Veterans for Higher Education
The increment in student veteran enrollment rises in higher education every year as more military personel pursue their education, taking advantage of both state and federal benefits.
According to va.gov, the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs provides student military veterans benefit programs that apply toward education. These programs, such as the 9/11 post GI bill are offered to those veterans who are qualified. The GI bill pays student veterans their education fees for a maximum of 36 months. 71 thousand veterans in the state of Texas are currently enrolled in higher education, costing the federal government $800 million dollars. Not only do student veterans receive free education, but also veterans in Texas are eligible to receive monthly payments under the hazel wood exemption with chapter 30.
Alexander Stamatis, Veterans Certyfiying assistant at Texas State started as student worker when he graduated in 2009. Statmatis specializes on the process of veterans benefits such as the GI bill for the department of student veteran affairs, while insuring student veterans are meeting satisfactory progress for benefit requirements. Stamatis says Texas student veterans can be eligible for both Federal and state benefits.
“Yes, they could be qualified for both. What the Hazelwood act is the veteran when they raise their hand when sworn in Texas or have a home record in Texas, they could possible be eligible for both, federal and state, but they are some stipulation in which they the post 911 bill they have to use federal benefits used before state benefits their are cases they can use both at the same time, but for the most part is federal or state.”
– Alexander Stamatis
Student veterans who have served their time in the military and are unable to attend post higher education due to common llnesses such as PTSD, Depression and even suicide can participate in a “transfer entitlement program,” which allows the student veteran to transfer all or a portion of post 9/11 GI bnefits to their spouse or children.
“We do have some vets that have ptsd diagnoses and things like that, we do have veteran specific couslers that helpout and are there for student veteran student. organization that help out students veterans , There is also the student organization VATS veterans alliance at texas state which helps student veterans help at texas state contact each other like a social group on campus in which they can resolve any social issues internally.”
– Alexander Stamatis
Stamatis also is a veteran and understands that many student vets try to deal with problems on their own. Some vets decide not to be resgistered with student affairs nor want to identify themselves as a veterans. Stamatis says some student veterans do not want to be on record, they simply want to get in and get out.
Robert Nunez, KTSW News