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Earning your associate degree first gives you a sense of accomplishment and a diploma to hang on your wall while you continue working toward your bachelor's degree, and no matter what your long-term goal may be, going for an associates now can give you a great jump start.

Thai Le

Surviving Spouse and Military Benefits

Surviving spouses or children of deceased or disabled servicemen are often completely oblivious to the fact that there are so many survivor scholarships out there. With over $300 million of military survivor scholarships and grants available, there is definitely a lot of money in survivor scholarships. So if you’re considering advancing your education and your parent or husband/wife served in the military and is now currently deceased or injured, you should definitely look into getting a survivor scholarship.

Allot of people will try to tell you that it’s impossible to get a scholarship and that scholarships are too difficult to get. The truth is that there are a wide variety of different kinds of scholarships, and while some may take a ingenious science experiment to get, many just require a genuine essay stating why you need the scholarships. If it’s as simple as just writing a short essay for a couple hundred bucks, why not try for it?

Another myth that many people will tell you when you’re considering pursuing a scholarship or grant is that the scholarships aren’t necessary because the Survivors and Dependents Education Assistance Program will help you pay for school, and will cover pretty much all your tuition costs. While it is true the DEA is a great program for survivor spouses and children seeking educational assistance, It’s also true that having a couple extra buckaroos in your pocket from writing a simple essay for a scholarship isn’t going to hurt you.

Another of the myths that many people will feed to you as a reason not to get a scholarship is that scholarships are too hard to find. Well that’s just plain not true! Scholarships for all kinds of things are available to many students right now, just sitting there unclaimed. Truth is, not many students know where to look for scholarships, and that’s the main reason they go unclaimed for so long. You can start in your search for scholarships by looking on a scholarship finder. Ask a recruiter also if they know of any specific scholarships being offered for your subject of interest.

So as you can see there are many options when it comes to scholarships for survivor spouses/children of deceased/disabled service members. Even though your loved one has passed on you can still succeed in your own personal life and they’ll look down on you and smile since you’re getting your life on the right track. Don’t you think it’s time for you to take advantage of the educational opportunities that are available to you? Within a short time, you could be on the track to getting a great scholarship and a great education, all you need to do is try!

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Interested in TRICARE ECHO

If you have a family member who is in the United states Military, you can get healthcare from a program known as TRICARE Extended Health Option.

What are the TRICARE / ECHO benefits? TRICARE / ECHO benefits include medical coverage of the many areas including medical services, rehabilitative services, training for assistive technology, special education for special needs spouses and children, Institutional care for conditions that require residential environments(such as hospital visits), Ambulance costs, translators for speaking or hearing impaired beneficiaries, in home or caretaker services, along with any necessary medical equipment a patient requires. TRICARE is actually the most affordable, comprehensive and easy medical program.

Who is covered by the TRICARE / ECHO benefits? Anybody who has a spouse or child to an active duty member, including reserve soldiers who have been active duty for a period of 30 days or more can be benefited. Another case where a family member or spouse of a retired Armed Forces member can receive the TRICARE / ECHO benefits if the child or spouse is a victim of physical or emotional abuse. It also offers the programs on health care for the retired persons which include TRICARE dental, TRICARE pharmacy and also TRICARE for the life.

The benefits will kick in and cover your medical bills or any other necessary costs that may result from the qualifying conditions required by ECHO. ECHO’s qualifying conditions are that you’re suffering from moderate to severe mental retardation or a serious physical disability.

Luckily the old program, TRICARE Program for the Persons with Disabilities, was replaced by the TRICARE Extended Health Option, on September 1, 2005. This change reflected a drastic change in how TRICARE functioned overall. The coverage limits of Persons of the Program for the Persons with Disabilities was only $1000 per month, but with the TRICARE / ECHO program, beneficiaries are looking at benefits of up to two thousand and five hundred dollar per month for each eligible family. Another TRICARE / ECHO benefit is that beneficiaries who are stuck at home due to an injury or mental retardation can qualify for extended in-home health care. The old program, the Program for the Persons with Disabilities, required recipients to use public facilities and funds to the extent which is required or available… how much does that suck? Instead with the ECHO program that requirement is no longer for the majority, but only for a small group of ECHO beneficiaries.

