Are you aware of the many education benefits that service members can take advantage of? No matter if you are currently serving or have been discharged, it is important to consider the many programs that can help you take your education to the next level. From turning military training into college credits to financial aid, there have never been more ways to further your education and better your future prospects of success.
With the cost of tuition quickly rising, more and more students are forgoing college because of the cost. Fortunately, if you are part of the military you never have to worry about this. Instead, you can consider programs such as ?Military Tuition Assistance.? With this, service members are able to enroll in college courses at a variety of schools throughout the country. Each branch of the military has a unique program that can help pay for everything from a professional certificate to an advanced degree.
Do I qualify? This is based on many factors including how much longer you will be serving and how many credit hours you need to earn.
With the Tuition Assistance program, your tuition and expenses are paid in full up to a maximum of $4,500 per fiscal year. Along with those who are full-duty members of the military, selected National Guard and Reserve units offer the same program. That being said, the benefits can and will vary.
Post 9/11 GI Bill
The Post 9/11 GI Bill has been in effect since August 1, 2009. When it comes a comprehensive education benefits package, there is none that are better than this. If you have served after September 10, 2011 with at least 90 days of continuous service, you are eligible to take advantage of this program and its many benefits. Along with this, the program is also for Guard and Reserve members who have been activated for more than three months.
Starting on August 1, 2011, the Post 9/11 GI Bill pays 100 percent of in-state tuition and fees at public institutions. The full benefit is calculated based on the following numbers:
– Tuition and fees that are not to exceed the highest public in-state tuition in a particular state
– Living stipend
– Allowance for books and other education related supplies
The actual amount of the benefit is based largely on the person?s length of service. For instance, service members who have served at least three years prior to discharge for a service disability can receive the maximum tuition and fees allowance. On the other hand, those who have served at least three months but less than six, only receive 40 percent of the maximum allowable benefits.
Note: benefits are available for up to 15 years following retirement or honorable discharge.
Loan Repayment Program
Did you accrue college loans before entering the service? If so, the Army, Navy, and Air Force may be able to help you with. Through the loan repayment program, enlisted service members are assisted with paying off college loans.
As a member of the Army, a solider can qualify to have their student loans repaid at a rate of 1/3 of the loan for each year of duty. There is a maximum loan repayment amount of $65,000.
Full-time duty service members in the Navy also have access to a $65,000 Loan Repayment Program. To qualify, you must have a high school diploma, no prior experience in the military, and a loan that is guaranteed under the Higher Education Act of 1965. Along with this, candidates must qualify for a designated critical rating career such as the Navy Nuclear Field.
For non-prior service members considering the Air Force, the College Loan Repayment Program can make the decision much easier. If you have already accumulated student loan debt but still want to enlist, the repayment program can help. To take advantage, you must sign up for the program before signing an enlistment contract. The maximum repayment amount in the Air Force is $10,000.
As you focus more on these programs, it is easy to see that the United States Military is serious about education.