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Good as Gold: Clemson named top Military Friendly Employer


Clemson University has been named a 2023 Military Friendly ® Employer for the fourth consecutive year, receiving the gold designation for 2023, given to less than ten percent of applicants.

The designation demonstrates Clemson’s continued commitment to its military heritage and the strides the University is taking for its military and veteran employees.

The Military Friendly® award is bestowed by VIQTORY, a service-disabled, veteran-owned small business that connects the military community to civilian employment, educational and entrepreneurial opportunities. The Military Friendly® designation measures an organization’s commitment, effort and success in creating sustainable and meaningful benefits for the military community.

More than 1,500 organizations compete annually for the Military Friendly® designation, though only about 100 receive gold designation or higher.

Logo for 2023 Military Friendly Employer, that reads Military Friendly Employer, 2023, gold.
Clemson has been named a 2023 “Gold” Military Friendly Employer.

“Companies earning the Military Friendly Employers ® designation elevate the standard for military programs globally; they have invested in substantive programs that promote positive outcomes for service members, military spouses, and veterans within their organizations,” said Kayla Lopez, Director of Military Partnerships, Military Friendly ®. “For these employers, hiring military is more than just the right thing to do; it’s a standard that makes good business sense.”

Clemson’s proud tradition of military excellence dates to its founding as a military school for cadets seeking the highest academic excellence. In 1916, ROTC was instituted under the National Defense Act, and in 1917 the entire senior class enlisted in World War I. More than 10,000 Clemson men and women have served in the U.S. armed forces.

In recent years, Clemson University has created a welcoming environment for veterans and service members looking to join the Clemson workforce. Among those, Clemson facilitates a Veteran Preference program for qualifying veterans looking to apply for full-time, regular positions at the University.

“The Office of Human Resources is committed to Clemson’s military heritage and is honored to receive the Military Friendly® Employer with Gold distinction award once again. This award is a compilation of a lot of hard work by many HR team members focusing on creating programs to recruit, develop and retain veterans.”

Ale Kennedy, Associate Vice President and Chief Human Resource Officer

Clemson is also an approved location for the Department of Defense SkillBridge internship program. It provides opportunities for service members to gain work experience through specific industry training during the last 180 days of their service.

In addition, Clemson operates a Military & Veteran Resource Center in Vickery Hall to help veterans and military dependents develop critical campus connections and provide resources for their journey through civilian life. Clemson also offers Military and Veteran specific benefits, including paid leave while on military duty, preferred employment for spouses and discounts on campus.

The Clemson Tiger waves the Stars and Stripes in Clemson University’s Military Heritage Plaza during a veterans appreciation event.

“Clemson University is committed to serving our military community, which includes almost 1,400 students (service members, veterans, ROTC cadets, and military family members) and 450+ staff and faculty veterans,” said Emily DaBruzzi, Director of Military & Veteran Engagement at Clemson. “We are proud of the tailored support and resources offered by Military & Veteran Engagement, our VA Educational Benefits Office, HR, the Veterans Commission, and the Clemson Corps alumni group. We celebrate the strengths our military community brings to the Clemson Family.”

In addition to being named a Military Friendly Employer, Clemson has received the Military Friendly School designation for three consecutive years.

Many campus landmarks, including Memorial Stadium, Memorial Park, the Scroll of Honor Memorial and Military Heritage Plaza, are permanent reminders of Clemson’s military heritage. Clemson’s award-winning Army and Air Force Reserve Officers’ Training Corps units and Pershing Rifles honor guard carry on many of the University’s military traditions today.

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