Cameron Ranks High in Military Friendliness
Justin Reff & Jacob Jardel
Cameron University recently ranked as one of the top military friendly schools in two different rankings.
A panel from Victory Media awarded Cameron a silver distinction, putting it within 30 percent of the Top 10 ranking. BestColleges.com also gave CU high marks, placing it 22nd on its list.
These lists recognize schools that embrace military students and dedicate resources to helping them succeed in the classroom and beyond graduation. Both have similar criteria, such as the services they provide for service members and its membership in certain programs that assist in the transition from soldier to civilian or, in the case of the ROTC program, from civilian to soldier.
Instructor of Military Science SFC Eric Smith said he has seen the effects of some of the listed transitionary services. After serving with the military police, he wanted to work with an ROTC program. After talking with his branch manager, Smith learned of a job opening at Cameron, three hours away from where he grew up near Tulsa.
Since joining, Smith noticed one unique advantage Cameron has when it comes to working with the military: its proximity to Fort Sill.
“There are a lot of people who retire here,” Smith said, “and most people who do retire have high school or college-aged children. For those who want to stay near home or with family, this is a great option.
“They can stay home with their family in a community they’re familiar with and still get their education.”
Cameron’s location is one of many reasons Smith gave for the university’s success on a national level.
“This is an excellent program,” he said. “It competes with all the other schools throughout the entire nation. Not being a Division-I university just speaks for itself as to the type of education and experience that you will get at Cameron compared to any other school.”
Junior chemistry major and Cameron cadet Nick Meaux lived this experience firsthand. He said a good ROTC program was high on the list when he was initially selecting a college, especially since he had a scholarship for his involvement in the program.
Cameron was his top pick, especially with the merits of its ROTC program and the school’s affordability.
“Compared to OU and OSU, Cameron has the best ROTC program,” Meaux said. “[At] OU and OSU, [I’d] still be paying out of pocket, but at Cameron, [I] end up not having to pay for anything.”
Since he started at Cameron, Meaux has grown to like the atmosphere as much as his program.
“Cameron’s perfect,” Meaux said. “Cameron has everything I need here. It’s nice and small. You’re not overwhelmed [and] the people are friendly.”
It is for this reason that he would recommend Cameron to others debating on attending here.
“It gets [students] accustomed to the college lifestyle and the work they’re going to have to do—the responsibilities you’re going to have to take on,” he said.
He said he experienced this type of growth not only through living on campus but also through ROTC. He emphasized the lessons he learned that helped this maturation.
“ROTC has helped a lot with that, especially some of the people I’ve interacted with. The coaches and mentors I’ve had in ROTC [made me] more responsible,” Meaux said. “I’m more level-headed, taking everything with a grain of salt and being more disciplined.”
For more information on these rankings, visit militaryfriendly.com/schools or bestcolleges.com/features/top-military-friendly-colleges. For more on Cameron ROTC, visit www.cameron.edu/militaryscience.