Following the passage of the Post-9/11 GI Bill in 2008 and the upgrades to that legislation in 2010, some students who are enrolled in public colleges or universities outside of their state of residence still face significant challenges in financing their education. For example, a service member who is stationed in a certain state for years, buys a home in that state, begins raising a family in that state, pays taxes to that state, and transitions from active duty to civilian life in that state can still be denied the opportunity to attend college in that state as an in-state resident. More improvements to the Post-9/11 GI Bill in order to better support veteran students and ensure they receive the benefits they have earned.
Nearly a third of New GI Bill dollars and half of DoD Tuition Assistance dollars are going to for-profit schools. These predatory schools spend millions on aggressive and deceptive recruiting campaigns designed specifically for veterans. They do this because a loophole in the law makes it extremely profitable for them to target veterans.
This targeting of veterans alone is not the issue. The problem is that many for profit schools are failing to deliver the educations they promised. Many for-profit schools have terrible drop out rates, the top ten GI Bill receiving schools averaged an over 60% in 2008-2009. And for those that do complete their programs, many find that their degrees didn’t prepare them for the jobs or certifications they seek.
Many for-profit schools provide a great education and serve students - like distance learners and veterans seeking vocational training - that other schools don’t. But, because there is so little transparency in the system, veterans don’t have the tools to distinguish the good schools from the bad.
So, this is the fight that IAVA is taking to Washington this year. We’re asking Congress to close the loophole - known as the 90-10 rule - that rewards these schools for targeting veterans’ benefits. We’re asking Congress to prevent schools from using your GI Bill dollars for marketing and recruiting. We’re asking Congress to restore transparency to the system by requiring schools to report data uniformly and by presenting this data in an easy-to-use tool. And, we’re asking Congress to require education counseling so that veterans have the information to choose the program and school best suited for their goals.
Stephanie Hardy. Montgomery, Alabama. As a military spouse, Stephanie was able to use the GI Bill to pay for her education at Northcentral University. She chose an online for-profit PhD program because none of the local schools had a program she was interested in. The expenses at Northcentral University cost her $2160 and 2 months of the GI Bill every 8 weeks. When she asked to speak with her professor to learn how to improve her class grade, her professor threatened to lower her grade more.
Improving Transparency of Education Opportunities for Veterans Act of 2012 – Creates a comprehensive online tool that will inform veterans of all their educational and career training options. This tool will use data from the Department of Education and the State Approving Agencies to help veterans make choices that meet their needs.
IAVA has helped thousands of veterans. Here are some of their stories:
On Sunday, March 18th, IAVA Founder and Executive Director Paul Rieckhoff and…
On August 5th, IAVA Member Veterans joined President Obama at the Navy Yard…