CollegeHow Much Does The Military Pay For Your College

How Much Does The Military Pay For Your College


Navy Student Loan Repayment Program


You must serve a minimum of 3 years on active duty during your first enlistment to be eligible for this repayment program. Like with the Army, you can receive 33 % or up to $1,500 toward your principal balance, whichever is greater. You can receive a maximum of $65,000 in loan forgiveness, but your loans cant be in default.

What Loans Qualify for Navy Student Loan Repayment:

  • Stafford loans

How to Apply For the Navy Student Loan Repayment Program:

You can visit for more information, or contact a Navy recruiter.

Education After Military Service

After a service member decides to leave the military, there are a number of opportunities for them to further their education. One of the biggest pluses for veterans is the Post-9/11 GI Bill, which can cover up to 100% of college tuition expenses and up to $1,000 a month for rent. Veterans can use this program to get a college degree, vocational training or other certification. Current service members with between six and 16 years of service can also transfer this benefit to a spouse or child.

Veterans with at least two years of active-duty service can use the Montgomery GI Bill program to get up to $61,000 for college programs, flight training or apprenticeships.

Veterans and FRY Scholars who have or will soon exhaust their benefits and are currently enrolled in a STEM degree program or are seeking a teaching certification are eligible to receive the Rogers STEM scholarship. Family members who received transferred entitlement are not eligible for additional educational assistance under the STEM Scholarship.

Service members or their spouses can also reach out to Military OneSource education consultants while actively serving and for up to a year post-separation or retirement. These consultants can help service members and their family members figure out their education goals, find military-friendly colleges and professional programs, and apply for scholarships all at no cost.

Dont Use Your Gi Bill If Military Tuition Assistance Is Available Instead

While working in a previous job as a military education policymaker at the Pentagon, Sweizer says he often spoke with veterans who called in, upset to the point of tears, because they wanted to go back to school but they had exhausted their GI Bill benefits. Many of these veterans had used their GI Bill benefits while on active duty, unaware they could have used the governments free Tuition Assistance program instead.

Its a wonderful program, says Sweizer. Most of the enlisted force who are going to school pretty much rely on the TA program because it covers just about everything.

However, at least one military enlistee isnt using Military Tuition Assistance while on Active Duty because he found applying for it to be too much hassle.

James Newcomb is an Army sergeant assigned to Fort Knox, Kentucky, who is working on an online bachelors degree in government at Regent University.

Newcomb, 32, says he found the Tuition Assistance program to be a really cumbersome experience, full of red tape and bureaucracy. So, he is tapping into his GI Bill benefits to pay for his distance college degree.

Sweizer disagrees with Newcombs assessment of TA.

Its not cumbersome, he says. The military services have gone out of their way to make applying for TA extremely easy.

In the past, military personnel had to go in person to educational centers to sign up for TA. But today, says Sweizer, You dont have to go to educational centersyou can do it online.

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The American Military Partner Association

One of the largest support systems for military members and their spouses, AMPA can help you obtain a higher education. This scholarship is designed for not just military spouses but also their families and LGBTQ service members. AMPA supports all education goals and can help you gain a higher education. The award generally offers $1,000 to $2,500 for your education assistance.

Another great thing about this scholarship is they dont require you to answer personal questions. When you apply for the scholarship you dont have to identify as LGBTQ or any sexual orientation.

There are many other scholarships out there for military spouses to apply for, so make sure you search for them all and apply for the ones you are eligible for! Lets talk about a few other options for military spouse education assistance.

What Are Some Requirements For Attending A Military Academy

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  • You must be a US citizen.
  • Students must be unmarried, with no dependents.
  • Students must have good moral character.
  • Student must be at least 17 years old, and cannot be older than twenty-three by July 1 of the year he or she is entering the program.
  • Four years of English.
  • Four years of College Prep Math.
  • Four years of Social Studies.
  • Two years of Foreign Language.
  • One year of Computer Science
  • To be competitive, a student must have an average SAT score of 1300.

Ellies Tip: Check out the individual academy portals to find out about additional requirements.

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Post 9/11 And Forever Gi Bill

For military members that have served and choose not to use their eligible Post 9/11 or Forever GI Bill, they may transfer it. Military members can choose to transfer all of or just part of their VA financial aid to their spouse.

The assistance they receive from these bills will be determined by the amount of time they have served as military personnel. With a minimum of 10 years total of service, you can transfers up to 36 months worth of education benefits to their eligible spouse or dependant.

