In addition to the GI Bill®, you may qualify for other programs.
Pennsylvania National Guard Military Family Education Program (MFEP)
Together with the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, PHEAA administers this tuition assistance program for dependents (spouses and children) of PA Guard Members who enter into an additional 6-year service commitment with the Pennsylvania National Guard.
Grant Information: https://www.pheaa.org/funding-opportunities/aid-for-military-national-guard/military-family-education.shtml
To be considered for the MFEP, you must be:
A Guard Member:
- Someone who completed an initial service obligation, on or after July 1, 2019, in the Pennsylvania National Guard and be eligible to reenlist in the Pennsylvania National Guard for a period of 6 years
A Family Member:
- Someone who is a spouse or child of a Pennsylvania National Guard member who meets the above criteria and has assigned the benefit to the family member.
- Someone who is enrolled in a degree or certificate-granting program of study at an approved Pennsylvania institution
Undergraduates and Graduates Full-Time Attendance, the lesser of:
100% of the tuition plus technology fee at the institution where you are enrolled OR The annual tuition rate and technology fee charged to a Pennsylvania resident at a state-owned university
Undergraduates and Graduates Part-Time Attendance, the lesser of:
100% of the tuition plus technology fee for a part-time course of study OR The per credit tuition rate charged to a Pennsylvania resident at a state-owned university plus technology fee
- The MFEP grant can be used for a degree-granting curriculum or certificate-granting, course of study, or training programs required for entrance into a specific career as determined by PHEAA at an approved PHEAA institution of higher learning for up to 5 academic years.
- The PA Guard Member can assign the entire benefit to one dependent or a portion of the benefit to more than one dependent.
- If you fail to honor the service commitment with the Pennsylvania National Guard, you must repay your total MFEP award amount, plus interest.
Length of Dependent Eligibility
- A spouse can use the assigned MFEP benefit up to 6 years after the member’s separation from the PA Guard.
- Children can use the assigned MFEP benefit before reaching 26 years of age.
Educational Assistance Program (EAP) for National Guard Members
A state-funded program which awards an education grant in the amount of tuition to
qualifying National Guard members.
Paperwork is initiated through the Guard unit, and should be submitted at least 2-3 months prior to the term. When eligibility is determined, the student receives an award letter indicating the amount of tuition payment; payment is made directly to the student's account. Students who receive EAP are also eligible for the GI Bill®.
Criteria for eligibility
- Must be enrolled in an accredited Commonwealth of PA college that is PHEAA approved.
- Must be enrolled in approved program of education.
- Must be a member in good standing of the National Guard with an obligation to serve for 6 years from date of entry into the program. This obligation may be incurred through enlistment/reenlistment/extension.
- Must be a resident of Pennsylvania 12 months prior to enrollment.
- Must be a Private through Sergeant major, Warrant Officer 1 or 2, or Lieutenant.
- May not possess a Bachelors degree or higher degree, if full-time.
- May not be an ROTC Scholarship participant.
- Failure to complete the 6 year service agreement of being deemed an unsatisfactory participant will result in repayment of all monies paid under the EAP, plus interest & fees.
- Eligibility is limited to five years of full-time or part-time grants, or the equivalent.
- Enlist, reenlist or extend enlistment for 6 years.
- Obtain application from PANG Education Officer, submit application, cost and promissory note for the EAP to the PANG Education Officer.
- Enroll in an approved program at a PHEAA approved school.
- Have PANG Education Officer verify eligibility and send application to PHEAA.
- School and student are notified of student's EAP eligibility; school verifies enrollment; PHEAA disburses monies to the school.
Student Loan Repayment (Reserves/Guard)
Members of the Reserves or National Guard may be eligible for annual loan repayment of 15% of eligible loans or $500, whichever is greater.
Maximum payment will not exceed $10,000 in most cases; maximum annual payment will not exceed $1,500 plus interest. Contact the National Guard or Reserve recruiting station.
- Basic eligibility: enlisting for 6 years, 8 years, or extending enlistment of 3-6 years; AFQT score of 50+ for NPS only; not a permanent technician or AGR; MOS qualified, and have a position vacancy; must execute form through Reserve/Guard unit to select Student Loan Repayment (SLR).
- Which loans qualify for repayment: Stafford, Perkins, parental (PLUS), Federally Insured Student Loans (FISL), Auxiliary Loans (ALAS).
- Scope of repayment: loans secured prior to, on, or after date of enlistment, or those which have been secured for at least one year. SLR can be combined with enlistment bonus, retention bonus, GI Bill®, Tuition Credit or ACES programs.
- How to apply: Soldier completes Part I of form DD2475 (DOD Annual Loan Repayment Application) obtained from Reserve/Guard unit; unit completes Part II and sends to lender (bank); bank completes part III and returns form to unit for payment processing.
- Termination of repayment: termination will occur if soldier completes term of service, is reclassified to ineligible MOS, becomes an unsatisfactory participant, or separates from the Reserve/Guard as an enlisted person, fails to extend term of service for period of non-availability, or is enrolled in the Active Duty portion of the Montgomery GI Bill®.
- The federal government has special programs available for military related students in regards to interest and repayment of loans. Find more here.
- The branches of the military also offer Student Loan Repayment. Students who are eligible for this program should check with their unit regarding how to activate the program. The Army offers information online about its Loan Repayment Program.
VA Work Study
The VA Work Study program permits eligible students to perform VA-related services
in return for payment based on the higher of the Federal or State minimum wage. An
eligible person may work up to 25 hours a week in the enrollment period and must have
remaining entitlement under the below GI Bill® programs. Students may work at a school
VA office, VA regional office or medical facility, or approved State employment office.
The VA work-study allowance is available to persons training on a full-time or ¾ time basis under the following programs: (https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/workstudy.asp#INTRO)
- Post-9/11 GI Bill®--(38 U.S.C. Chapter 33) (Veterans and transfer-of-entitlement recipients)
- Montgomery GI Bill®--Active Duty (38 U.S.C. Chapter 30)
- REAP Participants
- Montgomery GI Bill®--Selected Reserve (10 U.S.C. Chapter 1606)
- Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program (38 U.S.C. Chapter 35)
- Eligible dependents under 38 U.S.C. Chapter 35 may use work study only while training in a State.
- National Call to Service Participants
- Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment Program -- (38 U.S.C. Chapter 31)
The VA will provide money to help defray the cost of a tutor, with certain limitations. The maximum amount payable per month is $100 with a maximum total amount for any one student of $1,200 per year.
Active Duty Tuition Assistance
This benefit tuition reimbursement is paid directly to the college through paperwork submitted at the time of registration. There are no monthly benefits associated with this option. Your paperwork should be submitted to the Finance Office and not the VA Certifying Official.
National Guard and Reserve Tuition Assistance
It is recommended that you see your unit Retention or Education Officer early for advice on eligibility, unit processes, and timeframes for requesting tuition assistance so that after you enroll in courses you can be prepared to present all payment related documents i.e. tuition assistance form, degree audit signed by an advisor and school bill to the Finance Office before the payment deadline.
“GI Bill®” is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government website at www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.