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Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment (VR&E - Chapter 31)

This program assists Veterans with a service-connected disability (a disabling condition that has resulted from or was aggravated by an injury or illness while the veteran was serving on active duty in the military) to prepare for, find, and keep suitable jobs. For Veterans with service-connected disabilities so severe that they cannot immediately consider work, this program offers services to improve their ability to live as independently as possible.

A VA Veteran who is eligible for an evaluation under Chapter 31 must first apply for services and receive an appointment with a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC). The VRC will work with the Veteran to determine if an employment handicap exists as a result of his or her service connected disability. If an employment handicap is established and the Veteran is found entitled to services. The VRC and the Veteran will continue counseling to select a track of services and jointly develop a plan to address the Veteran's rehabilitation and employment needs.

The rehabilitation plan will specify an employment or independent living goal, identify intermediate goals, and outline services and resources that VA will provide to assist the Veteran to achieve his / her goals. The VRC and the Veteran will work together to implement the plan to assist the Veteran to achieve his or her employment and / or independent living goals.

A Veteran found not to be entitled to services, the VRC will help him or her locate other resources to address any rehabilitation and employment needs identified during the evaluation. Referral to other resources may include state vocational rehabilitation programs; Department of Labor employment programs for disabled veterans; state, federal or local agencies providing services for employment or small business development; internet-based resources for rehabilitation and employment; and information about applying for financial aid.

Active Duty Service Members are eligible if they:

  • Expect to receive an honorable discharge upon separation from active duty
  • Obtain a memorandum rating of  20% or more from the VA
  • Apply for Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E) services

Veterans are eligible if they:

  • Have received, or will receive, a discharge that is other than dishonorable
  • Have a service-connected disability rating of at least  10%, or a memorandum rating of  20% or more from the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA)
  • Apply for Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E) services

Basic period of Eligibility

The basic period of eligibility in which VR&E services may be used is 12 years from the latter of the following:

  • Date of separation from active military service, or
  • Date the veteran was first notified by VA of a service-connected disability rating.

The basic period of eligibility may be extended if a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC) determines that a Veteran has a Serious Employment Handicap

Services that may be provided by the VR&E Program include:

  • Comprehensive rehabilitation evaluation to determine abilities, skills, and interests for employment
  • Vocational counseling and rehabilitation planning for employment services
  • Employment services such as job-training, job-seeking skills, resume development, and other work readiness assistance
  • Assistance finding and keeping a job, including the use of special employer incentives and job accommodations
  • On the Job Training (OJT), apprenticeships, and non-paid work experiences
  • Post-secondary training at a college, vocational, technical or business school
  • Supportive rehabilitation services including case management, counseling, and medical referrals
  • Independent living services for Veterans unable to work due to the severity of their disabilities

Veterans Online Application

1. Apply for your VA Benefits online

Whether you choose to apply online or by sending a paper application through the mail, we recommend following the Road Map found at the link above.

2. Follow this guide to use your benefits at Excelsior

These detailed instructions will help you use your Voc Rehab benefits at Excelsior College.

For specific information about eligibility and entitlement determination, please visit the VA's Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment Program's site.

Financial aid counselor for veterans

Email: vafa@excelsior.edu

Application, degree planning, or enrollment assistance

Toll free: 888-647-2388, ext. 22

Email: admissions@excelsior.edu

Veteran Services and Outreach at Excelsior:

Email: jreed@excelsior.edu

Phone: 518-464-8678

Fax: 518-464-8777

Mail:

Veterans Services and Outreach
Excelsior College
7 Columbia Circle
Albany, NY 12203-5159

Back to Current VA Educational Benefits