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Interest Rate Caps

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act offers interest rate caps on student loans that were taken out prior to entering the military. While the 6% cap applies to both federal and private student loans, typically the interest rate cap is most applicable to private loans due to their higher rates. This cap lasts as long as the servicemember is on active duty.

Most servicemembers are provided this benefit automatically by lenders due to loan providers routinely scanning federal databases to determine if those who are on active duty. However, those individuals or loans overlooked may provide a copy of military orders to their loan servicer to cap the interest rate.

And given that the best student loan rates are typically more than that, make sure you follow up to save a little money.

Note that to qualify for this benefit, the loans must have been originated after August 14, 2008. Contact the loan servicer for specific information about SCRA eligibility.

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Earn Your College Degree Through The Green To Gold Program

The Green to Gold Program identifies enlisted Soldiers with leadership potential and helps them pay for college and earn the degree needed to become an Officer. Through ROTC, candidates will attend college or graduate school, complete Army Officer Commissioning requirements, and compete for Officer assignments.

Army Tuition Assistance Benefits How To Pay For Your College Education

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The Army recently updated their Tuition Assistance program with a focus on ensuring their Soldiers are more focused on military readiness and training as opposed to spending more time on college classes.

Soldiers will still have the opportunity to use Tuition Assistance to achieve their educational goals, however, Soldiers must first meet more stringent criteria to be eligible to participate in the TA program. The most recent updates to the Army Tuition Assistance benefits program are effective through September 30, 2021.

While not everyone will be happy with these changes, the Army was compelled to make these changes to meet readiness goals and to help stretch the ever-shrinking budget.

Lets dive in and take a look at what the Army TA program offers, who is eligible, which educational programs are covered, and how to take advantage of this valuable benefit.

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More Sources Of College Aid For Active

In addition to the special programs described above, both active-duty members of the military and veterans are eligible for the same financial aid that any other student is. Those includePell Grants, subsidized and unsubsidized federal student loans, and federal work-study programs.

They also are eligible for numerous state, institutional, and private scholarships, some specifically for current and former members of the military.

To apply for financial aid, prospective students should fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid . The FAFSA is used by both the federal government and other student-aid providers to determine a student’s eligibility based on their financial resources. For FAFSA purposes, members of the military are considered “independent students,” which means they dont have to supply information about their parents’ finances.

Active-duty military members and veterans are also eligible for special student loan benefits and repayment options that are not available to other borrowers.

Army Tuition Assistance Eligibility

Perhaps the biggest change to the Army Tuition Assistance program pertains to eligibility requirements. In 2018 eligibility was based on a tiered program, but today it has been adjusted to reflect a Time in Service model.

Now through September 30, 2021 soldiers are eligible for Tuition Assistance Benefits for a Bachelors Degree upon successfully completing one year of service following graduation from Advanced Individual Training . Soldiers are eligible to use TA for a Graduate Degree with the same service requirement, provided they did not use TA for their Bachelors Degree. If they did, they have to wait until they had 10 years of service before being eligible to use TA for a graduate degree.

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Air Force Tuition College Benefits

The Air Force Tuition Assistance program allows airmen to pursue approved college courses while off duty. Tuition assistance pays for 100 percent of tuition up to $250 per semester hour or $166 per quarter hour. Students may receive up to $4,500 per year, according to the Air Force’s Personnel Center, or AFPC. This program allows airmen to pursue two- or four-year academic degrees or technical programs.

Time In Service And Additional Service Commitments

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Any enlisted Soldier using TA must have enough time left in service to complete the courses they are signing up for.

  • Active Duty officers incur an Active Duty Service Obligation of two years, and
  • Reserve Component officers incur a Reserve Duty Service Obligation of four years.
  • The ADSO/RDSO is calculated from the date of completion of the last course for which TA was used.

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Take Advantage Of Military Family Scholarships

There are numerous scholarships available to children of service members. Each varies depending on eligibility, so check carefully to find the scholarships right for your childs educational goals, then apply, apply, apply.

  • The Defense Commissary Agency created the Scholarships for Military Children Program in recognition of the contributions of military families to the readiness of the fighting force, and to celebrate the role of the commissary in the military family community.
  • Military service relief organizations offer scholarships and no-interest loans for family members.

The Gi Bill: Helping Military Veterans Pay For College

Originally known as the Servicemens Readjustment Act of 1944, the GI Bill was started after World War II to support military veterans in their return to civilian life. Years later, plenty of military service members still use the program to fund their college education.

