Archive for Monday, March 18, 2013

A few KU students already feeling effects after military tuition assistance suspended

March 18, 2013


The early effects of this month’s automatic federal spending cuts have hit financial assistance for military service members taking college courses, and at least a few Kansas University students are already feeling it in their pocketbooks.

The U.S. Army, Marine Corps and Air Force have suspended their tuition assistance programs for active-duty, reserve or National Guard service members because of the automatic cuts, known as the sequester, that went into place March 1. The Navy was the lone service branch not to suspend the assistance as of Friday.

Among the recipients of that tuition help, which can be as much as $4,500 per year, are 64 current KU students.

The good news is that students enrolled in spring classes won’t lose the funding they’ve already been awarded, according to Brian McDow, interim senior associate university registrar for KU.

“Spring students are in good shape,” McDow said.

But the military branches aren’t awarding any new funding, McDow said, and it will soon be time for students to begin enrolling in summer or fall courses. “The soonest a person might need to worry about this is the end of March,” McDow said.

The cuts don't affect students in the supply chain management and logistics master’s degree program that the KU School of Business offers to officers stationed at Fort Leavenworth.

That program allows officers, mostly Army majors but a few from other branches, to earn a master’s degree in just 10 and a half months, with the aim of helping them work in logistics positions in the military and also to prepare them for jobs in the civilian world when their service is over.

Because the program is so condensed, it doesn’t follow KU’s normal semester-based calendar. New courses start throughout the year, and some for this year’s class don’t begin until April, said Greg Freix, a business school lecturer who directs the program.

Freix said he suggested that students apply as early as possible, in late February, for tuition assistance for their final courses, just in case the budget cuts shook things up.

Sure enough, the announcement came early this month that the assistance was suspended. Some of his students didn’t get their applications in before then. That means they’ll have to pay out of pocket for them, though they may be receiving help from other military programs.

Freix did not have exact numbers available, but he estimated that about half of the 32 members in his current class were using tuition assistance. The program costs roughly $14,000 in all, plus textbooks, he said. Some students receive scholarships from the Army, and others may be able to use GI Bill benefits to pay tuition.

It remains to be seen whether the next class of students in the program will be able to apply for tuition assistance, he said. He said he was confident the program would still attract a full class, as students in the past have shown a willingness to pay their own way if necessary.

Two U.S. senators were pushing this week for an amendment that would restore the tuition assistance programs.

Baker University this week announced plans to provide financial support for any active-duty military students whose funding is affected by the sequester.

McDow said word has not yet come down from the military branches what exactly will happen to students hoping to use tuition assistance to take summer or fall classes.

“We don’t know what that impact will be yet,” he said.


verity 1 year, 1 month ago

Close-minded ideology is by definition not arrived at by thoughtful study, etc., but by not being open to any other way of thinking.

You chose to take offense with a part of my post and ignored the rest. Do you have a better idea how we might solve our problems? Because, if you do, I would like to hear it.


verity 1 year, 1 month ago

As my rather conservative brother used to tell me: "You have to spend money to make money."

That is the thing that everybody seems to be ignoring. Yes, some people are cheating the system, but many here are advocating throwing the baby out with the bath water. Money multiplies as it goes through the economy---at least that is what I was taught in Economics class. You cut the worker's compensation and they will put less money back into the economy. Lay them off and they go on unemployment. Take away medical insurance and they end up costing the system more. Too many of the cuts being made will cost us dearly in the end.

We have to pay to live in a civilized society. Taxes is just one of the things we must pay. Because cost is shared, we probably all get back more benefits than we paid for. Sequestration is bringing a hatchet to brain surgery.

Can we for once get off the closed-minded ideological stupidity and work for the common good? Yes, I said it---common good. Because, you know what, the common good is good for all of us.


notajayhawk 1 year, 1 month ago

Personally I find it amusing that in a city full of people frequently complaining about waste (and outright fraud) in the defense budget, not to mention constantly harping on the importance of education funding, they seem willing to accept at face value the administration's claim that there's nothing else in the defense budget that could be cut before tuition assistance for those that fought for their country.


Roland Gunslinger 1 year, 1 month ago

TA is a great benefit, but no one should really be surprised it's being cut. That's why we have the GI bill to fall back on.

In the grand scheme of things TA cuts, to me, is a no brainer along with cutting air shows, demonstration teams, military bands, etc.

