R.V. Doon

Get Money For College: By Helping People

With all the college debt slavery news circling on the internet, this path to college scholarship rewards is worth another mention.

Occasionally, while editing one of my stories, my brain revolts, and I go surfing on the information highway.  I found this article, FEMA Corps Graduates First AmeriCorps Members. Now, as a homeowner in an area hit by hurricanes, I like FEMA. I read the story and the first class graduated after giving ten months of community service to disaster survivors across America. Many of them worked during and after Superstorm Sandy. They can serve one or more terms which the article lists. This is a new unit engaging YA’s aged 18-24. What a great idea. If your high school graduate wants to try the Peace Corps to help people, and you don’t want them to leave the US, this program may be an answer for both of you. After a term of service is completed, they can opt out of the education award and select a cash stipend. If you have student loans, you could be eligible for 15% cancellation. In certain circumstances, you can use the award for study outside the US. Plus, you have 7 years to use your stipend without penalty. Naturally, the IRS will tax this award (in case you were wondering).

The scholarship reward amount wasn’t listed in the first article, which I though was strange since it could be a recruitment tool. Graduates are eligible for a Segal AmeriCorps Education Award to help pay for college or other learning opportunities. So, I looked up the SAEA to see what the money award would be. The full-time education award equals the amount of a Pell Grant in the year the service is rendered. In 2012, Pell grants averaged 5,500.

The real gold came under Additional Information. A current list of colleges that Match the Education Award and others may waive out-of-state tuition or other fees.

Folks, the two articles are worth the read. Tuition assistance in the military has been frozen, but this award hasn’t, plus it doesn’t involve guns or leaving the country. Any money to decrease current or future education debt should be considered.

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