Educational Benefits

State & Federal Tuition Assistance

The Missouri State Tuition Assistance (TA) Program was established in 1998 by Missouri House Bills 1519 and 1165, Section 173.239. State TA pays 100% of tuition fees for up to 39 credit hours annually (Note: general fees, technology fees, etc. are not included in TA). Over the course of four years (150 credit hours for a BS) this benefit could total over $41,000. Soldiers are eligible to receive State TA immediately upon enlistment for classes with a starting date of at least one day later. Service Members are also granted in-state tuition rates.

Soldiers who meet the one year requirement after completion of AIT, BOLC, or OCS are eligible to receive Federal TA at the rate of $250 per credit hour up to 15 credit hours annually (capped at $4,000 for undergraduate degrees). Federal TA may also be saved for graduate level courses if not used for an undergraduate degree.

GI Bill® Programs and Benefits

  • Montgomery GI Bill® - Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR), Chapter 1606
    • An education assistance program for individuals serving in the Selected Reserve—including the National Guard and other Reserve forces.
    • Current rate, effective 1 October 2019, is $392/month for soldiers enrolled in school full-time for a total of 36 months.
      • Students enrolled less than full-time receive a pro-rated amount
  • Montgomery GI Bill® - Active Duty (MGIB-AD), Chapter 30
    • Provides education assistance to eligible service members who have served a sufficient period of Active Duty on or after July 1, 1985.
  • Post-9/11 GI Bill®, Chapter 33
    • For Soldiers with at least 90 days of Active Duty service on or after September 11, 2001, the Post-9/11 GI Bill® can cover up to 100 percent of your tuition, depending on the length of time you’ve served. You may also be eligible for a housing allowance and a stipend for books and supplies, and your benefits may be transferable to your dependents. You’ll also find information about the Yellow Ribbon Program, which can help pay higher private school, graduate school or nonresident tuition.
  • Montgomery GI Bill® Kicker
    • Qualified applicants who enlist into the Missouri Army National Guard with this incentive receive an additional monthly stipend while going to school
    • This is stackable with the Montomery GI Bill® AND State TA
    • Current rate is $350/month for Soldiers enrolled in school full-time for a total of 36 months of eligibility

Housing Scholarship

Members of the Show-Me GOLD Program are eligible to receive up to $3,000 annually towards the cost of on-campus housing. 

  • Living in the Military Learning Community, currently located in Vandiver Hall, awards Soldiers $1,500 per semester
  • Living outside of the Military Learning Community awards Soldiers $750 per semester

Student Loan Repayment

Imagine leaving college debt free! Qualified applicants who enlist into the Missouri Army National Guard with this incentive can get up to $50,000 in Student Loan Repayment on qualifying federal loans. The best part is that you may be able to add additional qualifying loans you take out after enlistment if your pre-enlistment total is less than $50,000!

Monthly Drill Pay

Soldiers of the Missouri Army National Guard serve one weekend a month (typically just Saturday and Sunday) and earn pay for their time. Pay starts out at $218.44/month and is based on rank and time in service (E-1 < 1 year service) Members of the Show-Me GOLD Program conveniently report for their monthly drill on-campus and the drill calendar is set up around SEMO's events and scheduled breaks!

Annual Training Pay

Soldiers in the Missouri Army National Guard are required to perform a minimum of two weeks of annual training (AT) per year. Members of the Show-Me GOLD Program conduct AT in May, immediately followng final exams to allow for summers off! This two-week period is a culminating event that allows Officer Candidates to utilize the skills and knowledge acquired throughout the semester. During this time, they are evaluated on their leadership abilities and their proficiency at using the 8 steps of the Troop Leading Procedures to accomplish a variety of tasks alongside members of the four other Show-Me GOLD Programs from across the state. AT Pay starts out at $764.54 and is based on rank and time in service (E1 < 1 year service).

Additional Benefits

Enlistment Bonus

Qualified applicants who enlist into the Missouri Army National Guard with this incentive can receive enlistment bonuses up to $20,000, which is paid out according to individual contracts, after the completion of all initial entry training.

Paid Job and Skills Training

Learn a military occupation that may translate into a great civilian career or broaden your horizons and make you more marketable to a future employer. Our paid job training will make sure you are financially sound. Earn up to $2,000 a month while in initial entry training,  and $2,800 a month while in Officer Candidate School. Plus earn college credits based on the training you complete by sending in your Joint Service Transcript after all initial training is completed!

Non-Deployable Status

The Missouri Army National Guard is committed to investing in the education of its future leaders. This has led to the creation of unprecedented policies to ensure that Members of the Show-Me GOLD Program are non-deployable while attending Southeast Missouri State University for the duration of their college degree (to include final semesters after completion of Officer Candidate School).

Insurance Options

Health Insurance

TRICARE Reserve Select is a premium-based plan available worldwide for qualified National Guard Service Members and their families. Individual plans cost only $48 per month while family plans cost $217 per month. That is roughly 1/2 or even 1/3 of the price of healthcare plans offered by civilian employers.

Dental Insurance

TRICARE Dental Program is also offered to National Guard Service Members and their families. Individual plans cost only $8 per month while family plans cost $18 per month.

Life Insurance

Service Member Group Life Insurance (SGLI)
  • Up to $400,000 in coverage at extremely low costs ($400,000 for $25 month)
  • Smaller amounts available in increments of $50,000
  • Coverage is available through age 60, upon receipt of your first retirement check, or 120 days after a Soldier's ETS (Expiration of Term of Service).
Family Service Members' Group Life Insurance (FSGLI)
  • Spousal coverage is offered in increments of $10,000, up to $100,000 (not to exceed the amount of SGLI elected by the Service Member). 
  • Family coverage provides $10,000 for all dependent children

Retirement Planning

The Missouri Army National Guard offers two varieties of Retirement Options, depending on the Service Member's date of enlistment:

  • Soldiers who were in a paid status on 31 December 2017 and had less than 4,320 retirement points were eligible to stick with the traditional Uniformed Services' retirement systems (serve 20 years to qualify) OR opt for the new Blended Retirement System.
  • Soldiers who enlisted after 31 December 2017 were automatically enrolled into the Blended Retirement System, which blends the traditional retirement system with a defined contribution plan that allows Service members to contribute to a Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) account with government automatic and matching contributions. This allows about 85 percent of Service Members to receive a government retirement benefit if they serve at least two years, even if they don't qualify for a full retirement. 

For additional information on the benefits and opportunities available in the Missouri Army National Guard or for information on enlisting, please contact the Show-Me GOLD NCOIC:

SGT Kristina McGuire
(573) 680-4562

Officer in Charge
(573) 576-5916
Innovation Center 301
Mailing Address
One University Plaza, MS 7980
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701