U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs - 810 Vermont Avenue, NW - Washington, DC 20420December 8, 2010
For many eligible participants, the Post-9/11 GI Bill is a better solution than other education benefit programs, such as the Montgomery GI Bill - Active Duty, Montgomery GI Bill - Selected Reserve and the Reserve Education Assistance Program (REAP). However, this decision depends on several factors, including the type of education or training you plan to take and the amount of benefits received under each program.
Types of training that can be taken under current GI Bill benefits include college (undergraduate, graduate), certificate programs, on-the-job training, apprenticeship training, flight training, and non-college degree courses. The Post-9/11 GI Bill can only be used for programs taken at a college or university.
The monetary issue is most likely a very important factor you will consider before selecting a benefit. While you may think you will receive more money under the Post-9/11 GI Bill, that will not always be the case. More.
If you wish to receive benefits under the Post-9/11 GI Bill and you are eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill and another GI Bill benefit such as the Montgomery GI Bill you will be required to make an irrevocable choice of which benefit you wish to receive. If you are eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill and two or more other education benefit you must make an irrevocable choice to give up ONE of the other education benefits, however you will remain eligible to the benefit you did not relinquish. Because you are now eligible for two education benefits, you MAY be able to change which education benefit you draw depending on your eligibility.
For example: you have eligibility under the Post 9/11 GI Bill and the Selected Reserve GI Bill. You can get a degree in electrical engineering under the Post-9/11 GI Bill at a community college, then you can enroll in an apprenticeship program with the electrician's union under the Selected Reserve GI Bill and receive Journeyman certification.
If you are not planning to use the Post-9/11 GI Bill now, you do not need to make your election immediately but should wait until closer to the time in which you wish to use benefits.