Sequestration Hits Army Tuition Assistance

Earlier this week the Marine Corps moved to halt tuition assistance for new enrollees in response to the sequestration. On Thursday, March 7, 2013, the Army announced they will also suspend all tuition assistance enrollments.

The following message details the Army’s decision:

Due to the current fiscal challenges, the Secretary of the Army has approved the suspension of Tuition Assistance (TA) effective 1700 EST Friday, 8 Mar 13.  The suspension applies to all components and will remain effect until the fiscal situation matures.

Effective 1700 EST 8 Mar 13, Soldiers will no longer be permitted to submit new requests for Tuition Assistance through the GoArmyEd portal.  Soldiers currently enrolled and participating in courses approved for tuition assistance are not affected and will be allowed to complete current course(s) enrollment.

Soldiers can continue to access their GI Bill benefits, if applicable (either the Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB) or the Post 9/11 GI Bill), or use another funding sources (i.e. grants, scholarships, or Army National Guard Soldiers using state Tuition Assistance). Soldiers should be encouraged to contact their local education centers for additional information.  Updated information will also be posted to

The Army understands the impacts of this decision and will re-assess as the fiscal situation matures.

Army Strong!

Let your elected officials and DoD know how you feel about the decision to cut tuition assistance.

About the Author

Terry Howell
Before becoming the Managing Editor for, Terry served 20 years in the U.S. Coast Guard as an Aviation Electrician’s Mate and aircrewman. In his final role in the Coast Guard, Terry served as a Career Development Advisor, where he provided career, finance, education, and benefits counseling to servicemembers and their families. Since retiring from the Coast Guard, Terry has authored the book, The Military Advantage, managed the content for TurboTap, the DoD's online transition program and VAforVets, the VA's transition assistance website. Terry earned both his Bachelor's and MBA at Corban University using Military Tuition Assistance and his GI Bill benefits to help cover the cost.

119 Comments on "Sequestration Hits Army Tuition Assistance"

  1. Nicholas Dittbrender | March 8, 2013 at 12:15 am |

    Well then, as a fresh private whos been working on his TA packet, this sure does put a damper on my 5 year plan. Ahooah…

  2. Nicholas Dittbrender,

    Someone on the other blog (Marine Corps to Stop Tuition Assistance) mentioned using Pell Grants as an alternative. I'm not an expert on this, but just wanted to pass that along.

  3. People should be seriously pissed off. #army

  4. Go to your local UMUC office. They'll help you with financial aid and VA options.

  5. The point of Army Tuition Assistance is to make it easy for the troops to get education funding. Having to take out Pell Grants or alternative sources for education funding that could cause these Soldiers longterm debt should be seen as counter operational as it will undoubtedly play a part in the lowering of health morale and welfare. The idea was to make education funding one less thing for them to worry about. Idiots and Criminals in the decision making chairs. It is pathetic.

  6. Welcome to the real world is all I can say. As Soldier myself, I admit that the military bascially throws money at me every month. I pay no electricuty, no heat, and if i have rent, i get extra money for that. At some point, Soldiers need to remember the "selfless service" aspect of military life. No more free school? Use the wad of cash that many of us drink away or spend on brand new cars. Our grandfathers only wanted cigarettes…..

  7. Pell Grants aren't always automatic depending on what you're making in the military. For myself as an NCO and the COLA in Hawaii, I am not eligible for Pell Grants. Additionally, President Obama (a few years ago) placed restrictions on how many terms you can utilize Pell Grants for. Just wanted to state some clarification on the issue…

  8. Use your post 9/11 GI Bill. Why do you need both!

  9. Use my GI Bill? Oh, you mean that I should through it away since I only have time to take one, top two, classes at a time. While the GI Bill has cost caps, it is limited to 36 Months, TOTAL! At the rate that I can take classes, given that I've deployed back to back for the past several years, I'd kill ALL of my GI benefits in about 6 classes. If I killed myself I might get in 15~16 class before I used up all of them.
    Answer me this: Are we still buying F22s at a cost of $122 MILLION each and funding the $750 MILLION alternate F35 engine program that the Air Force didn't want?
    But really, why should I complain. I've only spent most of the last 12 years away from my family, with little down time in between deployments, rapidly destroying my body. I guess that I'm just ungrateful. What did I expect? To be left out of politics and maybe given some consideration? THAT WAS STUPID. Dumb, Dumb me.

  10. You have to have a pretty low income to qualify for pell grants. When I say pretty low I mean (just an example) you have to be an E-4 with single income married with 2-3 kids to qualify. Not everyone falls into that category. How about cutting some of the government cheese that gets handed out left and right.

  11. David Officer | March 8, 2013 at 8:07 am |

    Have you noticed this 'sequestration' cuts amounts to only a small part of the total interest we pay on the national debt? And that the cuts seem to be very public facing for dramatic political effect? Where's the cuts to the banks, the foreign countries, and the reverse to the dramatic increase in $100k a year federal government management jobs? go to youtube and check out the satirical shortfilm explain our crisis. DEBT LIMIT – A GUIDE TO AMERICAN FEDERAL DEBT MADE EASY. (The $300 he cut that year was your tuition money and other US citizen financial help. But he's still buying new fluff!)

  12. Felix Zazueta | March 8, 2013 at 8:22 am |

    Tuition Assistance was one of the key benefits that "triggered" my decision to join the army. A Service Member could earn a Bachelor's Degree while on active duty and be able to us the GI Bill for a Master's Degree when he/she gets out. That was my plan anyway. This will set me back a couple of years and a couple of bucks as I will pay for the final two years of my BA degree myself. It's just a sad state of affairs when TA looks to be among the first cost cut. I don't know the numbers but the annual budget for TA must be but a tiny fraction of the overall defense budget no?

    My current CSM says that the Army is an institution of learning, he places a high value on education, I admire that in my CSM. But the top dogs cut TA first, and quick. Who needs educated soldiers right?

    Bring back TA and make the cuts somewhere else. Let's put our SMs welfare and education first.

  13. David Officer | March 8, 2013 at 8:22 am |

    It's a funny take on why tuition was cut and other less important and more expensive things not cut.