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The United States Active Duty Education Resources

Active duty education resources service offers various benefits for the United States military, spouses, children and families. You may be eligible for more than one educational benefit at one time. Have a look at our list of active duty education resources and check your eligibility for each resource.

Military Active Duty Education Resources

Military Active Duty Education Resources assist as program guidelines to determine eligibility in between services. Here is the list of military tuition assistance education programs:

  • Army Tuition Assistance
    1. Provides financial assistance for voluntary off-duty education programs in support of a soldier’s professional goals
    2. Open to nearly all soldiers (officers, warrant officers, enlisted) including Army Reserve and Army National Guard on active duty.
    3. The maximum amount paid for tuition assistance: 100% Tuition and Fees not to exceed: $250 @ Semester Credit Hour, or $166 @ Quarter Credit Hour, and $4500 @ Fiscal Year
  • Navy Tuition Assistance
    1. available to both Naval Officer and Enlisted active duty personnel and Naval Reservists on continuous active duty
    2. available to enlisted Naval Reservists ordered to active duty 120 days and to Naval Reservist Officers ordered to active duty for 2 years or more
    3. be on active duty for the whole length of the course
    4. Attend an institution accredited by a regional, national, or professional accrediting agency recognized by the Department of Education.
    5. receive counseling from a Navy College Office
    6. remain on active duty for at least two years upon completion of courses funded by TA
    7. The maximum amount paid for tuition assistance: 100% Tuition and Fee not to exceed: $250 @ Semester Credit Hour, or $166 @ Quarter Credit Hour, and 16 Semester Hours (24 Quarter Hours or 240 Clock Hours)@ Fiscal Year
  • Marine Corps Tuition Assistance
    1. 100% tuition and fees for courses taken by active duty personnel.
    2. The maximum amount paid for Tuition Assistance: 100% Tuition and Fee not to exceed: $250 @ Semester Credit Hour, or $166 @ Quarter Credit Hour, and $4500 @ Fiscal Year
  • Coast Guard Tuition Assistance
    1. 100% Tuition and Fees not to exceed: $250 @ Semester Credit Hour, or $166 @ Quarter Credit Hour, and $4500 @ Fiscal Year
  • National Guard Tuition Assistance
    1. Eligible to members of active duty, reserve and civilian employees – in their professional development by providing funding for off-duty voluntary education courses to broaden their academic or Coast Guard technical background.
    2. 100% Tuition not to exceed: $250 @ Semester Credit Hour, or $166 @ Quarter Credit Hour, and $4500 @ Fiscal Year
  • Reserve Tuition Assistance
    1. Members of the National Guard are eligible for tuition assistance.
    2. Members state funded education incentives based on state guidelines and eligibility such as TA, waivers, exemptions, student loan repayment from Army National Guard (ARNG) and Air National Guard (ANG) services
  • Military Education Support Programs
    You will be entitled to specific college funds, scholarships and education programs if you are eligible for one of these military active duty education resources. The following is the list of military active duty education resources and support programs:

