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Does Your State of Residency and Where You Go to School Have Any Impact on Your GI Bill?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: If my state of residency is Texas, but I chose a private school in Louisiana, would I still be eligible for the GI Bill?

A: Yes, because the GI Bill is a federal educational assistance program, it can be used at either public or private school, in any of the States, Territories or even at foreign schools as long as the school is VA-approved.

If you choose to attend a private school using the Post 9/11 GI Bill, the VA will pay your tuition and fees up to $17,500 per year directly to your school. Monthly, you would get a housing allowance dependent on the number of credits you take and the zip code of your school. Also once each semester, you would get a book stipend calculated at $41.67 per credit, up to the $1,000 yearly cap which is enough for two 12-credit semester per year.

If you plan on using the Montgomery GI Bill, then you would get up to $1,473 per month and you would have to pay all your own education expenses including tuition.

You mentioned your state of residency is Texas, which may mean you could also qualify for the Hazelwood Act. The eligibility requirements are, who, at the time of entry into the U.S. Armed Forces:

  • Are Texas residents
  • Designated Texas as Home of Record
  • Entered the service in Texas
  • Served at least 181 days of active military duty excluding training
  • Received an honorable discharge or separation or a general discharge under honorable conditions.
  • Have no federal veteran’s education benefits, or have federal veterans education benefits dedicated to the payment of tuition and fees only.
  • Are not in default on a student loan made or guaranteed by the State of Texas.
  • Enroll in classes for which the college receives tax support.
  • Live in Texas while using Hazelwood benefits.

If you meet the above requirements, you could get up to 150 hours of education benefits that you could use once you finished using your GI Bill benefits.

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