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The Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA) Program

The Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA) Program is an employment assistance program that provides up to $4,000 of financial assistance to eligible military spouses who are pursuing a license, certification or Associate’s degree in a portable career field and occupation.

MyCAA Program Basics:
The MyCAA Fact Sheet explains:

Who is eligible to participate in the MyCAA Program?

  • What MyCAA funding does and does not pay for
  • How to establish a MyCAA Account
  • How to provide feedback to MyCAA
  • How to get additional information and assistance.

The MyCAA program is open to all eligible spouses under the new program guidelines below:

Spouse of an active duty Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine service member in pay grades E1-E5, W1-W2, or O1-O2.

  • Spouse of an activated Reserve member in pay grades E1-E5, W1-W2, and O1-O2.
  • If the spouse of National Guard and/or AGR member, the sponsor must be on federal Title 10 active duty orders as reported in DEERS.
  • Spouses of Guard/Reserve members in an Alert, Transition Assistance, or Post Deployment status are not eligible.
  • MyCAA accounts will be limited to the new $4,000 maximum benefit with a $2000 fiscal year cap. Waivers to the fiscal year cap will be available for spouses pursuing licensure or credentials with a cost that exceeds the $2,000 fiscal year cap up to the total maximum assistance of $4,000.
  • Spouses must finish their program of study within three years from the start date of the first course.
  • Funding is limited to only Associate’s degrees, credentials and licensure programs.
  • Please allow for 14 days for approval of all financial assistance documents.


All spouses (even if you no longer qualify for the MyCAA program) that have had a MyCAA account can still access all your course information by logging-in into the MyCAA website. If information is needed on other sources of financial assistance please contact a Military OneSource consultant at 800-342-9647. 

MyCAA FACT SHEET

The Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts Program (MyCAA) is a career development and employment assistance program sponsored by the Department of Defense (DoD). MyCAA helps military spouses pursue licenses, certificates, certifications or Associate's Degrees (excluding Associate's Degrees in General Studies, Liberal Arts, and Interdisciplinary Studies that do not have a concentration) necessary for gainful employment in high demand, high growth Portable Career Fields and Occupations.

As part of the Military Spouse’s Career Lifecycle, MyCAA offers the following:

Training and Education Financial Assistance: MyCAA provides a maximum education benefit of $4,000 with an annual fiscal year cap of $2,000 to assist eligible military spouses who need professional credentials to meet their Portable Career goals. Annual cap waivers are available if there is an upfront tuition cost that exceeds $2,000 (up to the maximum education benefit of $4,000).

Employment Readiness Counseling: Counseling services are provided to all military spouses married to active duty service members of all ranks, regardless of their eligibility to receive MyCAA financial assistance and their desire to pursue higher levels of education. Counseling services help military spouses identify additional sources of federal, state and local financial assistance, expanded career choices and opportunities, and support resources (e.g. child care, transportation, books, computers, equipment, supplies, etc.).

Employment Assistance and Career Services: Referrals are made to networks of military friendly employers for MyCAA spouse participants who have completed their programs of study using MyCAA funding and who are ready to seek gainful employment.


Who is eligible for MyCAA Financial Assistance?
 

  • Spouses of service members on active duty in pay grades E-1 to E-5, W-1 to W-2, and O-1 to O-2 who can start and complete their coursework while their military sponsor is on Title 10 military orders, including spouses married to members of the National Guard and Reserve Components in these same pay grades.
  • Those who are not eligible include:
    • Spouses married to service members in pay grades: E-6 and above; W-3 and above; and O-3 and above 
    • Spouses who are a member of the armed forces themselves currently on Title 10 orders 
    • Spouses who are married but legally separated (or under court order or statute of any state or US territory) from a member of the armed forces on Title 10 orders 
    • Spouses whose National Guard/Reserve Component military sponsor is in a Warning Orders/Alert, Post Deployment/Demobilization or Transition Status 
    • Spouses married to a member of the Coast Guard 
    • Spouses who are unable to start and complete their course(s) while their military sponsor is on Title 10 orders


What will MyCAA pay for? 
 

