The Legion's Steve Gonzalez submitted written testimony to Congress March 17.

Legion proposes education benefits recommendations

The House of Representatives Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity convened March 17 to examine higher education opportunities for veterans. Steve Gonzalez, the assistant director of the American Legion’s Veterans Employment and Education Division, submitted written testimony for the record on behalf of the American Legion.

In his statement, Gonzalez covered a variety of critical issues, ranging from credentialing to the Department of Veterans Affairs GI Bill Feedback System. Other points of interest included Entitlement Payments vs. Cost of Credential, Articulation of Academic Credit and private loan violations of the Service Members Civil Relief Act.

Gonzalez stressed how important it is for State Approving Agencies, and Defense, Education, and Veterans Service Organizations to reassess their programs, policies, types of services, and how these current and future student-veterans have access to useful information.

“All of these stakeholders have an obligation to provide and inform these current and future student veterans about the financial cost of education, local resources available to them (i.e.: VA treatment facilities, veteran campus centers, child care, etc), to ensure quality programs are being delivered, and to ensure that educational institutions provide high-quality academic and student support services to servicemembers, veterans, and families,” he wrote.

In his testimony, Gonzalez noted The American Legion’s commitment to ensuring the success of veteran pursuing further education, suggesting use of the Department of Education Veterans Upward Bound Program for those who need to take remedial courses to assist with their reintegration into institutions of higher learning.

“The American Legion wants to see student veterans become as educated as possible in order to be productive in the economy and the workforce,” wrote Gonzalez.

To view his written testimony, click here.