DANTES Creates Education Benefits App

Navy members use cell phones

Information on your Defense Department education benefits is available in the palm of your hand, anytime, anywhere you want it. The new My VolEd Path mobile app is a tool aimed at increasing awareness of and access to voluntary education programs and benefits for military members. The new app serves as a discovery tool to help you begin to build personal pathways to your individual education and career goals. It also serves as another resource to demonstrate the Department of Defense (DoD) Voluntary Education (VolEd) program's commitment to ensuring you are properly informed of the educational opportunities available. The My VolEd Path mobile app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and through Google Play. You can also access the app download through MyVolEdPath.com

Tool to Help Counselors & School Representatives

One of the voluntary education community's strengths is its myriad of professional education counselors and school representatives from academic institutions under the DoD Voluntary Education Partnership Memorandum of Understanding (DoD MOU). The My VolEd Path mobile app helps these professionals empower you and other military students to navigate the vast amount of available information. Counselors and school representatives may encourage students to use the app to aid in making informed decisions on the right programs and benefits that will help them prepare and be ready to succeed while pursuing post-secondary education. The app can be used to begin the process of clearly defining education goals and connecting to those resources that will be the most beneficial throughout a member's education journey. The app may also save counselors time during advisement sessions by familiarizing students with voluntary education terminology, programs, and how to access resources.

Discovery Tool for Students

A key feature of the mobile app is the discovery tool designed to quickly assess and generate recommended programs. You can “Create a New VolEd Path” by answering a few short questions about your career and education goals. Based on these responses, you will receive program cards that introduce you to programs you may be interested in learning more about. Once those selections are made, you are taken to your personal pathway to help reach your goals.

Voluntary Education Pathways

The “My Pathway” section of the app provides you with a customized checklist to support the pursuit of your education goals. You will see a snapshot of your discovery tool selections to remind you of the options you chose. Because you are able to create multiple pathways, this reminder allows you to be clear on the pathway that corresponds to a particular goal (for example: military advancement, officer accession, college degree, etc.). Next, you'll receive the option to “Find a Counselor” and explore “Recommended Programs”.

The programs included on the “Recommended Program” list will include those voluntary education programs that best correspond to your current education level and future education goal. As you select a program, you'll be taken to an overview of how the program may help you prepare for college and career advancement, find support as you pursue schooling, and save time and money while completing degree requirements. To find more detailed program information, you can select “Learn More”. If you are ready to get started with using a program, you can select “Try Now” to be instantly connected to register for a program. You are also able to share your recommended pathways directly with their education counselor through email or social media.

Connections to Counselors

When using the app, you are able to connect to voluntary education professionals through the “Find a Counselor” feature. By selecting a branch of Service, CONUS or OCONUS, and state, you are presented with all of the education centers available in the state or location selected. The app includes additional functionality that connects directly to the mobile device's call features to allow you to contact the education center. The education center location and street address are also included. If you prefer virtual assistance, the branch of service selection will automatically populate the appropriate Virtual Education Center or voluntary education portal information.

Education Program Information & Access

Not everyone who uses the app may want to complete the discovery tool assessment. If you are simply interested in learning about of the available programs, you can select “All Benefits” from the main menu. This will bring you to an overview of all the program included in the app and links to additional program information. From here, you can also access each program by selecting “Try Now”.

Videos, Podcasts, & News

Because there are various ways learners consume information, the mobile app includes videos and audio podcasts. These resources will be updated on a regular basis and provide program benefit information and tutorials based on frequently asked questions.  The app also includes articles on various education topics from the DANTES4Military.com blog for service members. Each week, new articles are available that offer guidance, advice, encouragement, and information that supports you and other military students pursuing voluntary education.

FAQs, Resources, and Encouragement

An important aspect of promoting quality education opportunities for service members is ensuring you have adequate support. In addition to being able to “Find a Counselor”, the app provides you with connections to DANTES support resources. From any screen within the app, you can select the question mark at the top right hand corner of the screen to be connected to either chat live with a DANTES representative via instant messenger or send a message for an email response. In the “FAQ and Resources” section, you can find answers to frequently asked questions and links to helpful resources.

You and other My VolEd Path users will also benefit from positive reinforcement and periodic encouragement through badges. You can earn badges for reaching certain milestones within the app. These badges can be viewed with their profile and are also shareable on social media. To download and view the My VolEd Path mobile app, visit MyVolEdPath.com or the Apple App and Google Play Stores by searching for “My VolEd Path” or “DANTES“. For additional information, contact dantes_outreach@navy.mil.

 

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DANTES
GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at www.benefits.va.gov/gibill