Twenty-seven-year-old Chris Holland served one tour in Iraq and three in Germany as a specialist in the U.S. Army before deciding to further his education.
“The Army gave me the opportunity to go to college,” he said. “I knew I had to use this opportunity while I had it.”
Holland, of Western Hills, is now a junior studying criminology and psychology at the College of Mount St. Joseph. The Mount was recently named a ‘Military Friendly’ school by G.I. Jobs, a national military magazine. The annual survey looks for colleges that recruit and retain students with military experience and offer scholarships, veterans’ clubs and other opportunities.
“The Mount is extremely veteran friendly,” Holland said. “I transferred to the Mount because I wanted smaller class sizes and more personal attention from my professors. That’s what really drew me to the Mount.”
The Mount offers several opportunities for veterans to become active within the college. Veterans in Communities (VIC) is one of these groups that offers veterans and non-veterans an opportunity to join and help support veterans at the college and in the community. VIC hosts events such as the Boot Drive which collects proceeds to donate to charities, such as the Delhi Veterans Association. VIC also offers benefits to veterans at the Mount and the community, such as arranging for health screenings and free flu shots.
“One of the Mount’s primary values is leadership and those who have served our country are noble examples of the excellent students we are proud to have on campus,” said Tony Aretz, Ph.D., president of the Mount and a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel.
The Mount will hold its first Challenge Coin ceremony in October, giving out tokens to Mount alumni who served in the military. In addition, VIC will form a team to run a 5K for the Disabled Veterans Association at Yeatman’s Cove in November.
“It’s no wonder the Mount is ranked among the top 20 percent of schools for being military friendly,” Holland said. “It’s very evident they care about veterans.”