  • Tuition costs for education and training courses and examinations leading to an Associate's Degree (excluding Associate's Degrees in General Studies, Liberal Arts, and Interdisciplinary Studies that do not have a concentration), license, certificate or certification at an accredited college, university, or technical school in the United States or approved testing organization that expands employment or portable career opportunities for military spouses.
  • MyCAA will NOT pay for the following:
    • Tuition for courses and examinations that are not included in the spouse’s Education and Training Plan and those that have alredy started or been completed by the spouse
    • Reimbursements of any kind
    • Books, supplies, equipment, uniforms, computers and electronic devices of any kind
    • Student activities, events and entertainment
    • Pre-payment/deposits for future courses, unless costs are part of a block of study
    • School or college level entrance examinations, comprehensive exams and related preparatory courses
    • Courses, tests or fees normally paid by an employer as part of a job training program
    • Non-academic credit or ungraded courses, including courses taken on an audit basis or as an internship, practicum, apprenticeship, or clinical supervision; also, orientation programs that are non-academic credit or ungraded
    • Courses taken more than one time unless MyCAA has received a full refund from the school
    • Academic credit by examination tests (e.g. CLEP, etc.)
    • General Studies, Liberal Arts, Interdisciplinary Associate’s Degrees that do not have a concentration
    • Personal enrichment courses (excluding courses that are academic credit/graded electives in an approved MyCAA Spouse Education and Training Plan)
    • Transportation, lodging, child care, and medical services
    • Course Extensions (except for approved hardship waivers)
    • Study Abroad Programs (excluding programs of study offered by participating MyCAA schools on overseas military bases)
    • Private licenses (Example: A private pilot’s license would not be covered because it is for recreational use but a commercial pilot’s license would be covered because it would be used for an occupation)
    • High school completion programs, including online high school completion programs
    • CEU’s to maintain a standing in a professional organization

How can you establish a MyCAA Account? Visit the MyCAA Spouse Portal online at https://aiportal.acc.af.mil/mycaa. Provide required Spouse Profile information. A real-time DEERS eligibility check will confirm if you meet MyCAA eligibility requirements so you can move forward and establish your MyCAA Account. Those who do not pass this check will be provided additional guidance.

How can you provide MyCAA with feedback? Visit MyCAAFeedback@militaryonesource.com to send MyCAA your ideas and recommendations. Visit Contact Us to provide information about your MyCAA program experience once you have found gainful employment. 

How can you get additional information or assistance? Call 1-800-342-9647 to speak with a MyCAA Career and Education Consultant or, if you already have an established MyCAA Account, use your Message Box as the fastest way to receive information and assistance. Counselors at Military OneSource Spouse Career Center (MyCAA) are available Monday through Friday from seven am until ten pm (7am-10pm) eastern time and Saturday from ten am until six pm (10am-6pm) eastern time.

School representatives should visit the “For School” resource page on the MyCAA Spouse Portal for program eligibility, participation and contact information.

 

MyCAA Military Spouse FAQs 

MyCAA Program

1. What is the URL for the MyCAA Spouse Portal (website)?
https://aiportal.acc.af.mil/mycaa

2. What is the Military Spouse Career Advancement Account (MyCAA) program?
The Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts Program (MyCAA) is a career development and employment assistance program sponsored by the Department of Defense (DoD). MyCAA helps military spouses pursue licenses, certificates, certifications or Associate's Degree necessary for gainful employment in high demand, high growth Portable Career Fields and Occupations.

As part of the Military Spouse’s Career Lifecycle, MyCAA offers the following:

Training and Education Financial Assistance: MyCAA provides a maximum education benefit of up to $4,000 with an annual fiscal year cap of $2,000 to assist eligible military spouses in acquiring a professional credential needed to meet their Portable Career goal. Annual cap waivers are available if there is an upfront tuition cost that exceeds $2,000 (up to the maximum education benefit of $4,000).

