After World War II, America seized the opportunity to create a more productive workforce by sending its veterans to college on the GI Bill. It proved to be a smart investment. The Greatest Generation propelled our country to lead in almost every facet of life.
Today, we have another opportunity. Here in Iowa, an increasing number of veterans are using the post-9/11 GI Bill to go to college. Among other benefits, this GI Bill covers the cost of resident tuition. In order to help our non-resident veterans, our regent institutions give veterans who are eligible for the post 9/11 GI Bill residency status for undergraduate college. While this is wonderful, it needs to be expanded to cover our graduate and professional colleges as well.
For those who would oppose this move, citing revenue loss, a few facts. First, our graduate and professional colleges do not set resident tuition at a level that constitutes a loss. If they did, our universities would have gone out of business long ago. Second, the number of students this would affect is fairly small.
The reward for extending resident tuition to this population is high. If we want to attract highly educated and productive citizens to our state, this is one way to achieve that. It is time for our legislature to amend 681-1.4(2) of the Iowa Administrative Code.
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