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Education and Training

 

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Compare VA-approved institutions and review other information to choose the educational program that works best for you.

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You served with honor and you’re ready to further your education and skills. If you qualify, apply for VA education and training benefits online, in person, or request an application over the phone.

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Important Information for Ashford Students

July 20, 2017 4:10 PM

Ashford University has been involved in an ongoing court case regarding its GI Bill approval with the Iowa State Approving Agency. A recent ruling from the Iowa District Court dismissed Ashford’s petition and affirmed the withdrawal of Ashford University’s online programs from GI Bill approval by the Iowa State Approving Agency. This means that classes offered by Ashford University can no longer be qualified for VA education benefits. This ruling will become final on August 16, 2017 unless Ashford University appeals the decision and the court delays implementation.

What does this mean for your GI Bill benefits?

If you are enrolled in classes at Ashford you will continue to receive benefits through the end of any class beginning on or before August 16, 2017. After that you will no longer receive GI Bill benefits, including the monthly housing allowance, for any classes at Ashford University unless Ashford University appeals and a court delays implementation of the current decision. Even if your enrollment for a class starting after August 16th was already submitted to VA, VA will not be able to pay for it. This includes payments under any GI Bill benefit program including the Post-9/11 GI Bill and the Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program.

VA does not have the legal authority to restore any GI Bill benefits you have used to attend Ashford University, even if you are not finished with your program. However, you are free to pursue your education goals at another approved school or training facility.

What resources are available to you today?

Our GI Bill Comparison Tool can help you review and compare alternatives to Ashford University if you wish to continue your education goals at another institution. If you do, remember that you must transfer to a school approved for the GI Bill to continue receiving VA education benefits, including the monthly housing allowance under the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

Here are a few more resources:

- You can view our previous emails sent over the past year.
- You may qualify for an emergency grant through the Veterans of Foreign Wars Unmet Needs program to assist with interim living expenses. VFW professional staff can also help answer education benefit questions through 1StudentVeteran@vfw.org.
- The American Legion has service officers in every state that can provide answers to questions about education benefits, federal student loans and credit transferability.
- Student Veterans of America has a network of over 1,400 student chapters at colleges and universities and their staff can provide answers to your questions.
- VA’s GI Bill Comparison Tool can help you review and compare alternative schools.
- In addition to the GI Bill Comparison Tool, you can also research schools on the U.S. Department of Education’s College Scorecard
- For free legal advice and college choice counseling, visit Veterans Education Success website or email them directly, help@VeteransEducationSuccess.org.

What can I do if I have additional questions?

Our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. If you have any other questions you can also write an email to Right Now Web.

We understand that this is a difficult situation and have tried to keep all Ashford students informed throughout this entire process. Please tag any Ashford student you may know in the comments below to make sure they are aware of what is going on, and what resources are available to them.


Updated Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

July 7, 2017 10:25 AM

The updated transcript of the June 12, 2017 Education Service Webinar is now available including answers to unanswered questions asked during the Webinar.


Yellow Ribbon Program Information Available for 2017-2018 Academic Year

July 3, 2017 3:05 PM

The Post-9/11 GI Bill Yellow Ribbon Program 2017 - 2018 list of participating schools and rates is now available.

Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

June 12, 2017 11:55 AM

The transcript of the June 7, 2017 Education Service Webinar is now available. We will be answering some of the unanswered questions and including them in an updated version of the presentation.


Yellow Ribbon Program Open Season for School Participation Ends May 15

May 10, 2017 11:00 AM

March 15 to May 15 is the open season for the Yellow Ribbon Program for the 2016-17 academic year. Schools may apply for initial participation, modify existing open-ended agreements, take no action and continue to honor the terms of existing open-ended agreements, or withdraw from the Yellow Ribbon Program. Please see the Yellow Ribbon Program home page for more information.


Revised School Certifying Official (SCO) Handbook

April 10, 2017 7:25 AM

See current revisons detailed on page 8 of the School Certifying Official Handbook.


GI Bill Benefit Delay

March 17, 2017 4:50 PM

We are experiencing some processing delays for certain Veterans and service members primarily, because we initiated a review of previously processed claims. These reviews require a number of inquiries we had to make with DoD service departments for information about individual training dates and service times. We are working with DoD and making every effort to minimize the effect of this review to our GI Bill beneficiaries.

If your school is concerned about the status of your tuition payment, or they have any questions, please have your school certifying official call us on the School Certifying Official hotline. For more information, call the GI Bill Hotline at 1-888-442-4551.


