The purpose of the Spouse Tuition Assistance Program (STAP) is to provide partial tuition assistance for spouses of Active Duty airmen or officers, who accompany members to overseas locations and will be attending college programs. The focus of the program is on the completion of degree or certificate programs that provide increased occupational opportunities for spouses.
The branch of the military you are affiliated with wants to help you, the military spouse, pay for college. Get more information on Army Overseas Spouse Tuition Assistance, Army Stateside Spouse Tuition Assistance, Navy Spouse Tuition Assistance or Marine Corps Spouse Tuition Assistance.
The program provides tuition Assistance (TA) at a rate of 50% of unmet tuition charge per course, with a maximum of $1,500 per academic year and a term maximum, which is calculated by dividing the annual maximum ($1,500) by the number of terms within the academic year. For purposes of this program, "academic year" is defined as the 12-month period beginning August 1 through July 31 of each year.
Air Force spouse eligibility
All spouses of Active Duty Air Force personnel, who accompany members (command sponsored) to overseas locations participating in the program, are eligible candidates. Individuals who wish to participate must submit a completed application for STAP to the Base Education Office. This application will be considered by the Spouse Tuition Assistance committee, which has sole authority to grant TA under this program. The submission of an application does not guarantee TA for the applicant. Only formal notification by the Committee indicating approval of STAP funds can be considered as approval of an application.
Only contracted institutions offering on-base programs will be utilized by STAP students at overseas locations. Only courses that provide academic credit in undergraduate or graduate (Masters) programs are eligible for STAP funding. Courses and degree or certificate programs should be reasonably related to preparing an individual for an occupational goal. Non-traditional forms of education, such as distance learning and independent study courses are only eligible through contracted institutions. Doctoral courses/programs and non-credit courses, other than English as a Second Language (ESL), are not eligible. STAP funds may not be applied to any duplicate/repeat course for which the student was previously funded under this program.
STAP funding may be used in conjunction with other aid (i.e. Pell Grants, Veterans Administration Benefits, scholarships, grants etc.). However, other aid, with the exception of loans, must be applied to tuition costs prior to determining level of STAP funding.
STAP funds will be calculated as 50% of unmet tuition costs, not to exceed term and/or annual maximums. "Unmet tuition" is defined as tuition charged per course less other aid. If tuition costs are from more than one contracted institution, term maximum is established by using number of terms for school providing degree or majority of courses. Total STAP funding must neither exceed the established maximum per term (not per school), nor the 50% unmet tuition per course limit.
A generic application form, AFAS Form 90A, is available at Base Education office. The application requests information on applicant and sponser (i.e. name, SSN, phone #'s, etc.), financial data (to include other educational aid), school enrollment, and an agreement to be signed by student applicant and sponsering Air Force member. Statement stipulates the conditions that require student applicants to reimburse AFAS HQ in full (i.e. withdrawls unrelated to Air Force actions, failure to meet grade requirements, receiving other financial aid, and overawards; and if obligation is not met, notices may be sent to sponsoring member and member's Unit Commander. Each base is authorized to develop and attach any addendum deemed necessary to inform applicants of specifics unique to that base's program administration (i.e. application deadlines, term maximums, class limitations, etc.). Each addendum should be initialled by the student applicant. A copy of sponsoring member's Leave and Earnings Statement (LES) and any other pertinent information necessary to establish priority of applicants will be required.
Individuals receiving STAP funds must receive a grade of "C" ("B" for graduate work) for all courses funded by this program, to be eligible for further aid. The award of TA for one term does not assure continued funding; a separate application is required each term. However, the Committee should consider individuals who have already received aid for a program of study towards a degree or certificate in makingaward decisions.
The STAP award will be based on financial need and the occupational focus of the individuals course or program.
Neither the student applicant nor the sponsoring member may have an AFAS Emergency Assistance (EA) loan that is uncollectible (i.e. bankruptcy, write-off) or delinquent in payment, nor owe a refund on AFAS STAP funding.
Contact your local Family Support Center for application deadlines for each term.