Warrior-Scholar Project Partners with Columbia University to Help Veterans Prepare for Higher Ed

After being virtual for two years, the transformative summer boot camp returns in person to Columbia's campus for the first time since 2019.
NEW YORK - Aug. 9, 2022 - PRLog -- Each year, approximately 115,000 veterans separate from the military to pursue higher education as a critical next step in landing a fulfilling career after service. While this is an exciting new chapter, transitioning from military life to a college student can be challenging, especially after years spent away from the classroom. In an effort to help veterans acclimate to civilian life and successfully earn undergraduate degrees, national nonprofit Warrior-Scholar Project (WSP) has partnered with Columbia University to host a Humanities Academic Boot Camp from August 6-13. The intensive curriculum is designed to help veterans prepare for an academic environment while learning strategies to become better students.

Participants have the opportunity to learn from University faculty, receive mentoring from fellow student veterans, and begin to adjust to a formal learning environment. A recent study by the D'Aniello Institute for Veterans and Military Families found that WSP is the only national program of its kind dedicated to veterans that not only provides targeted support for academic success, but also improves social connection and relationships with both faculty and nonveteran students.

"Columbia University is deeply committed to broadening access to education, and we are glad to help bridge the transition from military life to college," said Julie Kornfeld, Vice Provost for Academic Programs. "The successes of our Warrior-Scholar Project participants are a point of pride for us and we are delighted to be partners in this program."

This is the fifth year Columbia has partnered with WSP, bolstering the school's reach to veterans. Support from Columbia University and investments made by foundations, corporations, and private donors cover the entire cost of the program for participants, including an accessibility stipend of up to $500 for travel, child care, and other expenses. Since the partnership began, 54 veterans have attended the WSP-Columbia Academic Boot Camp.

"There is no other program out there that equips student veterans for success that compares with Warrior-Scholar Project. For 10 years, we have worked with world-class faculty, veteran mentors, and university administrators to make the WSP impact come to life," said Ryan Pavel, CEO of WSP. "Our program is truly transformative—90 percent of our alumni have completed or are on track to earn their undergraduate degrees, an increase of 25 percent over the national veteran average."

WSP launched its first boot camp at Yale University in 2012 with nine participants. Since then, the program has expanded to 24 of America's top schools and has helped nearly 2,000 veterans get a head start in higher education.

To learn more, visit the Columbia University School of General Studies website (https://www.gs.columbia.edu/news/warrior-scholar-project-...).

Christina Gray
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