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Your Education and How to Succeed

As the summer Permanent Change of Station season kicks into high gear I would like to talk about education! Why education now? Well, the new location and new job associated with the location give us an opportunity to review our goals and where we are going with our careers and families.

When I had one PCS from a Texas base where I had been training student pilots in the T-38 to a staff job at Scott AFB in Illinois, I had a very smart new supervisor. He sat me down and said okay you have worked hard and the flying was fun but now you need to think about your career and your family. You need to go back to school now and get some additional education and finish that professional military education as well.

I can hear the announcements of "no time", "we are at war", "I might be deployed" and many other very valid reasons why now is not a good time to pursue educational goals. Great reasons but why push back education which will lead to success in other areas of your life as well? Is there ever a good time while pursuing our careers and supporting our families to target education as a priority? I don't think there is ever a convenient time. If you think the next assignment will be easier, the kids will be older and less work, my spouse won't be working so hard, etc you may be on another planet.

One of your benefits of serving this great country is the education benefits to which you are entitled (ie earned, worked very hard for,etc). Take advantage of them! There has been some recent changes to the GI Bill and some add on benefits from the Services as well. You can find more information at your Base Education Office and most universities on or near an installation can walk you through the paperwork in short order (they are frequently the experts because they want you in their classroom). Many of these schools have an online capability! So if you do get deployed and have some time to go online you can continue.

Don't forget those PME courses which are often required by the Services for that next promotion as well! Fill that requirement and the pay check goes up and you get new opportunity as well!

One resource you should check out is the education category on MilitaryAvenue.com and our Reading Room with up to date articles on the GI Bill and other veteran and family programs! Let us know if there is something you are interested in us talking about as you settle into that new job and location!

PS: I took my supervisors words to heart for my education but the words and actions of my spouse to encourage me to push ahead were priceless! So if you are reading this as the spouse of a military member be sure to let them know that their educational pursuits will be a team effort and its important for the whole family!

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