Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Millitary Education Benefits Help Veterans Pay for College

Members of the United States military have access to a variety of financial aid options designed to help them advance their military career as well as transition to civilian employment. Here is a list of the military education benefits that may be used to pay for classes at Rio Salado College.

RSC VA Office does not determine eligibility for benefits. Only the Department of Veterans Affairs can do that. The information below is presented only as a rough guide to the payment you can expect if the DVA finds you eligible for a program.


FOR VETERANS:

Chapter 33, Post-9/11 GI Bill: The veteran is awarded a percentage of entitlement based on length of active military service after 9/10/2001. DVA will pay this percentage of:
  • in-state tuition and fees
  • BAH (rate for an E5 with dependents in zip code 85281 for in-person enrollment; one-half the national average rate for completely online enrollments)
  • book stipend of up to $1000 per academic year based on number of credits
Chapter 30, Montgomery GI Bill: DVA pays veteran a monthly stipend.

Chapter 31, Vocational Rehabilitation: Veteran must have 20% or higher service-connected disability to be eligible. Benefits are authorized through a DVA case manager. Program will pay tuition and fees, actual cost of books, and a supplies stipend. The veteran also receives a monthly living stipend.

VRAP, Veterans Retraining Assistance Program: This program is for unemployed veterans ages 35-60 who want to train for one of the occupations on the Department of Labor’s list of high-demand occupations. Recipients are limited to 12 months of benefits, to be earned before April 1, 2014. They are paid a monthly stipend equal to the Chapter 30 rate, and they MUST maintain full-time enrollment to receive any stipend at all.


FOR RESERVISTS:

Chapter 1606, Selected Reserves: Reservists and National Guard members who have never been activated. DVA pays a small monthly stipend. Many also use Federal Tuition Assistance if they are attending at greater than half time status.

Chapter 1607, Reserve Educational Assistance Program: Reservists who have served active duty time. DVA pays a monthly stipend based on length of active duty service.


FOR SPOUSES AND DEPENDENTS:

Chapter 35, Survivors and Dependents Educational Assistance (DEA): For spouses and children of veterans who are deceased or who have a 100% service-connected disability rating. Recipient is paid a monthly stipend.

Chapter 33, Post-9/11 GI Bill Transfer of Education Benefit (TEB aka TOE): Eligibility to transfer benefits to a spouse or dependents is based on length of service and retirement eligibility date.

Transferring benefits is a three-step process:
  1. The service member applies for his/her benefits through VONAPP at www.gibill.va.gov
  2. Once approved for benefits, the service member applies with Department of Defense (DoD) for approval to transfer the benefits
  3. Once DoD approval is received, the spouse or child applies through VONAPP at www.gibill.va.gov to complete the transfer.
Fry’s Scholarship: This benefit is for children of service members who die in the line of duty. They are eligible for the full benefit of Ch33 post-911.

For pamphlets & fact sheets regarding these and other benefits please visit the following website: http://gibill.va.gov/resources/student_handouts/index.html
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