Veteran says Arkansas State gold ranking is deserved

Published: Mar. 18, 2022 at 9:42 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 18, 2022 at 10:41 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - Going for Gold.

For the first time ever, Arkansas State University ranked gold for being a military-friendly campus.

The university is only one of two in the state that received this ranking.

Johnathan Mullins started as a student at Arkansas State University before a lot of the military resources were present.

He returned in 2019 and saw a difference in how veterans were supported.

Mullins is an Army National Guard veteran, but also a student.

He worked with storing hazardous materials and later medically retired.

“The first month and a half, I was reluctant,” said Mullins.

He said when he returned to Arkansas State University in 2019, he was a little nervous.

“I would say an obstacle is apprehension,” he said.

But, an invitation to lunch from a military liaison introduced him to many resources for him as a veteran and student.

“You know the financial part of it didn’t go the way I planned on it too. So, as a VA student, we are authorized to work as a work-study,” he said.

A-State ranked at the gold level as a Military Friendly School.

There are 1,800 schools that participated in the ranking, 282 received gold, and only two of those were in the state of Arkansas.

“The staff, the faculty, the students are all supportive of the military,” he said.

Last year, A-State received a silver rank, and the two years before that, it received bronze.

Mullins said he sees a change from when he started school in 2003 until now.

“You can work on PTSD, procrastination, stress level, how to reduce your stress level as a student or as a veteran,” he said.

Mullins is now in graduate school at the university. He is studying Environmental Science, concentrating on policy.

The university was evaluated for the ranking by using public data sources, a survey, and input from student veterans, according to a news release.

You can find the list of 2022-23 Military Friendly Schools by visiting their website.

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