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Troy State establishes presence at Fort Campbell

March 12, 2001

Troy State University, a comprehensive four-year university in Troy, Ala., and an active participant in the Army's Access Online program, has requested space in Fort Campbell's Glenn H. English Army Education Center, the facility housing Austin Peay's Center @ Fort Campbell.

The space hasn't yet been granted, "because they don't offer courses here," says Bob Faires, chief of Fort Campbell's Education Division. "Also, we didn't have the space to give them." In the meantime, Troy State has leased space just outside Gate 4, according to Faires.

"They just wanted a representative here to answer questions and recruit soldiers for their distance learning program," he says.

Faires believes Troy State poses little threat to traditional programs at Ft. Campbell. "They'd have to charge out-of-state tuition, so they couldn't compete with public colleges here," he says.

He does concede, however, that the desirability of online learning to the post's mobile personnel might pose a threat to on-site programs. "We getting a large number of soldiers signing up for the online courses, about 400," he says.

Gerald Beavers, interim executive director of the Center at Fort Campbell, is also concerned about the potential threat. "Troy State offers a wide variety of bachelor's degrees and almost every two-year degree we offer," he says. "They may get space as soon as space is available. They have a reputation for being super-aggressive wherever they begin programs."

Faires says that a recently passed bill may boost the desirability of traditional courses. Called the Montgomery GI bill, it would provide qualifying soldiers VA funds to pay fees and expenses not covered by existing educational programs. "In essence, soldiers may be able to get 100 percent funding for education," he says.