Senator Jim Webb’s $30 Billion Investment Improves Lives and Economy.
Nearly 70 years ago, near the end of World War II, the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act, better known as the “GI Bill of Rights” – or just the “GI Bill” – was enacted in 1944 to recognize that military service deserved and demanded a certain amount of compensation and assistance after coming home.
As a result of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s initiative, which was somewhat controversial when passed and which some Veterans at the times said did not go far enough, nearly 8 million Veterans of World War II went to college. The historic legislation stimulated our post-war economy and brought unemployment, medical, and housing benefits to millions more Veterans and families readjusting to civilian life.
Renewed Investment in Americans
The new Post-9/11 GI Bill, written by then-Senator JimWebb (D-VA), was modeled in part on the old law. The landmark law, which also faced opposition when it was introduced, has now provided Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans and their families the opportunity to improve their lives and invest in their future through higher education based on their honorable service during wartime.
And it has just reached a huge milestone. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced that 1 million Veterans, Service members, and family members have benefited from the law.
According to a VA press release, VA provided more than $30 billion in the form of tuition and other education-related payments to Veterans, Service members, and their families and to the universities, colleges, and trade schools they attend.
VA Secretary Shinseki Praises Veterans and VA Staff
The GI Bill is a tremendous long-term success because of the Veterans who use it and the VA staff who made this program possible. “This is one of the most important programs helping our Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans reach their educational goals and find a good job,” VA Secretary Eric K. Shinseki said in a statement. “We’re proud this important benefit is making such a big difference in the lives of so many Veterans and their families.”