The New Post-9/11 GI Bill offers a new set of benefits for service members and veterans attending education and training programs taken at an accredited college or university. The bill provides upfront tuition payments directly to the school, a monthly living allowance and a book stipend of $1,000 per year. To qualify for the benefit, a veteran must have served at least 90 days of active duty service post-9/11, or have served 30 days and was discharged due to a service connected injury or illness. Service members and veterans having tapped out of regular tuition assistance programs can use GI Bill benefits and still have benefits left for dependants.
Tuition and fee payments can be used at any public or private school but are capped on a per state basis. The monthly living stipend is based on the Department of Defense Basic Housing Allowance (BAH) for the region. The stipend will be pegged to the E-5 with a dependent rate for the zip code of the school regardless of the pay grade of the veteran. Veterans will receive $41.67 per credit, but no more than $1,000 per year to help pay for books and supplies.
Doing the math:
Service members and veterans with an honorable discharge are entitled to 36 months of education benefits (approximately $13,500). For example, under Post 9/11 a military student completing an Ashworth College Bachelor’s Degree ($9,600) will have nearly $4,000 remaining towards a Master's Degree or be able to transfer benefits to a dependant -- perhaps more depending on transfer credits and credit for military experience.
National Guard & Reserve
Reservists will continue to receive a percentage of the active duty GI Bill based on the length of their active duty service. However, this new benefit will allow reservists to accumulate active duty service from multiple tours (more service = higher benefits).
Transfer of Benefits
The last and most novel feature of the Post 9/11 GI Bill is that currently serving troops have the opportunity to transfer education benefits to a spouse or a child. To qualify for transferability a servicemember must:
- Qualify for the education benefits themselves.
- Served at least 6 years Active Duty, National Guard or Select Reserves.
- Agree to commit to 4 more years of service starting August 2009.
- Have a spouse or dependent(s) enrolled in the Defense Eligibility Enrollment Reporting System (DEERS) to transfer benefits to.
The Yellow Ribbon Program
Private schools and graduate programs costing more than the state cap may qualify for the Yellow Ribbon Program. A Yellow Ribbon school must offer a veterans-only scholarship and then the VA will match that scholarship up to the full cost of tuition and fees.
Post 9/11 benefits at a glance
Tuition & Fees:
Payment shall be made to the school for the entire quarter, semester or term. The payments are capped separately for tuition costs and fees charges by state.
More expensive schools participating in the Yellow Ribbon Program and offering veterans scholarships will be matched dollar for dollar up to the full cost of tuition.
Up to $1,000/year. Paid $41/credit enrolled.
Based on DoDs BAH rate for E-5 w/dependent, using zip code of the college/university.
Time to Use Benefit:
Up to 15 years
To learn more about your military education benefits, start a discussion in the military community and an Ashworth Military Advisor will assist you.