Post-9/11 G.I. Bill

Friday July 17, 2009

What Is It?

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is accepting applications for the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill, which goes into effect Aug. 1, 2009. Soldiers are encouraged to think through long-range schooling and occupational plans for themselves and/or their families to determine whether the program suits them. The Post-9/11 G.I. Bill is the biggest military education benefit since World War II, but Soldiers still have access to other programs like the Montgomery G.I. Bill (MGIB).

Soldiers unsure of their educational goals should consider enrolling in the MGIB program first. It offers great advantages, and down the road Soldiers can convert to the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill. MGIB Army College Fund "kickers" also convert and will be paid in addition to regular 9/11 G.I. Bill benefits. Visit www.gibill.va.gov for the latest information and to apply.

What Has The Army Done?

Since the President signed the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill in 2008, the Army has worked with the VA and Office of the Secretary of Defense to create guidance for Soldiers. This includes the rules and procedures for the benefit that has garnered the most attention from Soldiers: transferring unused benefits to Family members.

The Army's Post-9/11 G.I. Bill policy and a transferability quick reference are on the Army's Deputy Chief of Staff, G-1 Web site. It guides Soldiers through benefits transferability and guides family members through requesting and using transferred benefits.

Why is this Important to the Army?

Our grateful nation provides Soldiers a variety of educational benefits, each with its own strengths and guidelines. Soldiers investing time to understand the available benefits is crucial, particularly because some decisions regarding the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill are time-sensitive and irrevocable. Soldiers should consider their financial and schooling plans now and consult their education counselors and also the VA's Post-9/11 G.I. Bill Web site.

What's the way ahead?

The Army is alerting Soldiers to the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill's upcoming effective date (Aug. 1 , 2009) and to encourage them to educate themselves on the program's details. Army.mil and other Army communication channels will be disseminating information over the next few months. Visit the listed Web sites below to apply for benefits and to learn how to transfer benefits.

Resources:

Department of Veterans Affairs GI Bill Web site

Army Quick Reference Guide on Transferring Benefits (PDF)

Army's Post-9/11 G.I. Bill Policy (PDF)

ASA (M&RA) Cover Memorandum Announcing Implementation (PDF)

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2009 Commemorations :

Year of the NCO

Year of the Military Family

100th Anniversary of the Chaplain Assistant

SENIOR LEADERS ARE SAYING

"The new Post-9/11 G.I. Bill offers our Army family an enhanced educational benefit to meet the contemporary educational and professional development needs of our Soldiers, as well as the flexibility to support our families. It is vitally important that all Soldiers make time to review their options under this new program."

- Lt. Gen. Michael D. Rochelle, deputy chief of staff G-1

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING

"Accomplishing a high-(operational tempo) mission in a non-threatening environment is stressful, but in a deployed environment, it can be downright grueling. This means that each person will face individual obstacles when redeploying. For some, it may be seamless - for others, especially those with family members, the transition may be much harder."

- Maj. Rebecca McElwain, 106th Finance Company commander

Warrior Adventure Quest aims to channel thrill-seeking behavior of combat veterans

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