Higher Education Matters: Report says local schools good for military

Scott Wuerz
Scott Wuerz

The metro-east has several options for active military members and veterans hoping to further their education, according to a new report.

Lewis & Clark Community College, Lindenwood University, Kaskaskia College, McKendree University, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and Southwestern Illinois College have all been named great places for members of the military to go to school, according to

The 2016 Military Friendly Schools list honors the top 20 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools that are doing the most to embrace America’s military service members, veterans and spouses as students and ensure their success on campus, according to its website.

“We are very proud to be recognized for our commitment to helping military and veteran students achieve their education goals,” said Terry Lane, director of Career and Veteran Services at Lewis & Clark and a veteran himself.

Institutions completed a survey of more than 100 questions that spanned 10 categories about military support on campus, graduation and employment outcomes and military spouse policies, on which they were judged.

According to the list, McKendree has one of the highest military populations of Illinois colleges and universities at 11 percent of its total student body.

“McKendree provides a nurturing, flexible academic environment for military members and veterans,” according to the report. “Located near two military installations, students have the unique ability to tap into campus and base educational resources, i.e., counseling, tutoring, career placement, etc. Students also benefit from the personalized attention provided by faculty and staff who are veterans and/or military spouses and understand their unique academic needs.”

About 9 percent of SWIC’s student population is made up of current and former military members, according to the report.

“Recognizing and honoring service member students is a strong tradition at Lindenwood University,” the report said about the St. Charles-based school with a campus in Belleville. “Lindenwood offers flexible degrees at locations around the St. Louis metropolitan area and online. Lindenwood features special pricing for families of service members with some of the most competitive tuition rates in the St. Louis area. The university has a new student orientation for service members, military and veteran student services and events, plus dedicated military and veteran admission specialists who can help service member students succeed.”

SIUE School of Pharmacy offers new master’s degree

The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy is introducing a master’s program in pharmaceutical sciences to begin fall 2016.

It is the only school in Illinois and the metro St. Louis area to offer this degree.

“We have developed a strong Doctor of Pharmacy program because of our internationally recognized faculty with their many years of academic and pharmaceutical industry experience, ensuring the overall quality of our department,” said Mike Crider, chair of the School of Pharmacy’s Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences. “As a result, our research program has advanced rapidly, receiving several federal grants along with infrastructure additions and improvements.

Students of the new program may choose a concentration in the areas of medicinal chemistry, pharmacology and pharmaceutics.

“While pharmacists work to manage patient care with emphasis on therapies using existing drugs, pharmaceutical scientists work to discover and develop new drugs,” School of Pharmacy Dean Gireesh Gupchup said. “The pharmaceutical sciences not only determine the detailed biological mechanism of disease, but also develop the molecular interventions that can provide the treatment or cure.”

Through this new offering, students will have the tools necessary to pursue careers in pharmaceutical sciences research engaging in the discovery and development of new drugs, or to pursue PhDs in health sciences, medical and drug discovery research. Additionally, students will be prepared for other non-research, but science- and technology-related positions relevant to the pharmaceutical industry.

According to data gathered by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. Department of Labor indicates a continued growth rate for medical scientists of 8 percent between the years 2014-2024.

For more information about the master’s in pharmaceutical sciences program at SIUE, email or call 618-650-5088.