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Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Claremont Graduate University (CGU) has received a $50,000 grant from The Ahmanson Foundation to recruit, retain, and educate the university's student veteran population.
CGU will use the bulk of the Ahmanson Veteran Scholarship Initiative grant to fund scholarships for student veterans with the rest going toward veteran-related campus programs and events.
"Student veterans have my deep and profound respect and I am committed to ensuring that CGU is a place where they can succeed," President Deborah Freund said. "We are deeply grateful to The Ahmanson Foundation for giving these students the support they so richly deserve."
Colleges and universities across the country have seen a surge in student veteran enrollment as many of the 2 million service members who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan have returned home. Such a heavy influx of student veterans has not been seen since World War II, according to a report led by the American Council on Education. The numbers are expected to spike in the coming years with the continued drawdown of combat troops overseas.
Many of these veterans are taking advantage of the Post-9/11 Veterans Assistance Act of 2008, also known as the Post-9/11 GI Bill, to further their education and advance their career prospects in today’s uncertain economic climate.
CGU currently has about 30 student veterans pursing master’s and doctoral degrees. Fred Siegel, vice provost for student and enrollment services and dean of students, said he believes that number could double in the next two years.
These students are a tremendous asset to the university because of the diversity of experience and thought they bring to the classroom, Siegel said. However, they also have needs that are distinct from those of other students as they navigate the sometimes challenging transition from military to college life.
Siegel said veterans will find the assistance they need at CGU to overcome the traditional obstacles they face.
"Our relatively small size allows us to give these students the individual attention they deserve, be it in the classroom, with financial aid, or generally adjusting to civilian life" Siegel said. "We're also building an environment at CGU where student veterans can connect with each other, and I'm very proud of that."
The Ahmanson Foundation was incorporated in 1952 as a private foundation with initial funding from financier Howard F. Ahmanson and his wife, Dorothy Grannis Ahmanson. The Ahmanson Foundation serves Los Angeles County by funding cultural projects in the arts and humanities, education at all levels, health care, programs related to homelessness and underserved populations as well as a wide range of human services. By supporting non-profit organizations that demonstrate sound fiscal management, efficient operation, and program integrity, the foundation strives to enhance the quality of life and cultural legacy of the Los Angeles community.
About Claremont Graduate University
Founded in 1925, Claremont Graduate University is the graduate university of the Claremont Colleges. Our five academic schools conduct leading-edge research and award masters and doctoral degrees in 24 disciplines. Because the world’s problems are not simple nor easily defined, diverse faculty and students research and study across the traditional discipline boundaries to create new and practical solutions for the major problems plaguing our world. A Southern California based graduate school devoted entirely to graduate research and study, CGU boasts a low student-to-faculty ratio.
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