Greenville man creates scholarship program for veterans

GREENVILLE, S.C. – A Greenville man has started a scholarship endowment program aimed at helping veterans get needed funds to pursue vocational and skilled trades training that can lead to employment.

Ron Demonet, a veteran himself, started Veteran Scholarships Forever to help veterans transition back to civilian life quickly and successfully.  Although there are government programs like the G.I. Bill that help veterans get an education, these programs do not cover all types of training.

“Certified vocational and skilled trades programs can help veterans not only find employment quickly, but also lead to long-term careers,” Demonet said.

Demonet, who has created scholarship endowments in the past, said he created Veteran Scholarships Forever because of the high unemployment rates for those leaving military service. He said nearly six million Americans have served in the military since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and almost 3.2 million of them are now civilians. That group’s unemployment rate is 9.9 percent — while the rest of the nation is 7.9 percent.

“These men and women have served their country,” he said. “This program will help them build a better life moving forward.”

As a nonprofit, Veteran Scholarships Forever receives contributions from individuals and organizations.  Once donations are received, Veterans Scholarships Forever will establish endowments at evaluated colleges where veterans can apply for these scholarships.

The college then manages the endowment and provides scholarships to veterans with the most need to obtain the skills needed to be qualified for a job placement that will allow veterans to provide for themselves and their families, he said.

Veterans are still eligible for other forms of financial aid, Demonet said.  Veteran Scholarships Forever does not grant scholarships directly, but interested veterans and current spouses can contact the colleges’ financial aid or Veterans Affairs department to inquire about the program.

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