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.


Senators Press Dept. of VA on GI Bill Overpayments

May 10, 2016, 22:09 PM
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On Thursday, Democratic U.S. Senators Tom Carper and Richard Blumenthal sent a letter to Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary Robert McDonald requesting information on steps the department is taking to reduce overpayments of Post-9/11 GI Bill funds.

Last year, a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report found flaws in the VA's ability to track overpayments made to schools and inadequate notification processes for overpayment collection. The investigation revealed $416 million in Post-9/11 GI Bill overpayments in fiscal year 2014, affecting one in four beneficiaries and about 6,000 schools. According to the GAO, the problems could potentially leave veterans unprepared to cover living expenses if the department withheld future benefit payments.

At the time, VA officials said they agreed with the government watchdog's recommendations such as that it improve its guidance and processes related to payments, Politico Morning Education reported.

In their letter, Sens. Blumenthal and Carper called on the department to provide information on how the VA is implementing those recommendations to alleviate the burden on veterans responsible for resolving such overpayments.

"After honorable military service to our country, our nation's veterans have earned the right to attain a high-quality, affordable education here at home with the help of the Post-9/11 GI Bill benefit," the lawmakers wrote.

"It is crucial," they continued, "that VA improve its efforts to reduce and collect Post-9/11 GI Bill overpayments to safeguard taxpayer funds and alleviate the repayment burden that falls disproportionately on veterans. VA must ensure that the delivery of Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits will enable veterans to achieve a high quality, affordable education without incurring unnecessary debts."‎


Related Links

U.S. Senator Tom Carper's Press Release

Politico Morning Education

Michelle Mott
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