VBA’s Education Service announced new members to the 2020 Veterans Advisory Committee on Education (VACOE) at an introductory public meeting on a recent teleconference.

The committee holds public meetings to discuss and explore Veterans’ education benefit issues. It also advises the secretary on existing and new VA education benefit policies and programs and services. The committee submits its recommendations and reports to the Secretary and to Congress, Under Federal Advisory and Committee Act (FACA) statute and rules.

The committee’s chair is Sarah Roberts, a West Point graduate who served on active duty as a finance officer in the Army from 2005 to 2010. Roberts is also Head of Military and Veterans Programs for LinkedIn.

“I want to extend my gratitude to the 2020 VACOE for coming together this past week to virtually convene,” said Chairperson Roberts. “Collectively, we will work together to make recommendations that support VA Education Service’s mission to expand access to education benefits for Veterans, service members and dependents… The time we spent together helped lay the foundation for the important work that is ahead.”

Committee members
  • Mona Dexter, chief of staff and senior director, Operations and Communications, US Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Hiring Our Heroes, Vice Chairperson.
  • Barry Butler, Ph.D., president, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.
  • Ashlynne Haycock, deputy director, Policy, Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS).
  • Soudarak (Sue) Luangkhot Hoppin, founder and president, National Military Spouse Network.
  • Jared S. Lyon, president and CEO, Student Veterans of America.
  • Javier Miyares, president, University of Maryland Global Campus.
  • Beth E. Morgan, director of Higher Education Transition and Partnerships, The Center for Veteran Transition and Integration, Columbia University.
  • John T. Quintas, brigadier general USAF (Retired), director, Military Affairs, Amazon.com.
  • Darrell L. Roberts, director of organizing, International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers (SMART).
  • Cynthia A. Warrick, Ph.D., RPh, president, Stillman College.
  • Joseph W. Wescott II, Ed.D., national higher education consultant, American Legion; and national legislative liaison, National Association of State Approving Agencies.

For more information on VACOE, its charter, meeting minutes, reports and member biographies, go to: https://www.va.gov/ADVISORY/Veterans_Advisory_Committee_on_Education.asp.

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Published on Jul. 9, 2020

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  1. Darlana Seureau July 30, 2020 at 2:13 am

    Hi, my deceased husband was a submarine naval sailor during the Vietnam war. We were together from 1978 through 1989. We were legally married from 82 to 89. I had two children with him. We were together for 10+. Because Texas recognizes common law marriage is, should I be getting rid of benefits from him. He is buried up in the Sitka Veterans Memorial cemetery in Sitka Alaska. Could you please tell me the best way to find out the answer? I have a disability and have a hard time. God bless you.

  2. Bruce Allan Johnson July 10, 2020 at 1:57 pm

    The VA Medical Program has tens of thousands of veteran records that van easily identify individuals that could get deathly sick if they contracted the COVID–19 Virus. I personally am 90 years old, with high blood pressure, my lungs do not produce sufficient oxygen without the aid of an inhaler, I recently (last year and this year) had bacterial infections that affected my upper respiratory system, and to top that off. I am a type 2 Diabetic.

    All I get from my VA Primary Physician is: stay away from people, wear a hand-made mask, and wash my hands often. Your clinics do not offer testing for Covid-19 nor do anyone’s bi-annual Blood Test include the test for Covid-19 antibodies that would lessen the risk of catching the Covid-19 Virus. The only trips I make are to the local VA Clinic or the VA Mail Hospital the see specialist.

    I gather that those people working in hospitals have masks that reduce the chances of Covid-119 infection and I would suggest that ALL veterans that are over 60 and have diseases that are dangerous to have if they get Covid-19 Virus. I also suggest that Covid-19 test be performed on anyone entering a VA Medical Facility and those individuals that test positive be trained in the best couse of action for a 2-week quarantine period.

    Bruce Johnson

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