Camarillo, Calif., Oct. 12, 2011 – CSU Channel Islands (CI) has been named a “Military Friendly School” in an annual list that highlights colleges and universities who are doing their best to recruit, retain and support military veterans. The ranking, which resulted from a survey of more than 8,000 institutions nationwide, places CI in the top 20 percent of all colleges and universities for its military friendliness. The annual list is compiled by G.I. Jobs magazine, a respected, veteran-owned publisher that targets members of the military.

“This is a great honor for CI to achieve this recognition at such an early stage in our growth as a university,” said Jay Derrico, Veterans Affairs Program Coordinator at CI. “It validates that we’re already doing a good job of embracing military students and veterans – and we’re just getting started.”

In its 2012 listing, G.I. Jobs commends CI for practices such as offering veterans priority registration and transferring help, assistance with G.I. Bill benefits, a Vet 2 Vet mentoring program, two student organizations, customized orientation and academic advising sessions, a veteran-oriented workshop series, a resume-writing service, and a campus Veterans Resource Center where veterans can study, socialize and meet with advisors.

The G.I. Jobs survey analyzed universities’ policies, programs and services for military friendliness and also sought input from currently enrolled veterans and service members. “The Military Friendly Schools designation is the result of an arduous survey process that takes into account both effort (policies) and results (various enrollment and graduation rates),” said Sean Collins, Senior Brand Manager at G.I. Jobs. “Earning the Military Friendly Schools moniker is recognition that CSU Channel Islands’ policies and results are best of breed.”

Currently, 171 students at CI are veterans, members of the military, or their survivors or dependents – approximately 3 percent of the total student body. River Rose, a nursing student who retired from the Navy after 24 years as a sonar technician, said CI’s “Military Friendly” designation was well-deserved. “Long before I even set foot on the campus, the people at CI were reaching out to me and making me feel welcome,” Rose, 50, said. “They work hard to foster a caring network and promote the awareness and development of their veterans. Not only do they care, but they’re also extremely efficient at working to ensure our benefits run smoothly with the Veterans Affairs office.”

According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, more than 800,000 veterans took advantage of the G.I. Bill to continue their education in 2010 – a 42 percent increase over the previous year. As a growing number of veterans return to school, favorable ratings from G.I. Jobs’ “Military Friendly Schools” will be helpful to the institutions they recognize as well as to service members seeking a college, said Michael Dakduk, Executive Director for the Student Veterans of America. “The Military Friendly Schools list is the go-to resource for prospective student veterans searching for schools that provide the greatest opportunity and overall experience,” Dakduk said. “Nothing is more compelling than actual feedback from current student veterans.”

For more information on CI’s veterans affairs programs, contact Jay Derrico, Veterans Affairs Program Coordinator, at 805-437-2745 or jay.derrico@csuci.edu.

To view the 2012 Military Friendly Schools list by G.I. Jobs, visit http://www.militaryfriendlyschools.com.

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About California State University Channel Islands
CSU Channel Islands (CI) is the only four-year, public university in Ventura County and is known for its interdisciplinary, multicultural and international perspectives, and its emphasis on experiential and service learning. CI's strong academic programs focus on business, sciences, liberal studies, teaching credentials, and innovative master's degrees. Students benefit from individual attention, up-to-date technology, and classroom instruction augmented by outstanding faculty research. CI has been designated by the U.S. Department of Education as a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is committed to serving students of all backgrounds from the region and beyond. Connect with and learn more about CI by visiting CI's Social Media.