Murphy's Law: Unused Veterans Benefits


July 10, 2007: American military recruiters report that one of their most potent lures for new recruits are the veterans benefits. It's taken for granted that more than half of the new recruits are only going to stay for one enlistment (usually four years). The most attractive of these goodies are the educational benefits. Put simply, a veteran can receive nearly $40,000, over 36 months, while they are attending college. For someone attending a State university (with its low tuition), the military benefit pays for more than half the cost of going to college. While most American recruits have the intelligence and educational background needed for college work, and the remainder can qualify for trade schools, some 40 percent of veterans college benefits are never used. Veterans have to use their educational benefits within ten years of discharge from active duty. A new benefits law boosts educational benefits by over $4,000. But many veterans want the educational benefit to last longer. Many veterans have job or family responsibilities that prevent them from attending school. Then again, many veterans simply get into careers that do not require a college degree or trade school certificate.


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