    1. Army Voluntary Education Programs
      1. GoArmyEd
      2. Tuition Assistance
      3. Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOCAD)
      4. eArmyU
      5. Other Army Education Resources
    2. Navy Voluntary Education Programs
      1. Navy Advanced Education Voucher
      2. Navy Graduate Education Voucher
      3. Tuition Assistance
      4. Servicemembers Opportunity College ( SOCNAV)
      5. College-At-Sea (NCPACE)
      6. Seaman to Admiral (STA-21)
      7. Navy Marine Corps Relief Society Grants
      8. Other Navy Education Benefit Programs
    3. Air Force Voluntary Education Programs
      1. Tuition Assistance
      2. The Community College of the Air Force (CCAF)
      3. Service members Opportunity Colleges (SOC)
      4. General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant Program
      5. General George S. Brown Spouse Tuition Assistance Program (STAP)
    4. Marine Corps Voluntary Education Programs
      1. Marine Deployed Education Programs
      2. Library Programs
      3. Military Academic Skills Program (MASP)
      4. Military Tuition Assistance (TA)
      5. United Services Military Apprenticeship Program (USMAP)
      6. Sailor/Marine American Council on Education Registry Transcript (SMART)
      7. Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges Marine Corps (SOCMAR)
      8. Spouse Tuition Assistance (TA)
    5. Coast Guard Voluntary Education Programs
      1. Tuition Assistance
      2. SOCCOAST
      3. SOCCOAST Afloat
      4. The Coast Guard Foundation Grant
      5. Coast Guard Mutual Assistance (CGMA)
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Military education in the Air Force

The adaptive and successful use of technology in learning and performance, involving a range of digital literacy, plays a large role in modern society and is particularly critical in warfare. The U.S. Air Force is facing future learning environments where Airmen must learn more rapidly and adapt more quickly to swiftly evolving demands of war fighting where knowledge, critical-thinking skills, and performance are increasingly important in unforgiving circumstances. Evolving-conflict environments demand evolving-education processes. Well-developed digital literacy is needed by Airmen to effectively learn and perform across informal self-development efforts, formal schoolhouse programs, and a variety of operational experiences.

Advanced technological developments require educators to think and plan strategically regarding the role of digital literacy to help ensure the Air Force has a competitive and adaptive learning system capable of meeting future learning needs of the Airman. Educators should be actively involved in devising updated learning frameworks and curricula to help develop the digital-literacy knowledge and skills needed by Airmen. Posner (2002) observed that students do not simply need to know how to manipulate computer or digital tools and resources; they must develop the desire for, and a habit of, critical thought. The learned capacity for critical thinking includes improved discernment when using the Internet and forms of social networking as well as interpreting reliable information sources on the Web. In addition, the ability to use technology does not necessarily involve consistent ethical considerations among students, or an understanding of the possibilities for cross-cultural understanding and access to multiple perspectives the cyberspace provides.

Blended- and affective-learning frameworks and environments can also be designed to support modular curricula to help sequence learning in better ways with Airmen’s schedules and operational tempos. This capability introduces prospects for integrating performance-support applications that are also blended with learning applications to help foster stronger ties between schoolhouse learning and on-the-job performance and decision-support tools. Bridging the schoolhouse to on-the-job environments, using blended- and affective-learning frameworks, can strengthen the continuum of lifelong learning across formal, informal, and life experiences for the Airman. Competitive and adaptive future-learning environments will increasingly evolve to better-blended and distributive models simply because it matters to an expeditionary force to educate war fighters regardless of place. Nonetheless, most educators place high importance on the role of place in learning, even with distributive-learning environments. In addition, educators are increasingly designing and developing good virtual surrogates for traditional physical learning places. Some educators go so far as to suggest that traditional physical places for learning operate, in part, with critical virtual elements through the sociocultural practices of the learning community.

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The Air Force… Learn and Earn!

Hey I’m interested in Air Force education benefits, where do I find out more? Well, take a moment to read over this article and you’ll definitely be able to get a good grasp of the Air Force education benefits.

One of the main Air Force education benefits is provided through the Tuition Assistance program. Through the Tuition Assistance program, the Air Force will pay for 100 percent of your educational costs if you’re active duty airmen.

The Air Force is also home to the CCAF or the Community College of the Air Force, which is the only degree granting institution in the world that is dedicated solely to enlisted service members. So you’ll be receiving a military degree from a military university, nothing more official then that. If you’re interested in getting an online military degree at online military colleges, the CCAF can also help you with that. The Air Force is dedicated to providing airmen with all the educational tools they require to accomplish their academic goals.

