GI Bill Changes Have Arrived

by Levi Newman on October 7, 2011

For some veterans, the GI Bill has felt somewhat useless. They didn’t feel compelled to be a traditional student, focusing more time and energy on vocational skills. Fast-forward to October 1, 2011, and for those veterans, the GI Bill is suddenly relevant again. Veterans who never before had the desire to attend school, but still wanted to improve themselves, can now use their GI Bill benefit to hone their talents using many out-of-the-classroom options.

The changes.

Non-college degree (NCD) programs: Non-college degree (NCD) programs offered at non-degree granting schools. Pays the actual net costs for in-state tuition and fees or $17,500,whichever is less. Also pays up to $83 per month for books and supplies.

On-the-job and apprenticeship training: Pays a monthly benefit amount prorated based on time in program and up to $83 per month for books and supplies.

Flight programs: Per academic year, pays the actual net costs for in-state tuition and fees assessed by the school or $10,000, whichever is less.

Correspondence training: Per academic year, pays the actual net costs for in-state tuition and fees assessed by the school or $8,500, whichever is less.

Housing allowance for distance learning: Payable to students (other than those on active duty) enrolled solely in distance learning. The housing allowance payable is equal to ½ the national average BAH for an E-5 with dependents. The full-time rate for an individual eligible at the 100% eligibility tier would be $673.50 for 2011.

Active duty stipend: Students on active duty will now receive a books and supplies stipend.

Driving, flying, and make-up oh my!?

If you’re a veteran who wants to learn a new trade skill such as HVAC Certification, Truck Driving, EMT Certification, or Barber/Beautician School, your GI Bill will now cover the costs. An active duty stipend for books and supplies could help active duty service members greatly, and make further education more attainable for those unable to attend regular classes and enrolled in distance learning.

{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Trey October 7, 2011 at 1:02 pm

Too little, too late for those who have already/recently exhausted their benefit.

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Levi Newman October 7, 2011 at 1:18 pm

If they used their benefits correctly it shouldn’t be a total waste, but it is unfortunate it took so long to get this much needed change.

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Mike October 14, 2011 at 2:42 pm

Yeah, it’s real nice they took so long enhancing the GI Bill. I started college in Jan 2006, a month after returning home from Iraq. I finished up 2 bachelor’s degrees and now I’m in my last quarter of graduate school and NOW they increase the benefits. I can’t believe that they have the audacity to label it the Post 9/11 GI Bill, when in actuality the men and women who immediately responded to September 11th by signing up… well… if they survived combat, served their contract in the military, then immediately went to college after serving… the benefit won’t apply to them! Am I the only person who realizes this? Look at the timeline here. I am happy that the GI Bill increased, but the way the VA has arranged it is a slap in the face to those who served at the beginning of the Afghan and Iraq conflicts and promptly got their butts in and out of school.

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Levi Newman October 14, 2011 at 4:24 pm

I guess I’m unsure what you mean Mike. If you served prior to 9/11 you get the original GI Bill and if you served for 3 years after you get the Post 9/11 GI Bill. If you served both prior and after (like myself) you get to use both, for 5 total years of school. Having 2 degree’s and now in graduate school I still fail to understand how you didn’t benefit.

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Spc Tucker Jared October 7, 2011 at 1:03 pm

I would like a lot more info on this please I am really interested in vocational training as well as can it be used on more than one training class such as auto body repair and motorcycle training repair motor or whatever

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Levi Newman October 7, 2011 at 1:17 pm

You should be able to use it for multiple resources as long as the money/time are within GI Bill’s limits. I’ll look for more information, but you should definitely contact a VA Education Rep to find out how it all works out since it’s new.

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Terry Pellegrin October 7, 2011 at 3:28 pm

35 years ago I worked for a Caterpillar Dealer. They were a training center where VA paid me a salery adj for 3 years….It was a good thing for me and helped my family out alots.

