Education Programs Ideal For Veterans

We have posted previous content about the different educational support services available to veterans, so today we want to focus on some specific ideas that veterans can work with to try and plan a future outside of the military.

A lot of people immediately jump on the idea that college is the best solution no matter what. However, for many people a college education is not the right option and it is not always the path to best results and highest income. And not all veterans are in the position to commit to 3 or 4 years of studying with little or no income.


Class Room Education

So in this post we will focus on a few higher level trades that have great potential and are ideal for a lot of ex-military personnel.

Welding Careers

One of our favorite recommendations for people is to look plan for a welding career. The best thing you can do is try and get into this area while in the military as it can open doors an awful lot quicker that way. There is also the opportunity for service men in the Navy to work towards a qualification from an underwater welding school, which includes commercial diving certification. There are specialised welding schools within the Navy that will cover such training.

For those close to leaving the military the question becomes: How do I become a certified welder? The answer to this is relatively simple: you need to sign up for a commercial welding course and the various education support services will cover the majority of programs available. However, before you sign up, make sure that the college or school is indeed covered.

Another option is to go through a union apprenticeship program, but this is not really ideal if you want to your qualification within a year or less. Union apprenticeships essentially pay for the education and provide for many great benefits, but you can always join a union once you finish your welding school program.

Electrician Careers

Education programs for electricians are available within the military and because of the length of time it takes to complete this training it is advisable to seek such qualification while still a member of the military.

However, many trade schools can be accessed with funds from the GI bill so it is not the end of the world if you are newly retired and looking for options. Training as an electrician is a great way to open many doors in commercial and residential construction as well as specialized fields in the automobile and aviation industries as well.

Mechanical Careers

Most military personnel will have encounter some sort of need to fix machinery and may even have gone down the road of training a mechanic. It has saved many a soldier being able to fix broken down engines while on active duty!

Mechanics from the military are in very high demand as employers look for the high tech experience as well as ability to work on tough engines and in difficult conditions. All are things that come natural to a soldier, but are not common with regular civillians.


We need to reiterate that before you sign up for any course that you contact your local VA and make sure that the school and course you want to sign up for will indeed be covered by education support funding. In most cases this does apply, but you do not want to end up out of pocket when past military service entitles you to funding.

Education Advice: College Assistance Programs

Serving those who served their country

The men and women serving in the armed forces of the United States, regardless of branch, deserve the honor, the respect and gratitude of a grateful nation. While no single act can really thank the brave men and women who faithfully served their country, as a nation, we can at least provide them with greater opportunity here at home. Training grants and scholarships for military personnel, veterans and their families are available in the United States through their servicemen and women.

Scholarships and grants for veterans are supported by the Federal Government, as well as from military associations, universities, and private donors. After the sacrifices made by our military and their families, it is right to help them find new opportunities and achievements here at home.

Federal Programs For Veterans

graduationSince the dawn of GI Bill, the Federal Government has been dedicated to helping returning veterans find the funds that they need to get a college education. How times have changed, so have government financial aid programs for military veterans and their families. While the programs continue to change with the times, the Federal resolution remains constant. These financial help initiatives exist to help military veterans define their own success at home, giving them much needed support and encouragement in their aspirations for a college degree.

The Montgomery G.I. Bill

The G.I. Bill is one of the best known financial aid services in the USA and it is no exaggeration to say that the introduction of the Montgomery GI Bill changed the face of the nation giving returning veterans access to higher education. In many ways, the Bill created the growing of the middle class that would become the backbone of the United States. The G.I. Bill has undergone many changes since its inception, but continues to provide much needed financial assistance to veterans who wish to pursue a college education.

The Montgomery Bill benefits are accessible by military personnel who have agreed to have $ 100 withheld from their monthly earnings. Military can also opt to have an addition of $ 600 deducted from their monthly salary to receive greater benefits after his discharge from active duty. The amount of financial aid available through GI Bill varies and depends on time served and the contributions of the individual soldier. Typically, service personnel who were honorably discharged become eligible up to 36 months of education benefits, or about $ 37,000.

GI Bill is also available for reservists and National Guard members, who opted to pay into the program during their time of service. To these auxiliary members of the armed forces, training benefits total will be about $ 11,000.

G.I. Bill benefits can be used for tuition fees at accredited colleges, universities and professional schools throughout the country. Benefits include contributions for college fees, accomodation, books and other college expenses. All benefits are contingent upon the length of military service. The G.I. Bill benefits are payable for up to ten years following release from active duty service members.