Heres what you need to qualify for the GI Bill:

  • Have served at least 90 days of active duty, or at least 30 days if youve been discharged with a service-related disability
  • In most cases, you will need to sign up for eight years of military service. The most common arrangement involves four years of active duty, and four years of reserve duty

Military vets can choose between the Post 9/11 GI Bill and the Montgomery GI Bill. Both paths offer a number of benefits, so its up to you to make your decision based on your educational goals and service history.

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Do Students With Lower Grades Or Test Scores Have A Chance Of Getting Admitted To Military Academies

If a student has a lower GPA, but still exhibits high leadership or athletic talent, they may be recommended to an affiliated prep school for a year in order to bring up their grades or help them acclimate to the rigor that is a major part of these programs. The admittance to these prep schools is determined, and usually paid for, by the individual academies.

Dod Credentialing Opportunities On

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Like the VMET, DoD COOL is not specifically a military education benefit. However, it is another tool that servicemembers can use to find information on certifications and licenses related to their military service based on training they have already accomplished .

The COOL program helps translate military training into civilian credentials and speak better to what employers are looking for. COOl also offers resources available to fill gaps between military training and civilian credentialing requirements

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Benefits Of The Minuteman Scholarship

The Minuteman Scholarship can provide up to full tuition OR $10,000 in room and board. This scholarship may also be used in conjunction with your existing scholarships. Additional benefits of the Minuteman Scholarship include:

  • An annual book allowance of up to $1,200
  • A monthly living stipend between $300-$500
  • Placement in the Army Reserve after graduation and commissioning

Transferability Of Gi Benefits

The Post-9/11 GI Bill allows service members to transfer their education benefits to immediate family members, including a spouse and/or child.

  • The recipient must be enrolled in the Defense Eligibility Enrollment Reporting System, or DEERS, at the time of the transfer.
  • The transfer must occur while the service member is on active duty.
  • The service member can transfer up to 36 months of their benefits.

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How Long Do You Have To Be In The Military To Get Free College

The Montgomery GI Bill extends educational benefits to any active duty member of the military who served for at least 2 years of active duty. This also extends to veterans of any branch of the military. You receive up to $1,857 each month for educational expenses, as long as youre enrolled full-time.

Attending College During Military Service

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There are a number of ways to earn higher education degrees while serving in the military.

  • The Military Tuition Assistance Program pays active-duty service members up to 100% of tuition expenses up to $250 per credit.
  • There are more than 1,900 colleges that offer service members and their families the chance to finish college degrees despite a mobile military life.
  • Both the Army and the Navy offer loan repayment programs to help active-duty service members pay off student loans they took out before enlisting.
  • More than 1,700 colleges and universities offer Reserve Officer Training Corps programs. ROTC cadets commit to military service after graduation, and receive military officer training and tuition, fee and textbook scholarships during their time in college.
  • There are also several types of military schools: service academies, senior military colleges and maritime academies. The nature of the service required during and after attending these schools varies.

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Should I Go To College Before Joining The Military

With a college degree, you may be eligible to enlist in the military as an officer. According to the U.S. Army, a bachelors degree is needed to become a commissioned officer and a masters degree is needed for those who want to rise to the rank of captain and above. You may have a higher chance of being promoted.

Why The Army Changed The Tuition Assistance Program

Budgets are being crunched from all directions, and each branch of the service has been tasked with doing more with less. The Army TA program was briefly halted several years ago due to the automatic spending cuts that were part of the sequestration.

After the programs were reinstated, each branch took a long look at how they could reduce the budget while still offering their troops education benefits.

Each branch altered their TA program to some degree, with the Air Force making many changes similar to the Army TA Program. The Coast Guard had the most drastic changes, in which they reduced the benefit to a 75% tuition payment with the member paying the remaining 25%. The Coast Guard also reduced the total number of credit hours per year.

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Career Opportunities After Military Service

The positions that soldiers, Marines, sailors and airmen hold in the military not only allow them to serve their country, but also help them collect years of experience in a trade or service. If they decide to leave the military, their service branchs COOL program can translate their experience into a resume that civilian hiring managers can understand. Veterans can also get a leg up for many public service jobs in federal, state and local positions. Learn more about careers in the military.

Limit Your Interest With The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act

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The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act is for any military members who took out student loans out prior to joining. They provide a cap on interest rates while you serve on active duty and this applies to both federal and private loans.

The loan mustve been disbursed before you started active duty. The interest rate cannot exceed 6% and this can bring significant savings, especially with private loans.

How to apply for SCRA:

Submit a copy of your service orders to have this applied to your loans

  • Wait until your loan servicer applies the cap through checks of the military database

This is helpful for anyone who wants to join the military after youve finished your education. It can keep your payments low and cap the amount of interest you need to pay back.

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