Tuition Agreement Continues to Serve Coast Guard Members

Tuition Agreement Continues to Serve Coast Guard Members
June 5, 2014/LSSU News

By Tom Pink

SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. – Lake Superior State University’s agreement with the U.S. Coast Guard’s Sector Sault continues to pay dividends for Coast Guard personnel who are interested in pursuing their educational dreams while serving their country.

Two more USCG members were among the hundreds of graduates who participated in commencement exercises recently at LSSU, bringing the total to 11 who have received associate’s and bachelor’s degrees either directly from LSSU or as a result of courses they began with the university, according to ESO Brian Streichert of USCG Sector Sault. The graduates are attending through a tuition agreement established with LSSU and Sector Sault in 2009.

The recent graduates were DC3 Daniel Miller, who received an associate’s degree in criminal justice, and SK2 April Cannon, who received an associate’s degree in exercise science. DC3 Miller made his way back to Sault Ste. Marie from his current post aboard the USCGC Juniper in Newport, Rhode Island, in order to walk in his graduation ceremony. SK2 Cannon is continuing to serve in Sault Ste. Marie.

“LSSU made it relatively easy to pursue higher education while I was stationed in Sault Ste. Marie,” said Miller. “The discounted tuition rate for Coast Guard members made it very affordable and allowed me to complete my first degree with very little debt. Additionally, the guidance of professors, the Sector Sault Ste. Marie Education Services Officer, and my advisor, Prof. James Schaefer, were invaluable in the completion of the degree.

“When I joined the Coast Guard, I believed that I had taken a hiatus in my college education,” Miller added. “LSSU's partnership with Sector Sault changed that. Even after transferring out of Michigan, LSSU made it possible to finish up my final classes online, allowing me to graduate this spring.”

Both USCG members began attending LSSU after the agreement was formed to assist members and their families with the ease of enrollment and tuition assistance process, and both took advantage of on-base classes taught each semester at Sector Sault Ste. Marie, through LSSU professors and adjunct professors, Streichert said. Nearly 100 USCG members have attended LSSU since the agreement was established.

The LSSU-USCG compact sets the rate for LSSU tuition the same as the Coast Guard Tuition Assistance Program for Sector Sault Coast Guardsmen. The partnership is also a natural fit for two organizations that have long had a cornerstone presence in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.
Sector Sault's wide geographical area -- all of Lake Superior and the northern parts of Lakes Michigan and Huron -- means that personnel may also pursue courses through LSSU's regional centers in Escanaba, Gaylord, and Petoskey.

Coast Guardsmen and their spouses who are interested in participating in this program should contact ESO Streichert at 906-635-3355 or Brian.D.E.Streichert@uscg.mil. For more on educational opportunities at LSSU, contact the admissions office at 906-635-2231 or admissions@lssu.edu.



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