In recognition of the networks of support Vassar has been providing, a national veterans’ group has awarded the College a 2023-2024 Military Friendly School designation. Vassar was named one of the Top 10 institutions in the country in the “Private Colleges Not Offering a Doctorate” category. More than 1,800 schools participated in this year’s survey conducted by Viqtory, a veteran-owned marketing business. Survey results and ratings are determined by combining an institution’s survey scores with the assessment of the institution’s ability to meet thresholds for student retention, graduation, job placement, loan repayment, and loan default rates.
Most of the veterans currently on campus were recruited through the Posse Veterans Program, which conducts nationwide college recruitment of veterans and matches them with participating institutions. Vassar recently ended its affiliation with the Posse Foundation and created the Vassar Veterans Initiative (VVI), overseen by a full-time administrator, former College Registrar Colleen Mallet. Mallet, who serves as Director of Veteran Students Outreach and Support, said VVI has enabled the College to continue and expand its services to its veterans. “I’m now able to devote 100 percent of my time to recruiting and supporting veteran students,” Mallet said.
Throughout the school year, Mallet has worked with the veterans to organize a number of events and programs that raise awareness about issues affecting veterans on campus and elsewhere. In March, the College sponsored two veterans, Vassar Veterans Association President Brittany Andrade ’24 and Seth Jenkins ’26, to attend a conference in Washington, DC, hosted by the Student Veterans of America. The student vets met with congressional staffers and others in the federal government to discuss issues affecting veterans on college campuses, and had the opportunity to sit in with the Committee for Veteran Affairs as the members were briefed on the needs of the veteran community.—Larry Hertz