Embracing Adventure “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” ~~Hellen Keller

Finding Out About MyCAA Through Military OneSource

Click to set up a MyCAA profile and find out the answers to questions such as if you’re eligible and what programs and institutions are available.

The military provides up to $4000 in tuition assistance to spouses who qualify through Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA). I got as far as adding my goal as mental health/substance abuse/behavior counselor on their site (sometimes it doesn’t connect, so if it’s not working just try in a couple hours). Anything more required talking to an education counselor to approve a plan. I could see on the form that I’d have to pick if I was going for licensure, credential, or an associate’s. I was going for a MA. Though that is required to get licensure, I read through the FAQ and found out that courses toward a Bachelor’s, Master’s or Ph. D. aren’t covered.

I wondered if there might be an exception for psychology since they did have counselor listed as a goal and technically the MA is required to be able to apply for licensure. But I wanted to make sure. So, I emailed the MyCAA representative at UMUC to ask. I am able to sit for the NCE (National Counseling Exam) when I’m close to graduating, but their understanding was that since that isn’t required to get the MA and isn’t part of the program of study, MyCAA wouldn’t cover the test. They recommended I call Military OneSource Career and Education Consultants (1-800-342-9647).  

I called and the guy I spoke to asked a whole bunch of questions to set up a profile before finally telling me I was an hour too early to talk to the MyCAA folks, but he would put in a note as to why I had called. They would call me, but if I wanted a faster answer, I should call them.Before he hung up, he let me know that Military OneSource provides free document translation if I need anything translated to or from German. Since that can be expensive, this was good to know.

Click to go to Military OneSource’s website where you can find information on policies and procedures, articles about a range of topics, social media tools, and resources for support.

When I called back a couple hours later, I talked to a girl who started off with the same questions and asked if someone had already set up a profile. I let her know the first guy had. At first she misheard the letters in my name, so we made sure we got those correct. Then she checked to see if the first guy had made the same mistake. He had, so she was able to fix it. Before transferring me to someone about MyCAA, she asked if I knew about Military One Source’s Services. I told her the last guy had mentioned the document translation. She said they also have counseling services including to help with health and wellness, losing weight, or a life change like if my husband decides to get out of the service.

She transferred me to a girl with MyCAA, and that’s where I got the bad news. MyCAA will not cover any courses toward a Master’s. I expected as much but it was still disappointing. The girl told me that the reason counselor is listed is that MyCAA will cover anything that’s required directly for the licensing like the test. She also said if I wanted to specialize in an area of counseling later and was taking something toward a specialization, that would be covered. It turned out she’d gone through the program herself and said that I probably won’t know my niche really is until I’m in the program, but if I decide on something after the MA that’s when they can help. Since MyCAA is only available for spouses of service members in certain paygrades, it’s unlikely I’ll still qualify by the time I finish my degree, but it’s good to know regardless. 


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2 Thoughts on “Finding Out About MyCAA Through Military OneSource

  1. Ouch! Sounds like a lot of pain to go through and a lot of time spent on being rejected/ not accepted after all. Oh well, you’re always smarter in hindsight. Hopefully another person reads this who is in the same situation so that she/he does not have to go through the ordeal of having to talk to 3 different people like you did.

    • Yep. I do know I could have used MyCAA if I wanted to do a certification program or something. At one point I was considering doing one for personal training to do that while I was in school because the woman at the gym had told me they’re always looking for trainers, but then I found the job at the daycare. I just can’t use it toward my degree program. Hopefully someone can learn from the post, either if they are in the same situation or if they might actually qualify.

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