Young vet uses Post-9/11 GI Bill for higher education in New York City

Derek Coy enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps at age 19 and served in Iraq from August 2005 to August 2006. He used the Post 9/11 GI Bill to finish college and get an advanced degree in Middle Eastern History from the City College of New York. Credit: Bess Adler
Derek Coy enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps at age 19 and served in Iraq from August 2005 to August 2006. He used the Post 9/11 GI Bill to finish college and get an advanced degree in Middle Eastern History from the City College of New York. Credit: Bess Adler

This week marks the fifth anniversary of the signing of the Post 9/11 GI Bill.

The Post 9/11 GI Bill includes the most generous education benefits afforded to veterans since World War II, providing up front tuition payments directly to schools, a monthly living allowance and a book stipend of $1,000 per year for qualified veterans and their families.

Derek Coy, a veteran of the Marine Corps who served in Iraq from August 2005 to August 2006 and returned to school initially on the old GI Bill saw the difference when the new one kicked in and said it was “night and day.”

“The benefits that you’re afforded are phenomenal,” Coy said. “It really covers the student veteran from almost all angles.”

Coy said he was “probably one of the first” of this generation’s vets to benefit from this almost unprecedented investment in the education of the United States’ service members. 

Not only did the Post 9/11 GI help Coy finish his undergraduate degree, he was also able to use those funds to move to New York City to pursue an advanced degree in Middle Eastern History at the City College of New York.

“Never in a million years would I have thought that I would have moved from Texas to New York City to go to grad school, or really go to grad school at all,” Coy said. “It was a decision I made that I was really excited about.”

Veterans often struggle with adjusting to civilian life when they return from duty, and finding employment has been particularly tough for many, as civilian employers often don’t see how skills developed on the battlefield translate to those needed in the workforce.

Coy said going back to school is a great way for veterans to ease back into civilian life and deal with the obstacles that can arise in searching for employment. 

“It’s one of those things that really unleashes the next level of potential within veterans,” Coy said. “Once you come out, the skill set and vitality and potential you have is really second to none.”

“It really just offers a whole variety of opportunities to each veteran,” he added.

Readers can check out the stories of other veterans who have benefited from this GI Bill here.

 

Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter @danielleiat



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

NYPD: Suspect dead after two U.S. Marshals, cop…

A suspected sex offender died after a shooting at a West Village smoke shop that wounded two U.S. Marshals and an NYPD detective on Monday, officials said.

National

PHOTO: New Zealand Heral uses wrong image to…

The New Zealand Herald made a terrible mistake of using the wrong image to illustrate the tragic death of Staff Sergeant Guy Boyland – a New Zealand-born Israeli soldier who…

Local

Katz's Deli wins name battle with Florida cafe

The New York City delicatessen Katz's has won a legal battle to force a Florida restaurant to change its name, according to court documents made public on Monday.

Local

Rethinking the NYC subway map and mass transit…

Max Roberts has never ridden New York City's subway — but he's thought about system's twists and turns more than most daily riders. A 47-year-old…

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

Entertainment

'Kim Kardashian: Hollywood' game easter eggs and cheats

"Kim Kardashian: Hollywood" is the hottest game of the moment. Here are its best easter eggs as well as some tips and tricks to speed your way to the top.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

MLB

Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…

MLB

Yankees GM Brian Cashman breaks down art of…

The action frequently accelerates as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, as it will on Thursday.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

When Lisandro Melendez and his teammates from CampInteractive's after-school program were tasked with coming up with an app that would help members of their Bronx…

Food

Zagat releases '30 Under 30' list

Zagat releases a list of the people changing the food and drink industry across the country.

Wellbeing

Fist bump gets respect as clean alternative to…

Though long used to give props, the fist bump is getting some actual respect. The gesture, once dubbed a “terrorist fist jab,” could become the new…