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Will the Army Reserve Help Pay for My Schooling?

Q: I’m looking to join the Army Reserve and go to Spokane Community College in Washington State at the same time. Will the Reserve help pay for tuition, books, and room and board? I plan on taking Fire Science and Fire Protection there. Thanks.

A: If you join the Army Reserve, once you get through IADT (Basic Training and Advanced Individual Training), and you remain in good standing within your drilling unit, you will be eligible for the Montgomery GI Bill – Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR) GI Bill.

As long as you remain a member in good standing of the Reserve (no more than four unexcused absences), you have 10 years to use your 36 months of education benefits. Yes, the MGIB-SR will pay you a monthly amount to go to school and you can use your money however you wish, i.e. room and board, tuition, books, etc. Right now, you would get $333 per month to go to school. This amount is adjusted annually in October. You will also have your monthly Reserve pay to help pay for education expenses also. Just remember once your are discharged from the Reserves, you lose your Montgomery GI Bill – Selected Reserves education benefits.

Once you are in the Reserves, also look into using their Tuition Assistance program. It pays up to $250 per credit with an annual cap of $4,500, which is enough for at least 18 credits per year.

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