Another part of the Air Force education benefits is the Service members Opportunity Colleges or SOC. The SOC colleges are there to help you as well as your family members to get the college degrees and certificates you want. You can take courses here during you’re off duty hours or if you’d like you can do it at many different military institutions across the United States and in oversea countries as well.

If you’ve taken out student loans in the past you haven’t been able to pay off yet, joining the Air Force and pursuing a military degree might just be the perfect option for you; because the Air Force will help you pay off up to $10,000 in student loans you have hanging over your head. If you’re interested in this program check it out it’s the Loan Repayment Program or LRP.

Another way to put a quick $2000 bucks into your pocket for your academic needs is through the General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant Program, which is a grant program sponsored by the Air Force Aid society. The grant can be applied for by full time active duty airmen or retired Air Force members. You can get more then $2000 from this grant program depending on your familie’s income and other educational cost factors that come into play.

So whether you’re in debt with student loans and are looking for a quick way out or you’re looking to acquire some serious skills from military colleges and from serving in the Air Force. Getting the Air Force education benefits is worth it for any young person interested in succeeding in their academic goals. So if you’ve been walking on the edge for a while, after reading this article you really have no excuse left. Get off your behind and go explore the world while learning great job skills and getting an education in whatever you would like to learn about.

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Army and Education

If you are thinking about joining the Army as a way to advance your own education, then after reading this, I hope you’ll at the least take away what a kind of Army education benefits you’ll get out of enrolling for military degrees or degrees sponsored by the military.

The military provides many benefits to active duty service members, including the fact you’ll be able to earn while you learn, because while you’re active duty, you’ll get paid as well as have a chance to get an education. There are many different programs that can provide you with benefits if you’re looking for Army education benefits, but you may receive up to $4,500 worth of tuition fees if you are an active duty service member. You’re also able to dip into the GI bill funds if you’d like, however it’s not recommended to active duty members.

Another option for Army education benefits is to pay off a loan with the CLRP, otherwise known as the College Loan Repayment Program. While taking out a loan seems like a risk, with the military, you’ll receive up to $65,000 to pay off your college loans if you apply for a three year active duty enlistment, simply because you’re a service member. However, with up to $4,500 in Army education benefits coming from the Tuition Assistance program and the Tuition Assistance Top-Up program, it’s unlikely you’ll ever need to take out a loan.

With the Tuition Assistance Program, you’ll receive all the Army education benefits you’re going to ever possibly need because the Army pays 100 percent of the necessary fees and tuition costs for active duty service members. Soldiers that are part of the Army Continuing Education program use Tuition Assistance funds to pay for the classes they take when they’re off duty as a chance to advance their education goals without really any costs, or little to none.

So as you can see there are many options when it comes to the Army and education. You can take this information and figure out what’s right for you. You should also consider the possibility of online military colleges. The military offers online classes at many of its colleges that you can attend even if you’re overseas. The opportunities are endless when it comes to education and the army. If you’re still indecisive about joining the army so you can further your education, I’d say the best option you have is to head on down to the local recruiting office and talk to a recruiter to see what kinds of opportunities will be available to you. They’d be able to give you an in depth overview of all the different options you have as far as education goes. Now is the time to serve your country and get a great education for your future!

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Tuition Assistance (TA) Program Overview

The Armed Forces do offer several programs to marines, sailors, soldiers, guardsman and airmen in order to help them reach their goals in terms of education, and this includes a Tuition Assistance program for college courses. These courses can be taken during your off-duty hours, thus not interfering with their routine jobs.

California Intercontinental University takes a flexible approach to specialized degrees. Our short terms and individual attention help military students succeed.

  • Short, six-week terms fit the busy lives of military service members
  • We strive to balance conflicts with deadlines
  • Founders, faculty and staff realize high achievers appreciate a hands-on approach

The Tuition Assistance program is a benefit offered to eligible members from the Marines, Army, Navy, Air Force as well as the Coast Guards. Each service does have their own criteria for eligibility, obligated service, application processes, and restrictions. This money is usually paid directly to the institution by the individual services once their members have been approved.

