WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC), announced the introduction of the Veteran Education Empowerment Act, legislation to create, maintain, and operate Student Veteran Centers at universities and colleges across the nation to help student veterans transitioning from military to civilian life. Rosen introduced the bipartisan and bicameral Veteran Education Empowerment Act alongside Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) in the Senate and Reps. Lois Frankel (FL-21-D) and Michael Waltz (FL-06-R) in the U.S. House of Representatives.
“Our veterans’ service is inspiring, and we owe it to our heroes to make sure they are taken care of when they return home,” said Senator Rosen. “I am proud to introduce the bipartisan Veteran Education Empowerment Act to establish and support Student Veteran Centers at colleges and universities. Student Veteran Centers are tailored to address the unique needs of veteran students pursuing a higher education, helping them transition from the battlefield to the classroom and into the workforce. One of my greatest privileges as a Senator is representing the 225,000 veterans that call Nevada home and we must provide them with the tools to succeed as they return to civilian life.”
BACKGROUND: Student veterans often face unique challenges enrolling in and attending college. They may have been away from school for long periods or struggle with service-related disabilities, and many are older than their peers with families to support. These hurdles can lead to high dropout rates and limit potential job opportunities.
The Veteran Education Empowerment Act would reauthorize and improve a grant program, through the Department of Education, designed to help institutions of higher education establish and operate Student Veteran Centers. These centers provide a one-stop-shop for student veterans to find academic support, networking opportunities, peer mentorship, financial assistance, and career services. Grants would authorize up to $500,000 to eligible colleges and universities.
The bipartisan and bicameral Veteran Education Empowerment Act is endorsed by over a dozen veteran service organizations including the Student Veterans of America, American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, United Way’s Mission United, and Veterans’ Trust.