Education center offers path to degrees

For decades, data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics have shown that workers with higher education have lower unemployment rates and higher earnings than those without. The bottom line? Earning a college degree increases the probability of obtaining a higher-paying job and staying employed.

For service members interested in pursuing higher education after transitioning from the military, the Luke Air Force Base Education and Training Center offers a two-day “Accessing Higher Education” workshop. This track is designed to help guide individuals through the decisions involved in pursuing a college education, including providing information on financial aid, college applications, and how to research and compare schools.

“Transitioning service members interested in attending an institute of higher learning should be present,” said Robert Flack, 56th Force Support Squadron Education Services specialist. “The information provided is universal based on how to make an informed decision. The resources provided are invaluable to anyone involved in the college search.”

Students will identify long-term career goals and align their educational plans to meet those goals. Having a plan allows the student to choose a school that also aligns with their goals, increasing the probability of completing the degree on time, increasing satisfaction in their education and finding long-term fulfillment in a career.

The course helps participants understand financial resources available such as the Post 9-11 and Montgomery G.I. Bills, completing the FAFSA, federal and nonfederal loans, grants, work-study programs, and scholarships. These benefits and resources can be used to defray most if not all the costs associated with higher education.

“Many service members rely completely on the Post 9-11 G.I. Bill stipend to help with living costs,” said Sandy Cooper, 56th FSS Education Services specialist. “But there are so many other options out there to get financial help to cover school and living expenses. We want to make sure those transitioning out of the service are aware of these opportunities.”

The next Accessing Higher Education workshop will be 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 14 and 15.

Sessions are offered every other month but frequency will be increased if there is a greater demand.

For more information or to register, call the Luke AFB Education Center at 623-856-7722 or visit Bldg. 1150, Room 3136.

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