eArmyU portal takes enroll call

As a single mother and an enlisted Army sergeant at Fort Benning, Ga., it was hard for Andrea Pratt to juggle all of her responsibilities and attend college.

As a single mother and an enlisted Army sergeant at Fort Benning, Ga., it was hard for Andrea Pratt to juggle all of her responsibilities and attend college.Not anymore.Today, Pratt is taking classes online as part of the Army's eArmyU initiative, studying for a bachelor's degree in resource management at Tri-State University in Indiana. She spent a year away from her son while serving in Korea, and she didn't want to leave him again to attend college.'A program really can help you,' Pratt said. 'Being a single parent, I have the chance to go and actually take classes and still be at home with my son. It's great.'Staff Sgt. Hassan Stewart feels the same way. He said he lacked the time to attend a traditional college. He likes the fact that he can log on whenever he wants, even on his lunch break, and do classwork. Today, Stewart is working toward a degree in applied science and technology at Central Texas College.'It's more convenient. Now it's easier for you to focus on what you want to do college-wise,' said Stewart, who is also stationed at Fort Benning. 'In some places, you can't go to school, and it's discouraging.'Ten months after the Army contracted with PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP of New York to build an electronic-learning portal to make available free education from 24 colleges and universities, service members all over the world are itching to enroll. Soldiers in the program are given a notebook PC and printer, an e-mail account, Internet access plus academic and technical support.The program provides online registration for classes, tutoring and technical assistance at the click of a mouse. Credits are transferable among the participating institutions.The three bases that offer the Army University Access Online program'Fort Hood, Texas; Fort Campbell, Ky.; and Fort Benning'have a long waiting list. Two more bases, Fort Drum, N.Y., and Fort Lewis, Wash., will be phased in to the program by mid-November, said Susan Johnson, program adviser in the office of the assistant Army secretary.In an online user survey about eArmyU.com conducted earlier this year, many soldiers called the initiative 'the best thing the Army has ever done for them,' Johnson said.PricewaterhouseCoopers received a five-year, $453 million contract last December to develop the eArmyU.com portal. The company hired dozens of subcontractors and set up the portal by integrating 10 software products with the Army's three legacy systems.'It's so popular with the soldiers,' said Dennis Bundy, on-site manager of the eArmyU program at Fort Benning for PricewaterhouseCoopers. He said the initiative is a morale booster. 'They say it's better than any promotion, any pay raise.'The initiative began at the three Army posts with the goal of reaching out to eight more posts next year. Ultimately online courses could be available to 80,000 soldiers Army-wide within the next five years.Through the portal, soldiers will be able to earn certificates and associate's, bachelor's and master's degrees at no cost to them.Fort Benning is home to about 17,000 enlisted soldiers. So far, 1,895 are enrolled in the program, Bundy said. By the end of the year, an additional 920 are expected to sign up, he added.Many of the students come to the Fort Benning Learning Resource Center, where 25 computers are linked to the Internet and 10 phone lines have been installed. Fort Campbell also has a state-of-the-art center, with 60 classrooms, including several with computers at every desk.Bundy said many of the more than 8,000 soldiers taking classes through eArmyU have re-enlisted or have extended their time of service to meet eligibility requirements, which mandate that a soldier have three years remaining time in service to qualify.The program also requires soldiers to complete at least 12 credits in two years or face being charged a percentage of the college costs.The program recently accepted another 4,000 students who will be phased in by year's end, Johnson said.'It's a recruiting tool. It's a retention tool,' Bundy said. 'The ones that are already in, we want to retain them. A lot of the soldiers are staying in the Army.'When the program is implemented across the Army, soldiers deployed around the world will no longer have to put their college goals on the back burner, Johnson said.'We think this is going to help the Army get to our goal of transformation,' he said. 'It's an investment.'

Specialist Jason Mims, who works in the Army Materiel Command's Logistics Assistance Office at Fort Benning, takes a training course at the fort's eArmyU installation.

















Bootable campus















Take your PC pick













NEXT STORY: Editorial Cartoon

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.