GVSU among nation's top schools for military spouses

The July-August issue of Military Spouse Magazine ranks Grand Valley among the top schools in the nation for military spouses.

The Military Spouse Friendly School designation is a result of the university’s efforts to create sustainable and meaningful education paths for military spouses. This is the first time GVSU has been recognized with this distinction.

The recognition validates the work of the university’s veterans community and its leadership to provide an inclusive and welcoming environment for military-connected students and their families, said Jill Hinton Wolfe, GVSU’s military and veterans resource manager.

“Being included in this list is important for us because we work hard to show the families of our veterans that they are part of our Grand Valley family,” said Wolfe.

Wolfe said the recent creation of on-campus veterans lounges on the Allendale campus and the Pew Grand Rapids Campus, programs like GVSU’s Veterans Promise and support services to help connect veterans and their families with vital resources are a few of the ways Grand Valley works to support veterans.

Those connections have helped Yelena Klawon, a third-year Health Communications major whose husband, Lt. Col. Scott Klawon, is on active duty this summer with the Army Reserve.

“When you’re in the thick of it, and you’re a mom with two little kids, and my husband goes away all the time, it’s just great to see there’s other people who care,” Klawon said.

Schools on the Military Spouse Friendly Schools list have constructed their admissions, retention, career counseling, and mentoring programs to help alleviate the difficulties faced by military spouses and provided flexible-learning options and degree-continuation programs that are designed to accommodate deployments and relocation.

To determine the list, the Military Friendly team collects and processes data that encourages schools to develop and sustain strong programs for military spouses on campus.

Grand Valley has been recognized as a Top 5 Veteran-Friendly School in Michigan by Viqtory Media, a Best for Vets College by the Military Times, and Gold Star Status by the Michigan Veterans Affairs agency.