The Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA) program provides up to $4,000 (over 2 years) of Financial Assistance for military spouses who are continuing their education by pursuing a license, certification, or Associates degree in a portable career field and occupation.
The Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts Program (MyCAA) is a career development and employment assistance program sponsored by the Department of Defense’s (DoD) Spouse Education and Career Opportunities (SECO) program. MyCAA helps military spouses pursue licenses, certificates, certifications, or Associates Degree necessary for gainful employment.
MyCAA Benefits for Military Spouses
- 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 – Spouse Education and Career Opportunities career coaches are available 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. Examples include the Military Spouse Employment Partnership, USAJOBS.gov, and CareerOneStop.org.
Who is eligible for MyCAA?
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, Reserve Components, and Coast Guard in these same pay grades. Military spouses of service members above O-2 are still eligible if already enrolled in a program with an education plan in place prior to promotion. Eligibility includes currently employed military spouses.
Spouses must have completed high school or obtained a GED and are required to complete their program of study within three years from the start date.
Who is Not Eligible?
- Spouses who are members of the armed forces themselves and are currently on Title 10 orders
- Spouses who married but legally separated
- Spouses whose National Guard or reserve military sponsor is in a Warning Orders/Alert, Post Deployment/ Demobilization or Transition Status
- Spouses who are unable to apply for financial assistance while their military sponsor is on Title 10 orders or before the sponsor’s date of separation
How To Apply For MyCAA
- Establish a MyCAA account by visiting the MyCAA website.
- Explore interests and career fields from education to business to paralegal to IT.
- Find a school matches your interest and offers licenses, certificates and degrees.
- Create a career and training plan.
- Work with the selected school’s admissions advisor in order to complete all the necessary steps.
- Apply for MyCAA financial assistance.
MyCAA Approved Career Fields
- Animal Services
- Automotive Services & Transportation
- Business, Finance & Administration
- Health & Human Services
- Homeland Security
- Information Technology
- Skilled Trades
- Aesthetician or Skin Care Specialist
- Make-up Artist (Theatrical & Performance)
- Mortuary Science
- Musical Instrument Repair
- Nail Technician
- Sales Manager
- Nursing (must meet certain qualifications in the Education and Training Plan)
- Other training programs listed in the MyCAA approved programs
Do spouses have to select a school that is participating?
No, but it can take up to 60 days for approval, and it is recommended to find a school that is participating. The school and only the school can apply for the MyCAA program. Spouses can encourage the schools to apply and even provide them the link to the application. These schools have an incentive to do so if it’s a difference between a military spouse attending the school or not. The easier path, however, is to choose a school that is already participating.
What will MyCAA pay for?
MyCCA will pay for an approved program’s tuition and examination fees.
What is NOT Covered by MyCAA?
- Bachelor’s degree courses
- Courses you have already started or completed
- Books, supplies, and equipment
- Computers, laptops, ipads or any kind of electronic device
- Activities, events, and entertainment
- Fees of any kind
- Ungraded courses
- Courses taken more than one time
- Reimbursement for completed training
Where can I get more information?
Contact a Spouse Education and Career Opportunities (SECO) Consultant at 1.800.342.9647