VA program to help thousands of veterans learn new career after being unemployed due to COVID-19 pandemic

A new Veterans Affairs program has been set up to help veterans who are unemployed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Veteran Rapid Retraining Assistance Program provides some free education and training for eligible veterans to learn a new career. 

If approved for the program, up to 12 months of tuition and fees will be covered for courses that lead to one of the hundreds of preapproved jobs that are considered "high demand." A monthly housing allowance would also be included. 

The list of "high-demand jobs" eligible for the program has already been released and includes jobs in management operations, computers, engineering and healthcare, to name a few. You can see a full list here.

Dozens of schools around the country are participating in the program.


The US Department of Veterans Affairs building is seen in Washington, DC, on July 22, 2019. (Photo by Alastair Pike / AFP) (Photo credit should read ALASTAIR PIKE/AFP via Getty Images)

The program is funded thanks to President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan, which approved $386 million in funds. The program will be available through December 2022 or until the funds run out. About 17,000 veterans are able to participate.

The program is targeted at those who have already exhausted other job-training opportunities but still find themselves without stable employment because of coronavirus closures, layoffs or health complications, MilitaryTimes reported

In order to be eligible, veterans must meet several requirements. You can see details on how to apply here.  

Biden’s sweeping $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill was passed earlier this year in March and also provided $1,400 checks for most Americans and direct billions of dollars to schools, state and local governments, and businesses.