A pair of senators on Thursday introduced bipartisan legislation that would provide more veterans an opportunity to translate their military training into college credit, The Military Times reported.
The Military Learning for Credit Act, introduced by Sens. Chris Coons (D-DE) and Joni Ernst (R-IA), would expand veteran education benefits to include proficiency exam fees and other costs related to documenting skills learned in uniform. It would allow veterans to use up to $500 to cover the costs of tests such as the College Level Examination Program, Dantes Subject Standardized Test Program, and ACT National Career Readiness Certificate, among others that can be translated into college credit at thousands of institutions of higher education.
"Our veterans receive intense and thorough training as servicemembers, often during the years when other Americans are attending college. The least we can do is ensure that once they enroll in college, veterans have every opportunity to translate their military training into college credit," Senator Coons said in a press release. "Permitting all veterans to take credit exams and receive portfolio assessments for free will save our veterans' time and money while working toward a degree while also reducing federal funding expenditures through the GI bill. It truly is a win for all."
Only about 36 percent of veterans enrolled in higher education received any credit for their military training, according to research from Student Veterans of America. Of those, the median number of credits awarded was three, the equivalent of a single college class, reported the Military Times.
"Allowing all veterans to use veterans education assistance funds to cover portfolio assessments and fees for standardized examinations will reduce the expenses covered by federal funding, while simultaneously increasing veteran graduation rates," said Senator Ernst.
U.S. Senator Joni Ernst's Press Release