FSU named ‘Purple Star’ campus by Board of Governors

Tony Simmons

Florida State University has been designated a Purple Star Campus by the State University System in recognition of its dedication to military and veteran students.

“This is further acknowledgement of FSU’s campus-wide commitment to the success of these students,” said Jim Allen, director of FSU Panama City’s Academic and Registrar Services, who is also a U.S. Navy veteran.

First Friday Feast in the Veterans Ready Room at FSU PC is open to all student veterans and active-duty military students.

“Being a Purple Star Campus also conveys to the many active and former service members in the Panhandle that Florida State provides an open and welcoming university experience,” Allen said. 

Last year, the Florida legislature expanded the Purple Star initiative to include state universities, which provided Bay County, in particular, an opportunity to heighten awareness of its support of the region’s military-connected families.

With numerous K-12 schools in the county, as well as Gulf Coast State College, being awarded Purple Star status in previous years, Florida State’s designation provides a capstone for Bay County.

“From top to bottom, the schools here have always been very supportive of the military and their family members,” said Randy Hanna, dean of the FSU Panama City campus. “What the Purple Star program provided us are metrics that validate that level of support.”

For state universities, those metrics include priority course registration for veteran, military and dependent students, a designated military liaison, student-led transition programs, dedicated resources for veteran/military students and families, and faculty and staff training programs.

FSU has a long history of serving its military students and veterans. In 1947, the state legislature converted the Florida State College for Women to coeducational Florida State University as World War II veterans using the G.I. Bill attended colleges in droves.

In 2011, FSU enhanced its commitment to veteran/military students with the launch of the Student Veterans Center in Tallahassee, followed by the Veterans Ready Room in Panama City. 

FSU’s veteran-rich heritage and culture is symbolized by the Veterans Alliance Arrowhead, which represents the university’s commitment to current and previous members of the armed services. 

“Being a Purple Star Campus is confirmation from the Board of Governors that Florida State University is proactive in its veteran-success endeavors,” said Hanna.

More information on the Collegiate Purple Star Campus program is at https://www.flbog.edu/universities/key-university-info/military-veteran-affairs/.
Information on Veteran Services on the FSU Panama City campus is at PC.FSU.edu/students/veterans-services.