  14. I understand people being upset, but come on. The only education benefits that you are entitled to is the GI Bill. The TA is something the military designed to help Service Members go to school while they are on active duty. There are only two options here: pay for it yourself or wait for the funds to come back. I just recently ETS'd and I had to pay for this semester myself because the VA can't get it right on starting the GI Bill benefits in a timely matter. But that's the choice I made. Nowhere in your contract is there anything about TA. It's just an added bonus, like getting 10% off at a clothing store. Just be thankful it was there at all and hope that it comes back. Maybe this will teach people to not sign up for something unless it's written in the contract.

  15. Dorothy D. Thompson | March 8, 2013 at 8:36 am |

    God will provide as all I have for school is tuition assistance. They will lift this bill before I need to register for my next class in Jesus name.

  16. I beg to differ my husband is an e7 and he got a pell grant. hes attending CTU.

  17. For those of you who don’t think TA is a benefit you are probably the ones never using it because if you did you would realize how important it is to some soldiers namely myself. As for the “wad” of cash I to would live to have your job and I am an E7 with 14 years and don’t see the “wad” you are referring to. I have a family to support. Here is another little aspect many of you don’t realize I am a recruiting station commander and see kids come in to the office day in and day out wanting to serve and looking for ways to pay for college and each one of them does there research and knows all about TA. Now to tell them they can’t have it you WILL see a reduction in people wanting to join an if you think that’s no big deal come on out to recruiting and see for yourself.

  18. Where is your source for this statement on Army Tuition Assistance?

  19. Cut the pay of those in washington. You know the civillians sitting in offices and getting paid Six figures.

  20. StacieLee | March 8, 2013 at 9:40 am |

    My issue with the cuts is the president still took a 20 million vacation. Why don’t the cuts start with congressional salaries and stop all paid vacations for everyone including the president. Like warren buffet says pass a law that says if congress can’t stop the deficit, make them ineligible for reelection.

  21. Sick of this mess!! | March 8, 2013 at 9:45 am |

    They can cut tuition assistance, and yet it takes over $100,000 a year to take care of Obama's pet. This sickens me. Start cutting the salaries for Congress, Senators and the President before you start cutting back on the lower class paying military and citizens. Start at the top and work backwards.

  22. Dominique | March 8, 2013 at 9:46 am |

    This does not affect me since I already am out but for others like me that wanted to use their TA for undergrad and save the GI Bill for when they are out for grad school. Most who I served with, including myself, attended a 2nd or 3rd tier school-most I served under were online school graduates. I graduated from a mediocre state college since that was my only option while serving. In most civilian careers a state college or online school is not going to take you far in this world. I now attend a first tier graduate program that is putting me on path to at the very least get an interview with a prestigious company.

    Let face it a BS degree from University of Phoenix or University of Delaware is not going to land you a job that would lead you to a six figured salary.

    Let not let down those who just enlisted to want to better themselves. I enlisted because of the educational benefits. Those who are hurting the most are the privates (non-rates in my case) who are extremely intelligent, motivated and plan on getting all that they could out of the military in 4/6 years and then get out and make something of themselves. Those who were in for 20 are not the ones that are going to be hurt the most.

  23. A draft brought the country cheap soldiers, loss of the draft forced the Govt to bribe volunteers with health care, benifits, education family care and better pay. Now with sequester, many of these benifits will be gone. Day cars close, what will the single soldiers do? The Army dropped the rules on single parents for PC policy now what happens??

  24. How can you be in the military and support that TA is gone?? Yeah, your right we work, we make good money but I dont see civilians going overseas, being shot at, coming home missing limbs or completely F***ed up or even worse in a damn bidy bag! TA is just an incentive for the many sacrafices that us as Soldiers are given. How can you sit here and say, Oh well…You obviously dont use it, which is why you are completely blind and ignorant to how this truly effects us. You have people on Welfare WHO CLEARLY do not need it but are too damn lazy to get a job. Why not cut Welfare out? Why take something from those of us that are working and trying to make something of our selves? Those of you in the military that think it is ok for TA to be gone, SHAME ON YOU!

  25. Actually it has to do with the republicans not wanting to make negotiations on tax cuts for the wealthy. Not Obama's fault, his hands were tied. Thank the morons in the republican party!

  26. Does this apply to the military spouse assistance?

  27. That is not the case and you are blinded by hatred. This is happening because our elected officials continue to refuse to do their jobs. You can't make everyone happy, but you have to try. When all we here is bickering, we know nothing is getting done.

  28. Barbara Hershey | March 8, 2013 at 10:39 am |

    Maybe we could contact Joe Flacco or some other highly overpaid athletes to see if they could send our soldiers to school…

  29. It is unfortunate that this benefit is being cancelled. When I first started serving, we used to only get 80% tuition paid for by TA. As a veteran and full-time working single dad, I was able to attend the University of Phoenix online and still take 8-10 classes per year taking just 1 class at a time. This was considered full-time and I was able to use my full GI Bill while going there.

  30. It's amazing that people can sit and argue that soldiers are whining because we've lost tuition assistance. In my personal opinion, every single soldier deserves the opportunity to utilize this benefit. For god knows how long now, that's all you ever hear is "further yourself". And as stated in many other comments, yeah you have Pell grants and G.I. Bill's and such, but take some soldiers who have to work full time, take care of their families, AND make attempts to educate themselves. Speaking from my own personal experience using VA's REAP alongside of tuition assistance was a lifesaver financially. Yes VA Benefits are there, but not as practical to some as they are to others. I had intentions on resuming my school when I return to better myself to give my family a better life, which now that idea appears to have gone halfway down the crap-hole. You know what I think? A nice size chunk of money to save would be to cut these civilian contractors who are all dragging in $100,000+ a year tax free for doing stupid jobs here, while the people risking their necks and volunteering years out of their lives for international conflicts (i.e. service members) make pocket change compared to their salaries. Funny thought when we have multiple MOS's to be self sustaining for the jobs they do, but costs alot less to pay us.

  31. I joined the army to put myself through college. Now that TA is gone I have to find other means. Way to go government. "Let's hold the military to values like respect, duty, and integrity–but it's okay if we treat them like dirt by going back on our promises."

    Honestly they could have phased out TA by only supporting soldiers with a 3.0 and above. They are only shooting themselves in the foot by ignoring their human capital investments.

