In 1944, the G.I. Bill was signed into law by President Roosevelt, providing those who had served in WWII with an array of benefits, including tuition payments. Since then, the bill has helped millions of veterans afford to attend college — but many still struggle to transition to civilian life.
Fortunately, some of the best schools in the country have made a commitment to supporting veterans. U.S. News and World Report found that these highly ranked schools were all certified by the G.I. Bill, participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program (which provides additional funds for education beyond the G.I. Bill benefit) or charge in-state tuition to out-of-state veterans. Each enrolls at least 20 veterans and active service members. U.S. News then ranked these universities based on their 2018 best university rankings.
Read on to see the 10 best universities for veterans:
New York, New York
Total enrollment: 50,550
Tuition and fees (2017-2018): $50,464
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Total enrollment: 44,718
In-state tuition and fees (2017-2018): $14,826
Out-of-state tuition and fees (2017-2018): $47,476
Total enrollment: 13,961
Tuition and fees (2017-2018): $53,910
Total enrollment: 23,898
In-state tuition and fees (2017-2018): $16,146
Out-of-state tuition and fees (2017-2018): $46,975
Los Angeles, California
Total enrollment: 44,947
In-state tuition and fees (2017-2018): $13,256
Out-of-state tuition and fees (2017-2018): $41,270
Los Angeles, California
Total enrollment: 43,871
Tuition and fees (2017-2018): $54,259
Washington, District of Columbia
Total enrollment: 18,525
Tuition and fees (2017-2018): $52,300
Ithaca, New York
Total enrollment: 22,319
Tuition and fees (2017-2018): $52,853
Hanover, New Hampshire
Total enrollment: 6,409
Tuition and fees (2017-2018): $52,950
Total enrollment: 16,914
Tuition and fees (2017-2018): $49,617
Topping the list is Stanford University. The California school was ranked fifth overall on U.S. New's list of the best universities for 2018. "Veteran applicants add a highly valued voice to the undergraduate community," says the Stanford admissions website. "The life experience that students bring from previous career paths or military service provides a unique perspective in discussion seminars, student groups and campus activities."
UCLA was the highest ranking public university on the list. At UCLA, veterans from across the country are eligible to pay in-state tuition, the UCLA medical school provides care to 3,000 patients at the VA every year and in 2016 UCLA made a commitment to provide $1.15 million a year to veterans programs and services.
Unfortunately, graduation rates for veteran students remain far below the national average. The Student Veterans of America surveyed 788,915 former military service members who pursued some kind of postsecondary credential and found that only 51.7 percent received that credential within 10 years.
Community and support may help some veterans in overcoming these challenges. Jessamy Buban, U.S. Marine Corps Veteran and a UCLA Anderson school of Management alum says, "It is really nice to know that in essentially every class, I've got another veteran in there with me."
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