Campus Life

UWF named 2017 Best for Vets college by Military Times

For the third time, the University of West Florida has received recognition as a “Best for Vets” college by Military Times, a national publication for service members and their families. UWF came in at No. 33 in the 2017 rankings of all four-year schools.

This designation comes a few weeks after the five-year anniversary of the UWF Military and Veterans Resource Center—a one-stop shop, providing guidance in navigating University, state and federal resources and assisting military and veteran students as they make the transition from military to civilian life.

“The support provided by the MVRC staff to our military affiliated students is a direct result of the great support and relationships shared with all of the departments on campus,” said Marc Churchwell, MVRC director. “I don’t believe there is a single department or office we haven’t worked with or relied on in some capacity.”

Best for Vets: Colleges 2017 evaluates the many factors that help make colleges and universities a good fit for service members, military veterans and their families. The eighth annual rankings factor in the results of Military Times’ comprehensive school-by-school survey of veteran and military student offerings and rates of academic achievement. More than 500 colleges institutions took part in the 2016 survey.

“We work hard to provide the highest level of customer service to our veterans and families, with the ultimate goal being their academic success,” Churchwell said. “To be recognized by an organization as prestigious as Military Times tells us we are doing it right. It provides a level of confidence to our veterans knowing that we have been evaluated and given a ‘seal of approval’ for support services for veterans and their families.”

Since it opened in 2011, the Center has continued to progress and expand. Its many achievements include creating a Mentoring and Counseling Program, which Churchwell credits for retaining more students; opening an office at UWF Emerald Coast; awarding scholarships annually to military students and their dependents; and being selected as one of five higher education institutions to administer and deliver the Veterans Florida Entrepreneurship Program, a new entrepreneurial training initiative for veterans in Florida seeking to start their own businesses.

“UWF has been and continues to make dedicated efforts to support our military affiliated students,” Churchwell said. “It is not just a catch phrase on a marketing sign —UWF really does care and is truly supportive of active duty military, veterans and their families.”

For the full Best for Vets: Colleges 2017 rankings, visit the Military Times website. To learn more about the UWF Military and Veterans Resource Center, visit