Yellow Ribbon Program Open Season

March 15, 2017 8:45 AM

From March 15 to May 15, 2017 we are accepting new Yellow Ribbon Program agreements, modifications to existing open-ended agreements, or withdrawal from participation. See our Yellow Ribbon Program schools web page for instructions and forms.


Updated Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

March 14, 2016 4:05 PM

The updated transcript of the March 1, 2017 Education Service Webinar is now available including answers to unanswered questions asked during the Webinar.


Post-9/11 GI Bill Rate Increase for August 2017

March 13, 2017 4:25 PM

As you may know, the maximum amounts for tuition and fees under the Post-9/11 GI Bill change every academic year. For academic year 2017-2018, the maximum annual reimbursement for those attending a private or foreign school increased from $21,970.46 to $22,805.34. Additionally, the monthly housing allowance for those taking online training exclusively (no classroom instruction) increased to $840.50 per month. These increases are effective August 1, 2017 - July 31, 2018. Remember: while BAH rates for DoD personnel are effective in January, GI Bill beneficiaries will not see the change in MHA until Sept (for terms that started on or after Aug 1). More information can be found on our Post-9/11 rates page


Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

March 6, 2017 1:45 PM

The transcript of the March 1, 2017 Education Service Webinar is now available. We will be answering some of the unanswered questions and including them in an updated version of the presentation.


Important Information for Spouses Regarding Fry Scholarship Eligibility

March 6, 2017 11:20 AM

A new provision was signed into law in December that extends benefit eligibility for spouses of Servicemembers who died in the line of duty between 9/11/01 and 12/31/05. As a result, these spouses will now be eligible to use their remaining Fry benefits until January 1, 2021.

For spouses that elected to use the Survivors and Dependents Educational Assistance benefit instead of Fry, you may be eligible to switch from DEA to Fry. More information can be found in this letter or on our updated Fry Scholarship page.

If you have any questions regarding this change, or your eligibility, please call the Education Hotline at 1-888-442-4551.


Army Reservists and GI Bill Eligibility Update

February 27, 2017 10:20 AM

The Department of the Army recently announced that they are now counting Active Duty Training (ADT), Active Duty Special Work (ADSW), and Active Duty Operational Support-Reserve Component (ADOS-RC) performed under section 12301(d) of title 10, United States Code, after September 10, 2001 as qualifying service for the Post-9/11 GI Bill. As a result, certain individuals may gain eligibility for Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits, be eligible to receive additional benefits as a result of a higher eligibility level (%), or establish eligibility for Transfer of Education Benefits (TEB).

Army Reserve Soldiers should review their ADT, ADSW, and ADOS-RC in the Reserve Component Manpower System (RCMS) self-service site or contact their Unit Administrator, S-1, or Reserve Personnel Administration Center to ensure that service is reflected accurately.

Those impacted will not need to reapply with VA for benefits. Corrections to service should be automatically transferred to VA and reviewed when beneficiary enrollments and/or applications are submitted for processing.

As always, contact our Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) if you have questions about GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement.


Expansion of Resident Rate Requirements

February 23, 2017 11:55 AM

Congress recently passed the Jeff Miller and Richard Blumenthal Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2016 - this law expanded the coverage of who is eligible for the resident rate at public institutions of higher learning.

Expanded an existing category

• Fry Scholarship beneficiaries who live in the state in which the public institute of higher learning (IHL) is located were already covered but now they are no longer required to enroll within three years of the Servicemember’s death, and the Servicemember does not have to have served a minimum of ninety days on active duty.

Added a totally new category

• Dependents who live in the state in which the public IHL is located and are using transferred Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits while the transferor (Servicemember) is on active duty are now covered and must also be charged the resident rate

All states and territories are working with VA to comply with the law. To help with your educational planning and ensure transparency, we have a listing of each state, territory, and district’s status on our website, http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/417.asp. This page will be updated regularly so that you can follow any progress and know what is going on in your particular state, territory, district, or school.


Release of the Revised School Certifying Official (SCO) Handbook

February 23, 2017 11:00 AM

Education Service is pleased to announce the release of the updated School Certifying Official Handbook. The Handbook has been revised to include additional information and updates suggested by School Certifying Officials through their Education Liaison Representatives. A list of revisions can be found on page 8 of the handbook, which can be accessed and/or printed from the School Training and Information Resources page of the GI Bill website.


Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Dates

February 1, 2017 8:45 AM

The proposed dates for the School Certifying Official Webinars for 2017 are as follows:.

February 22nd.
June 7th
September 13th
November 15th

A link will be sent to the participants prior to the event.


