If you're in the Army National Guard and want to improve your chances for a good civilian job, there's a new program coming next year that may help you out.
Soldiers in Colorado, Kansas, New York and Washington state can begin using the program this month. Georgia, Hawaii and North Carolina will be added Nov. 1; Arizona, California, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Virginia will be added Dec. 1. The program will expand to all other states and territories on Jan. 1, 2020.
The new CA program will let soldiers get the necessary training to earn professional licenses and other professional credentials required for many technical jobs.
CA is basically an expansion of the Tuition Assistance (TA) program. Soldiers have a total of $4,000 combined per fiscal year to use toward TA and CA. They can elect to put the money toward college courses with TA or for training courses that lead to credentials with CA. Soldiers will be able to use their annual $4,000 entitlement for any combination of courses they desire.
Unlike TA, which requires every participating soldier to have a documented degree plan approved by their command prior to enrolling in classes and receiving payment, the CA program allows soldiers to seek any certification, even one unrelated to their military occupational specialty. The new CA benefit will pay for books, materials, fees and exams and even to renew an existing certification the soldier may hold, while TA won't pay for most fees and exams and will not pay you for a lower or lateral degree.
Currently, CA offers nearly 1,600 certifications in such things as fitness, food service, commercial driving, information technology, six sigma, project management and more. To see a list of all credentials offered, go to www.cool.army.mil.
For more information on the Army Credentialing Assistance program and to check eligibility, soldiers should contact their local or state Education Center.
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