For Air Force, there will be a 100% Tuition and Fees coverage, but not to exceed $250 per semester credit hour or $166 per quarter credit hour or $4500 per fiscal year. For those who opt for the 75% assistance, it will not exceed $187.50 per semester credit hour or $3500 per fiscal year. This assistance would be able to cover the fees of tuition, enrollment fees, lab fees, special fees, and computer fees. Both active duty members as well as reserves are eligible for this assistance program.

The Army provides 100% assistance for tuition and fees, not exceeding $166 per quarter credit hour or $250 per semester credit hour or $4500 per fiscal year. It will be able to cover the fees for tuition, enrollment, lab, computer as well as special fees. Active duty members, army reserves, and ARNG on active duty are eligible for this assistance program.

The Navy also provides 100% assistance for tuition and fees, not exceeding $166 per quarter credit hour or $250 per semester credit hour or $4000 per fiscal year. It will be able to cover the fees for tuition, enrollment, lab, computer as well as special fees. Those who are on active duty and naval reserves in AD status are eligible for this tuition assistance program.

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Games, simulation, and the military education dilemma

Desktop training systems are playing an expanding role in military training. They can be used for the most basic tasks all soldiers and other service members must master, and they can be used to simulate extremely complex tasks performed by specialists in particular weapons and systems. In one innovation, desktop simulation will soon be used in training where tasks are not defined to teach officers to think flexibly about very difficult challenges.

Economy is one reason for the shift to desktop training. Desktop systems can often train both recruits and officers much faster and less expensively than instructors, said Ray Perez, program officer for the Office of Naval Research’s (ONR) Warfighter Performance Department. Convenience can be another reason, as software is deployed on laptops and other personal devices. One future use might be providing Navy corpsmen in the field with the ability, using handheld devices like ruggedized smartphones, to communicate novel symptoms back to systems or experts that would provide advice on correct treatment, dosage and evacuation decisions, Perez said.

Perez manages two types of desktop training systems. The first is given to all Navy recruits at Great Lakes. This includes training in the basics of naval ships for recruits, many of whom have not been on a Navy or other ship in their lives. “We teach them how to navigate their way around the ship and find compartments,” Perez explained.

Another basic desktop course instructs recruits in damage control. “If there’s a fire or flood onboard and they do not handle it correctly, the ship sinks,” Perez said. Recruits are trained on situational awareness, how to deal with damage and how to communicate to damage-control officers. The course takes 80 minutes and recruits are afterward tested on competency on a mockup of a Burke-class destroyer. Experiments show desktop training reduces the time recruits take for correct actions and cuts errors by 50 percent.

Another basic desktop system deals with recruits who enter the Navy with less than 8th-grade reading skills. Instead of two weeks in instructor-led classes, recruits are given 40 hours of desktop tutoring. The desktop system has increased reading levels by two grades, equivalent to two weeks of instructor-led classes. The system is like a game, but with a set of objectives, constant feedback and a built-in pedagogical strategy. An entirely different set of desktop systems is used at the Navy’s Surface Warfare School (SWS) in Newport, R.I., to address two challenges. Naval weapons and systems have become much more complex. And adversaries no longer fight by the book. “We have to train people in adaptive problem solving,” Perez noted.

One desktop system is the Tactical Action Officers Sandbox, which trains officers to plan and execute tactics for dealing with submarines, missiles or enemy ships. Another is the Adaptive Device for Adaptive Performance Training (ADAPT), which does the same kind of training for force protection in port. Aptima developed ADAPT for the Navy to meet two challenges, according to Chief Research Officer Jared Freeman. “The first is the scientific problem of training decision-makers to adapt well to novel problems for which there are not good rules or standard operating procedures. The second is the specific instance of force protection by the Navy.”

