By: Matt Galka
April 4, 2016
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- With around 1.5 million veterans calling the sunshine state home, Florida continues to make its claim as the most veteran friendly state in the country. Now, Governor Scott has signed a bill that aims to help expand college opportunities for military men and women in the state.
It started at sea. Veteran Adam Cerullo found his love for helping others while working as a physical therapy assistant while in the Navy.
“Unfortunately, a lot of the programs that the military has for training do not roll into the civilian sector equally as far as licensures,” said Cerullo.
So 45-year-old Cerullo is back in school at Tallahassee Community College in hopes of starting a new career. He say's it’s not as tough as the military.
“I know how to prepare, I know what I need to do, I know what I need to do to get that good grade,” he said.
Now lawmakers want to make it easier for veterans to earn college credit. Lawmakers passed and the Governor signed a bill that would give credit for more exams military men and women take while in uniform.
“There’s no boundary when you put on the uniform in the United States of America, you’re an American soldier, sailor, marine, airmen, or coast guardsman. You serve the nation, and that benefit that you earn should be something that goes from one state to the other,” said Retired Colonel Mike Prednergast, the outgoing Secretary of the Department of Veteran’s Affairs.
The bill also expands the in state tuition waiver to more veterans. Cerullo hopes it’ll create more opportunities for those who served.
“I’m just so glad that Florida is able to help recognize a lot more of the training that the veterans have already gone through,” he said.
The law goes into effect July 1st.