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Choosing the military education benefit that is right for you


More and more service members are using their benefits to further their education, but determining which benefit to use and when to use it can be confusing. The benefit summaries below can help you determine which benefit will best suit your short and long term objectives.

Military Tuition Assistance: The Tuition Assistance (TA) program provides funding for a service member’s continuing education. TA is available to all eligible active duty service members, including active duty National Guard and Reserve. Tuition Assistance pays up to $250 per credit hour not to exceed the fiscal year cap. Each military branch has its own eligibility requirements, application process, and fiscal year caps.

Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB): The Montgomery GI Bill provides up to 36 months of educational assistance for an undergraduate or graduate degree at a college or university, or a cooperative training program. Active duty service members can use MGIB benefits up to 10 years from the date of your last discharge or release from active duty. Selected Reserve members’ benefits end 14 years from the date of eligibility, or on the day you leave the Selected Reserve. More information on eligibility requirements is available at www.gibill.com.

GI Bill “Top-Up”: If you are eligible for the Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB) and are using Tuition Assistance, you may qualify for Top-Up. If tuition and expenses exceed $250 per credit hour, an eligible service member can elect to receive MGIB benefits for all or part of the remaining expenses. For more information on the program, visit: www.gibill.com/topup.cfm

Scholarships & Grants: Many scholarships and grants are available for military service members through local service organizations like the American Legion. Sites like Scholarship Gateway, Scholarship Resource Network Express or Scholarships.com can also help you find more ways to fund your education.

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