We did not save money for our kid’s college. Now what?
You are not alone. According to a 2011 article in The Wall Street Journal, student loan debt has surpassed credit card debt by over $3 billion.* To make matters worse, tuitions continue to rise at 13% over the last five years for public four-year college (outpace average inflation),** ranging from $3,347 to $31,231 average annual tuition and fees, as the table below shows.
Stop panicking! As you are building your college savings plan with your children, why not send them to a military academy? Each branch of service offers FREE tuition, room and board for the opportunity to study at one of the best colleges in the country. For example, in 2015, USNews ranked Naval Academy, United States Military Academy (Academy), also known as West Point, and Air Force Academy as top three Liberal Arts Colleges in the country.*** There are also many other outstanding ROTC programs throughout the country.
The catch. Your kid will serve agreed years in active duty or reserve capacity. The promise is thrilling. Your kids will get free high quality education. He is trained to lead others and graduated with a guaranteed job as an officer. If he desires to be a career military serviceman, there are additional attractive career opportunities and benefits.
Chuck’s story.**** Chuck is a loving husband, a successful executive, and a Senior Officer in my husband’s Army Brigade. He has served 28 years in the military, is well respected by the community. Chuck is determined and dedicated in doing what he loves. He is the kind of Soldier we are grateful to have protecting us.*****
The determination of a kid. How many sixth graders know which college they want to attend? How many of sixth graders know that they want to go to a Military Academy? Chuck did.
During a field trip with his classmates to West Point, the counselor told them that it was impossible to get into this school; enjoy the field trip, this was probably as far as they would ever achieve. It was the day that set the course for Chuck’s military career. He told his best friend that he would go there after high school. AP credits, extracurricular activities, sports, clubs, volunteer work, Chuck devoted himself preparing for the rigorous requirements for the next six years. It was a joyful day for his family when he received early acceptance letter from the Academy.
The desire to serve the country. Twenty-eight years later, Chuck graduated from the Academy at the top of his class. He then went on to complete many successful missions and commands, and is now a Senior Army Reserve officer. Chuck enjoys his time served in the military. He volunteered for tough operations, has been deployed overseas on numerous tours, where he earned several awards. Chuck cares about his Soldiers and is well respected by everyone. After serving his military commitment for college, he joined the Army Reserves to continue his dream.
The caring neighbor next door. “Chuck is in the military? He does not remind me of the stereotypical type of rigid officers.” Neighbors often comment, “Chuck is such a wonderful listener. He is kind and generous.” When he is not in uniform, the short military hair cut is the only evidence that gives him away as a Soldier.
Military prepares him to be a better leader and top candidate for civilian business world. Chuck’s dedication and service had impacted his success with the civilian career. Chuck visits schools and speaks at local businesses to advocate for the military. He has helped other kids to get into the academies and excel in their military career. When people come up to thank him for his service, he would always take time to share with them that he is honored to serve the country and to protect them.
There are many Soldiers like Chuck that devote themselves to serve in the reserves on weekends and are ready to be deployed into harm’s way when are called upon. The Army is a million-plus, it’s not 450,000,” Faced with downsizing amid growing global threats, Army chief Gen. Mark Milley says his service will have to lean heavily on part-time troops. ******
We thank Chuck for his service and his dedication to the country. Parents, take your kids to visit a military academy and it might change their lives forever.
**** A pseudo name is used to protect Chuck’s privacy.