Anyone using Army Reserve STRAP?
Just doing some evaluation and soul searching...
I am currently applying to CRNA schools and have an interview lined up in Nov. @ U. of Cincinnati...awaiting other invites too.
I am 36 and have been an Army Reservist for 19yrs (will hit 20yrs in Jan '08 @ age 37). I spent 15 yrs enlisted/4+ commissioned and will pin on CPT (pay grade O-3E >20yrs) after Jan. 08 board. I know I would get to 1380 my drill pay ($762/month pre-tax for me) which will be alot better than any new LT's with no time in (I'll get to keep my rank since I am already Nurse Corps). I also would get the VA chapter 1607 REAP GI Bill from my Enduring Freedom/Noble Eagle deployment (extra $430/month--not taxed) I think the current STRAP stipend is $1235/month (pre-tax). I already contracted for the $50K Health Professional Loan Repayment Program (HPLRP) when my AOC (66E) went on the critical wartime shortage list in 2006, but I will only have $30K left to use on CRNA school (paying off undergrad with the first $20k payment).
I also recently learned about an available Reserve Tricare program that costs $253/month to cover a family (sounds cheaper than health insurance purchased through school).
1) Does the STRAP, GI Bill, and drill pay kill you on your FAFSA for other types of aid (subsidized loans, grants, needs-based scholarships
2) Is the current stipend $1235?
3) Would anyone rather have taken out private loans as opposed to using the STRAP/HPLRP and the obligations incurred?
4) Are you elligible for Army Tuition Assistance (TA) too while in CRNA school (I think it is like $4500 per year)?
I have alot of huge decisions to make regarding my Army Reserve career--I could retire in Spring '08--any input would be greatly appreciated.