Military Spouse Benefits
Through the years, spouses have sacrificed while their loved ones serve on active duty assignments throughout the world. The U.S. military and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs recognize those sacrifices and continue to improve benefits offered to spouses of veterans and active duty servicemembers. Today, these organizations offer a number of education benefits for spouses.
Military Spouse Education Opportunities
Spouse Tuition Assistance Program (STAP)
The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society provides interest free loans for up to $3,000 per academic year. The funds may be used by spouses of active duty personnel who live outside of the United States and can be used for educational expenses such as books and tuition.
General George S. Brown Spouse Tuition Assistance Program (STAP)
The Air Force Relief Society has gone to work to provide Air Force spouses up to $1,500 a year for undergraduate tuition, fees, and other expenses. This program serves the spouses of active duty Air Force personnel stationed outside of the U.S.
Stateside Spouse Education Assistance Program (SSEAP)
Up to $2,500 per academic year is available to Army wives and husbands to put towards an undergraduate degree. The spouse must be residing in the U.S. The servicemember may be on active duty, retired from the military, or deceased.
Post-9/11 GI Bill Transfer
This benefit transfers the servicemember's educational benefits to his or her spouse if certain qualifying criteria are met. The transfer applies to both active duty and retired military personnel and offers educational assistance benefits identical to those offered to the servicemember under this program.
Vice Admiral E.P. Travers Loan Program (Travers Program)
The Travers Program is administered by the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society and provides interest free loans between $500 and $3,000 to spouses of active duty personnel who live in the U.S. The loan may be applied to tuition and fees for undergraduate degree programs and certificates.
General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant The Air Force Relief Society administers the grant program directed towards the spouses of active Air Force personnel. The spouse must live within the U.S. Up to $2,000 per academic year is provided to allay the costs of an undergraduate college degree.
Joanne Holbrook Patton Military Spouse Scholarship This scholarship is offered to spouses of qualifying active duty, retired or deceased military personnel in every branch of the U.S. Military. The qualifying servicemember may have served in the National Guard, reserves, or be retired. The scholarship may be applied to vocational schools, colleges, graduate programs, and other eligible programs on either a full- or part-time basis.
Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA)
The Department of Defense provides up to $6,000 to help pay the cost of college degrees and certificates to military spouses if the education leads to careers that are not restricted to specific locations. The spouses of active duty personnel, activated National Guard, and reserve status personnel qualify.
Overseas Spouse Education Assistance Program
The Army Emergency Relief provides tuition assistance to the spouses of active duty military personnel who live overseas with the servicemember. The funds may be applied to an undergraduate degree.
In the end, spouses should be able to complete degree and other educational programs by taking advantage of the numerous education benefits offered through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, nonprofits, and military branches.