The Army suspended their tuition assistance program for active-duty soldiers due to loss of funding associated with sequestration. The program changes will include all active-duty soldiers in the Army Reserves and the Army National Guard.
Soldiers who are already enrolled in classes may continue and will be provided with the tuition assistance, however no new applications will be approved. The suspension of the program will effect numerous soldiers who count on the assistance to further their education during off-duty time.
The statement, issued by the department of Defense, stated that the suspension would remain in effect indefinitely as budgetary remain unresolved. As reported by the Washington Times, The Army has reported a “$18 billion shortfall” that has been caused by resolution funding. That shortfall, in combination with sequestration, has forced the army to suspended their tuition assistance program.
Sequestration, which went into effect on March 1, has triggered automatic cuts to defense. Lack of funding and budgetary concerns have caused all branches of the military to rethink tuition assistance. As a response to Sequestration cuts the Marines have also announced that they will suspend their tuition assistance program.
The Marines have followed guidelines similar to the army with their program cuts. Home Post reports that the suspension will not effect those already enrolled. New applications are being suspended indefinitely.
For many, tuition assistance provided by the military has been a major factor in the decision to join. The program has appealed to those who do not have access to funding for higher education costs or do not want to be accumulate student loan debt. Literature distributed to high school students from all branches of the military highlights the program.
The Army’s suspension of the program could be devastating for numerous active-duty soldiers and may influence the decision of those wanting to enlist. As the sequestration cuts effect all branches of the military, it is expected that more program cuts will be announced before the end of the month.
[Image via Wikimedia]