Melissa Krouse spent five years as a medic in the U.S. Navy before choosing to attend Saint Louis University and major in accounting. When she entered the Navy, she had aspirations of work in medicine, but serving in military positions related to human resources and management changed her mind and she began taking business classes. Those classes inspired a love of accounting, leading her to pursue a bachelor's degree at Saint Louis University's John Cook School of Business.
Saint Louis University is proud to support more than 250 students who are affiliated with the armed forces as veterans, active-duty service members, reservists or their dependents. For four consecutive years, G.I. Jobs has ranked SLU as a military friendly school, putting it among the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools nationwide that support men and women in uniform.
After Melissa completed her associate of arts degree through the Navy College Program, there were a few factors that motivated her to apply to continue her education at Saint Louis University.
"I chose SLU because of its overall reputation for excellence, small class sizes and its ranking as a top business school," she said. "Additionally, SLU was, and still is, a participating member of the Yellow Ribbon program. "
The Yellow Ribbon GI Education Enhancement Program is an agreement between colleges and universities and the VA to share the burden of the remaining educational costs that exceed the Post-9/11 GI Bill's annual benefits cap for private school tuition. The program also awards credit for military service. SLU has participated in the program since the bill went into effect in 2009.
"This allows me to go to SLU without needing student loans, grants or scholarships," Melissa added. "After applying to SLU, I was also pleased to learn that they accepted practically all of my transfer credits that I had earned from public colleges and universities while on active duty."
Going from military to student life can be difficult, but Melissa found that the staff at SLU, particularly Jennifer Matteson, coordinator of academic certification at SLU, were ready to help her navigate the transition.
"[Jennifer] is always available to help, and more often than not she already has the answers to my questions," Melissa said.
Jennifer also assisted SLU's student veterans in establishing a chapter of the Student Veterans Association, which provides a social network and support structure for veterans transitioning to academic life and civilian careers.
Melissa said her favorite part of her experience at SLU has been the encouragement by her professors to ask questions, challenge ideas and think for herself. "Much like my decision to join the military, my decision to choose SLU has proven to be exceedingly rewarding," she said. "Thanks to Saint Louis University's support and quality education, I look forward to the next stage of my life as a college graduate."
To learn more about SLU's benefits and resources for military and veteran students, visit military.slu.edu.