State lawmakers from Lake and Porter counties took part in a ceremonial bill signing for a new law they say is meant to encourage veterans to become teachers, as part of a “Second Service for Veterans” program. Democratic State Representatives Earl Harris of East Chicago, Shelli VanDenburgh of Crown Point and Chuck Moseley of Portage were co-sponsors of Senate Enrolled Act 331, which Governor Pence signed into law earlier.
“Veterans have skills and experiences that would be extremely valuable to students in the classroom,” said Harris. “Indiana is wise to utilize these valuable resources found in America’s heroes. In addition, helping our veterans find new careers and good-paying jobs is the right thing to do.”
“The law provides career and academic counseling for veterans enrolled in schools of education,” explained Moseley. “In addition, in-state tuition would be offered to out-of-state veterans who apply and are accepted in the ‘Second Service’ program. Another aspect of the law would be the development of scholarship opportunities for veterans who are students majoring in education.”
VanDenburgh added that the veterans’ skills and training will translate into college credit.
“Another important aspect of the new law is that military training and experience will count toward an education degree when they are applicable,” said VanDenburgh. “It is critical that veterans, who have given so much of their lives in service to our country, be given life experience credit toward obtaining a degree. This will reduce the time and cost involved in earning a degree.”
VanDenburgh explained that veterans who pass college equivalency exams or complete courses at an accredited, post-secondary education institution during service will have the opportunity to obtain college credits. [Photo provided: Ceremonial signing, including Gov. Mike Pence, legislators, Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz, Department of Education staff, and individuals representing veterans organizations]