  32. You Signed Up | March 8, 2013 at 11:24 am |

    Having served for 19 years I've seen this topic brought up time and again. The fact this benefit, and that is all it was, ever existed should be something people are thankful for. Use your other educational financial sources or benefits but don't say you have earned this. There are countries that require service with no benefits at all. You have joined the military to defend this country you are all now bashing. You have joined the military because you are patriotic and want to protect our freedom. You have joined the military because it is an option, not a requirement. To hear people complain about this is simply sickening. Be a soldier, be a patriot. Stop demanding benefits for your sacrifice. It was your decision to join the army. If you did it only to get out of bills for education than perhaps you should of just gotten a job as a dishwasher or a salesperson and saved the money. THIS WAS A FREE HANDOUT. We already get paid. We already get meals. We already get countless other benefits like interest free mortgages. SERVE YOUR COUNTRY. Don't have your country serve you. Stop complaining and be the soldier YOU agreed to be. You weren't forced into the service.

  33. Yes, cut, cut, cut the Military to shreds, but make sure Egypt gets $250 million
    Go figure!

  34. I hate seeing members of the military so entitlement brainwashed. Anything other than your pay, medical, and retirement is welfare. I know too many people in the military or retired military that think the world is owed to them. Give me a break.

  35. The only reason why some think it's okay for TA to be suspended is because they probably already have theirs. Well, good for ya. The military is pushing for educated Soldiers, Sailors. etc. That's why the Army raised the points for promotion for civilian education. Now the gov't, in all it's infinite wisdom, is suspending TA because they couldn't get their heads outta their fourth point of contact long enough to handle the budget. Now young troops have to suffer. Mean while, the POTUS and family and friends are out golfing and vacationing it up on our tax dollars. This is a sad state we're in. Last time I checked this was OUR country, not congress'. Bout time they had a history lesson on how we came to be in the first place.

    US Army retired

  36. Enjoy… Your GI Bill is next. Im using mine while we still have money for it. If you think for a second they wont target that next you have no foresight.

  37. T. 1SG (RET) | March 8, 2013 at 11:47 am |

    Another example why none of them (Congress) should be re-elected. They have failed the American people.

  38. TA is is something there to help. You recieve 100% of the gi bill if you have 3 years of active duty service. correct?? So lets talk about reservists.. who because they can never usually get three deployments they can never use the gi bill. its not even worth it. so all they have to pay for school is chapter 1607 with TA to benifit going to school like all of you. so TA along with grants is actually one of the only ways a reserve soldier can go to school as a full time job and barely get by. I know this magical info because i did 4 years active and now am in the reserves. so yes taking it away is going to royally fuck many people who would like to attend school.

  39. Freaking Obama!!!!!!!! I swear.

  40. @You Signed Up:
    Soooo you're about to hit you're 20 year mark and eligible for retirement… By your logic, you should simply be grateful for serving your country and you really don't need that pension? I mean, they don't HAVE to give you a retirement, that is a "benefit" of serving for 20+ years. That is more than hypocritical my friend.

    I've served with a lot of people like you, who benefit from using the benefits through the ranks, and forget what it's like being an E-2 with a family when government cuts start hitting the military. FIGHT for your young soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen. They make a lot less than a dishwasher and sacrifice a lot more than the people who suck the teet of the system- NEVER working. They are not at some frat house partying like their high school friends who have their school paid for by mommy and daddy.

    I'd be extremely disappointed with my leadership if YOU were MY NCO!

    @Cry me a river… YOU think that these kids have bad credit and that's why they don't get financial aid- Really? Have you EVER filled out a FAFSA or even been to college?

    The GI Bill benefits DON'T pay for the whole thing! They have to supplement what the VA doesn't pay with FAFSA and other grants, TA, and such.

    Sorry for YOU that you have absolutely NO clue as to what it takes to complete a degree while serving in the military- OBVIOUSLY you have it ALL figured out and could really give a crap about anyone else. Annndd by your logic, you are ok with fighting for the lady with 15 kids by 10 different daddy's who suck the taxpayer dry. While that young man or woman your in charge of gets deployed 4 times fighting for their country working themselves through school.

    Good job sir- you are a scholar and a gentlemen with the altruistic reasoning of a 2 year old and the philanthropic bone of a TRUE liberal…

    Have a good day- Semper Fi

  41. So pissed!!!
    BE PATRIOTIC- you say!!!! I have served my time, and yes, have used my GI Bill benefits while I was not only in but when I got out- the ONLY way to pay for college. For those of you who are salty "19" year lifers who say that it is a FREE hand out, and we should simply be thankful for serving our country- give me a break!

    WE didn't get a free ride, or Mommy and Daddy paying for our school like most other kids out of high school-partying it up at a frat house on a Saturday night. NO! we were in fox holes a million miles away freezing our ass off, eating shit rations, protecting "foreign country's" from their own "domestic terrorism"- far far away from our own families, and earning much much less than a "dishwasher" would make. When we had the opportunity to better ourselves we did- using this benefit.

    THAT is not FREE! WE earned it! Much more than those who have 15 kids by 10 different daddy's and live on the system sucking it dry… WE contributed to the welfare and security of this country and many many other countries as well- not just our own.

    So take your "you should be Patriotic", sycophantic rants, and stop being a government sucking yes man- Stop drinking the Kool Aid, and FIGHT FOR YOUR subordinates who NEED this benefit!

  42. I've been at my unit for a few weeks, my TA was pushed back because my commander wasn't around, and this comes out TODAY the DAY I was going to get this filled out and turned in. What makes it so worse is that this is one of the main reasons I joined the Military and agreed to do the duty I swore to.

    I'm disappointed. HIGHLY disappointed.

  43. SGM Porter | March 8, 2013 at 12:28 pm |

    To sit there and say that one is not entitled to be upset with this program being taken away sickens me!! You say things like be a soldier, a patriot??? Thats what the damn three deployments were!! The tours in korea, Germany.. Taking this privilege away sends a message!! You mention G.I. bill, but guess what, gotta ets before you start using that!! And all the points about money being tossed loosely around in soooo many other parts of our government ARE accurate!! So all these people who are upset, do need to speak up about it, because how else does positive changes/reversals of policy happen if everyone just "soldiers on" and keeps there mouth shut!! lastly, remember that not agreeing with policy and simply voicing that, is not a form of treason, and all those who act like it is just need to get their heads out of their 4th point of contact and credit soldiers because we do deserve benefits!! Its not wrong to be appreciated..l IT IS EARNED!!!

