If you are thinking of joining the Coast Guard, there are a number of educational opportunities designed to aid enlisted Coast Guard Servicemembers with their education. If you are already enlisted in the Coast Guard you are already qualified for many of these programs. The United States Coast Guard is the armed service charged with Homeland Security, and defense of our Coasts. The Coast Guard is not considered a military service technically, but it is one of the five Armed Forces, and it is identical in scope and enlisted ranks rates and pay schedules with each of the other four military services. The Coast Guard boards vessels, and so it has always been under civilian authority to be regarded by other nations as more of a police agency rather than a military invading force. This has been purely organizational; for all intents and purposes it is the fifth branch of the United States military services, in deed, form and tradition.
Coast Guard Education Foundation Grants- This is the Coast Guard program for active duty Coast Guard’s Servicemembers, from enlisted level E-3 to E-9, or in other words for Seaman Apprentice to Master Chief Petty Officer. It is for those persons seeking to take courses through distance learning (for the most part) or occasional in person college or university courses. It provides money to reimburse educational fees, expenses, and cost for textbooks. It is capped currently at $350 dollars a year, but is renewable if the student is qualified for each year. USCG Vander Putten Scholarship- This is a program for E-3 to E-9 personnel, that provides up to $500 dollars a year for educational costs and miscellaneous expenses not provided for by the USCG Foundation Grants. Coast Guard Mutual Assistance- This is a short-term assistance program that mainly helps out in emergency situations, it is supported by donations from Coast Guard personnel, for Coast Guard personnel, administered by Coast Guard personnel.
Coast Guard Tuition Assistance- This is a version of the Tuition assistance program that is also found in its other four sister services. It pays for college tuition and books up to $4,500 dollars a year. This is a valuable program that will pay for undergraduate programs as long as you earn a C or better, and graduate programs as long as you maintain a B grade or better. There is also support if a person needs to finish their HS education through distance learning, or to obtain a GED, these programs are fully funded.