MyCAA: A Great Resource for Military Spouses
Just as it takes a special kind of person to volunteer for military service, it also takes a special kind of individual to voluntarily take on the role of military spouse, often referred to as “the hardest job in the military.” To thank military spouses for their sacrifices, the Department of Defense created a military spouse education program for eligible military spouses called Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA). The military spouse education benefits are part of a scholarship/workforce development program, providing up to $4,000 in tuition for military spouse education. MyCAA provides the perfect opportunity to pursue certifications and licenses needed to start or maintain careers in high-demand industries, careers that are not impaired by frequent relocation and the responsibilities of a military spouse.
We at MilitaryConnection.com know from first-hand experience that military spouses are some of the hardest working and most reliable employees out there. Having employed military spouses who did not have portable careers, we were always sad to see them leave. We understand why military spouses find it hard to maintain careers, because of their lifestyle of multiple responsibilities and constant relocation.
Military spouses can use MyCAA to cover tuition and the costs of obtaining licenses, certifications, or certificates in certain eligible career fields. Some of the approved career fields include: Aerospace, Animal Services, Automotive Services & Transportation, Construction, Education, Energy, Health & Human Services, Homeland Security, Hospitality, Information Technology, Legal, and many other skilled trades.
Not all military spouses are eligible for benefits through the MyCAA program. Only spouses of service members in pay grades E-1 through E-5, O-1 through O-2, and W-1 through W-2 are eligible. Also, the service members must be active duty or activated members of the Guard or Reserves.
There are some fees and several other school-related expenditures that may not be covered. Be sure to talk to an approved career counselor before attempting to use MyCAA.
Military spouses often take on the role of nurturer, disciplinarian, task-master and efficiency technician in their households, especially while their service member is deployed. For all they do, this is one way that we, as a country, can express our gratitude for all that military spouses do.
Counselors are available at www.militaryonesource.mil or by calling 1-800-342-9647