  44. If they can continue to access their GI Bill benefits what's the problem?
    I guess I am missing something here.
    BTW a small % take advantage of the GI Bill

  45. Well, as of 1200 hours on 8 March, they have already placed all of my Soldiers accounts on hold. I guess 1700 does not mean 1700.

  46. I flew a General around eastern Afghanistan today so that he could have lunch with some friends of his at another FOB. In fact we fly these "VIP's" around every day to places at a very high cost to taxpayers. A blackhawk uses about 300 gallons of jet fuel every 90 minutes of flying. At around $6 a gallon you can do the math. All to take these folks to places that are easily available via VTC, email, phones, and the like so they can talk about who knows what. The Army (DOD) waste so much money on unnecessary things yet they decide to cut TA which a lot of people take advantage of to better themselves professionally and personally. The Army wants smarter soldiers but is taking away a very effective tool like TA
    . Like everything else our government does this just doesn't make sense.

  47. While this is a benefit and not an entitlement– it was the sales pitch that got MANY people to enlist. To take the tuition asistance away is to take away one of the best recruiting and retainment tools that are available. In addition, there is a very small number of service members that actually take advantage and USE the program.

    And what does this do for the military? Once we were dedicated to getting the most training we could into every member of the armed forces because it made our military stronger and better for it. If we want to save money, why not get rid of all the tech schools and just make it OJT?

    We aren't doing a service to the military by removing the recruiting tools that actually make our service stronger and better by having them.

  48. Nothing like taking care of the soldiers who sacrifice so much everyday. I teach in a military environment, and I see how hard pressed many of these students are to actually take advantage of the opportunity to receive TA normally. The mission always takes precedent… I understand that. I don't understand why these hard-working individuals have to suffer even more than they already do because of our dysfunctional political system.

  49. We gave Saddam a longer warning that we were coming for ass then we just did about our own Soldiers education. Heads up would of been nice

  50. Lol Russell A TROLL lol. Why do people like you still exist in this world? Ignorant, racist, douchebag.

  51. Don't forget that Education (in the Army) counts for a large percentage of promotion points. So not only are we taking away TA, but at the same time making it harder for enlisted soldiers to get promoted.

  52. Really? Many young people have signed up to serve the country with the belief that they could obtain an education. This kind of cut should be introduced to new people entering the service so that they have a choice not to sign the dotted line.
    Why is it that the military, elderly and children always have to suffer the cuts while the voters in government give themselves raises?
    Here is what needs to happen………..Make the lawmakers in Washington live on the average salary, pay the same taxes and retire with social security. Reduce their vacations. No one voting on policy should own stocks. And the next time we need our military to defend our country, send the people in Washington to fight and leave the military to run the country.

  53. D. Collins | March 8, 2013 at 1:57 pm |

    ask our troops to put their lives on the line for America, leave their jobs to serve, leave their families, etc. and THEN take away the benefits that our troops have had for years, and were promised when the enlisted. When the soldier comes home and is no longer in the military, his job at home is no longer available. My son-in-law is in Afghanistan now after already serving in Iraq. He will need to have employment AFTER he leaves the service. A high school diploma alone is not adequate education for a person to acquire a decent paying job. These service people deserve AND need to have a means to provide for themselves and their dependents. Why is it that our politicians can grant themselves raises, have lifetime health and retirement benefits, and are not even accountable to attend all the sessions in congress, let alone get their jobs done so that the budget is balanced. If someone on the outside didn't show up for their mtgs., got their projects done,etc., they would be fired!

    PLEASE do not renege on our promise to these young men and women to help educate, offer medical care for them AND their dependents, etc. It is not right for us to turn our back on those who are protecting our country.

  54. LadyLawstudent | March 8, 2013 at 2:01 pm |

    Instead of posting to, write to your House Representative or your Senator. Also consider writing a letter to the editor of your local paper so that others understand how the sequester affects military members and their families.

  55. PART 1

    Your comment is rather insulting to the many Service Members who have sacrficed over the years and at times have even given of their lives for this Great Nation… TA a Benefit? Yes, so is Tricare, Tax Free Pay Deployed, Bonuses etc. but we have realized over the years from not taking care of Servicemembers the dishonor it does to them and how it sets many up for failure… Do we want to go back to the Sort of Military that sucks people in, chews then up and then spits them out with no or reduced benefits? NO we've been there and have realized the error of that.

    Not to mention at a time when Financial cuts are happening, why is it that the Military faces the largest cut? Why is it that the military is the one that always have to give the biggest piece of the pie back? If you read the Constitution the Military is ONE of the areas that the Federal Governmant is mandated to keep going by using our taxes to maintain our Republic! Now the current Administration is trying to reduce that, all the while he is preparing to Nationalize College/University Tuition Costs the same way he did with Health Care!

  56. PART 2

    That is unconsciounceable! Many young service members are brought in with the promises by their recruiters that they will get TA and GI Bill to help them get a good kick start on life… That is not milking the system, nor is it being lazy, and un-patriotic to get upset by this cutting of a benefit that was realized as a good thing so as to make sure we don't repeat the era of Viet Nam etc.

    Your post was very dishonoring to the Millions of Families who have lost someone to defend this Republic of ours!

  57. Whats funny is the people who chose to stop the pay of the organization already have their college education. The branches still need to cut more jobs, I see this as another way to get people out.

  58. If there are cuts to be made, why are they not cutting tuition assistance for ILLEGAL ALIENS IN THIS COUNTRY? That, I wish Rand Paul would get back on the filibuster floor and hammer it home for another 12-13 hours for an answer.

  59. Headhunter509 | March 8, 2013 at 3:27 pm |

    from what i understand this is only stopping the tuition assistance that you can apply for when you are still on active duty… It does not have anything to do with the G.I. Bill or the Voc Rehab program which are the education programs we signed up for when we enlisted. people need to understand this is not taking away the education benefits that many people think it is. it is only stopping the Tution Assistance that SOME (not all) soldiers can get. I got out almost 6 years ago and had tried to use these programs while I was in and was denied because I could only attend online due to my duty station… everyone take a deep breath and look at the facts.

