Veterans Retraining Assistance Program
VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011 Creates New Benefit for Unemployed Veterans
Congress passed, and the President has signed into law, the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011. Included in this new law is the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP). VRAP offers up to 12 months of training assistance to unemployed Veterans.
VRAP Applications Are Open
We are accepting VRAP applications now. Please visit eBenefits to apply. Remember, to complete the application, you will need to know your direct deposit information (bank routing number and account number), the name and location of your school, the program you wish to pursue, and the applicable high demand occupation you wish to train in. To view an informative video on how to complete the application click here. NOTE: You do not have to select a program and high-demand occupation in order to complete the application like the video states.
To qualify, a Veteran must:
- Be at least 35 but no more than 60 years old
- Be unemployed
- Have an other than dishonorable discharge
- Not be eligible for any other VA education benefit program (e.g.: the Post-9/11 GI Bill, Montgomery GI Bill, Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Assistance)
- Not be in receipt of VA compensation due to unemployability
- Not be enrolled in a federal or state job training program
The program is limited to 45,000 participants from July 1, 2012, through September 30, 2012, and 54,000 participants from October 1, 2012, through March 31, 2014. Participants may receive up to 12 months of assistance equal to the monthly full-time payment rate under the Montgomery GI Bill–Active Duty program (currently $1,473 per month). DOL will provide employment assistance to every Veteran who participates upon completion of the program. VA will begin accepting applications online by May 15, 2012.
Participants must be enrolled in a program of education approved for VA benefits offered by a community college or technical school. The program must lead to an Associate Degree, Non-College Degree, or a Certificate, and provide training towards a high demand occupation.
Call us at 1-800-827-1000 to learn more about the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011, or visit www.benefits.va.gov/vow.
It’s important for VA to know if you do not plan on using your benefits---we could open your spot to someone else.
If you received a Certificate of Eligibility for VRAP but no longer wish to participate in the program, you can let us know by sending us an email via the GI Bill website at www.GIBill.va.gov. Click on the “Submit a Question” button in the middle of the page, login to your account and click “Ask a Question.” You must have an account to submit a question. If you do not have an account, you can set one up by clicking here.
Please place “Withdraw from VRAP” in the subject line and provide the following information in the body of your email:
- Full Name
- File Number (Social Security Number)
- Why you no longer need or want to participate in the program
- Students using the VRAP program Must be enrolled as a full-time student
- Once enrolled in the VRAP program a student may not change his/her program
- Students who drop below full-time enrollment will become ineligble for VRAP and may owe money to the VA
- Students using VRAP are required to verify their enrollment at the end of each month. For more information on verifying enrollment please click here.