One community that is seeing immense challenges stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic is veterans. In March of 2021, 5% of all veterans looking for work noted they have exhausted all of their job training opportunities and cannot find stable employment. That number is close to double the national average.
To help address this rising unemployment problem, the American Rescue Plan of 2021 included $17 billion for several veterans programs. One of them was the Veterans Rapid Retraining Assistance Program (VRRAP). This program helps veterans that have been affected by COVID-19 and provides them with training for high-demand jobs.
We’re going to break down what the VRRAP program is, who is eligible, and what programs are accepted so you can get started with your career transition using the VRRAP.
Here’s what you need to know about VRRAP:
What is the VRRAP?
The Veterans Rapid Retraining Assistance Program, or VRRAP for short, is modeled after the Veterans Retraining Program. This new program was created as a part of the American Rescue Plan of 2021. This new “rapid” retraining program aimed to help Veterans that have been affected by COVID-19 and provide them with short-term training into a high-demand career path, such as technology and software development.
Who is eligible for VRRAP?
To be eligible to use the VRRAP, you must meet all of these requirements:
- Age: Between 22 and 66 years of age
- Unemployment due to COVID-19
- Must not also be receiving unemployment benefits (including CARES Act benefits)
- Not enrolled in a federal or state jobs program
- Not considered as disabled because they can’t work
- Cannot also be eligible for
- Post 9/11 GI bill
- You can get VRRAP benefits if you were one time eligible, but you’ve transferred all of your benefits to family members
- Montgomery GI Bill
- Veterans Readiness and Employment (VR&E)
- Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance (DEA)
- Veterans’ Educational Assistance Program (VEAP)
- A veteran who receives VRRAP benefits and fails to complete the program cannot receive additional assistance under VRRAP.
What funding is available through VRRAP?
Funding for the VRRAP program is available right now, so if you meet the eligibility requirements, now is the time to take advantage of this program. Even though funding is still available for this program, this program was created to help as many veterans as possible, and the program is moving quickly.
Here is what the funds from the VRRAP cover:
- Up to 12 months of tuition and fees for high-demand career paths
- Monthly housing allowance based on Post-9/11 GI Bill® rates
Funds for the VRRAP program will end when any of these happen:
- 21 months after the creation (December 11, 2022).
- The maximum number of 17,250 participants is reached.
- The $386 million budget is spent.
How do I apply for VRRAP?
If you are interested in taking the next steps and applying for the VRRAP program, you can apply directly from the VA.gov website.
To fill out your application, you will need your:
- Social Security Number
- Bank Account Direct Deposit Information
After the application has been submitted:
- The VA will review your application – usually makes a decision within 30 days.
- You will then receive your Certificate of Eligibility (COE) or award letter – by email and/or mail.
- You can now find a VRRAP approved program and apply to their program.
How can I make a career transition with VRRAP?
Being a San Diego company, LEARN academy has an extremely close relationship with our veteran’s community, helping many successfully make a career transition into tech.
Our 4-month Intensive Coding Bootcamp, offers students the opportunity to learn career-ready skills as a software developer and gain crucial real-world experience. For 3-months, students will collaborate inside a virtual classroom with their classmates and instructors, learning the ins and outs of full-stack development. During month 4 of the program, all students are guaranteed a 1-month coding internship with crucial mentorship and real-world coding experience. After graduation, students work with our in-house Career Services Manager to discover where their passions lie in the field of technology and software development.
If you are interested in learning more about our Intensive Bootcamp, schedule some time with our Enrollments Team. We can get all your questions answered, go over the next steps, and how to apply to an upcoming cohort.