  60. Just a bunch of stupid ignorants who dont f——g know what we just loose!!!
    I use TA for my college and I dont care if it is a beneft or not but is something that help me in a great way !! Remember we are not rich people thet the reason we need that TA Iis not because we are milking the system we work for it!!

  61. Honeslt all i can say is im devestated this is the main reason i joined. the Secretary of the army just spit in my face

  62. Christina | March 8, 2013 at 3:51 pm |

    If you joined the Army to live a life of selfless service then that's fine. So let's see you give back your GI BILL, BAH, free health care and all the other benefits you have and then come talk about selfless service. It's easy to talk about serving just for the sake of serving when you are still taking advantage of those free benefits. As far as your grandfather's army just wanting cigarettes, we're talking about two different worlds and two different times. We are currently involved in the longest war in the history of our country where people are being deployed, 2, 3, 4 or more times for pretty much no reason whatsoever. Even selfless service has its limits. Not to mention TA is not some new free benefit that servicemembers are trying to acquire and are now just bitching because they can't get it. A lot of people joined under the promise that this benefit was going to be available to them so they can pursue their education while they serve, which might I add is the least the government can do for a life of "selfless service" and the possibility of going to some God-forsaken sandbox and never coming back. As the saying goes, freedom isn't free, so if the U.S. government wants to retain the title of the best fighting force in the world, well, you get what you pay for. In any case, if these servicemembers enlisted under the promise of certain benefits, regardless of the reason they joined up, then the government needs to live up to that promise. Lord knows they make us live up to ours.

  63. Dennis Nielsen | March 8, 2013 at 5:02 pm |

    I agree it is going to hurt people, i got that but it is a benefit not a right. I mean yes you served and so have I but this country is in bad shape and we know it for various reasons which is beyond our control we are not policy makers but policy enforcers, no one made us sign on the dotted line to serve our country and yes we want the benefits but sometimes you got to tighten the belt and work thru it. Is it a bad thing sure it is but what can you really do about it but move forward and make the best of it. As someone said above dont waste your comments here send them to your representatives etc and tell them how you fell versus hammering some citizen and fellow service member for their views which they deserve to make which ever side they wish to choose.

  64. The problem is we were told that TA would be available to us for educational purposes. Civilian education is one area of getting promotion points. You can not be an officer without civilian college education. There is no way I can pay for the courses I need to become an officer in the medical field. The army just took $18,000 out of my pocket it had promised me and now I have no way to fund the classes I need to go into the PA program. Was 4 classes away.

  65. Ladyscorpio | March 8, 2013 at 5:39 pm |

    Tell Congress to take it out of their pay. I'll remember and watch whoever signs on to this bill and I will make it a point to see that they don't get re-elected. There are enough servicemen / women and their families to really make the votes count.

  66. Paratrooper | March 8, 2013 at 5:41 pm |

    I don't care how many years a person served, i don't care that anyone's grandparent only wanted cigarettes, I don't care if smart alec people want to say its not a benefit. Regardless it was a huge i repeat a HUGE motivator to many that will still put their life on the line for smart alec people that have contributed nothing to society. We hollar how much we want educated NCOs but we take away the very function of educating them while on active duty. Take away State Tuition Assitance, Take Away Congress's many vacations, take away the retired former President's $400,000.00 a year minimum salary, take away the fact that the US is backbone of the World and fighting everyone else's war. If we could only mind our own business we would prosper more. Let someone else go bankrupt for the sake of the world. We've helped beyond our means. I dare another country to be brave enough to step in and help the United States with our money crisis. Anyone? Anyone at all? Oh…(scratches his chin) I thought not.

  67. The state of this country is in a sad place and to take away from our military is so disrespectful. We have athletes that make millions and we have folks who sit on their duffs daily and collect. The few benefits our military folks get, they deserve. Lets get it together U.S. government. We should not be in this place. We were once a country that everyone admired. Now……..

  68. Has anyone even asked the question as to how in the hell this dude's light bill is paid every month? I served in the Army for ten years and NEVER once did they pay my light bill! I had plenty of Soldiers that were struggling to make ends meet every month and no they weren't clubbing and driving around in Jaguars! Yes some Soldiers have joined the service for the benefits and that does not make them wrong. How about this ask a civilian to work overtime, holidays, late nights, and sacrifice years of family time for the pay an initial Soldier gets, ask them if they are willing to give their life for those measly dollars. Please, please tell me how many you employ with those tactics.

  69. Angry Voter | March 8, 2013 at 6:33 pm |

    Why do Republicans hate our soldiers?

  70. They still have the GI Bill – with education benefits to get jobs after they exit their service.

    "Approved training under the Post-9/11 GI Bill includes graduate and undergraduate degrees, vocational/technical training, on-the-job training, flight training, correspondence training, licensing and national testing programs, entrepreneurship training, and tutorial assistance. All training programs must be approved for GI Bill benefits."

    This benefit provides up to 36 months of education benefits, generally benefits are payable for 15 years following your release from active duty. The Post-9/11 GI Bill also offers some service members the opportunity to transfer their GI Bill to dependents.

    Since 2000 over 28,000 students have earned Cyber Security Certifications and careers from Security University, using their GI Bill. SU is located in Herndon VA with onsite classes at your location – a VA GI Bill approved Institution of Higher Education, ACCET Accredited.

  71. Poor Airman | March 8, 2013 at 7:24 pm |

    Go straight to hell.

  72. TA is one of the reasons I stay in the Guard. I just returned from Afghanistan and am starting my grad degree. The changes in the Army have made me decide to get out after my current contract expires. The Army will continue to loose great soldiers who are motivated to succeed if they continue along this path.

  73. SPC Flores | March 8, 2013 at 9:37 pm |

    I'm a senior at a "cheap" In-State University with a 3.9 GPA, and aspirations to apply to a Clinical Psychology PhD program. I want to specialize in trauma and work with soldiers recovering from PTSD.

    I understand that budget cuts are necessary considering our nations debt, but suspending TA was not the wise decision.

    I was not raised in an affluent family or given opportunities my peers took for granted- I belive many of you soldiers reading this response are in the same boat… As a child I was raised in poverty. All odds were agianst me until I joined the Army, which gave me the financial stability and confidence to pursue my eduation.

