The number of veterans deciding to start or return to college continues to rise as the Iraq and Afghanistan wars wind down and more military personnel fulfill their service obligations and return to civilian status. The ranks of adult learners, those classified as at least 24 years old, also are expanding as more displaced workers look for a career change or seek additional education.
To help nontraditional students navigate the many challenges associated with the higher education decision, an information session is set for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 13, in the Conference Center at Penn State New Kensington. The Veterans/Adult Learners Open House provides prospective nontraditional students with information on the various certificate, associate and baccalaureate degrees offered at the campus. The sessions include tips on how to finance a Penn State education.
There are numerous academic options available to veterans and adults, including: selecting from more than 200 noncredit, certificate and degree programs; choosing full- or part-time status; and scheduling day or evening classes. The enrollment management staff at the campus will be on-hand to assist prospective students with application forms. The $50 application fee will be waived during the open house.
Veterans and adult learners, who comprise approximately 31 percent of the Penn State New Kensington student population, have their own space on the campus at the Adult Learner Resource Center and Lounge, which is open from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. seven days a week. The lounge includes a small library of resource books, coffee maker, refrigerator, microwave, a computer and printer, white board, table and chairs for small group study and comfortable chairs for relaxation. Penn State New Kensington strives to support these students in reaching their academic goals while maintaining a healthy life balance.
The catalyst for veterans matriculating at the campus is the Post-9/11 GI-Bill that provides financial support for education and housing. Under the bill's Yellow Ribbon program, veterans who served on active duty since Sept. 11, 2001, are entitled to educational benefits through the Veterans Administration.
For more information or to reserve a spot at the open house, call 724-334-LION or 888-968-PAWS.