Finding money for college can be tough for anyone. If you're a disabled veteran, or the child of a disabled veteran, financial help is available for you. The GI Bill, individual state bills and private organizations all provide educational assistance for veterans' children. In some cases, the aid doesn't depend upon the veteran's disability, while in other cases, it does.
The Veterans Benefits Administration, part of the Department of Veterans Affairs, provides an educational grant for children of disabled veterans. Part of the Montgomery Bill, better known as the GI Bill, the Dependents' Educational Assistance Program (DEA) helps children enrolled in college as well as vocational schools, The veteran's disability must be total and service- connected. A child's eligibility usually is limited to the ages of 18 to 26, although it can sometimes be extended. For example, the child serving in the Armed Forces is a qualifying reason for an extension. As of October 2009, the monthly grant for college ranges from $925 for full-time, $694 for three-quarters time, $461 for half-time and $231.25 for one-quarter time or less of study. Payments may be received for up to 45 months. Tutoring assistance may be paid up to $1,200 maximum, and a work-study allowance is also available. To apply, request a VA Form 22-5490 from your nearest VA Regional Office.
Many states provide educational assistance to disabled veterans' children. For example, Alabama offers five tuition-free years at any state-supported college or technical school. Similarly, North Dakota provides free tuition for up to 45 months at any state-supported educational institution, technical or vocational school. See the resources section for a list of individual states with links to information about their benefits for veterans.
All branches of the armed services have given rise to private aid societies or relief organizations that provide varying benefits to veterans. The Army Emergency Relief (aerhq.org), the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society (nmcrs.org) and the Air Force Aid Society (afas.org) offer tuition assistance and financial assistance to veterans and their families. ThanksUSA, a private non-profit organization, offers a scholarship for veterans' children and spouses as a way of thanking those who served in the military (thanksusa.org/main/scholarships.html). The National Military Family Association (NMFA) offers the Joanne Holbrook scholarship to active-duty and retired service people, National Guard, Reserves and survivors (militaryfamily.org/our-programs/military-spouse-scholarships).
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