    In the army, too often things happen and we all stay quiet becasue, heck, we don't want any problems or a smok'in. Too often are we taken advantage of, but this should not be one of them. As soldiers we were promised an education that would benefit our lifestyle and future generations. It is unethical to deny us this benefit… With that said, I hope no high ranking NCO or Officer chews me out for writing this.

  74. SFC Garcia | March 8, 2013 at 11:19 pm |

    "The nation which forgets its defenders will be itself forgotten."
    Calvin Coolidge

  75. You know Mr. President came to our base about a year ago, stood in front of thousands of Soldiers and preached the importance of education. Hmmmm. Well what happened? The Army throws money around like its bullets, waiting for resupply to show up. It never does. You would rather have a program like BOSS, (Better Opportunity for Single Soldiers) that takes both single genders and pays for them to go on vacation together. So what I am understanding is that the Army would rather promote dating within its own, rather then send these same Soldiers to school? Something is wrong with that picture. People wonder why Soldiers are angry, depressed, killing themselves. Well understand you have gone away from taking care of us, and are more worried about yourself and your image. Do whatever you have to do to get promoted because in the end that is all you care about right? I am currently deployed on my third tour. I have been gone 36 months out of the 6 years I have been in. The tempo here is slow and not worth our time here at all. All I had was the gym and school. You have taken that away, GREAT JOB. So now you give all of us more time to think about home, worry about everything, and take our minds off the current task.

  76. If you guys are angry about this, point the blame at where it belongs: a Repulican Congress that feels the sequester is better than accepting $1 in higher revenues from closing loopholes for our nation's wealthier tax payers. Losing tuition assistance is disappointing and unfortunate, but be glad you're not one of your civilian counterparts losing 20% of their salary, or the contractors supporting your unit that may get the axe.

  77. I think they should find other ways to cut the budget without affecting my comrades. These people are willing to lay down their lives if need be, and we as a nation don’t want to support them in the pursuit of education while they live? We all know some won’t even graduate before they probably get killed somewhere during deployment.

    Let’s get back to taking care of our troops. God and them watch over us.


  78. I'm a single mom and my son decided, after talking to a Army recruiter, that enlisting in the Army would be a great way to help with his education as well as serve our country. The recruiters really pushed education benefits when my son told them his plan to go to college. They told him how he would get paid monthly and get assistance for college. That joining the Army was the better way to go than going straight into college. I feel if you are in the Army now you should get the assistance you were promised. My son is still at AIT and hasn't started any college courses. He had a plan and is crushed by this new decision. I think the Army should look at who they are training and start the cut backs there. If soldiers in basic training, as well as AIT, can't follow the simple commands they are give at this level what makes the Army think they're going to listen at the next level.. The undisciplined should go. With all the cut backs, the Army should be looking for the best of the best. My son is proud to serve his country and will continue to do his best.

  79. SFC Garcia | March 9, 2013 at 2:32 am |

    The support and the passion shared by my fellow service members regardless of branch is commendable. I served along Navy, Marines, and Airforce in a Joint Command and it was a great experience. We all have are pride and competitive side,but when it comes down to it we all have U.S. on our uniform. Come together and support each other always.

    If you want to fight over whether or not cutting tuition is dispensable……the next time you go to Kuwait, Bagram, or Kandahar, ask yourself why all these people are driving around in Tahoe's, Montero's, and Pathfinder's. Or ask yourself why every swinging **** that thinks their important has to be chauffeured in a fully loaded Suburban? Why are all of our senior officials are riding in multi million dollar aircraft…work or play. But a wounded warrior has to complete a telephone book worth of TDY vouchers to get to Walter Reed.

    Its upsetting but keep your professionalism. Look at the bigger picture. Point the finger at the pleasures that have become the norm.

    The loosing of Soldier education is disgraceful.

    "If your not gonna stand behind those that protect you at night…..then the next time you call on those to fight in a foreign land….stand infront of them"

  80. When I was signing my contract, education benefit was part of my contract. Now that they modified our contract, do you think I can also modify my contract?

  81. It's so embarrassing that the government has made such a decision. Education was a great incentive to serve this country. Do you think if another war starts, these people will again come and volunteer to serve? The government should keep it's promises before people lose their faiths on government. I didn't really expect the government to make such a stupid decision, at least it should have affected the active duty servicemen who are far away from their families dying in Afghanistan. I guess this was their gift for them.

  82. SSG US Army | March 9, 2013 at 10:13 am |

    The GI Bill is not really designed to be used on active duty. You lose more of the benefit using it while on duty than you will off. Any guidance counselor will tell you that. That is why you have the TA assistance. I understand we are under budget restraints, but I think it should have been a better warning that the benefits were going to be cut. Instead of coming out at the end of the day saying that you will one more day to use the benefit when in all actuality it was gone as of 12 am that day.

  83. Tony Green | March 9, 2013 at 10:55 am |

    Why can't they go after wasteful spending like: Food stamps for alcohol and junk food. Though they were intended to ensure hungry children received healthy meals, taxpayer-funded food stamps were instead spent on fast food at Taco Bell and Burger King; on non-nutritious foods such as candy, ice cream, and soft drinks; and on some 2,000 deceased persons in New York and Massachusetts. Food stamp recipients spent $2 billion on sugary drinks alone. Improper SNAP payments accounted for $2.5 billion in waste, including to one exotic dancer who was making $85,000 per year. yet will give millions to billions dollars to foreign countries.

  84. Tony Green | March 9, 2013 at 11:02 am |

    Do we really need to spent tax payer dollars on this: A reality TV show in India. The Department of Agriculture’s Market Access Program spends $200 million a year to help U.S. agricultural trade associations and cooperatives advertise their products in foreign markets. In 2011, it funded a reality TV show in India that advertised U.S. cotton.
    Studying pig poop. The Environmental Protection Agency awarded a $141,450 grant under the Clean Air Act to fund a Chinese study on swine manure and a $1.2 million grant to the United Nations for clean fuel promotion.
    Amtrak snacks. Federally subsidized Amtrak lost $84.5 million on its food and beverage services in 2011 and $833.8 million over the past 10 years. It has never broken even on these services.
    Using military exercises to boost biofuels. The U.S. Navy bought 450,000 gallons of biofuels for $12 million—or almost $27 per gallon—to conduct exercises to showcase the fuel and bring it closer toward commercialization. It is the largest biofuel purchase ever made by the government.
    Conferences for government employees. In 2008 and 2009 alone, the Department of Justice spent $121 million to host or participate in 1,832 conferences. These programs would pay foir the Army TA 325 million dollar program

  85. Volunteer Soldier | March 9, 2013 at 12:36 pm |

    You Sir are a turd. 19 years and you have no integrity. Interest free mortgage? What planet are you living on? I like to move there. Every little benefit we get in the military we earned, when we retire after 20 years we have the body of a 40 or 50 years old person because we are push to the limit that is why our military is so strong. I don’t complain when my jumpmaster say go I jump that my job. We put ourselves in harm’s way freely hoping that when someone scream budget cut out earned benefits would be spared but it usually not the case.

