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New GI Bill Offers College Tuition to War Veterans

4 years ago
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Veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will be heading back to school in larger numbers than before. The Post 9/11-GI Bill took effect at the start of this month, providing full tuition for four years at a public university and a housing and book stipend for veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan. The benefits are also transferable to a service member's children or spouse, on the condition that he or she serve another four years.
In his statement delivered at George Mason University on Monday to celebrate the launch of the program, President Obama called the benefits not just a "debt" to be repaid to service men and women, but also "an investment in our own country." It was a precursor to his remarks a few moments later, when he struck out at the financial industry, saying:
"We have lived through an age when many people and institutions have acted irresponsibly -- when service often took a back seat to short-term profits; when hard choices were put aside for somebody else, for some other time. It's a time when easy distractions became the norm, and the trivial has been taken too seriously. The men and women who have served since 9/11 tell us a different story. While so many were reaching for the quick buck, they were heading out on patrol."

Though not yet a week old, the program already looks popular. The Boston Globe reports that more than 100,000 applications have already been processed, and a half million new applications are expected to arrive this year.

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