The Vermont Community Foundation has awarded Johnson State College a $10,000 “innovations and collaborations” grant to support a program to help military students and their families succeed in college. The grant will support these activities:
• JSC will collaborate with the Community College of Vermont to offer for-credit “Combat to Classroom” courses to help military students adjust to college and to provide faculty training on best practices for working with military students.
• The college will revamp the admissions process for military students and create materials specifically for veterans and military students.
• JSC will sponsor a military student club and community-wide events to recognize the service of military students and veterans.
• The college will continue as an outpost of the South Burlington Vet Center, providing counseling and information about veterans’ benefits to students and area community members who otherwise would have to travel to centers in Burlington or White River Junction.
Nationwide, more than 80 percent of military students who enroll in college drop out during their first year. The “Combat to Classroom” classes and related initiatives for military students at JSC are designed to reverse this trend.
More than 60 nonprofit organizations applied to the Vermont Community Foundation for an “innovations and collaborations” grant in the first round of awards for 2013; JSC’s proposal was one of 11 selected for funding. The grants support collaborative efforts by nonprofit organizations to develop innovative solutions to community needs.
JSC students and staff launched several initiatives to serve military students and their families this year. In particular, efforts by senior Shane Bouthillette, outgoing president of JSC’s Student Government Association and a member of the Vermont National Guard, led to his appointment by Governor Shumlin to a two-year term on the state’s Veterans Advisory Council.
In addition, the college offers counseling services to area veterans on Fridays through its partnership with the South Burlington Vet Center, and the JSC Admissions Office has a veterans representative who works with military students and veterans.
For more information on JSC programs and services for veterans and military students, contact Dean of Students David Bergh at 802-635-1200.