The Post 9/11 G.I. Bill

The Post 9/11 G.I. Bill was approved by law makers in 2009 and is an extension of above Montgomery G.I. Bill. It was specifically designed to benefit servicemen and women who saw active service immediately following the events of September 11, 2001. To be eligible, they must have enlisted as military personnel within 90 days from September 10, 2001. Particular attention is paid to those service members who were discharged because of a service related disability.

This Bill provides financial assistance to eligible military members who are pursuing third level education at an accredited college, University or technical school for 36 months. Educational fees, including housing, books and expenses of the supervisor, will be paid to those servicemen and women who enroll in a public college/university. Veterans who choose to continue their education at a private school or University may require additional benefits through the yellow ribbon project.

Post 9/11 G.I. Bill benefits are offered to veterans looking to sign up for undergraduate and graduate level studies at an accredited college or University, as well as to veterans pursuing courses at a vocational or technical school. The benefits are allocated on the basis of time served, mode of distribution and are contingent on veterans who receive an honorable discharge.

Career Advice: Shooting Range Instructor

Many veterans can end up struggling to adapt to civilian work life, and this becomes increasingly more difficult the longer the term of service. Military work life and active duty bring with them certain ethics and approaches that are not always suitable to other work environments.

One way to mitigate this is to choose an industry where there are either a lot of veterans employed or the products and services offered are similar to military work environments. One of our previous posts highlighted work as a gunsmith or gun sales assistant, which is quite obviously something any soldier would be able to relate to.

Another option though is to work as a shooting range instructor to train civilians in the use of various firearms. This is a great way to use knowledge and experience from the military and bring it to a point where it can be related to non-military people.

shooting rangeWorking at a gun range will bring familiar sounds and equipment to a veteran, and there are lots of services that you would be able to offer. At the most basic level you can provide training to people who have never owned a gun or want to become more proficient at it, maybe for competitive target shooting purposes.

Another very common problem for people at a shooting range is how to sight in a scope. This is a task any soldier would be very familiar with, but unless you know what you are doing it can be difficult to understand and do right. Help people out with this task is very common, especially at the start of the hunting season.

With AR 15 rifles being ever more popular you will also find people using such rifles for multiple purposes including hunting. As the AR15 takes a lot of its design features from military weapons, veterans are perfectly suited to helping out with their maintenance. The great thing with the AR is that it comes with loads of different mounting brackets so you will likely encounter people looking to sight in the best AR 15 optics for different purposes (including hunting and tactical), who require a little help with the assembly and sighting.

Many states require training and certification to become an instructor and you should check out the various educational assistance programs open to veterans to see if any of them qualify. But having full certification will certainly help in finding work in this field.

The best thing you can do is head to a local shooting range and talk to an owner about some available part time work and what they require from employees. They will also be able to point you in the right direction for certification requirements that may be necessary.

Gun Maintenance And Sales

Gun ownership in America is still growing and one great opportunity is to seek employment at a gun store or manufacturer. While the big gun makers may be located in just a few areas, there are many small gun stores that take on personalised and one off projects for individuals as well as police and armed services.

This is one industry that probably seeks out retired soldiers the most due to their extensive knowledge and experience with guns and ammunition and the ease with which they can work with guns. The first-hand knowledge and training gained in a military career is second to none and is in great demand with all the increased demand for home protection.

vietnam memorialSelling is a skill that can be taught and will come more natural to some. But the important thing is that you have to know the product you are selling and being a veteran brings that knowledge and appeal to potential buyers. It’s like buying a cell phone. Would you rather have a butcher try and convince you of the merits of a cell phone or a young technology geek that actually understands the inner workings?

There is also the aspect of maintenance and repairs. These are skills taught to all soldiers as it is crucial to many combat situations. Gun store owners love it when they can hire a veteran as the amount of teaching the job is minimal. You are practically ready to start working the moment you walk in the door.

Of course there are new concepts and possibly different types of guns to get familiar with, but the basics are all the same. With a little experience and further training this can then lead to careers in custom gun making which is becoming increasingly popular in the public.

But there is also the appeal to work on law enforcement and military projects where you know that your work will make the difference to a fellow soldier or police officer and will help save lives. It is a great way to work in an industry you are very familiar with and to make a significant difference to the customers you serve.

Checking in with local gun stores and asking whether they are hiring is one of the best options, as you can immediately talk to the owner and sell the fact that you are a veteran looking for work. If any store owner has work they will be foolish to turn down a veteran.