Chapter 1606 is an educational assistance program for individuals serving in the National Guard or Reserve. Such duty typically entails drilling one weekend per month and attending a two-week Annual Training period each year.

To become eligible individuals must agree to serve for six years, obtain a high school diploma or GED, and become qualified in their military job.

A 14-year eligibility period begins when the last of the three eligibility criteria is met, which is usually MOS qualification. Individuals must remain in an active drilling status to access their benefits.

Those eligible for Chapter 1606 who are federally mobilized for one day or more get the period of the mobilization, plus an additional four months, added to their eligibility window. For example, if a soldier is mobilized for one year, his or her eligibility window would be extended to 15 years and four months, or until the soldier had exhausted his or her G.I. Bill benefits.

Members of the National Guard or Reserve who were mobilized after September 11, 2001, for a minimum of 90 days under one of the qualifying operations, are now eligible for a new G.I. Bill benefit program entitled, the Reserve Educational Assistance Program, Chapter 1607.

Chapter 1607 provides a higher payment rate than the 1606 benefit. Therefore, eligible National Guard and Reserve members should elect to use the Chapter 1607 benefit program for enrollment in VA-approved education and training programs.

A maximum of $10,692 can be collected under the Chapter 1606 program.

For detailed information concerning this benefit visit: http://www.gibill.va.gov/GI_Bill_Info/rates.htm