G.I. Bill - How much will it really pay for med-school?

Discussion in 'Financial Aid' started by superbike81, Dec 24, 2009.

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  1. superbike81

    superbike81 2+ Year Member

    Dec 23, 2009
    edit for clarification: I know I should speak to the VA directly about this, but I can't right now. So I don't know where else to turn. There must be someone on this forum who is using the GI Bill to pay for med school. So I am hoping that person can help me

    I am currently Active Duty in the Air Force, and will separate in 2013 in hopes of going to medical school. I already have my B.S. in Psychology and am working on my M.S. in Counseling Psychology. Both degrees will be almost 100% paid for thanks to Air Force tuition assistance. My wife is fully supportive of this idea, but she wants me to set a solid savings plan right now, so we don't accrue too much debt while I'm in school. I can't say how much we need to save until I know how much the military is going to pay.

    Now, since I haven't used any of my GI Bill benefits, but I am fully qualified to receive the Post 9/11 GI Bill, I have some questions.

    I ran a search on this site, and couldn't find much, and the V.A. website is about as confusing as it gets. I also went to our family center to speak with the V.A. rep, and the rep just left the base, and the new rep will not be here until February.

    1) I keep reading stuff about X number of months of benefits. I saw someone on this site mention something about 36 months of benefits. So does this mean I won't receive any benefits during my 4th year of medical school?

    2) The tuition by state thing is confusing, some go all the way up to $50k per term (Florida) and some are only a $3000. Does that mean I can go to a hypothetically speaking $100,000 a year school in Florida and be fully covered?

    3) Let's just assume I am going to enroll in a school that meets the requirements for the GI Bill and falls within the maximum tuition benefits. Will my medical school be 100% paid for in that situation?

    If someone could explain this a little better, I would really appreciate it. I'll schedule an appointment with the new V.A. rep as soon as he/she arrives, but I'm anxious to get answers.

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  3. dpmd

    dpmd Relaxing 10+ Year Member

    Sep 14, 2006
    All I can say is that I am so pissed this didn't go into effect until after I finished school. It didn't start until Aug 2009. Montomery GI bill pays a set amount every month for 36 months, then its done. The amount changes so you can look at the curent and prior amounts to estimate what it will be. If you want to do the post 9/11 thing it sounds like you either get it or you get montgomery GI bill at one time (although you can use up one then use the other). It also sounds like if you go to a state school then you will be pretty much covered (although they don't specify if they pay up to the highest undergrad in state tuition-or just the most expensive overall). You are going to have to wait to talk with the counselor to get it completely figured out though because how much you get depends on a number of factors that will be best sorted out with someone who is supposed to be trained in that stuff. You can figure out about how much GI bill would be and factor your savings as if the other bill doesn't apply-then you will be well covered in case stuff changes before you get to use it (who knows how long it will last)
  4. ftrflyr29

    ftrflyr29 MS0 10+ Year Member

    May 14, 2007
    1) Yes. One thing to consider. If you are still eligible for the Montgomery GI Bill. You could exhaust your MGIB benefits (3 years) and then be eligible for an additional year of post-9/11 GI Bill benefits. IMO, there is only one instance where this makes sense--if you get a scholarship, pay the $600 top-up to MGIB and go to school in a place with low BAH. For instance...........I have been accepted to UCF. They are doing fundraising for some scholarships. If they are able to offer a tuition and fees scholarship, I will use my MGIB (after I pay the $600 top-up, before I get out) and get ~$1500/mo flat rate with no assistance for tuition, books, etc for the first 36 months. Then during the last year I will use my one-year eligibility for post-9/11 GI Bill and get the BAH for E-5 with dependents, which in Orlando right now is ~$1440. Otherwise, if I don't get a scholarship, I will use the post-9/11 GI Bill benefits for 36 months and suck it up with loans in the last year.

    2) Yes--it varies by state and from what I understand people in states like California are getting screwed, but alas, people in Florida (me :D ) are okay. You can also check the yellow ribbon program in which schools agree to pay a portion of whatever is left over from the post-9/11 GI Bill and I think the government matches, but don't know for sure. The VA website discusses it and lists which schools are members of the Yellow Ribbon program.

    3) Essentially yes, but I don't know how those random fees are covered. Also, at least with the schools I've been accepted to, you are required to have medical insurance, so if you can't get it through your wife and you get out, consider the Tri-Care reserve plan.

    One note, many of my friends in school now, have not seen a dime of post-9/11 GI Bill benefits. With you not getting out until 2013, hopefully it will all be worked out!

    Good Luck.
  5. Kris1

    Kris1 Mega-Senior Member 5+ Year Member

    Jan 11, 2006
    I separated in 2002 from the Marines as enlisted. I used my entire 36 months while at undergrad then was very surprised to find out that I qualify for a year of post 9/11 benefits. I am in my final year of medical school. The VA received my enrollment in July. Here it is January and I still have yet to get anything. The backpay will be NICE though!

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