Earning Your Online Degree While Serving Abroad

Earning Your Online Degree While Serving Abroad

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Since the advent of the Web, voluntary education for the military has experienced many changes.Service members are enjoying the ease of use of obtaining online degrees to pursue their educational objectives. In fact, the number of military service members going to online colleges has increased from five percent to more than 70 percent. To assist them, the Armed Forces have set up “educational centers” on just about everywhere there is a U.S. base throughout the world.

When one thinks about it, it makes perfect sense. Advancing one’s education is a good way for non-comms to advance to specialist ranks. Officers too can be seen at these centers, as these degrees help them climb up the advancement ladder. No matter what, this form of education increases a soldier’s chances of a satisfying career when he or she returns to full civilian life.

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Most important, is with these centers, a soldier can continue using their schools online wherever he or she’s stationed. This includes anywhere from the hot zones of the Middle East to a float in the Arctic Circle. Both the four services and their servicemen get an added advantage in that if the soldier gets orders to pack up and go to a new assignment, they can continue their education once they are allowed to plug back in.

As for getting the financial aid needed to take these courses? It turns out the government can be quite generous in this area. Each education center usually comes with a financial officer. His job is to help point out the number of programs that are available to non-comms and officers alike.

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A primary source of funding is called TA/DANTES(Tuition Assistance/Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Educational Services). Many times, this funding can cover as much as 100% of tuition as well as put in a healthy stipend for text books and software. Created by the government in 1974, DANTES is dedicated to helping members of every branch achieve their professional and personal educational objectives.

Another major source of funding are the online universities themselves. A number of online universities will reduce their tuitions as much as 50% to active military, as well as offer discounts to their spouses. To find this out, it is a good idea to see if the school offers the appropriate educational program, then ask them about these tuition discounts. A large majority of the top schools do offer online college.

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Finally, there are private grants available to active soldiers. These military grants are usually dependent on what field the soldier intends to study in, his/her military background (combat duty, family background, previous educational experience) and/or plans when leaving the armed services (such as going into domestic civil service). The base financial officer is usually one’s best guide in finding these grants out.

What really matters these days is the military is a good place to advance one’s education. It also is a solid source for the financial aid needed to further those goals. Any soldier worth his stripes or brass should march on down to their educational center to find out more about these online programs.

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