Veteran's Preference

Veteran's Preference

Houston Community College complies with applicable state and federal statutes regarding the employment of veterans.  In this section, "veteran" means an individual who has served in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard of the United States or the United States Public Health Service under 42 U.S.C. Section 201 et seq., as amended, the Texas National Guard, the Texas State Guard, or any other military force organized under state law, or an auxiliary service of one of those branches of the armed forces, and who has been honorably discharged from the branch of the service in which the person served.  

Eligibility
By law, veterans are generally entitled to a preference in employment with or appointment to a state agency  over other applicants for the same position who do not have greater qualifications.

When a non-veteran applies for the same position as a veteran, veteran status alone does not automatically entitle the veteran to preference in the hiring process.  Similarly, a veteran working in a position who possesses lesser qualifications than a non-veteran in a similar or the same position does not, due to veteran status alone, retain that position during reductions in force.

A veteran's surviving spouse who has not remarried or an orphan of a veteran also may qualify for veteran's employment preference if the veteran was killed while on active duty; the veteran served during a national emergency declared in accordance with federal law; and the spouse or orphan is competent.  

A state agency shall provide to an individual entitled to a veteran’s employment preference, in the following order of priority:

  1. A veteran with a disability (as defined under Chapter 657.001);
  2. A veteran;
  3. A veteran's surviving spouse who has not remarried; and
  4. An orphan of a veteran if the veteran was killed while on active duty.

Important:     Veteran’s preference laws do not guarantee employment or continued employment to veterans, but provide eligible veterans with a preference in the hiring and retention processes.

Applicants (both internal and external to Houston Community College) who qualify to receive a veteran’s preference must select Veteran's Employment Preference on the HCC application and provide a copy of their service discharge form (DD214) or other separation documentation and, if applicable, a DD1300, birth and/or marriage certificate to confirm their status as an eligible veteran.  

FAQs for Applicants

If you are a Veteran, you may be entitled to veteran's preference in the hiring process.

If I am a veteran, how do I know if I am eligible for veteran's preference?

You are eligible under Texas Government Code, Section 657.003 for veteran's preference if you meet all the following qualifications:

  1. Served in: the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, or Marine Corps of the United States or the United States Public Health Service under 42 U.S.C. Section 201 et seq., as amended; the Texas National Guard; the Texas State Guard; or an auxiliary service of one of those branches of the armed forces;
  2. Were honorably discharged from the military service;
  3. Hold greater qualifications than non-veteran applicants or comparators; and
  4. Are competent to perform the duties of the position.

If I am a surviving spouse or orphan of a veteran, how do I know if I am eligible for veteran's preference?

You are eligible for veteran’s preference under Texas Government Code Section 657.002  if you are a veteran's surviving spouse who has not remarried or an orphan of a veteran if the veteran was killed while on active duty, and you meet all the following qualifications:

  1. Hold greater qualifications than non-veteran applicants or comparators; and
  2. Are competent to perform the duties of the position.

How do I respond if I do not meet these requirements?

All other applicants should respond "No".

Who may I contact with my questions regarding the Veteran's Preference?

Please contact Rodney Nathan, Talent Acquisition Manager and Houston Community College Veteran's Liaison, at rodney.nathan@hccs.edu or 713-718-8573. 

Who may I contact if I have a complaint regarding an employment decision?

Chapter 657 of the Texas Government Code provides that an individual entitled toa veteran's employment preference who is aggrieved by a decision of a state agency or institution, relating to either:

  1.  the hiring of the individual, or
  2.  the retention in the individual (in the event of a workforce reduction)

may appeal the hiring or retention decision by filing a complaint with the executive director of the state agency.

The Executive Director for HCC is:

Janet May, Chief HR Officer
Houston Community College
3100 Main Street
Houston, TX 77002

Please begin the complaint process by contacting HCC’s Office of Institutional Equity at institutionalequity@hccs.edu or call 713-718-8573.  Please alert the staff you are raising a veteran’s preference in employment complaint. 

The complaint will be directed to the executive director for review and handling.

A response to the complaint will be provided not later than the 15th business day after the date the executive director receives the complaint.

The executive director may render a different hiring or appointment decision than the decision that is the subject of the complaint if the executive director determines the veteran’s preference was not (properly) applied.

For more information regarding filing a complaint, please visit http://www.hccs.edu/district/departments/institutionalequity/.