Choose wisely when considering an institution of higher learning – so that tuition, fees, and even books and possibly housing may be paid by your benefits without the need to borrow money and be burdened by student loan debt.
Here’s what you need to know…
1. Consider the public colleges and universities in your state. The cost of tuition, fees, and books at a public community college or university does not exceed the educational benefits paid under the Post-9/11 GI Bill for those who qualify. Find details on the GI Bill website.
2. Don’t buy the hype. There are many quality institutions among public colleges and universities. Don’t be influenced by fancy marketing or late-night TV advertisements.
3. Look for schools with support services. Does the school have a “Military-Friendly” designation?
4. Do your homework. Check out the websites of schools you’re considering. Look at their graduation rates and the pass rates on exams for certification.
5. Get ready to start. If your academic skills are a little rusty, a public community college is your best bet for remedial courses that will get you up to college level.
6. Ask the college to bridge the gap in benefits.
7. Check out state laws that confer additional educational benefits.
8. Compute your return on investment. Calculate the cost of your education in terms of the salary you will be able to earn after you complete your degree or certificate, and the amount you’ll need to repay if you have taken student loans.