It has always seemed fitting to me that Veterans’ Day and Thanksgiving are only a few short weeks apart on the calendar. After all, who deserves our thanks more than the committed, selfless men and women that serve in our armed forces? When we walk into a ballot box like we did this past week, worship as we see fit, speak our mind in the public square or just enjoy a host of the other countless freedoms we have as Americans, the service of our veterans should be top of mind. And not only on Veterans’ Day, but throughout the year.
We have always prided ourselves in being a university that is decidedly welcoming to military service members, veteran and their families here at William Woods. According to U.S. News and World Report, cost, support and career services, and flexibility are among the most important factors in decision-making on a school for veterans, which are all a big part of the William Woods experience. Our online and part-time study options, as well as the ability to start and stop as needed, provide that flexibility that veterans need to finish their degrees as their schedules allow, described here: https://www.williamwoods.edu/admissions/active_military_and_veterans/index.html
There are several prominent examples of our support for the military. In 2018 we established of the Show-Me Guard Officer Leadership Development (GOLD) program at William Woods, becoming the first-ever private university in Missouri to host this prestigious program. We have been thrilled to see the quality young men and women added to our already outstanding campus community through this program these past four years, providing a new generation of leaders to the Missouri National Guard in the form of trained, commissioned officers. And make no mistake, our program is one of Missouri’s best; in 2021, the WWU Show-Me Gold program was awarded with the “Tip Of The Spear” designation as the top performing GOLD program in the state of Missouri by the Recruiting and Retention Battalion of the Missouri National Guard.
We also take great pride in another military-oriented program we offer here at The Woods, the Triumph Program. Triumph is a partnership between WWU and Missouri Military Academy in which MMA students are able to take college courses and earn college credit at William Woods while still high school students. We began this partnership in 2019 and enrollment in it has steadily increased since its inception.
Indeed, our support for our nation’s military, including active duty soldiers, reserves and veterans, was once again noted in 2022 when William Woods received its annual designation as an official Military Friendly University, one of just 10 four-year institutions in Missouri to earn the honor: https://news.williamwoods.edu/william-woods-maintains-its-designation-as-an-official-military-friendly-university%ef%bf%bc/
It was a 104 years ago this week that the guns fell silent across Europe, bringing to a close the greatest war the world had ever seen to that point. We as a nation have paused to remember and thank all of our veterans for their service and sacrifice around this time every November since then. We will always be a campus that is as welcoming as possible to those who wear our nation’s uniform, and we hope many of these dedicated Americans will increasingly consider William Woods when choosing a college.
Because after all, we are all forever in their debt.
Jeremy Moreland, Ph.D.
William Woods University