A common question among service members and veterans is, “Can I use the GI Bill® for trade school?”
The answer is yes, you can use the GI Bill® for trade school if you qualify. This includes vocational training in areas like welding, HVAC or electrical applications.1
Keep on reading to learn more about using your GI Bill® benefits toward welding training.
What Is the GI Bill®?
The GI Bill® is the common term for the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944, which provided an array of benefits to returning World War II veterans. The benefits included:
- Low-cost mortgages
- Low-interest business loans
- One year of unemployment compensation
- Financial assistance for educational expenses2
Post-9/11 GI Bill®
The Post-9/11 GI Bill® offers educational benefits for service members or veterans who have served since September 11, 2001. The bill funds postsecondary education for those with 90 days of aggregate active duty since September 11, 2001 who are still serving on active duty, were honorably discharged or who were discharged with a service-connected disability after 30 days.3
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Montgomery GI Bill®
The Montgomery GI Bill® is available to those who are enlisted in the U.S. Armed Forces. The Montgomery GI Bill® Active Duty (MGIB-AD) allows for those with at least two years of active duty to receive a monthly educational benefit.4 The Montgomery GI Bill® Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR) was introduced to support the educational pursuits of reservists with a six-year obligation.5
How Does the GI Bill® Pay for Trade School?
The amount of money you receive depends on the type of GI Bill® program that you are entitled to and the type of non-college degree school you attend. The monthly entitlement is based on the number of clock hours you complete during training each week. Payments are issued monthly.6
Post-9/11 GI Bill®
The Post-9/11 GI Bill® covers up to $24,476.79 of tuition and fees per academic year at non- public institutions (effective August 1, 2019 – July 31, 2020). Full-time students may receive an allowance for books and supplies. They may also get a monthly housing allowance based on the location of the school.7
Montgomery GI Bill®
The Montgomery GI Bill® programs offer up to 36 months of education benefits. Active duty members can qualify for up to $2,050 per month while reservists can obtain up to $392 (effective October 1, 2019).8,9
How to Use the GI Bill® for Trade School
The first step in using the GI Bill® for trade school is determining whether or not you qualify and for which program.
For example, you may qualify for the Post-9/11 GI Bill® if you meet any of the following criteria (conditions apply):
- You served for a total of 90 days after September 11, 2001.
- You are still on active duty.
- You are an honorably discharged veteran.
- You were discharged due to a service-related disability after 30 days of active duty.
- You are a Purple Heart recipient.10
You can learn more about GI Bill® welding school eligibility requirements on our blog. Diligently researching what you may be entitled to in terms of financial assistance could help with your training and career plans!
In some cases, the dependent or surviving spouse or children of a veteran can get educational military benefits through a GI Bill® program as well. Furthermore, if you haven’t used all of your Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits, you may be able to transfer up to 36 months of benefits to your spouse or dependent child.11
Transition into a Civilian Career with Trade School
Trade school can help you transition from a military career to a civilian one. As an active or former member of the military, you may also qualify for military scholarships. That could mean funding to help you pursue a postsecondary education.
Some of the skills you can learn while in the military can be helpful in skilled trade careers. The skilled trades are ever-evolving and advancing and can provide exciting career opportunities for servicemen and -women.12
Do you still have questions regarding trade school and the GI Bill®? A Tulsa Welding School representative may be able to help answer them. Give us a call at (855) 237-7711.
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