Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Veterans, Guard and Reserve -how to earn a college degree
As military academic advisor for the last decade I wanted to point out some resources for veterans.
For those still in the Guard or Reserves there a few options to earn a college degree.
The first is to check with your unit and see what State funded Tuition Assistance programs are available. If you’re in the Army National Guard and you need more information the following website has the points of contact for all the states regarding education http://www.virtualarmory.com/education/ArngPOC/
If you’re in the Air National Guard and not eligible for state TA program then there is second option and that is to take advantage of the free Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) Program. All training in the Air Force is accredited by the CCAF which is a regionally accredited college. Any member who is a skill level 5 or higher can attain there degree for free.The main point of contact for this program is the base level education office and you will have combine this with the third method to attain the general education requirements for the degree.
The third method to earn a college level degree whether your a Veteran, Army or Air Guard or Reserve from any branch is the college level testing program. The Department of Defense pays for CLEP, Excelsior, and DANTES exams for all active, Guard and Reserves. These exams are free and don’t count against you if you fail them. Veterans will have to pay for the exams but can take them on some bases at reduced cost if thier retirees.
You can transfer them for free into a CCAF for general education requirements or anyone whether veteran or active/gaurd may transfer about 99% of a bachelors or associates using the free exam program at a college such as www.excelsior.edu.
There are fees to transfer in all the credits to Excelsior College for a college degree .It is about $750 for an associate and $1300 for a bachelor’s degree however you can use GI bill benefits to cover that cost.
To find the nearest DOD sponsored testing site please go to www.dantes.doded.mil/Dantes_web/apps/tes...testcenterlookup.asp
Another important place to check regarding what educational benefits are available is the military.com website at http://www.military.com/benefits/veteran-benefits/. This website lays out state by state what exact benefits are available for veterans including education.