Updated Information for Ashford Students

January 9, 2017 4:15 PM

The Iowa State Approving Agency (IA SAA) determined in May 2016 that they did not have jurisdiction to continue to approve Ashford’s online programs for GI Bill benefits and notified the school of its intent to withdraw approval of those programs.

In early August 2016, Ashford filed an amended legal petition to extend approval of their online programs through the Iowa Department of Education until at least June 1, 2017. The Iowa District Court provided a temporary stay to allow time for the court to review the petition and issue a ruling.

Current Status

The stay is still in force. This means you may continue to receive GI Bill benefits for enrolling in classes at Ashford. However, depending upon the judge’s decision, you may not be able to receive GI Bill benefits after a final decision is made. It is important to note that VA is not directly involved in the lawsuit and therefore does not have all the information regarding this ongoing situation. We are unable to predict an outcome but want to make sure that our beneficiaries are aware that there is a risk that Ashford could lose approval for its online programs.

Although the ongoing stay gives you additional time to use your benefits, please consider where you are in your educational pursuits and explore possible alternatives in case Ashford loses approval for GI Bill benefits. Unfortunately, VA does not have the legal authority to restore any GI Bill entitlement you have used to attend Ashford University should they lose approval for their online programs.

Please take advantage of the resources below as you consider your options:

- Our GI Bill Comparison Tool can help you review and compare alternatives to Ashford. 

Student Veterans of America is offering assistance to Ashford students. They have a network of over 1,400 student chapters at colleges and universities and their staff can provide answers to your questions.

- The American Council on Education’s Military Guide is available for any questions you may have about earning school credit for your service.

As always, our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter.


Attention Dodge City Community College Flight Program Students

January 4, 2017 2:45 PM

Effective December 28, 2016, based on Dodge City Community College’s continued non-compliance with GI Bill approval requirements, the Kansas Commission on Veterans Affairs, has withdrawn approval for the AAS Flight Instructor Program.

What does this mean for your GI Bill benefits?

This means you can no longer receive GI Bill benefits, including the monthly housing allowance, for continued enrollment in the AAS Flight Instructor Program at Dodge City Community College. This includes payments under any GI Bill benefit program including the Post-9/11 GI Bill and Montgomery GI Bill Active Duty (MGIB)-AD, Chapter 30 Program. VA does not have the legal authority to restore any GI Bill benefits you have used to attend this flight program or to continue monthly benefit payments beyond December 28, 2016. You are, however, free to pursue your education goals at another school or training facility with an approved flight instructor program. I understand this uncertainty creates a difficult situation for you and I wish to assist you as much as possible in continuing your educational path.

Continuing your Education:

As you continue your education, you may consider transferring to another institution. In the past, we've published tips on choosing a college.

Start with a Reliable College Search Tool:

- The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' college search engine, "GI Bill College Comparison Tool"

- The U.S. Department of Education has a college search engine called the “College Scorecard,” which has information on school outcomes.

Access College Counseling Resources:

- You may be eligible to receive personalized counseling and support through VA’s Education and Career Counseling program to help you identify high-quality and reputable institutions that align with your educational goals.

- Department of Education also offers personalized counseling and support to eligible veterans through Veterans Upward Bound and Education Opportunity Centers

What can I do if I have additional questions?

Our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. - 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter @VAVetBenefits.


Updated Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

December 19, 2016 4:15 PM

The updated transcript of the November 17, 2016 Education Service Webinar is now available including answers to unanswered questions asked during the Webinar.


Important Information Regarding ACICS’ Recognition

December 13, 2016 3:15 PM

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) announced on December 12, 2016 its decision to withdraw ACICS’ recognition as a federally recognized agency for several compliance failures, including its failure to provide appropriate consumer protection measures. If they execute new agreements with ED, affected schools can maintain Title IV Federal Student Aid eligibility for a period of up to 18 months.

VA may also continue paying education benefits for up to18 months to students attending schools and programs accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS), as long as those schools are in good standing with their respective State Approving Agency (SAA).

Affected students will receive email updates as information becomes available. Students in need of information about their benefits should contact the Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551. VA will provide updates on our website and on our GI Bill Facebook page.

FAQs
How does this impact me?
Recent legislation allows the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to continue paying GI Bill benefits for up to 18 months following the withdrawal of recognition of an accrediting agency, as in the case of ACICS, while the school seeks alternate accreditation or program approval.

VA is working in close collaboration with the Department of Education to monitor the progress toward accreditation of each school affected by this decision.

You should be aware that should your school not achieve new federally-recognized accreditation or receive approval from your State Approving Agency (SAA) as a non-accredited educational institution; the approval to use your benefits at that school may end after no more than 18 months.

