Victory Media’s coveted Military Friendly Schools list for the fifth time. The Military Friendly list honors the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools in the United States that are doing the most to embrace U.S. military service members, veterans and spouses and ensure their success on campus.