The summer of 2016 brought considerable changes to the higher education world. The largest for-profit school accreditor lost its authority & a nationally recognized institution, ITT Tech, closed. (More for-profit schools have since closed.) Not only was this a huge blow to the higher education world, but it was felt deeply by GI Bill users.
How GI Bill Users Were Hurt
These military affiliated students stopped receiving their Basic Housing Allowance (BAH) the minute the school they were attending (ITT Tech, for example) closed. It was also made clear when this all began to unfold, that those students won’t get any of the GI Bill money they spent at that institution back. It’s gone. Wasted on a school that is no longer open or accredited. So now what?
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs set up a Breaking News feed that updates those affected by these recent changes & claims they are working diligently on the matter. A recent uplifting post states,
“Depending on your student status and your interactions with ITT, you may be eligible to have your federal student loans forgiven, cancelled or discharged and may be eligible to be reimbursed for loans you already paid.” Great news for some, but for so many they would just like to have their GI Bill dollars that they earned from serving in the military reinstated to where they can attend an accredited (and hopefully non-profit) school to attain a worthwhile degree.
A more sobering post from September 28, 2016,
“Knowing that not only are you without a school, but also without the housing allowance to help pay your bills, we recognize this may put you at risk of being unable to stay in your home. If you face the possibility of losing your residence, please contact our National Call Center for Homeless Veterans…”
We Found a Solution
Hindsight is 20/20. So how do we stop the cycle of GI Bill users who succumb to for-profit institution ploys?
We may have found the solution:
There is an online database specifically tailored to help GI Bill users find the RIGHT school to fit their needs. Even better, the only schools this resource lists as options are non-profit schools. In a perfect world, everyone would share this resource with their college-bound military, veteran, & GI Bill using friends so that there isn’t even the option for them to explore a for-profit institution.
What’s The Catch?
But there’s a catch.
….. Actually there isn’t.
What it Can & Can’t Do
Although this resource can’t get BAH money back into the pockets of students who lost theirs, nor can it reinstate GI Bill money lost on degree programs that no longer exist, it can stop others from falling into this for-profit school trap. Maybe this summer’s headlines will serve as a catalyst of change for the GI Bill & where it is used.
Give it a Try…
So here it is. The online database that will present you a list of non-profit higher education institutions based on the requirements you plug into the search engine. Search for schools & start conversations with admissions personnel all on this one platform. Oh, and it’s free. Win. Win.
(Featured Image Courtesy of DVIDS)