Employment Readiness Counseling: Counseling services are provided to all military spouses married to active duty service members of all ranks, regardless of their eligibility to receive MyCAA financial assistance and their desire to pursue higher levels of education. Counseling services help military spouses identify additional sources of federal, state and local financial assistance, expanded career choices and opportunities, and necessary support resources (e.g. child care, transportation, books, computers, equipment, supplies, etc.).

Employment Assistance and Career Services: Referrals are made to networks of military friendly employers for MyCAA spouse participants who have completed their programs of study using MyCAA funding and who are ready to seek gainful employment.

3. Where is the most updated version of the MyCAA Fact Sheet?
The MyCAA Fact Sheet is located on the front page of the MyCAA Spouse Portal: https://aiportal.acc.af.mil/mycaa.

4. What does MyCAA pay for?
MyCAA pays for tuition costs for education and training courses and examinations leading to a recognized license, certificate, certification or Associate's degree with a specified concentration or major. The concentration or major for the Associate's degree cannot be in General Studies, Liberal Arts or Interdisciplinary Studies unless there is a specific concentration such as General Studies - Nursing, or General Studies - Teaching. The license, certificate/certification and Associate’s degree must be obtained from a MyCAA approved accredited college, university, or technical school in the United States or approved testing organization that expands employment or portable career opportunities for military spouses.

5. What does MyCAA NOT pay for?

  • Tuition for courses and examinations that are not included in the spouse’s Education and Training Plan and those that have already started or been completed by the spouse
  • Reimbursements of any kind
  • Books, supplies, equipment, uniforms, computers and electronic devices of any kind
  • Student activities, events and entertainment
  • Pre-payment/deposits for future courses, unless costs are part of a block of study
  • School or college level entrance examinations, comprehensive exams and related preparatory courses
  • Courses, tests or fees normally paid by an employer as part of a job training program
  • Tuition for courses and examinations that are not included in the spouse’s Education and Training Plan and those that have already started or been completed by the spouse
  • Reimbursements of any kind
  • Books, supplies, equipment, uniforms, computers and electronic devices of any kind
  • Student activities, events and entertainment
  • Pre-payment/deposits for future courses, unless costs are part of a block of study
  • School or college level entrance examinations, comprehensive exams and related preparatory courses
  • Courses, tests or fees normally paid by an employer as part of a job training program

6. Will MyCAA pay for remedial courses?
Yes. The MyCAA program will pay for a maximum of 3 remedial courses

7.What are the Terms and Conditions for spouses participating in MyCAA?
In order to open a MyCAA Account and request up to $4,000 of education financial assistance funding on a course-by-course basis, military spouses must read and electronically sign the following Spouse Terms and Conditions Agreement.

  • I agree that I am solely responsible for the establishment and management of my MyCAA Account. Under no circumstances shall I share my account username or password with anyone, including but not limited to my military sponsor or school representatives.
  • I agree to develop an Education and Training Plan in coordination with school officials. I understand that a MyCAA Career and Education Consultant is required to approve this plan prior to my requesting MyCAA financial assistance.
  • I understand that the maximum MyCAA financial assistance benefit is $4,000 and that there is a $2,000 annual fiscal year spending cap. Spending cap waivers are available if the spouse’s school requires an upfront tuition payment exceeding $2,000 (up to the maximum $4,000 education benefit).
  • I understand that MyCAA funding cannot be used to audit, to repeat a course (unless MyCAA receives a full refund from the school), or to pay for non-academic credit / ungraded courses such as college / freshman orientation programs, internships, practicums or supervised clinical assignments.
  • I understand that MyCAA funding cannot be used to audit, to repeat a course (unless MyCAA receives a full refund from the school), or to pay for non-academic credit / ungraded courses such as college / freshman orientation programs, internships, practicums or supervised clinical assignments.
  • I understand that spouses that have participated in the Career Advancement Accounts program administered by the Department of Labor and funded by the Department of Defense and Department of Labor are not eligible to participate in the MyCAA without a waiver.
  • I understand if I fail or withdraw from a course, my MyCAA Account will be suspended and no financial assistance documents can be created until I contact a MyCAA Career and Education Consultant. If a second failure or withdrawal is made, I understand that I will not be allowed to receive any further funds from MyCAA.
  • I understand that if I receive a grade of incomplete, I am required to attain a satisfactory grade within 6 months of the course end date unless a shorter term is specified by my school. I understand that my account will be suspended and no additional MyCAA funding will be provided until I complete this course.
  • I understand that waivers related to course failures, withdrawals and incompletes are authorized for “hardship” cases. Waiver requests must be signed by my military sponsor’s supervisor or higher authority and uploaded into my MyCAA Account e-File with a request for waiver approval. They must include
  1. Name/title/code of course(s) for which the wavier is requested
  2. Reason for the Wavier
  3. Name, title and command for military sponsor’s supervisor or higher authority

