Bridgepoint Education's Ashford University Extends Military Benefits to Children of Fallen Soldiers

President Barack Obama has signed into law the 2009 Supplemental Appropriations bill that extends GI Bill benefits to the children of fallen soldiers.  The bill changes the current law and expands grants to survivors of soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The new benefit, known as the Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship in honor of a fallen soldier with three young children, will take effect on Aug. 1, 2009.  The law will allow children of those who have died while on active duty since 9/11 to use benefits that could have been transferred to them if their military parent had lived.  Until now, the Veterans Administration had to tell children of soldiers killed in the line of duty that they weren't eligible for the GI Bill because their father or mother did not serve long enough before they died.

In concert with the new legislation, Ashford University has extended its Military Program to include the sons and daughters of military personnel who lost their lives while serving their country, regardless of how long they served.

Ashford University's military enrollment program is structured to match the tuition assistance that is available to all qualified military personnel through the GI Bill.  Qualifying students can receive up to $4,500 per year, which covers the cost of six online courses.  The university also waives application and technology fees and pays for all books and applicable shipping costs.

As a part of the military program, Bridgepoint Education’s Ashford University also provides a specialized team of advisors who assist students with enrollment, academic and financial needs.  Bridgepoint Education, Inc. (NYSE:BPI) is a provider of postsecondary education services focused on providing higher access to higher education.
In addition to active-duty personnel, Ashford University currently offers military benefits to active-duty spouses, veterans or retirees utilizing VA benefits, vocational rehabilitation students, college-age spouses or dependents who are using survivor benefits and Department of Defense employees.

"We recognize the contributions made by our military and their families," KC Haight, Ashford University's associate vice president of Military and Corporate Development and a former member of the Armed Forces, said.  "Providing financial assistance and special support shows the university's appreciation for their service."

Last year, Ashford University was selected as one of the Military Advanced Education Magazine's Top Colleges and Universities.  The distinction placed Ashford in the top three percent of military-friendly colleges in the nation.

Based in Clinton, Iowa, Ashford University provides on-campus and online graduate and undergraduate degree programs.  More than 97 percent of its 42,000 students are earning their degrees online.

About Ashford University
Founded in 1918, Ashford University is a coeducational institution regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, with programs in education, business, accounting, criminal and social justice, computer animation and graphic design, and other areas.  The University offers undergraduate and graduate degrees, as well as a range of student activities and athletics, at its Clinton campus.  Online degree programs are available in education, organizational management, business administration, and psychology.  The University is known for its high quality yet highly affordable on-campus and online programs, with tuition fees among the lowest in the U.S. compared to other private institutions.  Its tagline is: “Higher Education Made Affordable”SM.  For more information, please visit or contact Shari Rodriguez, director of Public Relations, at 858.513.9240 x2513.

About Bridgepoint Education
Bridgepoint Education’s postsecondary education services focus on offering associate's, bachelor's, master's and doctoral programs in the disciplines of business, education, psychology, social sciences and health sciences.  Bridgepoint Education’s regionally accredited academic institutions – Ashford University and University of the Rockies – deliver their programs online as well as at traditional campuses located in Clinton, Iowa, and Colorado Springs, Colorado, respectively. For more information, please visit or contact Shari Rodriguez, director of Public Relations, at 858.668.2586 x2513.