If Military Decreases Tuition Assistance, Excelsior College Will Drop Tuition

Excelsior College

Excelsior CollegeExcelsior College Assures Students Using Military Tuition Assistance (TA) Program “We’ve got your back

If proposed cuts in the military tuition assistance program happen, Excelsior’s students will not have to make up the difference

Albany, N.Y. (November 1, 2011) – The Department of Defense (DoD) may be considering reducing the amount of tuition assistance it provides to military personnel, cuts that could have a severe impact on the finances and budgets of military families across the nation. For students in the military at Excelsior College, one of the nation’s largest private colleges, this won’t be a problem. The distance learning institution has announced that if federal budget constraints force a decrease in military Tuition Assistance, Excelsior will adopt those lower rates to avoid passing on costs to students. 

“Our commitment to serving our nation’s men and women in uniform is longstanding and remains solid in the face of the uncertain future of the tuition assistance program offered by the military,” said Dr. John F. Ebersole, president of Excelsior College, a regionally accredited, nonprofit college located in Albany, NY. “Nearly 30 percent of our 32,000 students are on active duty or in the reserves and National Guard. We don’t now, and we won’t in the future, ask service members to pay tuition costs above and beyond what military TA will allow.”

Discussions have been taking place at the federal level over whether to reduce the Tuition Assistance cap from its present level of $250 per credit. The uniform rate was implemented in 2002 across all branches of the military, but the future of that rate is now uncertain as talks over the defense budget persist.

“No one knows for sure what will happen in the budget discussions in Washington, but we can promise our military students that through fiscal year 2012 we will accept whatever per credit rate the military’s tuition assistance rate provides,” added Ebersole, a retired Coast Guard commander. In a video message to Excelsior’s military students, Ebersole told them that “we’ve got your back,” assuring them that they will not be asked to make up any difference in tuition cost.

In the 2010-2011 academic year, more than 1,700 graduates – 31 percent the graduating class at Excelsior – were members of the U.S. military. During its 40 years, more than 60,000 service members have earned their degrees from the college, many of whom pursued their education while deployed in war zones. Excelsior has education partnership agreements with all branches of the U.S. military, and the College is repeatedly designated as a top military-friendly college.

Across the military branches, some 350,000 service members used TA funds to take 1.1 million courses in 2010, at a cost of $641 million, according to a report published earlier this year in Navy Times.

Military personnel seeking further information may contact military@excelsior.edu“>military@excelsior.edu, or call 877-542-4134.

About Excelsior

Excelsior College http://www.excelsior.edu is a regionally accredited, nonprofit distance learning institution that focuses on removing obstacles to the educational goals of adult learners. Founded in 1971 and located in Albany, NY, Excelsior is a proven leader in the assessment and validation of student knowledge. It offers more efficient and affordable access to degree completion through multiple avenues: its own online courses and college-level proficiency examinations, and the acceptance in transfer of credit from other colleges and universities as well as recognized corporate and military training programs. Excelsior College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.