Turning Military Training into College Degree

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BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- A military veteran went through all kinds of training during his time in the service and thought that should be able to count as college credit toward a degree.

After universities rejected that, Bloomsburg University developed a program to help him and other vets graduate.

Chuck Storti was disheartened when colleges he applied to would not transfer his decades of military experience into college credits.

Through a new program at Bloomsburg University, he was able to graduate and hopes other service members fall in line as well.

It was all smiles for Storti as he was honored during a small ceremony at Bloomsburg University. Storti was the first member of the military to graduate in the university's newest program, aimed at helping members of the service through college.

"It is amazing," Storti said. "I was really honored, really overwhelmed inside."

It's been a long journey for the Luzerne County man. During his 25 years in the military, he had amassed nearly 68 credits and two associates degrees. He wanted to continue his education but the colleges would not accept his credits.

"I just was not quite ready for how many would not listen or explore different ideas and accept different credits."

Rather than start from scratch, he looked for other avenues where he could accomplish his goals and he found that opportunity at Bloomsburg University.

The Military Academic Credit Review Board at Bloomsburg seeks to transfer military training and experience into academic credit, something members of the military find difficult when leaving.

"We found that something to the effect that 98 percent of them had an issue with the way that military credits have been dealt with historically," said academic advisor Bob Heckrote.

On a case by case basis, about 200 students at the university can use the review board to see how much credit they would get for their military experience and training.

"I hope it paves the road so that other service members can see something," said Storti.

Now with his business management degree, the veteran plans to help other servicemembers find a career path of their own.

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