Governor DeWine Announces First Round of Collegiate Purple Star Awards



(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Today Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Ohio Department of Higher Education (ODHE) Chancellor Randy Gardner named the first group of Ohio colleges and universities designated as Collegiate Purple Star campuses for their efforts to support students with military backgrounds. 

These 33 first-ever Collegiate Purple Star awards advance the work already done by Ohio’s PreK-12 school system to create the Purple Star designation for those schools that worked to become military friendly. Ohio is the first state in the nation to offer these designations. 

“Congratulations to the 33 schools chosen as the first Collegiate Purple Star campuses! Thank you for being examples of Ohio’s proud tradition of honoring our service men and women,” said Governor DeWine. “With these Collegiate Purple Star Award designations, servicemembers, veterans, and military-connected students are able to pursue higher education knowing that their school has the necessary support system and guidance to help them find their next steps.”

“Ohio has a long history of supporting its veterans and servicemembers, and we are now the first state in the nation where you can receive that support from pre-kindergarten all the way through your postsecondary education and beyond,” Chancellor Gardner said. “May is Military Appreciation Month, which reminds us that it’s important to honor our military for all they do. Today, I congratulate these 33 colleges and universities for being the first Collegiate Purple Star campuses.”

Campuses receiving the Collegiate Purple Star designation are:

Public Campuses
Bowling Green State University
Clark State College
Cleveland State University
Cuyahoga County Community College
Edison State Community College
Hocking College
Kent State University
Lorain County Community College
Marion Technical College
Miami University
Ohio State University
Ohio University
Owens Community College
Rhodes State College
Shawnee State University
Sinclair Community College
Stark State College
Terra State Community College
University of Akron
University of Cincinnati
University of Toledo
Wright State University
Youngstown State University
Zane State College

Independent Campuses
Ashland University
Baldwin Wallace University
Defiance College
Franklin University
Kettering College
Muskingum University
Tiffin University
University of Dayton
Xavier University

The initial Collegiate Purple Star announcement was made at an event in March where Chancellor Gardner was joined by Ohio Adjutant General Maj. Gen. John C. Harris Jr. and Maj. Gen. Deborah Ashenhurst, USA Ret., Director of the Ohio Department of Veterans Services, whose agencies have provided support for the designation.

Colleges and universities in Ohio were offered the opportunity to apply for the Collegiate Purple Star designation. The designations were then determined by a Collegiate Purple Star Advisory Committee appointed by the Chancellor and composed of members from organizations that include but aren’t limited to ODHE, the Ohio Veterans Education Council (with representation from two-year colleges, four-year universities, and independent institutions), the Ohio Department of Veterans Services, the Ohio Adjutant General’s Department, and the Military Interstate Children’s Compact Commission K-12 Purple Star Committee.

Criteria for being chosen as a Purple Star college or university include having a dedicated military/veteran point of contact and/or office on campus, establishing priority registration for veterans and servicemembers, surveying student veterans and servicemembers – along with spouses and dependents – about needs and challenges, and allowing for the establishment of student-led groups and organizations for veterans and servicemembers. Colleges and universities that earn the Collegiate Purple Star designation will receive permission from the advisory committee to utilize a logo or badge signifying the designation.

A second round of applications will be accepted later this year. More information on the Collegiate Purple Star program is available online at https://www.ohiohighered.org/purple-star.