What shouldn't be cut, but is, is funding for professional development. I have E4s that need to attend their leadership course before they can sew on E5 that are not allowed to leave until a spending bill or continuing resolution is passed.

I also have members needing professional training to be qualified to do their day to day job that I can't send because of this sequester.

These members in college have other avenues to get their schools paid for (GI Bill, scholarships, student loans). My day to day funding, however, has only one funding stream and Congress has cut that stream off with great detriment to my ability to accomplish the mission.


IKU57 1 year, 1 month ago

Close the white house tours and do not educate the soldiers because the annual Federal budget increase is 2 pennies less on the dollar, than it was going to be? Two penny decrease?? Why doesn't Obama get the $250 million he gave the brotherhood in Egypt back, to help make up the difference?


catfishturkeyhunter 1 year, 1 month ago

Only the best for Americas srvicemen and women. Go to war and serve your country only to come back and get a knife in your back. How about suspending the paychecks of the entire congress and figure this collosal goat F&^%k out.


Steven Gaudreau 1 year, 1 month ago

Elliot, I thought the same thing. What is the financial cost for KU to let this handful of military students finish college with 0 tuition? I'm not suggesting letting new students in for free, just let those who have already started with a broken promise be allowed to finish. I don't feel this is asking much of a university that has no problem paying its coaches millions of dollars a year.


elliottaw 1 year, 1 month ago

KU could show a lot of class and help the soldiers out, they won't of course, instead they will just cater to the officers who could pay out of pocket for the tuition while the soldiers who pretty much make minimum wage are forced to stop classes.


Michael LoBurgio 1 year, 1 month ago

10 Things the GOP Doesn't Want You to Know About the Debt

  1. Republican Leaders Agree U.S. Default Would Be a "Financial Disaster"
  2. Ronald Reagan Tripled the National Debt
  3. George W. Bush Doubled the National Debt
  4. Republicans Voted Seven Times to Raise Debt Ceiling for President Bush
  5. Federal Taxes Are Now at a 60 Year Low
  6. Bush Tax Cuts Didn't Pay for Themselves or Spur "Job Creators"
  7. Ryan Budget Delivers Another Tax Cut Windfall for Wealthy
  8. Ryan Budget Will Require Raising Debt Ceiling - Repeatedly
  9. Tax Cuts Drive the Next Decade of Debt
  10. $3 Trillion Tab for Unfunded Wars Remains Unpaid


neworleans 1 year, 1 month ago

Taxpayers are stretched to the hilt; with all of the wasted taxpayer money; congress salaries; pensions; benefits; plus many other government workers;...............wasting the taxpayers dollars. Watch for the future social security reciepants; as their social security checks are whacked in half.


question4u 1 year, 1 month ago

Well, Obama called sequestration "dumb" and "arbitrary."

Kansas Representative Mike Pompeo called sequestration "a home run."

But never mind, what they say. You can have it both ways: sequestration is all Obama's fault, but it's a good thing, except for the bad parts, which are Obama's fault, but they're exaggerated, except when they're not.

Clearly, in Kansas sequestration isn't the only thing that's "dumb" and "arbitrary."


Steven Gaudreau 1 year, 1 month ago

I love how the administrations answer to the budget cut is to attack students. Hows about renegotiating the price tag on a $100,000,000 fighter plane? No, that would go unnoticed and Obama needs the cuts to be felt so he can blame the Repubs. I'm confused because Obama wants to cut the Defense Budget, which I 100% agree with which is what he got, over 7% down. He then whines about it and attacks the education of military children on army bases and college funding for our military. Our current defense budget is the combined budget of the next 13 countries combined.


ljreader 1 year, 1 month ago

...and our pet company GE who pays nary a dime,..... and let's not forget our mandatory tax paid campaign contributions rewarded to Solyndra and all the others who went belly up and never paid us a dime of it back- green, indeed.


Cant_have_it_both_ways 1 year, 1 month ago

Cut the funding for those who have fought for this country, but continue to fund welfare at 100%+.


pilch 1 year, 1 month ago

Thank you obongo bin biden. 2 wars, with 5 campaigns and 20 years not good enough, but tuition assistance to los illegals is safe, Ohh, where do I vote again?


pigballin 1 year, 1 month ago

This was never a problem until the illegal dictator was put in office by vote corruption.


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