A Kinder, Gentler GI Bill Making College More Affordable For Vets

Aug 27, 2015

Information Systems Technician Seaman Zach Curry, of Groesbeck, Texas, a student at the Center for Information Dominance Unit Corry Station, demonstrates to Chief of Naval Personnel Vice Adm. Scott R. Van Buskirk how his computer responds to his method of problem-solving in the experimental computer-based teaching program, Digital Tutor.
Credit Gary Nichols / U.S. Navy

A change to state law is making it simpler for military veterans to attend college regardless of where they call home.

In the past, veterans going to a public college or university were often considered non-residents.

But since the GI Bill only paid for in-state tuition, veterans had to pay the difference between in-state and the higher out-of-state rate from their own pockets.

VA Deputy Under Secretary for Economic Opportunity Curtis Coy, says Florida was one of the early adopters of the change that is now the standard nationwide.

“All of Florida’s public colleges and universities (and the last time I checked there were about 148 of them) are now in full compliance," Coy said, "and they offer in-state tuition to all those veterans who have separated within the last three years.”

Florida’s version of the GI Bill was signed into law in March of last year.

In addition to waiving out of state tuition for veterans going to school in Florida, the law also requires Visit Florida to spend $1 million a year marketing to veterans.

The bi-partisan measure also created the non-profit Florida Is For Veterans to encourage more veterans to move to the state and to encourage more employers to hire them.