You may want to consider your education goals and decide whether your current school and program will meet your need for the next 18 months or if you should consider other options, courses, and/or schools. Remember: Even if your school remains approved for GI Bill benefits, it is no longer accredited by a federally recognized accrediting agency. This may affect your ability to transfer credits to another institution, or sit for state licensing exams, as well as other potential impacts. Always keep in mind details such as whether other schools will accept that school’s credits, what kind of accreditation (regional or national) another school has, and whether that school provides you the flexibility you need for your career goals.

Where can I get more information?
If you want to learn more about what happens regarding student aid from the Department of Education (Pell Grants, federal student loans, etc.) when ED withdraws federal recognition of an accreditor, please read ED’s blog post, “What College Accreditation Changes Mean for Students”.   

Who should I contact with questions about my benefits?
As always, please feel free to contact our Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement, or join the conversation on our Facebook and Twitter pages.
 
Does VA have tools to help students like me?
VA has many tools you can use to help you make the best decision regarding your benefits:
• Our GI Bill Comparison Tool can help you review and compare alternative schools and programs.
• Contact Student Veterans of America. They have a network of over 1,400 student chapters at colleges and universities and their staff can provide answers to your questions.
• The Department of Education (ED) has an announcements page with information for student Veterans.
• The State Approving Agencies are working with schools to identify those that will accept transfers as appropriate and possible.  
• There are several Veteran Service Organizations (VSOs) that provide free, professional assistance to veterans and their families. Many organizations have service officers in every state that can provide answers to questions about education benefits, federal student loans and credit transferability. To find a Veteran Service Officer near you click on the following link: https://www.va.gov/vso/.

Info for Students Attending Minnesota School of Business (MSB) and Globe University

December 8, 2016 3:20 PM

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) issued letters on Dec. 6, 2016, to Globe University and the Minnesota School of Business (MSB) notifying them that ED has denied recertification of each institution’s eligibility to participate in the federal student aid programs. ED took this step after finding that Globe and MSB are ineligible to participate in the federal student aid programs because they have been judicially determined to have committed fraud involving federal student aid funds. In addition, ED determined that Globe and MSB substantially misrepresented the nature of their criminal justice programs and that they substantially misrepresented their students’ ability to transfer credits earned at MSB and Globe to other institutions.

What does this mean for your GI Bill benefits?

This action does not immediately impact your GI Bill benefits; however, these schools are under further review by State Approving Agencies and VA to determine if they should retain GI Bill approval.

I understand this uncertainty creates a difficult situation for you, and wish to assist you as much as possible in continuing your educational path. I will stay in touch with any additional developments. The Department of Education has more on the reasons behind Globe University and Minnesota School of Business’ here. We will do all we can to continue to provide information to you on your options.

Student Loan Discharge:

You can seek to get your federal student loans discharged. Depending on your student status and your interactions with Globe and MSB, you may be eligible to have your loans forgiven, cancelled or discharged and may be eligible to be reimbursed for loans you already paid. Here are options that may apply to you. Visit StudentAid.gov/borrower-defense to learn more about the eligibility requirements and how to apply for loan relief.

Continuing your Education:

As you continue your education, you may consider transferring to another institution. In the past, we’ve published tips on choosing a college .

Start with a Reliable College Search Tool:

- The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ college search engine, “GI Bill College Comparison Tool”.

- The U.S. Department of Education has college search engine called the “College Scorecard,” which has information on school outcomes.

Access College Counseling Resources:

- You may be eligible to receive personalized counseling and support through VA’s Education and Career Counseling program to help you identify high-quality and reputable institution that aligns with your educational goals.

- Department of Education also offers personalized counseling and support to eligible veterans through Veterans Upward Bound and Education Opportunity Centers.

What can I do if I have additional questions?

Our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter @VAVetBenefits.


Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

November 23, 2016 1:10 PM

The transcript of the November 17, 2016 Education Service Webinar is now available. We will be answering some of the unanswered questions and including them in an updated version of the presentation on 12/7.

What can I do if I have additional questions?

Our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook page or follow us onTwitter @VAVetBenefits.


Important Resources for Students Affected By ITT Closure

November 21, 2016 2:20PM

Here are some valuable resources for students impacted by the closure of ITT Tech. Some of these resources, particularly the VSO resources, were discussed on our Facebook Live event on September 22nd. More information can be found below.

Helping Chart The Way Forward for ITT Students

We want to make you aware of potential resources that may be available to assist you with ITT’s closure.

