Veterans & Service Members

AACRAO recognizes and honors the sacrifices these men and women have made and its members are proud to assist them and meet their educational needs. Veterans and students on active military duty and their families face special circumstances and challenges.

Changes in federal statute and executive actions have greatly promoted the expansion of services toward veterans and their families. Since the Post-9/11 GI Bill was passed in 2009, close to 1 million veterans, service members, and eligible dependents have taken advantage of the educational benefits available to them. With the passage of more recent legislation, such as the Forever GI Bill in 2017 and the Isakson Roe and THRIVE Acts in 2021, there will be significant changes to military education benefits over the coming years.


Latest Actions

AACRAO recently hosted a webinar to discuss the implementation of veteran legislation passed in December 2020, also known as the Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act. This law will have a transformative effect on the mission of Education Service to provide ready access to, and timely and accurate delivery of, education benefits to Veterans, Service members, and their families, as well as further enable the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to empower GI Bill beneficiaries to achieve their vocational and career goals.

Other recent legislation introduced in both the House and Senate include important provisions to help ensure veterans can continue to receive their education benefits as well as technical corrections to the legislation passed last year.


AACRAO Urges Congress to Support Student Mental Health Care Needs

Apr 14, 2022, 12:34 PM
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Summary : Coalition strongly encourages lawmakers to prioritize the needs of college students as they develop mental health legislation.
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AACRAO joined a broad coalition of nearly 100 organizations on Wednesday in a letter to the leaders of the House and Senate education committees, the Senate Finance Committee, and the House Energy and Commerce Committee strongly urging lawmakers to prioritize the needs of college students as they develop mental health legislation.

"We have been heartened at the attention and urgency Congress has shown toward addressing significant mental health needs in America, as well as the bipartisan and bicameral interest in tackling this urgent problem," the letter states. "This is a critical opportunity to address the mental health crisis among college students that has been under addressed for too long, and has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic."

The groups encourage Congress to update the Public Health Service Act and the Higher Education Act to support holistic and evidence-based practices that meet students' mental health needs by:

  • Increasing support for basic needs interventions throughout higher education;
  • Providing more information to colleges on evidence-based preventative measures and interventions that support students' mental health and basic needs;
  • Expanding research funding to improve understanding of what works to support mental health, particularly at the community and organization level;
  • Facilitating connecting students to public benefit programs and sources of financial support they can use to seek mental health treatment;
  • Prioritizing support for under-resourced institutions and institutions serving historically underrepresented students such as community colleges and minority-serving institutions (MSIs); Ensuring that mental health investments reach students facing intersecting mental health needs and barriers to accessing resources, including LGBTQ+ students, students of color, parenting students, military-connected, first-generation, low-income students, and adult learners.

"With sufficient federal resources, students in higher education can graduate and build a healthier, more prosperous, and equitable society. Without these resources, students will continue to face substantial challenges to their academic success," the groups state in the letter. 

Related Link

Letter Urging Congress to Support Student Mental Health Care Needs 

Michelle Mott
Categories :
  • Advocacy
  • Community Colleges
  • Veterans and Service Members
Tags :
  • adult learners
  • adult students
  • covid-19
  • Federal relations
  • first generation
  • hbcu
  • HSI
  • lgbtq
  • minority students
  • MSI
  • tribal colleges
  • Veterans and service members issues
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