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The education of military elites

The Army of 2012 finds itself with similar challenges as its predecessors: how to provide units and organizations with knowledgeable leaders who are capable of ensuring success. This is especially difficult when faced with the requirements to support the Army Force Generation (ARFORGEN) model in the current operating environment. It is critical that the Army balance the immediate need for officers in the operational force with the longer term imperative to develop the senior officers who will lead and shape the future Army. Those senior officers should necessarily be a product of a senior level college (SLC) experience. To do otherwise harken to the assignment and education practices with junior officers of the Hollow Army. Some may challenge the assertion that the current process is not providing officers capable of succeeding at the strategic level. Clearly, some defense analysts and advisors as well as Members of Congress in their oversight role have made that assessment. Such are the findings of a recent congressional House Armed Services Committee study of professional military education.

The Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee conveyed that officers are serving in joint and service staff assignments without adequate educational preparation and that some operational commanders, including the Combatant Commanders, reportedly consider their staff officers lacking in certain critical abilities necessary to perform their jobs effectively. An expected challenge would be to question the value of senior level colleges as well as intermediate schools for those officers identified as high performers and possessing exceptional potential. If these officers are obviously talented and proven under the stresses of demanding assignments, it is worth asking what evidence exists that our schools would make them better. To answer such questions, the U.S. Army War College (USAWC) conducts a bi-ennial survey of general officers who receive its graduates.

While it may be the case that high performing officers could be successful regardless of whether they attend a senior level college, it is difficult to dismiss the value of education in preparing for strategic level responsibilities. As additional evidence to support this claim, it is useful to remind ourselves of the role of continuing education in a myriad of professions such as medicine, law, education, science, and public administration. It is therefore compelling that military professionals would benefit from advanced education, which places extensive training and experience in context and develops the faculty for judgment in ambiguous environments. We have learned from the experiences of the 1970s, 1980s, and now in the 21st century that education is essential for developing officers and that timing the delivery of education assists in the development of competencies that ensure better performance in assignments requiring those abilities. It is important then to examine how these lessons are reflected in the current practices and culture of the Army.

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Military education in the Coast Guard

Formal inclusion in the education community has resulted in additional authorities and resources for the Coast Guard, enabling the agency to expand its capabilities to include a cryptology program, codebreaking, which functions to preserve the operational integrity of the Coast Guard by shielding it from the activities of foreign powers, terrorist groups and criminal organizations.

Coast Guard Education applies its capabilities to all Coast Guard mission sets and has provided support for major operations, including the response to the Haitian earthquake in 2010. Education personnel provided the earliest port infrastructure damage reports, which supported multi-national efforts to provide relief and port recovery. Coast Guard Education also produced threat assessments and briefings that supported force protection decisions and other national and interagency operational decisions. In addition to numerous drug and human smuggling cases, Coast Guard Education also has provided critical support to Coast Guard commanders wrestling with non-traditional education needs, such as the interdiction of the Bangun Perkasa fishing vessel and its use of illegal driftnets.

Coast Guard Education has matured during the last 10 years and its focus has solidified. In addition to the cryptology program and countereducation service, Coast Guard Education includes a robust criminal investigative service, experienced education fusion centers and a developing cyber capability. Coast Guard education specialists in the field are a critical component of the enterprise, working in units across the nation and throughout the Coast Guard chain of command to provide operational commanders with the education support they need. Today’s Coast Guard Education encompasses a wide range of activities and capabilities, all striving to provide decision advantage to support senior Coast Guard leaders in their policy-making role, the Department of Homeland Security and its components and other national education or federal law enforcement agencies.

The Coast Guard’s persistent presence in the maritime domain, due to its diverse mission sets and broad legal authorities, fills a unique niche within the education community. As a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, the Coast Guard is at the intersection between homeland security and national defense. As a federal law enforcement agency and national education community member, the Coast Guard is also positioned as a bridge between these two important groups. Because of the service’s unique access, emphasis and expertise in the maritime domain – an area where other U.S. government agencies typically are not present – it collects and reports education that supports its own missions as well as national security objectives.

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California Intercontinental University is accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission. The Distance Education Accrediting Commission is listed by the U.S. Department of Education as a recognized accrediting agency. The Distance Education Accrediting Commission is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).