Vets return to college for job retraining

NW Ohio military veterans are returning to school under VRAP program

TOLEDO, Ohio (WSPD) Monday marked the first day of classes at Owens Community College for 56-year old Air Force veteran Kenneth Taylor, one of about three dozen Northwest Ohio military veterans now enrolled in the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP).

Taylor is a former autoworker at Toledo Jeep, but went on permanent layoff during the auto industry downturn in 2009. He since has tried his hand at other careers, even opening his own travel agency, but nothing lasted during the recession. He served in the Air Force as a repair technician from 1978 to 1982. Using VRAP funds, he will attend Owens Community College to take courses in human resources. He will receive a monthly stipend of $1,473 for the next year to pursue his education.

47,000 military veterans are now enrolled in the VRAP program-- nearly half of the available slots. U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) is pushing for as many Ohio veterans as are eligible to take advantage of the retraining opportunity.

Between July 1, 2012, and March 31, 2014, the program will provide up to 99,000 participants with retraining assistance. The first wave of enrollment closes September 30, 2012. Participants must be enrolled in a VA-approved program of education offered by a community college or technical school. The program must lead to an Associate Degree, Non-College Degree, or a Certificate, and train the Veteran for a high demand occupation.

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Vets return to college for job retraining »