Home Online Learning How an Online Institution is Helping Deployed Members of the Military

How an Online Institution is Helping Deployed Members of the Military


By Dr. Chris Reynolds, Lt. Col., USAFR
AVP & Dean, Center for Teaching and Learning at American Public University System

Fortunately for those students attending American Military University (AMU), professors understand how military deployments can disrupt your educational goals. One of the advantages of an online education is that the classes are mobile and can deploy with you!

I remember when I was in Pakistan early in Operation Enduring Freedom and worked with a young airman who was taking a course online. While he was able to complete his coursework, there are times when this is simply not possible. Students at AMU have the ability to request a course extension for short-term military activities and can request a special circumstance 180 day course extension for longer mission operations.

To assist with the needs of our serving student body, AMU maintains military outreach education coordinators throughout the continental United States. Our coordinators understand the special demands and needs of our military and family members. The Military Outreach Team consists of veterans and seasoned education professionals who serve as university ombudsmen. Each member is dedicated to advising prospective students, solving problems, and ensuring that the university meets the educational needs of all branches of the U.S. military. They are resource should you have questions about any aspect of your military commitment and educational goals. As an added resource you can stay informed through our “In Military Education” blog, which is a portal that features information, tips, and resources for military members. In addition, the blog provides tips and resources for military spouses.

The bottom line for our military students is to remember that many professors and staff members have also worn the uniform of our great nation. As our Vice President of Strategic Initiatives Phil McNair (COL. USA, RET) said in a recent presentation, “AMU has its roots with the military as both its staff and faculty–many of who are also former servicemen and servicewomen themselves, some with hands-on experience in working with PTSD impacted students–are intimately familiar with the unique learning needs of active service and veteran enrollees. We take our mission, ’to provide quality higher education with emphasis on educating the nation’s military and public service communities by offering respected, relevant, accessible and affordable, student-focused online programs, which prepare them for service and leadership in a diverse, global society’ seriously.  In military parlance, we practice what we preach–service before self.”


About the Author:

Dr. Chris Reynolds, CEM has over 30 years of higher education experience in both the traditional and online classroom. He currently serves as the Dean for the Center for Teaching and Learning and most recently served as the Director for the Emergency Management and Homeland Security programs at American Military University, where he developed an award winning undergraduate and graduate program.  Dr. Reynolds is also a Lieutenant Colonel in the United States Air Force Reserve stationed at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida as an Emergency Preparedness Liaison Officer (EPLO) assigned to Air Force Northern Command, 1st Air Force.



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