Monte A. Schrader II, Constituent Services Representative for U.S. Congressman John Ratcliffe (R-TX), said he feels right at home in his office located on the Texarkana College campus. Schrader, a TC alum, is also a veteran and works as a liaison between federal agencies to help resolve veterans’ matters. Schrader says his role as the Constituent Services Representative for the Fourth District of Texas is a job he’s honored to have.
“Most veterans do not know what resources are available to them,” Schrader said. “We have so many great resources right here in our community to help veterans with their benefits, and I am able to steer them in the right direction. However, when an issue can’t be resolved at the local or state level, it is my duty to relay their concern to Rep. Ratcliffe so that he can help address the matter on a federal level.”
Schrader says his role requires networking, follow-up and creative problem-solving.
“As a veteran, I know firsthand how beneficial it is to be able to tap into resources, and how frustrating it can be if you don’t know where to turn for help,” Schrader said. “I spend a lot of time helping veterans connect with agencies like the new Texas Veterans Commission’s Veterans Benefits Claim Center that just opened on the Texarkana College campus.
Schrader said funds made available to him as a result of his active service enabled him to pursue his college degree and plan for his future. He said he hopes all veterans know about these benefits and take advantage of the opportunities.
“I enlisted in the U.S. Army and was active duty for four years,” Schrader said. “My service enabled me to access funds to go to college through the Hazlewood Act, a State of Texas a benefit that provides qualified Texas Veterans, spouses, and dependent children with tuition exemption at public institutions of higher education in Texas. On top of that, I am eligible for additional education funds through the Montgomery GI Bill.”
Schrader earned an associate degree in general studies from Texarkana College and transferred his credits to Texas A&M University-Texarkana to pursue a bachelor’s degree in political science. He says his goal is to continue his education to earn a master’s degree and law degree and eventually work either as a federal prosecutor or for the State Department.
“I’ve been so encouraged by the great professors during my college career, both at TC and at TAMU-T,” Schrader said. “I was not raised in this community and don’t know very many people around here; however, the faculty and staff at both higher education institutions have become my closest friends. They feel like family to me. I am grateful for the support and direction they have given me for my future career. Our region has a wonderful network of professionals who help you succeed, and I am grateful for the opportunities I have found here.”
Schrader said getting to work alongside Rep. Ratcliffe and District Director Robbin Bass has been a wonderful experience and one that he does not take for granted.
“Every time I answer a phone call from a constituent, I know I am representing the Fourth Congressional District of Texas,” Schrader said. “I am honored to serve in this capacity and to be able to assist those who entrust me to help them with their concerns. Rep. Ratcliffe frequently visits our community and makes a point to interact with his constituents. He knows the importance of representing ‘our voice’ in Washington DC and relies on his staff to report concerns and comments accurately. I am honored to serve in my role and grateful to be part of the congressional staff.”
Rep. Ratcliffe’s regional office is located on the TC campus at 2500 N. Robison Road, Suite 190 (inside the Media Center building), Texarkana, Texas 75599. For more information or to contact the office staff, call 903-823-3173 or email email@example.com.