North Dakota to participate in pilot program for Air National Guard tuition assistance

Staff Sgt. LaMitchell Primm (right) and Airman 1st Class Christopher Novotny, both of the 119th Medical Group, run from a 54th Helicopter Squadron Bell UH-1N Iroquois helicopter after placing a litter with a simulated battle casualty onto it at Camp Gilbert C. Grafton, near Devils Lake on July 20, 2017. (U.S. Air National Guard Photo by Senior Master Sgt. David H. Lipp/Released)
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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.


“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.”

Sydney Mook has been the managing editor at the Herald since April 2021. In her role she edits and assigns stories and helps reporters develop their work for readers.

Mook has been with the Herald since May 2018 and was first hired as the Herald's higher education reporter where she covered UND and other happenings in state higher education. She was later promoted to community editor in 2019.

For story pitches contact her at or call her at 701-780-1134.
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