As you prepare to get out of the military, and approach separation there are some different things that you can do to prepare. Especially if you want to pursue getting an education. You should try and make a list for yourself, to make sure that you are hitting all the steps necessary. You should start about a year before separation to make sure that everything is set up and ready to go. About a year before you get out of active duty you should look into the schools that you want to start applying for. Don?t wait too long; schools fill up depending when you apply, so apply early in the period you wish to enroll in.
One of the easiest steps is to have a binder or folder, sometimes one of those tri fold folders work well. It needs to be large enough to accommodate everything you need, as well as have different sections for each kind of document. After you have done all the proper VA paperwork, then make sure you schedule an appointment with the schools academic advisor to get registered. If you have taken all these steps, then the transition from Soldier to Student should be an easy one for you. Finalize where you want to attend, and make sure that you are admitted. Obtain and complete a Veterans Form 22-1990, which is the application you will need to fill out for your Montgomery GI Bill benefits. You should make sure that you have a copy of your DD 214 discharge document available also. Its good to remember that timelines do vary from school to school, so you should be prepared to be a little flexible. Request any copies of your military record that you will need, especially military education transcripts. Some of these courses will directly count for possible college credit, so it?s a great idea to keep a copy of all your documents handy.
You should also request and have on hand a copy of your HS Transcripts, and any other coursework or paperwork that you will need. If you decide to complete forms online, then make sure you print out a hard copy for your folder of documents. If you complete forms by hand then either mail it the regional VA center, or take it in person to the VA center or your Schools Veteran?s Office.