North Dakota will be one of 14 states to participate in a pilot program to provide tuition assistance to members of the state’s Air National Guard.

The Air National Guard expects the Federal Tuition Assistance pilot program will begin in late 2020, according to a press release from Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D.

A tuition assistance program already exists for the Army National Guard, this pilot program will use $10.8 million in defense appropriations to give assistance to Air National Guard members.

“Tuition assistance is a critical part of the benefits we provide to active duty military personnel, and it should be provided to the members of our Guard as well,” Hoeven said in a statement.

Representatives from the North Dakota National Guard said they are pleased to be selected as a pilot state in the Air National Guard Federal Tuition Assistance program.

WDAY logo
listen live
watch live

“This will assist in recruiting and retaining top quality Airmen, not only in Fargo where we are doing pretty well, but in Minot, where we have vacancies for security forces personnel,” the Guard said in a statement. “No matter the location, we are always looking for good folks to join our team.”

The Air National Guard is expected to roll out a nationwide tuition assistance program in coming years. The announcement, made Thursday, Oct. 3, is the first stage of establishing the new Air National Guard program, according to the Hoeven release.

“Tuition assistance is an excellent recruitment tool,” Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., said in a statement. “Being able to offer some of the same benefits as others is only fair, and I applaud the Air National Guard for advancing these efforts. With a growing economy across the country and a booming economy in North Dakota, this move represents an important step toward helping the Guard compete for new members.”