  86. Air Force Proud | March 9, 2013 at 3:31 pm |

    Even though the military has made this decision. I can guarantee you that we still have the best job in America. Start preparing for the worst and hoping for the best. That's all we can do doing these times. I've already went to the VA website and activated my Post 9/11 G.I. Bill with the VONAPP. I can see the Air Force making this shift just as the Marine Corps and Army have. I already have my CCAF and I am 8 classes away from my Bachelors. But i feel for the people just enlisted and have to deal with this. I hate it as much as the the next person but just pray they will rethink this and give use our benefits that were promised to us when we entered into the military. I will not re-enlist if the make this permanent across all military forces.

  87. Air Force Proud | March 9, 2013 at 3:37 pm |

    Even though the military has made this decision. I can guarantee you that we still have the best job in America. Start preparing for the worst and hoping for the best. That's all we can do doing these times. I've already went to the VA website and activated my Post 9/11 G.I. Bill with the VONAPP. I can see the Air Force making this shift just as the Marine Corps and Army have. I already have my CCAF and I am 8 classes away from my Bachelors. But i feel for the people just enlisted and have to deal with this. I hate it as much as the the next person but just pray they will rethink this and give use our benefits that were promised to us when we entered into the military. I will not re-enlist if the make this permanent across all military forces.

  88. Smart NCOs and enlisted prepare for the future which means getting an education to keep them competitive when they get out. So with TA gone they are about to make decisions that will effect the Army. After serving with honor should I leave and go to school to use my FULL GI benefits so I can be relevant or stay in with my brothers and sisters hoping TA returns. It will be a hard decision but I'm afraid that we will loose smart enlisted guys in the long run. Other organizations will be calling them for their skill sets.

    I like to see what careers I can go into after retirement and most are bringing in $90-150k for the exact same thing I do. Of course I love what I do within the SOF community but my family's future and my ability to provide for them after 20 comes first. No one wants to be that guy who can't find a job after the Army.

    We push our guys to finish college to be on the same level as their civilian peers that work in OGAs. The more educated you are the better decisions you make….sometimes.

  89. Obama is a lying piece of crap that will say anything for a vote!

  90. the folks who made the decision to suspend TA don't give a crap about the ordinary joe whi is trying to go to college. They have theirs and don't give a lick about anyone else getting theirs. I wonder if the politicals in washington have had all of their civilians either reduced or fired outright in the name of budget cuts, how about reducing the amount of security these guys get, or hey let all these politicioans fly coach. I use TA and have helped all my soldiers get set up to use it. I hope the fat A_ _ es in Washington hurry up and get their stuff straight so we can again get on with our education

  91. Many – like my own childeren – joined the Army Guard believing that TA was part of their compensation in exchange for their service, and promise of continued service, and enrolled in school accordinagly In order to show how much they can hurt those not part of their base, the regime suddenly cut TA for military personnel; while Pell Grants – whch are not based on service or promise of service but just "financial need" are apparently good at least through the 2013-2014 school year..

  92. worried individual | March 10, 2013 at 11:26 am |

    Well all I can say is that individuals who had dept and want to wipe away there debt joined and got upto 50000.00 paid to there debt. I am not able to even get a loan or borrow the money for college and joined to help me get futher in life by my education. Now, the individuals who went to school and didn't want to work and go to school went to a school and didn't have to bounce back and forth. I work, involved in the military, and go to school. Is this my choice? Yes it is, but when a offer is made to get you to join and then is taken and you still have to complete your obligation to the contract then this is an issue.

  93. Fed up Soldier | March 10, 2013 at 7:53 pm |

    Ok, I understand we're all soldiers, and we should "suck it up and drive on". But while Army TA is being cut, programs are being put in place to reduce tuition for those that entered this country illegally. There are far better places to make cuts, but TA took the hit because it is the most visible.

  94. JadedSoldier | March 10, 2013 at 9:01 pm |

    When I enlisted, I signed a contract that promised certain perks, my education being one of them. While I am, have always been, and will always be honored to don my uniform and do what I love with the people I love the most, benefits be damned, it upsets me GREATLY that after all we give, we're the first they take away from. They can breach their end of the contract, but then expect me to fulfill my end with no complaint. Which I would be happy to do… if it weren't for the person in front of me in line at the store with steak and junk food and candy and soda in their shopping cart, talking on an iPhone, with a fresh perm and manicure… paying with food stamps. Ten minutes later in the parking lot, I see them getting into a brand-new car.
    I'm not saying there's not a side to the story that I don't know… But when I work my ass off at my civilian job for $9.25 an hour from open to close every day (10 hours) without a lunch break and barely a chance to go to the restroom (and that's not an exaggeration), get called in on my days off to work, and only manage to NOT go to work when I have drill, I shouldn't have to juggle my bank accounts and budget every month to make rent, insurance, car payment, and utilities… before I even THINK about my phone bill and FORGET about groceries, there's a problem.
    But then I make too much to qualify for assistance, and the ONE thing I was actually looking forward to utilizing for the sake of achieving a dream that is VERY dear to my heart… is no longer available. And no education means there's less opportunity for promotion points, meaning my military career comes to a standstill. No education means that my one ambition, which would GIVE BACK to soldiers/veterans who have NO ONE to stand up for them, remains unattainable.
    But the woman in front of me gets everything handed to her on a platter.
    And people wonder why my beloved country is in the shitter.

