Green Energy Goals

A College of Professional Studies post-traditional student veteran aims to bring more clean power to New York.

A high score on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test sparked an interest that would carry Dania Tompkins ’24 throughout her military career and beyond. Tompkins is studying liberal arts through the College of Professional Studies at Syracuse University to advance her career in the field of green energy. She qualified for the U.S. Navy’s Nuclear Power Program and spent her eight years in the service as an electrician’s mate first class on the USS Ronald Reagan, a nuclear-powered supercarrier.

Syracuse University Extends Tuition Assistance Support for Military Students to On Campus Programs

Syracuse University has extended its military tuition support to on campus programs for active duty, reserve and guard members. The university’s previous support included online undergraduate programs.

Under the new support program, active duty military admitted to Syracuse University through the College of Professional Studies will pay the Department of Defense Tuition Assistance (TA) rate for tuition. New York State Army Guard, Air National Guard, and Naval Militia using the state’s Recruitment Incentive and Retention Program (RIRP) to attend college will pay no more than the SUNY tuition rate.

“Extending the tuition assistance support program to our on campus undergraduate degrees effectively opens the university to active military, guard and reserve members who live within commuting distance of the campus,” says Michael Frasciello, dean of the College of Professional Studies. “In addition to our online undergraduate programs, members of our military now have access to more than 200 Syracuse University on campus undergraduate majors at their tuition assistance rates.”

The expanded tuition program is consistent with Syracuse University’s commitment to open opportunity and enhance affordability for members of the military who aspire to earn a Syracuse University undergraduate degree.

Active duty military, guard and reservists are life-long learners – members of the largest population of students enrolled in higher education today. Making Syracuse University more affordable and accessible is both a natural continuation of the University’s history of supporting non-traditional students and also an appropriate response to the changing needs and expectations of those who could most benefit from a Syracuse University education.

In addition to honoring the TA and RIRP rates, the extended program is also designed to permit military students to persist in their studies after they expend their annual tuition benefit. When a military student’s annual tuition benefit is reached, the university will honor the member’s tuition support rate until the next benefit cycle. This means active duty and reserve students pay no more than $250 per credit (or the current DoD TA rate) after they expend their annual TA allotment. New York State Air National Guard and Naval Militia students pay no more than $278 per credit (or the current SUNY per credit rate) after they expend their annual RIRP allotment.

“We have seen too many military students interrupt and delay their studies each year when they expend their annual tuition benefits,” says Frasciello. “We extend the student’s tuition benefit rate every semester to ensure their persistence from their first course to graduation.”

Syracuse University ranks among the nation’s top schools for veterans, with an enduring and unrivaled commitment to veterans and military students dating back more than 100 years. Expanding the TA and RIRP benefit to all on-campus programs extends this commitment consistent with the University’s mission to provide access to a world-class education for those who cannot study on campus full-time.  

The flexibility of attending Syracuse University part-time on campus while serving also permits military students to complete many of their courses online if they are unable to attend specific courses on campus. Military members living within commuting distance of the campus, such as airmen serving at the 174th TFW in Syracuse, New York, and soldiers stationed at Fort Drum in Watertown are encouraged to explore their options to complete their undergraduate degrees at a world-class private and nationally ranked research university.

Consistent with its mission to be an accessible university, Syracuse University accepts up to 90 applicable transfer credits toward completion of a 120-credit undergraduate degree. The university also has a progressive military credit-equivalency program. On average, military students receive 18-30 credits for their technical training and professional military education, and through prior learning assessment for non-military related experience.

Active military, guard and reserve members interested in more information about enrollment opportunities at Syracuse University may contact the College of Professional Studies admissions team at 315.443.9378 or Veterans and military-connected students can learn more about tuition benefits at

Protecting Our Nation’s Cyber Information

From the front lines to behind the computer, one cybersecurity administration online student works to keep Americans safe.

Brian Mixon spent a total of 20 years in military service between the Marine Corps and Army Reserves.

It’s not every person that would go back to school to earn their bachelor’s degree as a post-traditional student but Brian Mixon ’24 isn’t one to back down from a challenge. Mixon, a U.S. Marine Corps and Army Reserve veteran, is currently pursuing a degree in cybersecurity administration from the College of Professional Studies.

University Receives National Award for Training Central New York Teachers in Virtual Learning Environment Best Practices

Syracuse University received the 2021 Engagement Award for the Mid-Atlantic Region that was presented by the University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA) during its recent annual Regions Week National Conference.

The award recognizes the K-12 teacher engagement and development that occurred through an innovative community partnership established pro-actively by the College of Professional Studies to address challenges that ensued during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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CODL is Code for Productive, Engaging Online Learning at Syracuse University

When someone says “university” what often comes to mind are sprawling campuses, vast book-filled libraries and jam-packed sports stadiums. While this might be true, a rapidly increasing number of universities are choosing to embrace online learning as a degree path for students.

Since its founding in 1946, Syracuse University’s College of Professional Studies, formerly known as University College, has been dedicated to supporting the unique needs of part-time students who are enrolled in courses at the University but don’t reside on campus.

In support of the University’s strategic response to create access and postsecondary educational opportunities (primarily through online programming) for populations that fall outside the traditional residential undergraduate and graduate learner, Dean Michael Frasciello, soon after his appointment in 2017, formed a specialized unit within the College to meet the needs of students seeking a Syracuse University education from anywhere in the world.

Over the past four years, Syracuse University’s Center for Online and Digital Learning (CODL) has been quietly and persistently addressing the mission-critical need for a formalized response to the challenges and opportunities of online education.

“The requirement for a Center has grown increasingly relevant over the past 20 years as online education has moved into a more significant position within the University’s instructional portfolio,” says Dean Frasciello. “With the recent trend in higher education to expand online programs though outsourcing, it became strategically advantageous and necessary for Syracuse University to build out internal capacity to standardize developing, delivering, supporting and assessing high quality, rigorous and differentiated online programs.”

Leading the CODL team in this mission has been Eileen Julian, who has more than 24 years of experience at Syracuse University with positions in curriculum, instruction and program administration. Julian understands the needs of part-time learners well. She earned a master’s degree in higher education from the School of Education and a bachelor’s degree in liberal studies while working full time at the University and raising a family.

To meet the increased demand for online programming offered through Syracuse University, Julian has grown staff at CODL from just three employees in 2017 to 30 in 2021. Since its inception, CODL has developed 157 online courses and another 74 are currently in development for nine colleges within the University system. More than 4,500 videos for courses have been produced and the number of graphics created tops 10,000. The team has also fully developed the online Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree program, which is now being offered by the College of Law.

Beyond the immense productivity, Julian is most proud of the quality of work being done by the CODL team for online learners. “The Dean’s charge to us was cutting-edge online instruction,” says Julian. “To realize this goal, we’ve hired not just professionals with online instruction expertise, but also artists and cinematographers to enhance the overall digital learning experience we provide.”

Embracing technological advances has also been a high priority to Julian. The team is currently using virtual reality techniques to develop courses in partnership with faculty members in the art therapy master’s degree program within the College of Visual and Performing Arts. The CODL team further served the University community by helping to move 3,000 courses online in just five days during the spring 2020 semester, as the COVID-19 pandemic affected on-campus instruction.

The groundwork and achievements of the Center for Online and Digital Learning bode well for the University as plans for a more well-defined global initiative are unfolding. “The College of Professional Studies has 75 years of a solid commitment to continuous learners,” says Dean Frasciello. “We are now also poised to deliver high quality online educational experiences to those seeking access to the Syracuse University Orange community, wherever they may be.”