Military service instills valuable skills and experiences that can be utilized in academic pursuits. In this article, we will delve into the various benefits of seeking higher education as a veteran or current member of the military. From financial assistance to unique perspectives and resources, there are numerous advantages for those with a military background when it comes to furthering their education. So, if you’re considering going back to school, keep reading to discover how your service can benefit your academic journey. Overall, this article will cover some of the advantages of choosing to go back to school when you have a military background.
G.I. Bill Benefits
The G.I. Bill is a remarkable resource for military veterans looking to further their education. The bill provides financial assistance that can cover tuition and other education-related expenses for up to 36 months or four academic years. This education benefit can be used to obtain a degree or advance in a specific career field. The G.I. Bill benefits can extend to spouses and dependents in certain cases. This benefit serves as an excellent opportunity for veterans to pursue their academic goals without the worry of hefty financial burdens.
Military-Related Life Skills
Military training instills several practical life skills that can benefit individuals while going back to school. Skills like time management, self-discipline, and attention to detail are essential in juggling academic requirements and personal responsibilities. Veterans also learn the importance of teamwork and leadership, which can be helpful in group projects and campus leadership roles. These life skills imparted by the military help veterans focus, maintain a positive attitude, and prioritize their academic goals.
Unique Perspectives and Experience
Individuals with military backgrounds can bring a unique perspective and experience to the classroom that can help to enrich the classroom environment and lessons. Veterans have unique firsthand experience and real-world knowledge that can be useful while learning about different cultures, international relations, current events, and landmark historical events. Their experiences can also bring a different level of context to academic discussions, which can help further lessons and open up new avenues of learning and understanding for the entire class. Additionally, veterans can apply the leadership, teamwork, and problem-solving skills they learned while deployed with the military to navigate complex academic environments, courses, and projects.
Turn Your Experiences into College Credits
There’s another way that having a military background can be a significant advantage when returning to school. In addition to the discipline, determination, and teamwork skills acquired during service, individuals with military experience can also turn their experiences and learned skills into college credits. Many colleges offer credit for military training and experience, allowing for a smoother and more efficient path toward graduation, and allowing you to bypass courses you might otherwise find tedious considering you’ve already learned everything the class would have to teach you. This can also save time and money on tuition costs. Furthermore, with a cultural understanding of the military, veterans may feel more comfortable in the structured environment of a college classroom. Overall, going back to school with a military background can provide a unique set of advantages for individuals seeking to further their education and career opportunities post-service.
Many universities and colleges have resources geared toward serving veterans. These resources provide academic and emotional support, including academic advising, counseling, and mentorship programs for veterans. Institutions acknowledge the challenges faced by veterans and aim to provide a helping hand to ease the transition from military service to academic life. Some institutions cater only to those with a history of serving, such as online colleges for military. These places can offer greater discounts or, in the case of online college, work with your schedule should traditional schooling not be feasible.
Seeking a higher education while having a military background can lead to unique career advancements. Many military skills translate well in the job market, and going back to school can help veterans acquire the additional qualifications they’d need to qualify for a job, build new connections, or refine existing industry-specific knowledge that could lead to even more lucrative job opportunities post-military life. With things like the G.I. Bill and other block grants available for veterans, academic education is a very viable path that can help them acquire additional qualifications, leading to better job opportunities.
The military directly equips individuals with skills and experiences crucial to academic success. The G.I. Bill, military-related life skills, a unique perspective and experience, veteran resources, and career advancement paths are pivotal advantages of going back to school with a military background. The unique perspectives and experiences held by military veterans make them an asset to any academic community. For this reason, universities and colleges should prioritize resources for this unique population. So, if you’re a veteran or currently serving in the military, know that your service may offer unique advantages and beneficial options for academic goals.
Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from West Jordan, Utah. She graduated from the University of Utah and enjoys writing and spending time with her dog, Max. She has written several well-received how-to articles covering topics such as home repair, real estate, skincare, and insurance tips. She can be found on Facebook and Twitter, where she often shares links to her latest articles. During her research for this article, she did a lot of readings about online colleges for military and the advantages they can offer.