IN SUMMARY: I have read the above Spouse Terms and Conditions Agreement. I understand that non-compliance may result in (1) my being held responsible for tuition and examination costs; (2) indefinite suspension of my MyCAA Account; or (3) in the case of fraud, permanent closure of my MyCAA Account. I agree to follow MyCAA Guidelines and to honor these terms and conditions, including the requirement to notify MyCAA when I find gainful employment in a portable career field and occupation.

8. Are spouses required to complete their courses, certification or license in a certain timeframe?
Yes. The duration of an associate’s degree course cannot exceed 12 months and a license or certificate program cannot exceed 18 months. No exceptions can be made to exceed either of these timeframes.

9. What are MyCAA’s requirements for spouses after they finish their coursework?

  • Inform MyCAA when they receive their license, certificate, certification or Associate’s degree.
  • Seek a job in their chosen Portable Career Field and occupation.
  • Let MyCAA know when they find employment using the Contact Us page on the MyCAA Spouse Portal (https://aiportal.acc.af.mil/mycaa) -- as required in the Spouse Terms & Conditions Agreement that spouses electronically sign when they open their MyCAA Account.

10. Can spouses take graduate courses with MyCAA funding?
Spouses can take any program of study from an accredited school or institution recognized by the Department of Education or Department of Defense that leads to a license, certification, certificate or Associate’s Degree (except General Studies and Liberal Arts).

Coursework may include higher level courses needed for Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and higher level courses which serve as electives in an approved program of study.

In order to be eligible for MyCAA funding, coursework must be included in an approved MyCAA Spouse Education and Training Plan.

11. What happens if spouses need more than $4,000? Are there other funding sources?
Spouses should:

12. Can MyCAA funding be used in conjunction with other federal education benefits?
Schools are responsible for making decisions in concert with military spouses regarding which source of funding to use when multiple sources of federal education benefits are available to military spouses. To avoid invoicing errors, administrative delays and the need to make refunds to MyCAA (not the spouse), school officials should advise or refer military spouses to an expert at their school regarding which source of funding to use. This will allow spouses to request MyCAA financial assistance 60-15 days prior to course start dates if MyCAA funding is the best source of funding to use. Keep in mind that two sources of federal education benefits cannot be used to pay for the same tuition costs.

13. Are there any financial resources to help pay for books?
Spouses can find information on the following websites:

www.halfpricetextbooks.us
www.freebookexpress.com
www.textbooksfree.org
www.cheapestTextbooks.com
www.booksprice.com
www.coursesmart.com

 

14. Is MyCAA funding taxable?
No. MyCAA funding is considered a scholarship and is not subject to taxation.

15. Why isn’t the MyCAA website displaying properly?
A: The MyCAA website is not compatible with some browsers including Safari, and Google Chrome. Please access the MyCAA website using Internet Explorer version 6.0 or higher.