Thomas Edison U., with support from PSEG Foundation, expanding offerings in Military and Veteran Portal

Knowledge surrounding the use of sonar, night vision, jet engines and satellite navigation — all pivotal innovations first utilized by the U.S. military — have important civilian implications.

So, why shouldn’t soldiers get college credit for mastering these tasks?

At Thomas Edison State University — in conjunction with grant support from the PSEG Foundation — they can.

Launched in 2014 with support from PSEG Foundation, the Miltary and Veteran Portal has helped nearly 14,000 U.S. service members and veterans discover how their military training equates to college credits, view potential degree programs aligned with their training and estimate the cost of their education — all before they apply to the university.

A recent $200,000 grant from the foundation will enable thousands of non-military students and alumni to access the same resources. Outside of the MVP portal, the grant will also ensure students receive innovative hands-on simulation training in cybersecurity courses.

Calvin Ledford, Public Service Enterprise Group director of corporate social responsibility and president of the PSEG Foundation, said the utility is happy to help veterans in the next phase of their careers.

“Veterans often struggle with integration into civilian life,” he said. “The PSEG Foundation, which supports education and workforce development programs, is honored to help TESU and all those who create the tools and resources veterans need to apply their abundant skills, experience and leadership to their community.

“The PSEG Foundation helps build sustainable and thriving communities by fostering safety, diversity, inclusion and equity, as well as supporting education and the environment in the communities we serve, and TESU embodies this mission.”

John Thurber, vice president for public affairs at TESU, said the school is happy the partnership is expanding.

“We are immensely grateful to PSEG for enabling us to continue to serve our military and veteran students while enriching our cybersecurity programs and extending the efficacy of the MVP portal to our civilian students, alumni and our corporate partners,” he said. “The initiatives will allow us to create a pathway of success for more students and alumni, while providing a pipeline of talented graduates entering the workforce.”

Past funding from the PSEG Foundation supported enhancements to the MVP portal’s career counseling and job placement components for active-duty service members and veterans. The portal’s newly developed Career Enhancement Initiative will make those components available to thousands of TESU’s non-military students and alumni seeking jobs or advancement in their fields. The initiative also will provide a platform on which the university’s employer partners can post available career opportunities at their organizations and proactively recruit students and alumni for available positions.

PSEG Foundation funding has also supported state-of-the-art online laboratory simulations in the university’s online cybersecurity programs. Recent grant support is now focused on addressing the critical shortage of trained cybersecurity professionals in the workforce. In response, expansion of new laboratory simulations in the university’s cybersecurity courses will provide students with operationally realistic environments and hands-on skillsets necessary to address current and emergent cyberthreats.