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Air Force offers tuition assistance for civil service Ph.D. candidates

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) -- Air Force officials recently approved tuition assistance funding for eligible Ph.D. candidates through the Civilian Tuition Assistance Program.

Applications are due July 2, 2017 for academic programs this fall and need to include a strong justification statement explaining how the course work will benefit the Air Force mission.

Tuition assistance is limited to one academic course per semester or quarter term and will cover up to 75 percent of tuition, not including books and fees. The cap is $250 per semester hour or $166 per quarter hour and is limited to $4,500 per person per fiscal year.

“Civilian tuition assistance exists to offset costs for courses that contribute to occupational and institutional competencies, special interest needs and readiness by supporting the current and future needs of the Air Force,” said Ervin Long, the Air Force Personnel Center Employee Development specialist.

Long said this includes courses that will provide employees breadth of knowledge and problem-solving tools that aid in critical thinking, allowing individuals to address a wide range of problems and assess alternative solutions.

Permanent full-time appropriated fund employees, including wage grade employees, are eligible to use the Civilian Tuition Assistance Program. Ph.D. tuition assistance applicants need to apply through the Air Force Virtual Education Center portal and the career field development team chairperson must approve the request.

“Candidates who apply for the program in the future will be given the opportunity to continuously submit applications,” Long said. “Their applications will be forwarded to the development team chair on a semi-annual basis for approval.”

Additional information about tuition assistance for Ph.D. courses and the request process can be found on the civilian Force Development landing page on myPers. Alternatively, select “Civilian” from the dropdown menu and search “PhD.”

For more information about Air Force personnel programs, go to myPers. Individuals who do not have a myPers account can request one by following the instructions on the Air Force Personnel Center website.