President Obama has asked every American to commit to at least one year or more of higher education or career training. This can be a community college or a four-year school, vocational training or an apprenticeship.
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President Obama and the New GI Bill Encourage Higher Education

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President Obama has asked "every American to commit to at least one year or more of higher education or career training. This can be a community college or a four-year school, vocational training or an apprenticeship. But whatever the training may be, every American will need to get more than a high school diploma."

Increased financial support along with the rising popularity in online education may just allow military families to more easily achieve those higher education goals.

FROM PELL GRANTS TO POST 9/11 EDUCATION BENEFITS

To encourage Americans to return to school, the Obama administration has offered several new educational benefits including a $200 increase in National Pell Grants to $5,500/year for all students who qualify; an increase in Tuition Tax Credits to $2,500/year for families who earn less than $180,000/year; and comprehensive improvements to the Federal Family Education Loan Program.

In this economy, paying for college is challenging and every dollar counts. The added $200 Pell Grant support will be available starting in the 2010-11 academic year to help those on the road to higher education.

MILITARY SPOUSES CAN USE GI BILL EDUCATION BENEFITS UP TO 15 YEARS

The new Post 9/11 GI Bill has expanded the transfer of education benefits to military spouses and children, making it possible for military servicemembers to share generous educational benefits with their families.

Military servicemembers on active duty or in the Selected Reserve on or after August 1, 2009 are eligible to transfer education benefits to spouses or children, once they meet basic qualifications for the Post-9/11 GI Bill with at least six years of military service and an agreement to serve an additional four years.

Military spouses may begin using transferred GI Bill education benefits immediately, and for as long as the military servicemember remains in the Armed Forces. After separation from active duty, military spouses can use transferred education benefits for up to 15 years.

ONLINE EDUCATION SERVES THE MILITARY LIFESTYLE

In addition to traditional colleges, the Pell Grant can also be used for online universities, which are especially well suited to busy military servicemembers on deployment or stationed at home, military moms, even military kids who move a lot.

The military lifestyle, in which moving is a constant reality, makes online learning an ideal fit for just about everyone in today's military: no longer bound by geography, your online education simply goes along with you, wherever you may be stationed next.

ARE MILITARY MOMS THE NEW ONLINE EDUCATION GROWTH MARKET?

Many more military family members - perhaps military moms in particular - can now heed President Obama's education advice.

The combination of easier access to online education and greater financial support for higher education may mean that military moms can study while tending to the challenges of military life - and statistics show that American mothers are more likely than ever to return to school.

A recent survey on adult education conducted by the U.S. Department of Education concluded that adults with children under the age of 10 are growing rapidly as higher education participants.

Females in particular are more likely than males to participate in an educational activity (49 percent versus 43 percent).

Stay at home military spouses can climb further up the educational ladder, leading to better jobs, higher salaries, and greater financial stability - something all military families can benefit from.

EDUCATION IS A TOP MILITARY PRIORITY

When it comes to education, President Obama's administration and the military are in agreement: both are encouraging Americans to continue their education, and both are taking greater strides to support those who do. New financial support and the new GI Bill transfer of education benefits to spouses and children, may spur that initiative for every member of today's military family.



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