Figuring out how to use your veterans education benefits, whether active duty or retired, can feel overwhelming. The first step is understanding the benefits that are available to you and how to utilize them for maximum assistance. Each program has it’s own set of requirements and benefits that are offered. The three main sources of funding are Tuition Assistance, the Montgomery GI Bill and the Post 9/11 GI Bill. Supplemental funding and services are also available through the Yellow Ribbon program, Tuition Assistance Top-Up, GI Bill Kicker, the Work Study Program, and Tutorial Assistance.
Secondary programs supplement VA education benefits for both the service members themselves and also for their families. Specific programs, such as the Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship and the Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance (DEA) program, are in place for veterans and dependents of service members who have been permanently disabled or died in the line of duty. Alliances have also been formed with universities and colleges around the country—both online and on campus—that understand the unique challenges that active duty service members and veterans face when pursuing higher education. The military also pays for College Level Examination Program (CLEP) testing to help active duty and veteran service members earn college credit for their military training and experience. Many VA education benefits exist to support and help insure the availability of affordable higher education for U.S. service members, veterans, and their families.