Understanding Military Education Assistance

Education after Military

Now that you have served your country, it is important to understand the ways your country can immediately serve you through education. As you search for an online certificate program to jumpstart your civilian career, it’s important to know that the college you choose is committed to helping you make the most of the educational resources that you have worked so hard to receive.

“DoD leadership is committed to preserving a tuition assistance program that assists service members in achieving their education goals while maintaining mission readiness during this fiscally challenging time,” spokesman Nate Christensen said in a prepared statement.

Military Tuition Assistance (TA) is a benefit paid to eligible members of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard. Congress has given each service the ability to pay up to 100% for the tuition expenses of its members as part of their educational financial assistance program. Each service has its own criteria for eligibility, obligated service, application processes and restrictions. TA is not a loan; it should be viewed as money you have earned just like your base pay.

Active Duty and Tuition Assistance
If you are on Active Duty and are applying for Tuition Assistance benefits for the first time, you’ll need to have at least 2 years of service under your belt in order to apply, plus at least 60 days following course completion if enlisted. In addition, you may only take one course if you are a first-time applicant, unless you can prove that you have already obtained an Associate’s Degree or a minimum of 60 academic credits with a GPA of 2.5 or higher. You’ll not receive fresh TA for any classes that start before courses are finished for which you are already receiving tuition assistance.

There are some timely application requirements that will make planning easier.  You will want to apply during the 30-day period prior to the start date of your planned class. Approvals will be contingent on meeting all of the eligibility requirements, and approvals usually occur for classes during that quarter.

Military Spouse Career Advancement Account
Spouses can take advantage of the Military Spouse Career Advancement Account system, or MyCAA, which is designed to provide a form of tuition assistance to help our military spouses to train in a career field that you can carry along with military moves easily. These are fields that should make it more painless for you to find employment with all those periodic military moves, such as health care and teaching. The MyCAA program normally provides up to $4000 in financial assistance – usually no more than $2000 per year – to those meeting eligibility requirements in pursuing a license, certification, or Associate’s degree in one of a handful of acceptable occupations.

To be eligible, you must be the legal spouse of an Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine member on active duty(or Reservists or Guardsman on active duty) in grades E-1 through E-5, W-1 to W-2, or O-1 to O-2. When the program is reinstated, check with counselors for further information. You must be able to complete your planned educational program while your military member is on active duty.

Have Questions?
If you have questions about using your education benefits, we’re here to help. Our representatives understand the challenge of military service because they have been there themselves. Please fill out the form below to connect today.

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