Saturday, September 13, 2008

college and vets

I was wondering about how well we take care of our troops with education when they get back. I did about 3 minutes of research, literally. Not that I don't want to learn more. it was just an idle thought.

Of course, they gain a lot of knowledge that is directly transferable to the marketplace, but a degree is many times desired. Assuming college is for everyone is silly, but substitute a trade school if you like.

The numbers on the cost of college are below:

Private four-year $23,712. About 56 percent of students enrolled at four-year colleges or universities attend institutions that charge tuition and fees of less than $9,000 per year.

Public four-year $6,185. 43 percent of full-time students enrolled in public four-year colleges and universities attend institutions that charge tuition and fees between $3,000 and $6,000.

While private four-year institutions have a much wider range of tuition and fee charges, only about 6 percent of all students attend colleges with tuition and fees totaling $33,000 or higher per year.

The Montgomery GI Bill basic benefit is below:

As a Soldier, you can take advantage of the Montgomery GI Bill and the Army College Fund to pay for your college education. Depending on how long you enlist with the Army and the job you choose, you can get up to $73,836 to help pay for college. All you have to do is give $100 a month during your first year of service. If you select the Army College Fund, the total amount is combined with the MGIB.

Let’s do the math:

$73,836 in a $23,712 private institution covers 3.1 years. In a public school it covers all 4 years.

I wonder if it could be used for a Master’s degree? If so, a soldier could do four years public (like Penn State University) at the above number, and have almost $50,000 left for an advanced degree.

Seems like a good benefit. I wonder what Congress will do to increase benefits further after everyone comes home.

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