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Can I Use My Montgomery GI Bill to Pay for Part of My Schooling and the Post 9/11 GI Bill to Pay the Rest?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: I am attending a trade school with a high cost ($7,300). Although it is only 2 weeks, my understanding is it would use 9 months of my Post 9/11 GI Bill. I am eligible for the Montgomery as well and have not used either. If I used my Montgomery GI Bill to cover 60% ($4,380) of the cost and then transferred the remaining to the Post 9/11 GI Bill, how many months would I have remaining?

A: With the limited amount of information in your question, I really can’t give you a solid answer. But I can tell you this, you would not use up 9 months of Post 9/11 GI Bill entitlement for a 2-week course. In most Post 9/11 GI Bill situations, entitlement use is on a one-for-one basis meaning you would use up about a half month of entitlement for a two-week course.

However, if you were to use the Montgomery GI Bill, that is a different story. You would use up one month of entitlement for each $1,648 dollars paid out. So for your $7,300 course, you would use up about 4.3 months of entitlement. I can’t tell you how much entitlement you would have left because I don’t know how much you had before starting the course.

Due to you referencing using your MGIB to pay 60% of the cost, it leads me to believe you are talking about an accelerated course. Those rules could apply because your tuition amount is over twice of what you would receive from the MGIB for the same amount of time. The other requirement is that you are taking a high tech industry course and plan to work in that field when through with the course. However, only students using either Montgomery GI Bill or REAP are eligible for the accelerated course program.

Because students using the Post 9/11 GI Bill are not eligible, you would not be able to pay the other 40% using the New GI Bill. If you are in an accelerated program, then your best bet is to stick with the MGIB. However, if you are not in an accelerated program, then you may be better off using the Post 9/11 GI Bill as it would pay all of your tuition, provided you are at the 100% tier and not paying out-state tuition.

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