Clark State awarded for support of military-connected students

Members of the Military Order of the Purple Heart salute as “Taps” is played during a ceremony in 2015 designating Clark State Community College as a Purple Heart Campus. Clark State is the first college in the state to receive the designation. Bill Lackey/Staff

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Members of the Military Order of the Purple Heart salute as “Taps” is played during a ceremony in 2015 designating Clark State Community College as a Purple Heart Campus. Clark State is the first college in the state to receive the designation. Bill Lackey/Staff

Clark State College was recognized for its support of students with connections to the military.

The college announced it is among the first group of 33 colleges and universities in Ohio to receive the Collegiate Purple Star designation for being supportive and inclusive of military-connected students.

Those selected have a dedicated military/veteran point of contact and/or office on campus, establishing priority registration for veterans and service members, and allowing for the establishment of student-led groups and organizations for veterans and service members, Clark State said.

“Clark State has a long and proud tradition of serving our active-duty military and veteran students,” President Jo Alice Blondin said. “This designation is another reflection of our deep commitment to serving those who have served our country.”

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Randy Gardner, chancellor of the Ohio Department of Higher Education, announced in March the creation of this designation.

“The services provided to those military-connected students at Clark State help prepare them for a successful transition to education and, ultimately, the workforce,” Gardner said. “Clark State’s inclusion in the first group of Collegiate Purple Star designees is well deserved.”

The designations are determined by a Collegiate Purple Star Advisory Committee, appointed by Gardner and composed of members from organizations including ODHE, Ohio Veterans Education Council, Ohio Department of Veterans Services, Ohio Adjutant General’s Department and the Military Interstate Children’s Compact Commission K-12 Purple Star Committee.

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Clark State serves United States military veteran students, active military students, National Guard and Reserve students, dependents and military spouses. It was chosen as a top Military Friendly School for 2022-23 for the fourth consecutive year. Students have also been inducted into the SALUTE National Honor Society, the only one that recognizes and honors the service and achievements of student veterans.

Clark State has received other military awards, including Top School in the 2018 Military Advanced Education & Transition Guide to Colleges & Universities and designation as a Purple Heart Campus in 2015. The college also features a veterans lounge to provide student veterans with a place to unwind, study, hold meetings or network.

The college offers a 50% tuition discount to active-duty military students and their spouses. To be eligible, potential students must present active orders or military ID to the cashier’s office.

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