Fulton, MO – In the latest measure of progress for the historic partnership between William Woods University (WWU) and the Missouri National Guard, this week the university’s Show-Me Guard Officer Leadership Development (GOLD) program began classes with the largest enrollment the new program has seen to date. Eleven students are now enrolled in the program as the university began spring semester 2020 classes, a comparable number to what other Missouri universities enrolled during the first year of the GOLD program on their campuses.
“We are pleased at the growth we are experiencing in the Show Me GOLD program at William Woods, which benefits both the university in terms of enrollment and the State of Missouri by providing commissioned officers to the Missouri National Guard,” said Scott Zimmerman, Instructor of Leadership and Military Studies at William Woods. “As one of only five Missouri universities to offer Show-Me GOLD and the only one in mid-Missouri, we are confident about our future prospects at The Woods.”
WWU announced the establishment of the Show-Me GOLD program in August 2018, becoming the first private institution to host the program. Designed to train and prepare young men and women to serve as commissioned officers in the Missouri National Guard, the Show-Me GOLD program first began being offered at William Woods during the Fall 2019 semester. The university opened its on-campus headquarters for the program last year.
The addition of the Show-Me GOLD program has yielded additional benefits to all WWU students, regardless of major. Last fall, the university began offering a minor in Leadership and Military Studies, specifically designed for students who are not planning on joining the National Guard or embarking on a military career but desire military-level leadership skills. Closely linked with the GOLD program under the Leadership and Military Studies Department, the new Leadership and Military Studies minor offers military-style leadership training to students through academic and hands-on environments. Students learn crucial leadership skills demanded by the private sector, government organizations and the military, all designed to make them more attractive to potential employers.
“Our Leadership and Military Studies minor is providing graduates with a competitive advantage over their peers when seeking employment, offering the benefits of leadership training to all William Woods students,” said Zimmerman. “Graduates with the Leadership and Military Studies minor will be ready to assume leadership positions immediately upon graduation.”
The Show-Me GOLD program is just one example of William Woods’ proud status as an official Military Friendly university. Last fall, the university began offering the Triumph Program, a partnership between WWU and Missouri Military Academy in which MMA students are able to take college courses and earn college credit at William Woods while still high school students.
In addition, the cost, support and career services, and flexibility – all hallmarks of the WWU experience – are among the most important factors in college decision making for veterans. William Woods’ online and part-time study options, as well as the freedom to start and stop as needed, provide the flexibility students need to finish their degrees as their schedule allows.
For more information on the Show-Me GOLD program at William Woods, please visit https://www.williamwoods.edu/admissions/active_military_and_veterans/gold_program.html