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Alum takes aim at Yale over
low enrollment of veterans

While Yale commemorated Veterans Day in front of the war memorial in Beinecke Plaza last week, Wick Sloane ’84MBA took a different approach.

At "the nation’s self-proclaimed most highly selective colleges," only 168 undergradautes—out of more than 118,000—are military veterans, Sloane wrote in a combative column for Inside Higher Ed. Yale College's veteran count: two.

Sloane's "pitiful count" is of veterans enrolled at the "31 invitation-only members of the Consortium on Financing Higher Education," he writes. The tally of 168 carries an asterisk because "too many of these colleges . . . don’t know" how many ex-military men and women are in their student bodies.

Sloane—a product of Exeter Academy, Williams College, and the Yale School of Management—teaches at Bunker Hill Community College in Boston and writes about barriers to higher education for low-income students. Each year on Veterans Day, he reports on vets' enrollment at those elite colleges.

This year, Yale president Peter Salovey ’86PhD "didn’t think that the question of why Yale has just two veterans was worth much time," Sloane writes without elaborating. We asked Jeremiah Quinlan ’03, the dean of undergraduate admissions, who did take time to reply by e-mail.

"Yale does have a tremendous route for veterans to apply to Yale College and we do make efforts to reach out to this group," Quinlan says.

"I would personally recommend that veterans and other applicants who have had their formal education interrupted for a number of years apply to Yale College through the Eli Whitney Students Program, [which] was conceived with the same mission as that for Yale College as a whole: the education of leaders who will make contributions to society and the world."

Whitney students, Quinlan notes, "are full participants in Yale College academics," taking classes with other undergraduates and earning bachelors' degrees. In the past year, Yale has tried to boost awareness of the Whitney program by, among other steps:

* advertising in the Military Times and the Veterans Education Guide;

* working with the Marine Corps Leadership Scholar Program;

* sending admissions staff to Marine Corps bases;

* leading admissions workshops at the Warrior-Scholar Project, a Yalie-founded academic boot camp for veterans;

* sending information to the honor society of community college students, "a group of students that would include some veterans."

Quinlan also notes that Yale "recruits actively for students who are interested in Naval or Air Force ROTC" and participates in the Yellow Ribbon Program, "providing supplemental scholarship assistance to qualified veterans."

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