  95. Will this effect ROTC scholarships?

  96. This decision is really disappointing. I started using TA early in my career (when it was 75% with a 25% cost share). TA was one of the best benefits I ever used. There's no way I could have afforded to attend college without TA. The education I received as a result of TA has enabled me to start a new career after I retired from active duty in 2005. If you are an enlisted Soldier, education is the key to you making a successful transition to a civilian career not to mention getting promoted while on active duty. I sure hope the Army reinstates this benefit. I commend all Soldiers who have ever done homework using chem-lights or red-lense flashlights. Thanks to all of you who continue to serve our countrry in the world's greatest Army!

  97. I find it deplorable that if your parents are lifelong welfare recipients, you are guaranteed a college education in this country. However, if you serve the country in the military, you are not guaranteed a college education.

  98. Army MSG/E-8 | March 11, 2013 at 1:42 pm |

    Guys’, yes losing TA for a while is a major blow to us all. Trust me, I know! I was working on my Master's degree and it was paying for half of each class I was taking at that time. But TA alone did not get me to this point. I used all of the other educational benefits that the Army provided me. Anyone ever hear of CLEP & DANTES exams? I have taken approximately 20 or so of these tests/exams which provided me almost two years of "free" college credit. Now, combine that with converting my military experience/training into college credit and you have (in my case) 90 semester hours of college. Because of this "benefit" of free CLEP & DANTES exams, I now possess two Associate degrees and one Bachelor. I have only used TA to pay for approximately 11 classes and of those five were community college classes which were dirt cheap at $30.00 per SH. Folks what I am saying is that you can still get college credit without TA you just need to step back and see what is now available for you to use. **Part I**

  99. Army MSG?E-8 | March 11, 2013 at 1:43 pm |

    **Part II** Consider taking a few 40 hour military courses to make up for the lack of college classes to gather promotion points. They are free, can be placed into your military records and make you stand out from your peers. Also, they (military courses) can be converted into college credit later on. **Part I**
    Lastly, don't forget to get a few certifications along the way. I have six and I am currently studying for two more (safety & defense finance). I paid for these certification exams myself then submitted the receipts to VA after passing the exams. They took the exam fee from my GI Bill. Which averaged one or two days (per exam) from one month of the 36 months I earned. So, I have 35 months and 12 days left of my GI Bill which I have transferred over to my son and daughter. Also, if the certification is in your military MOS field then you can place it on your Enlisted Record Brief (ERB) and they are also worth promotion points for each certification passed. Go to and see what certifications you can get from your MOS.

  100. Army MSG/E-8 | March 11, 2013 at 1:44 pm |

    **Part III**Go to the education center on post and ask questions on what is out there for you now since TA is suspended and you'll be surprised at how far you can get without TA and it is really far(I am a active duty Army Master Sergeant/E-8). Don't believe me then you haven't read the previous paragraphs that I typed. Good Luck! Army MSG/E-8 out!

  101. All I know is, my TA has been halted, I am a Warrant Officer, I do not have any free TA, I owe ADSO each time I accept it, I accepted an ADSO so that I could finish my degree, now, TA is closed and I have an ADSO but no degree. WTF? So, welfare is still being paid, illegal aliens and their kids are still receiving their tuition assistance, and people are still buying alchohol on their food stamp cards.. but TA has been cut, 20% pay cuts to military contractors and our flying hour budget is being cut… Next will be our health care and retirement benefits… get ready .. time for the next revolution.

  102. Lt Col Paul Quigley | March 12, 2013 at 12:03 am |

    I believe state universities do support military members.

  103. The military is pushing us to get degrees, but not helping with the bill?! Not only that, there is a service commitment every time someone signs up for TA, so we are NOT getting it for free like some ignorant people think.

  104. Not fair that the government is getting into the pockets of struggling Americans but they refuse to stop paying for portraits at expensive prices of useless government officials!!

  105. Nota DONKEY | March 13, 2013 at 9:18 pm |

    All I can say is that I voted and this is not what I voted for. I guess we can just wait it out another 4 years.

  106. PFC Polite | March 14, 2013 at 1:24 pm |

    I read many comments and I admit its sad that TA has been taken away. I'm not an NCO but I am a soldier. Let me tell you what many soldiers talk about. The waste involved in the military. Why are there E-6's in my office that get paid $55k to be on Facebook all day and when I ask questions about my job he's clueless? Why do officers make so much and do so little? Is OCS that serious because many of the enlisted have college? This isn't 1960 where nobody goes to college. Why do we have equipment in the basement that no one ever uses that cost so much? There are many other places to cut and I hate that they took TA away. But we still have many benefits, many of which we don't use.

  107. Leave the Soldiers benefits along!!!

  108. For the posters who have mentioned compulsory military service in other countries without TA, consider the following. Over half of those with required service are less than 18 months. Many of the countries who require service have multiple provisions for delaying for things like school. Many of these countries also have college educations that cost about 1/10 of what tuition is in this country. When you market yourself as the military does, coming into high schools, talking to 17 year olds about serving in return for money to go to college, that is a sales pitch. These kids are signing a contract that could take their lives, in return for the investment of money for college. In my Dad's era, the military was an option for young men over going to jail, I'm sure all those fine upstanding vandals and car thieves were joining for patriotism and being part of something bigger than themselves *laugh*

    People can talk about joining for honor or making themselves better or whatever else they want. Bottom line, most join for some kind of benefit. There is nothing wrong with serving your country in return for benefits. Every time our young men and women get deployed there is a chance they won't come home…all this talk I see about being grateful makes me sick, 7 marines died yesterday, the president made his final four picks, talk to me about honor.

  109. spc castillo | March 24, 2013 at 8:36 am |

    if this is how a country repays it service members than it is something active service members should be aware of. never forget that this country will not hesitate to turn it's back on you when money gets tight even when you have served it honorably and for so long now.

  110. spc castillo | March 24, 2013 at 2:10 pm |

    right lets take more money from veterans so we can continue to protect our tax evaders…err…uh..job creators – fucking brilliant

  111. Many soldiers sign up for school benefits, and they are being denied FTA? So, if the military is not holding up their part of the deal, why should a soldier even have to hold up theirs, and show up for formation?

  112. To suspend the Army TA is not a smart choice to make Army stronger! I believe that Government have some better idea to cut the debt than cut off the future of those soldiers who served our country so much.

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