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Samantha November 15, 2011 at 12:15 pm

Hello, I don’t usually visit this type of site or reply to anything but, I just wanted to reply to your message. You should consider applying for the vocational rehabilitaion program prior to applying for the GI Bill benefits.. Reason..you can use the voc rehab for vocational training and if you consider attending a 2-4 year colloge or university you will still have your GI Bill benefits readily available. You can use both voc rahab and the GI Bill but, not at the same time.The only downer with the voc rehab (my opinion) is that they will not provide assistance for a program that they do not approve, for example if you were medically discharged under a Psychological condition they will not approve of a program that will lead to a Psychology degree or a program that might aggravate the condition. You have assistance available-educate yourself about all avenues 1st – use it smartly..it is yours! I hope that all goes with with your educational adventure : )

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Isidro Ramrez Jr. October 7, 2011 at 1:05 pm

It has been more than ten years since i was honorably dischared from the Marine Corps. Am I entitled to the benefits.

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Levi Newman October 7, 2011 at 1:15 pm

Your benefits have a time limit usually limited to 10 years. You should contact your local VA Rep to see if you still qualify.

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Ken Tsuji October 7, 2011 at 3:18 pm

A little too late for me also. Ten years went too fast.. how about extending the time??

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Levi Newman October 8, 2011 at 9:47 am

I imagine they have thought about it and from my perspective it seems like a good idea. Maybe it will be a future change if we’re lucky.

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John Sable October 7, 2011 at 3:47 pm

Flight programs: Per academic year, pays the actual net costs for in-state tuition and fees assessed by the school or $10,000, whichever is less.

Read more: Please provide more info on flight training.

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Levi Newman October 8, 2011 at 9:46 am

Try this link John. Here.

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Anton July 18, 2012 at 8:03 pm

Thank you for writing this qulatiy informational content. Your writing technique is impressive and enjoyable to read. You have many interesting points of view that give me pause to consider.

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Thomas Bugbee October 7, 2011 at 8:48 pm

My wife is retired reserve (grey area) and used up her GI Bill with her first degree. She decided to go back to school to get her Bachelors in Nursing degree and I signed over 2 years of my benefits to her. VA denied her my benefits saying that she already used four years of benefits and that is all she is entitled to. No one can show me where it says that, but we have hit a wall in this matter.

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Levi Newman October 8, 2011 at 9:45 am

Your situation seems pretty unique to me. I’m assuming if you’re retired as well then it might cause a problem with signing over your benefits, but I can honestly say I have no idea. I can only suggest to continue badgering that VA Education Rep until you get an answer in writing as to why.

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AF Vet T. Bunt October 15, 2011 at 1:48 pm

I do know that after 10yr mark of retirment you are no longer eligable to receive school benefits. Not sure this applies

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Frank October 9, 2011 at 9:31 am

Someone told me I could be eligible even though I never contributed to the Montgomery G.I. Bill. This can’t be correct can it?

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Levi Newman October 9, 2011 at 10:39 am

You would have had to sign off in basic training that you were contributing to it.

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Marshall Wilson October 9, 2011 at 4:11 pm

I sure hope these men and women who enter the service get and use their GI Bill. It comes in very handy to excel after leaving the military.

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Emerson October 9, 2011 at 6:22 pm

Need some more updates on flying. Last I knew you needed your private pilots liscanse before the VA would pay anything change in that area? Semper fi!

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Flora October 10, 2011 at 2:37 pm

Thanks for the information. Can this also be applied to surviving spouse? At the time of my husband’s death he was a100% disabled.

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AF Vet T. Bunt October 15, 2011 at 1:23 pm

Not sure why I havent recieved the Distance Learning Living Allowance, I’ve received notice from the VA that I’m eligiable for %100 of benefits but no money in bank? Any help?

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Thomas Cox November 21, 2011 at 1:16 pm

Post 911 GI bill is worthless to veterans with a non working spouse and kids in the house. Not possible to go to school and support a family on such a low income. Then the state tells you, you cant collect food stamps because you make too much on your pension. THAT is why so many vets are out of work.

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Levi Newman November 21, 2011 at 1:20 pm

It is difficult, but not impossible. I currently use the Bill, work full time, and support a wife and three children. It takes a lot of effort, but it’s really on how bad you want that education.

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Kerri December 9, 2011 at 4:22 pm

I am 100% disabled vet and yes I have GIBill benefits Which do I use and why? I want to go to school starting in January I have no clue where to begin I live in Biloxi and have tried calling the VA cannot connect with anyone I just want to know where to start Time is running out but I dont know where to begin THX

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