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Military Student Services Assessment Practices. May 2011. Military Times Edge study. NIU Ranked #49. 2010 Military Times EDGE magazine Evaluation criteria used: Financial assistance Academic flexibility Campus culture Support services . CAS Standards.

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Military Student Services Assessment Practices


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    1. Military Student ServicesAssessment Practices May 2011

    2. Military Times Edge study NIU Ranked #49 • 2010 Military Times EDGE magazine • Evaluation criteria used: • Financial assistance • Academic flexibility • Campus culture • Support services

    3. CAS Standards Veterans and Military Programs and Services (VMPS) 14 parts (e.g., Mission, programs, human resources, ethics, leadership)

    4. MSS Assessment • Survey – created, distributed, and analyzed by students in CAHE 572 • Conducted by Sharon Anderson, Amy Buhrow, & Richard Mitchell • MSS 2011 benchmarking study • Conducted by MSS staff

    5. CAHE 572 Assessment • 146 (26% response rate) took the survey • Needs Analysis - surveyed Fall 2010 population of 552 veterans & active military students

    6. Demographic data • Mean age 32 (n=129) • 88% white (n=118); 6.5% Latino/a (n = 9) • 46% (n=62)have one or more children • 26% (n=33) reside in DeKalb • 55% (n=70) live more than 25 miles from DeKalb • 61% (n=89) undergraduates • 77%(n=105) transfer students

    7. Demographic data cont. • *Only 2 were deployed while a student at NIU • Deployment status (n=134) • 93% have been deployed (n=125) • 60% were deployed (n=79) to combat theatre

    8. Why NIU? • Reasons for choosing NIU • 75% (n=109) indicated location • 38% (n=56) indicated specific program/major • 34% (n=51) indicated cost • 21% (n=30) indicated veteran-friendly campus

    9. Benefits & Challenges Use of Benefits 71% (n=97) use GI Bill benefits 66% (n=90) use IVG/ING Biggest college-related challenge 40%(n=38) Finding balance – (e.g. family, education, commuting, and working) 25% (n=24) Financial issues 25% (n= 24) Adjusting to college life (e.g., studying, immature students, socially connecting) 18% (n=17) Interpersonal communication challenges

    10. Campus Services • 93% (n=127) found NIU to be a “veteran- friendly” campus • 85% (n=123) were completely satisfied or satisfied with services and support at NIU. • Most satisfied • Scholarships, tuition waivers (n=118) • Financial aid/benefits processing (n=130) • Least satisfied • Employment assistance (n=40) • Housing assistance (n=39)

    11. Military Student Needs 55% (n=44) of students deployed indicated that Mental Health Services were very or somewhat important 53% (n=42) of students deployed indicated that Physical Disability Services were very or somewhat important 36% (n=29) of those who had been deployed to combat theatre indicated that opportunities to connect to veteranswere very or somewhat important

    12. Veterans club • 75% were aware of NIU’s Veterans club • 13% (n=19) attended a meeting • 11% (n=17) expressed interest in attending • Reasons having not attended included: • Too busy, no time (39) • Off-campus/commuter student (20) • I don’t know where they meet, or never been contacted by them (23)

    13. Programmatic Services • Top three areas of interest for programs (n=107) • 65% (n=69) Educational Benefits • 50% (n= 53) Resume Development • 40% (n=43) Career Advisement

    14. Programmatic Services cont. • Mentoring program • 52% (n=41) of veteran’s deployed (n=79) indicated a military student mentoring program is very or somewhat important • Women’s group • 37% (n=51) very or somewhat important to have a women’s specific group • 76% (n=22) of WOMEN veterans felt it is very or somewhat important to have a women’s specific group

    15. Comparison to Campus Population CAHE 572 Study (136) • 88% (118) white • 79% (104) male • 70% (96) full-time • 61% (89) undergrads • Mean age =32 (134) Campus IR Statistics (547) 74% (405) white 81% (443) male 72% (396) full-time 72% (395) undergrads Mean age = 30 (547)

    16. Benchmarking Study

    17. Benchmarking Process • Identified 18 institutions to benchmark with using the following criteria: • Ranked in the top 50 by Military Times Edge as a “Veteran Friendly” institution • Similar in size/scope to NIU (~24,000 students) • Nationally known for strong veteran services • Recognized in the state/MAC for strong veteran services

    18. Developed Areas to Benchmark • 23areas were identified by staff • Institutional/Veteran enrollment data (number of veterans, SOC, IVG) • Service-related data (orientations, seminar classes, etc) • Veteran office data (number of employees, funding, space, mission, etc)

    19. Findings - Enrollment 61%(n=11) institutions are SOC affiliated institutions 55.5% (n =10) institutions serve less than 1,000 veterans 10 institutions reported number of veteran’s using Post 9/11 GI Bill ranging from 132 – 650. Average is 473.

    20. Findings – Services 100% (n=18) of institutions provide veteran-specific programs (workshops, mental health outreach, etc) 44% (n=8) of institutions provide some type of social programs designed to help veterans connect to each other 67% (n=12) of institutions have at least something during orientation for veterans specifically 39%(n=7) of institutions hold a seminar for veterans

    21. Findings – Veteran’s office 100%(n=18) of institutions have an office for their services 61% (n=11) of institutions have a space for their VA Representative 61% (n=11) of institutions have a transition staff 28%(n=5) of institutions have some sort of recruitment mission 39% (n=7) of institutions provide some type of family services

    22. Major Themes 17 institutions have strong relationships with veteran clubs (e.g., University of Arizona has their veteran’s club provide most of their programs) Two institutions have developed models for programmatic services for uniformity and assessment (e.g., Kent State University & Arkansas State University)

    23. Major Themes All institutions used e-mail to communicate with veterans (news, information, events) At least 67% used Facebook to communicate with veteran students All have a web presence to communicate specific veteran information.

    24. Major Themes All institutions have created an office specifically for veteran services. Most are in the initial stages of creating or broadening their veteran services beyond providing educational benefits Many are exploring offering similar programmatic services (e.g. women’s group, mentoring, veteran honor societies)

    25. Next Steps • Data from the survey suggest: • Create a women’s veteran group (Annual Priority) • Develop a mentoring program (Annual Priority) • Develop a programming model that largely focuses programming for veteran students who are non-traditional, off-campus, and parents

    26. Next Steps • Data from the benchmarking study suggest: • Explore becoming a SOC affiliated institution • Strengthen relationship with the Veteran’s club (e.g., hiring veteran work study who are members, collaborative programming) • Possibly offer family services and have staff focus on transition of veterans

    27. Questions The End