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.


Group Warns Veterans Could be Excluded from CARES Act Grants

May 20, 2020, 18:54 PM
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Summary : Under recent guidance from the Education Department, veterans could be denied emergency aid grants, which help students affected by the closures of campuses due to the pandemic.
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According to a report from the Veterans Education Success, college students who are veterans of the U.S. military could be denied emergency aid grants under the  Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, reports Inside Higher Ed.

A ruling by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos—based on the department's interpretation of Congressional intent for the CARES Act—states that only students who are eligible for federal student aid can receive the grants, which help students affected by the closures of campuses due to the pandemic.

Campus financial aid administrators told Inside Higher Ed that the only way to tell if students qualify for the grants is if students have filed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). They note, Inside Higher Ed reported, that if institutions exclude students who have not filed a FAFSA, many student veterans will be left out because those who receive GI Bill benefits do not apply for regular student aid.

The Washington state attorney general and California community college system are suing the department for potentially excluding undocumented and other students, Inside Higher Ed reported.

Related Link

Inside Higher Ed

Heather Zimar
Categories :
  • Advocacy
  • Financial Aid and FAFSA
  • Grants and Scholarships
  • Veterans and Service Members
Tags :
  • covid-19
  • education department
  • Federal relations
  • gi bill
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