Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs Launches New Educational Bridge Grant Program

The Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs is now accepting applications for a new grant program aimed at helping Oregon veterans complete their educational goals. The Veteran Educational Bridge Grant Program provides financial assistance to veterans who are unable to complete their education due to the unavailability of one or more required classes.

The new program, which the Oregon State Legislature established during the 2019 legislative session with the passage of House Bill 2201, provides grants to eligible student veterans to alleviate the financial stress during a gap period when required courses are unavailable, allowing them to stay in school and finish their academic program.

“The financial reality of many student veterans’ situations is that they can’t simply take a semester off,” noted ODVA Director Kelly Fitzpatrick. “And we know that many of those who have to seek employment to provide for themselves and their families may never return to the classroom to finish their education.

“In Oregon, we believe our veterans should not have to miss out on the chance to reach their career and educational goals simply because of the timing of course offerings. At a time when student veterans’ schedules and finances may be more challenged due to the COVID-19 crisis, this program is needed now more than ever.”

Under the program, eligible student veterans who are unable to complete their education due to the unavailability of required classes may receive grants of up to $5,000. Recipients must be a veteran eligible for GI Bill® benefits, must be an Oregon resident and must be enrolled in an Oregon-based academic program that is approved by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

For more information about the Veteran Educational Bridge Grant Program, or to apply, visit the ODVA website at https://www.oregon.gov/odva/agency-programs/grants/Pages/Educational-Bridge-Grant.aspx. Questions may also be directed to ODVA’s Veteran Educational Bridge Grant Coordinator, Scott Salazar, at ebg@odva.state.or.us or by phone at 503-373-2338.