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Post-9/11 Veterans Education Assistance Improvement Act of 2010

You served your country. Now serve your dreams with the Post-9/11 GI Bill
Graphic from our "Serve Your Dreams" GI Bill awareness campaign,
created in partnership with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Background

The Post-9/11 GI Bill (Chapter 33) provides educational assistance for servicemembers who served on active duty on or after September 11, 2001. It was signed into law on June 30, 2008, and went into effect on August 1, 2009.

The Post-9/11 Veterans Education Assistance Improvement Act of 2010 was signed into law by President Obama on January 3, 2011, to simplify the original Post-9/11 GI Bill and to increase the pool of eligible veterans.

The most substantive change is a new, streamlined method for determining the amount of tuition and fee assistance provided by the Post-9/11 GI Bill, doing away with the state-by-state formula with separate tuition and fee caps from the original legislation. This previous method resulted in most students enrolled at Massachusetts private colleges and universities receiving less than $12,000 for an academic year. The new legislation will continue to pay in full tuition and mandatory fees at public colleges and universities and sets a national annual tuition and fee cap for all private institutions of $17,500 (following the application of waivers and scholarships, and other federal or state financial aid, excluding loans.)

Other changes approved by Congress will expand eligibility to include National Guard Title 32 activation for national emergencies and Active Guard Reserve service. On-the-job training, apprenticeship and non-college post-secondary programs are also now included.

How the Post-9/11 Veterans Education Assistance Improvement Act of 2010 Affects Massachusetts Student Veterans

Massachusetts Student Veteran Profile Benefit Changes Dates Changes Take Effect
Undergraduate students at public college / university None; tuition and mandatory fees covered August 1, 2011
Graduate students at public college / university May see slight increase in benefits August 1, 2011
Student attending independent college / university Act sets new national tuition/fee cap of $17,500. Most MA students will receive several thousand $ more per year August 1, 2011
National Guard reservists activated under Title 32 Now eligible Retroactive to August 1, 2009; benefits not paid until October 1, 2011
Part-time students Must be enrolled 51% time or more to receive pro-rated housing allowance August 1, 2011
Online students Eligible for 50% housing allowance. August 1, 2011
All students, spouses Book stipends extended to active duty military personnel and their spouses August 1, 2011
Disabled veterans receiving
vocational rehab benefits
Eligible to use Post-9/11 GI Bill housing stipend in lieu of the Voc-Rehab program (Chapter 31) subsistence payment August 1, 2011
Students taking exams Lifts cap on one exam; expands coverage to include SAT, GRE, LSAT, and CLEP August 1, 2011

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Next Steps

Details provided here are subject to change as the bill progresses from Act to Law to VA policy. How the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs interprets the legislation could greatly impact the actual benefits that veterans receive.

 

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