Paycheck Chronicles

The Career Advancement Account Process

I've written before about the amazing Career Advancement Accounts being offered by the Department of Defense via Military One Source.  I've been dawdling my way through the process of applying for financial assistance through the CAA system and I'm nearly done - just in time to register for spring classes.

The application process itself is pretty simple.  First, you create an account.  Write your password down (seriously; I've had to reset mine several times.)  Once you've created an account, you'll be shown a simple checklist of the steps, including:

  • Agreeing to the Statement of Understanding that outlines the program.
  • Enter your previous education.
  • Enter your career history.
  • Create your career and training plan.  (This part is slightly tough if you're not exactly sure what you want to study, such as if you are choosing between two variations on a similar degree.)
Once you've created a plan, then you send a message requesting that your plan be approved.  The program is currently quoting a four week wait for approval so be sure to start the process in enough time.  When you receive your approval, you then update your account each time you register for new classes.(within 90 days of the start of classes.)  The CAA payments are made directly to the school.

This seems like a no-brainer to me - free money for school.  I have a lot of questions about how long this program might last so I'm going ahead and taking my classes now even though this isn't exactly the right time for our family.  I hate to be pessimistic but you know how sometimes these things get changed as time goes by and I would hate to miss out on such a generous offer.

17 February 2010 Update:  This program has been temporarily halted.  You can find the most current MyCAA information at The Paycheck Chronicles MyCAA page.

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