A Guide To Military Scholarship Programs

The US military, regarded as one of the major educational funding agencies in the country, offers financial assistance to thousands of students every year. Whether they are in school, planning to join college or intending to put their educational goals on hold for a while, many students who are unable to pursue higher education due to paucity of funds are assisted by the military funding programs. Most of the aid programs allow students to attend school or college on a full time basis, but they may have to sign up for military commitment following their graduation. Some programs allow students to participate in the National Guard Organization while still in school. The different kinds of scholarship programs offered by the military are listed below:

Active Duty Scholarships Programs

A person on active duty is eligible for a wide range of educational benefits and this relates to every branch of the service. These programs are not consistent and may change often with respect to their specific qualification requirements. Some of the programs offered under this scheme include:

Tuition Assistance Program (TA)-Eligible members of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard benefit from a 100% tuition assistance for collegiate programs taken during off-duty hours. The criteria for eligibility, obligated service and application process are different for each service, but as a general rule, the money is paid directly to the institution by the individual services.

Montgomery G. I. Bill

Those who have served at least 2 years on active duty as well as veterans who have completed High School or have an equivalency certificate are eligible for the G.I Bill benefits. The beneficiary qualifies for scholarship for any two or four-year college- business, technical, vocational school or correspondence courses.

Veterans Educational Assistance Program (VEAP)

This program benefits those who have made contributions from their military pay toward VEAP. The government makes a matching contribution on the basis of $2 for every $1. The benefits may be used for degree, certificate, correspondence, apprenticeship or training programs, and vocational flight training programs for a period of 1 to 36 months. The VEAP benefits remain valid only for 10 years after release from active duty.

Federal Student Aid

The federal government offers several Financial Student Aid Programs including extremely low interest loans and grants aimed at assisting the student in meeting the cost of tuition, books, fees as well as board and lodging expenses while he/she goes to school. Those on active duty, reserve, veteran, retiree, whether or not they are on MGIB, can benefit from the federal student aid.

Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC)

Certain programs are offered by the services at select colleges and universities throughout the country. The first two years allow you to attend ROTC classes, such as military science, or training activities. For junior and senior years, you may be entitled to a full scholarship, which includes tuition, books and board. The eligibility criteria for this include a commitment to serve as an officer for at least three years following graduation.