BlogMilitaryThe GI Bill® — History and Development

The GI Bill® — History and Development

If you or a loved one are an active-duty military service member, a veteran, or a dependent child or spouse of a veteran, you could qualify for financial assistance to help you attend college, graduate school, or training programs. This assistance is available to military families thanks to the GI Bill®, special legislation outlining how and when certain veterans and military members can receive financial assistance for education programs. In this article, we will unpack the GI Bill®: what it is, its history in the United States, and how eligible individuals can use GI Bill® benefits to pay for their education at Blackstone Career Institute.

History of the GI Bill®

The GI Bill® was originally created in 1944 and titled “The Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944”. The bill was enacted as part of a response to a national outcry against the treatment of veterans of World War I. The original bill included benefits such as mortgage assistance, unemployment benefits, and business loans. Today, the GI Bill® is focused solely on tuition assistance.

The GI Bill® played a huge role in the influx of middle-class U.S. citizens who began attending college in the middle of the 20th century. Nearly half of the students entering higher education in the U.S. in the late 1940s were veterans, largely thanks to the GI Bill®. The GI Bill® received its first major update in 1984, when it was retitled the “Montgomery GI Bill®”. Later, in 2008, it was updated again, and the “Post-9/11 GI Bill®” was created. In the next section, we will unpack the difference between these two versions and what that means to military service members, families, and veterans today.

What is the GI Bill®?

The GI Bill® is legislation that helps active-duty military service members, veterans, and their family members pay for their education. You must meet certain criteria to qualify for GI Bill® benefits. Programs that can be paid for using GI Bill® funding include undergraduate and graduate degree programs as well as vocational training, testing programs, and more.

Montgomery GI Bill®

Montgomery GI Bill® benefits are available to U.S. Armed Forces members and veterans who have been honorably discharged. You will pay a flat fee of $100 for 12 months when you enroll in the program. Then, you can receive up to 36 months of total benefits, which are paid to you directly to help with the costs of education. Montgomery GI Bill® benefits can be sought for up to 10 years after active duty.

Post-9/11 GI Bill®

To qualify for benefits from the Post-9/11 GI Bill®, you must have at least 90 days of active-duty service on or after September 11, 2001. Alternatively, if you were discharged with a service-connected disability, you must have at least 30 days of aggregate service. If you are a veteran, you will need to have been honorably discharged in order to qualify for benefits.

This bill also provides benefits for up to 36 months, but tuition and fees are paid directly to the school, while housing and costs of living go directly to the student. Service members who left the service before Jan 1, 2013 have up to 15 years to apply for benefits after active duty. If you left the service after that date, your Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits will never expire.

Choosing Between the Two Bills

Keep in mind that for both bills, the 36-month cap applies only to months when you are enrolled in classes. You can start and stop your benefits. Additionally, many veterans and military members will find that they qualify for benefits from both the Montgomery GI Bill® and the Post-9/11 GI Bill®. You can only select benefits from one of these bills, so it is important to plan your education and choose the bill that fits your needs best. In some cases, the Post-9/11 GI Bill® will offer more financial assistance. However, in other cases, there can be factors that make the benefits of the Montgomery GI Bill® advantageous.

Blackstone Career Institute and the GI Bill®

Blackstone Career Institute is a fully remote learning institute that offers several online education programs to military members, veterans, and their families. All programs are fully accredited, and Blackstone has been recognized as a G.I. Jobs Top Military Friendly School for 10 years running. Blackstone’s military-friendly education programs accept both Montgomery GI Bill® and Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits. Click here to learn how you can use your GI Bill® benefits with Blackstone.

Additionally, Blackstone’s accredited programs have been approved by the Military Spouse Career Advancement Account program (MyCAA), which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Defense. Training from Blackstone is also available through the Army Credentialing Assistance Program, which is part of the Army Credentialing Opportunities Online (COOL) service.

Blackstone Career Institute is here to support active-duty military service members, veterans, and their families in obtaining an education. If you are interested in discussing more about using your GI Bill® benefits with Blackstone, you can call us at 800-826-9228. An admissions counselor would love to assist you in discovering your next steps.

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