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Yellow Ribbon Grant Pays $18,000

July 19, 2009, 9:58 PM by Cherlene Richards

A new grant program will provide thousands of dollars for veterans working toward a degree in higher education this fall. It's called the Yellow Ribbon Program, and in some cases, those who qualify will receive up to $18,000 dollars for one year of tuition costs.

Augustana College in Sioux Falls is one of 9 higher education institutions in South Dakota taking part in the Yellow Ribbon program.

"Each school makes a commitment of how much their going to contribute to the veteran education,” Director of Financial Aid, Brenda Murtha said.

Augustana College will pay $9,000 dollars per veteran, per year - and that number will be matched by the Department of Veteran's Affairs - for a grand total of $18,000 dollars.

"What this means to veterans, is that there really, should be no reason, that a veteran who wants to pursue higher education anywhere, that they can't do that now,” Murtha said.

Brenda Murtha with Financial Aid says the program is a great opportunity for future students, both veterans and traditional students.

"For these veteran students to enter the classroom, and share their experiences, I think that will enhance the classroom experience for all,” Murtha said.

Murtha realizes how important this new program is, because her son, Dan Murtha is a military member serving in Kuwait. He got assistance under the previous G-I Bill and graduated from Augustana.

The Post 9-11 G-I Bill takes affect in less than 2 weeks. The Yellow Ribbon Program helps pay for tuition that exceeds the highest public in-state tuition rate.

For more information on whether you qualify, or to find out what other institutions, read more on at the Department of Veterans Affairs website.

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