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Will My Post 9/11 GI Bill Cover All of My Physical Therapy Assistant Schooling Costs?

Author Ron Kness is no longer in the service.

Q: My name is Abraham and I am looking into attending Pima Medical Institute next year but I am unsure of a few things.

1. I have 100% of my Chapter 33 and enough months to finish out the program, but will it be covered entirely or will I owe a portion of the program? The program is for an associate’s degree as a Physical Therapy Assistant.

2. Will I receive the full amount of MHA each and every month since it is a year round program and I will be completing more than 12 credits a semester? If I will not receive the full amount, how much should I expect to receive each month? I would be attending the Mesa campus.

A: The Pima Medical Institute is a private post-secondary school Abraham that has 13 campuses total in Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Texas and Washington. However, only their Mesa, Tucson, Denver, Las Vegas, Albuquerque, Houston and Seattle locations have the associate degree program in Physical Therapy Assistant.

On their website, they are showing $11,070 in tuition and fees, and $559 in books and supplies. Being you are at the 100% Post 9/11 GI Bill tier, the VA should pay for all of your tuition and fees. Their new maximum for private schools is up to $20,235.02 per year as of August 1st.

Because it is a degree–producing course, they would also pay $41.67 per credit per semester (with a $1,000 per year cap) in book stipend money. You should get paid the book stipend for all the semesters except the summer one. With only $559 in book costs, you’ll make a little extra money there.

Pima’s website is showing your program at 18 months long; going year round is no problem. The VA will pay you the full amount due to you each month while in the program.

As far as how much you’ll get in housing allowance, the BAH Calculator is showing $1,461 per month for Mesa, AZ. For 12 credits per semester, your book stipend would be $500 per semester. This should give you a good idea of how much you should get so you can plan accordingly.

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