Why Should I Earn a College Degree While in the Military?
By Brett Tubbs
Serving in the military is an “all-in” feat. More than “just a job,” military service is a lifestyle. Wondering whether pursuing a college education fits in?
Here’s the thing: Getting your bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree says that you’re betting on yourself and your future.
You’re already disciplined in the art of making sacrifices and challenging yourself to advance. If a college education is something you’re considering, then pursuing it while you’re serving in the military is no different.
Here are a few reasons to consider going to college while in the military:
Set Yourself Up for Civilian Life
Wise people know that time passes if you’re pursuing a college degree or not. Whether you’re serving domestically or on a base overseas, if you’re planning on retiring from the military at some point in your career, you’ll need a strong education to successfully transition you into the civilian workforce.
The discipline and experience you earned while in the military, paired with an advanced college degree, will set you up for more opportunities.
Get Ready for the Next Rank
If you’re on track to continue your service in the military up to retirement, a college degree can help you earn the leadership and communication skills you need to move up in ranks (and pay scales). High-ranking officers need to have an arsenal of leadership and negotiation abilities in addition to their military knowledge. Your experience in developing those skills will strengthen your contribution to those who report to you later down the road.
Do It For Yourself
You’ve spent part – or perhaps your entire career protecting our nation and the people who you love most. Now it’s time to do something for you. Having a college education is a proud personal accomplishment that you’ll value beyond words. It’s smart to think about yourself and your future.
And imagine the fulfillment of protecting our nation’s freedom and conquering a college degree!
It Breaks Up Your Day
While many flourish under the routine of service, having an outside goal proves to be a welcome change of pace for many military students. For most anyone, an overwhelming day can be a bit easier – not to mention healthier – to manage if there is something you’re pursuing outside of work.
Connecting with a diverse group of students is a great way to take a break and open you up to a world of friendship and support outside your military cohort.
You Can Get It For Low or Even Zero Cost
As a military service member, you have access to the G.I. Bill and college at a low or even zero cost. In fact, many service people pursue a career in the United States military intent on taking full advantage of the education perks. The Yellow Ribbon Program at Regent University covers 100% of tuition and fees over the Post-9/11 GI Bill® yearly tuition cap (50% funded by Regent University and 50% funded by the Department of Veterans Affairs.)
Whether it’s for your personal improvement, to help you achieve the next level in your military career, or to prepare for your transition into civilian life, one thing is for certain: Pursuing a college education while serving in the military is well worth it.