The Montgomery GI Bill – Selected Reserve program may be available to you if you are a member of the Selected Reserve. The Selected Reserve includes the Army Reserve, Navy Reserve, Air Force Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve and Coast Guard Reserve, and the Army National Guard and the Air National Guard.
You may use this education assistance program for degree programs, certificate or correspondence courses, cooperative training, independent study programs, apprenticeship/on-the-job training, and vocational flight training programs. Remedial, refresher and deficiency training are available under certain circumstances.
You may be entitled to receive up to 36 months of education benefits. Your benefit entitlement ends 14 years from the date of your eligibility for the program, or on the day you leave the Selected Reserve.
One exception to this rule exists if you are mobilized (or recalled to active duty from your reserve status), in this case your eligibility may be extended for the amount of time you are mobilized PLUS four months. For example, if you are mobilized for 12 months your eligibility period is extended for 16 months (12 months active duty PLUS 4 months.) So even if you leave the reserves after mobilization, you may have additional eligibility to the MGIB-SR.
To qualify, you must meet the following requirements:
Have a six-year obligation to serve in the Selected Reserve signed after June 30, 1985. If you are an officer, you must have agreed to serve six years in addition to your original obligation. For some types of training, it is necessary to have a six-year commitment that begins after September 30, 1990;
Complete your initial active duty for training (IADT);
Meet the requirement to receive a high school diploma or equivalency certificate before completing IADT. You may not use 12 hours toward a college degree to meet this requirement;
Remain in good standing while serving in an active Selected Reserve unit.
If your Reserve or National Guard unit is deactivated during the period October 1, 1991, through September 30, 1995, or you are involuntarily separated (e.g., reduction in force) from Reserve or National Guard service during this same period, you will retain eligibility for MGIB – SR benefits for the full 14 year eligibility period. You will also retain MGIB – SR eligibility if you were discharged from Selected Reserve service due to a disability that was not caused by misconduct. Your eligibility period may be extended if you are ordered to active duty.
How to Apply
Your unit will give you DD Form 2384-1, Notice of Basic Eligibility, when you become eligible for the program. Your unit will also code your eligibility into the Department of Defense personnel system so that VA may verify your eligibility.
You should then make sure that your selected program is approved for VA training. If you are not clear on this point, VA will inform you and the school or company about the requirements.
Obtain and complete VA Form 22-1990, Application for Education Benefits. Send it to the VA regional office with jurisdiction over the State where you will train.
If you have started training, take your application and your Notice of Basic Eligibility to your school or employer. Ask them to complete VA Form 22-1999, Enrollment Certification, and send all the forms to VA.