Options for Federal Student Loans: Depending on your student status and your interactions with ITT, you may be eligible to have your federal student loans forgiven, cancelled or discharged and may be eligible to be reimbursed for loans you already paid. Here are four different options that may apply to you:

- School Closure Discharge: If you were enrolled when ITT closed or withdrew on or after May 9, 2016, visit StudentAid.gov/closedschool to learn if you meet all of the requirements.

- Misleading Information: If your school misled you when you obtained a federal student loan, you may be eligible for what is known as a Borrower Defense Discharge. Visit StudentAid.gov/borrower-defense.

- False Certification: If ITT took out a federal student loan in your name without your permission, or registered you for a program that prepared you for an occupation that you could not enter because, for example, you lacked a GED or had been convicted of a felony, you may be eligible to discharge the loans you took for that program. To learn more, visit StudentAid.gov/forgiveness. If you believe you qualify, contact your loan servicer to request a discharge application. Learn more about loan servicers by visiting StudentAid.gov/servicer.

- Total and Permanent Disability or public service: You may also be eligible for a discharge or forgiveness for part or all of federal student loans if you are totally disabled (visit StudentAid.gov/forgiveness), working in a non-profit, government, or military job visit StudentAid.gov/publicservice), or working as a teacher (visit StudentAid.gov/teach-forgive

Not making enough money to pay your loans?  The Education Department offers Income - Driven Repayment Plans to lower your monthly payments based on your income. Learn more by visiting StudentAid.gov/IDR.

The U.S. Department of Education recently announced plans to automatically restore semesters of Pell Grant eligibility for students whose institutions closed while they are enrolled. In the coming weeks, the Department will release more details before beginning the restoration process. To learn more about limits on Pell Grant eligibility, visit StudentAid.gov/pell-limit. If you have immediate questions about any of these programs, call 1-800-4FED-AID.


Star Career Academy Closed

November 17, 2016 9:30AM

As of Tuesday, November 15, Star Career Academy closed, discontinuing instruction at all of their campuses.

This means you can no longer receive GI Bill benefits, including the monthly housing allowance, for classes. At this time, VA does not have the legal authority to restore any GI Bill benefits you have used to attend these schools, or to continue monthly benefit payments beyond the date of school closure. You are free to pursue your education goals at another school or training facility.

No debts will be created against you because of the school closure. You will only have to repay benefits if you dropped one or more classes prior to the date on which the school closed or enrolled in a future term and were issued a books and supplies stipend for that term. The GI Bill Comparison Tool can help you review and compare alternative schools. As always, our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for questions about your GI Bill benefits, any overpayments, and remaining entitlement.

Check Out Our New Choosing A School Guide!

October 26, 2016 2:30PM

The new version includes information about job placement promises vs. reality, descriptions of different types of schools such as non-profit and for-profit schools and options that aren't necessarily a college or university.

See it here: http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/docs/factsheets/Choosing_a_School.pdf

Pennsylvania Strike Update

October 25, 2016 2:10 PM

The strike has ended and classes were scheduled to resume as normal yesterday (Monday). As a reminder, GI Bill benefits will be paid as scheduled.


Faculty Strike at Pennsylvania Schools

October 19, 2016 2:00 PM

We were notified of a strike by faculty members at fourteen Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL) in Pennsylvania. VA considers a strike as a school closure “due to an emergency situation” and as such the Secretary of Veterans Affairs is authorized to continue housing payments for affected students for up to 28 days. The following schools are affected:

Bloomsburg University                                   Kutztown University 
California University of Pennsylvania              Lockhaven University 
Cheyney University                                       Mansfield University 
Clarion University                                         Millersville University 
East Stroudsburg University                         Shippensburg University 
Edinboro University                                      Slippery Rock University 
Indiana University of Pennsylvania                West Chester University

Impact to you:

If your school is one of the schools involved, VA will consider your attendance as continuous and your payment will not be affected - assuming your enrollment was submitted prior to the closure.

Beneficiaries Using Chapter 33 (Post-9/11 GI Bill) and Chapter 35 (Survivors and Dependents Educational Assistance Program)
As long as your enrollment was submitted by your school prior to the incident, no further action is necessary to receive continued payment.

Beneficiaries Using Chapter 30 or 1606 (Montgomery GI Bill) or 1607 (Reserve Educational Assistance Program)
You should continue to verify your enrollment until further notice as if your school did not close, doing this will ensure that your payment will not be affected. To verify your enrollment, use the WAVE website or call 1-877-VACERT.

We are actively monitoring the situation and we post updates on our website. If you have any further questions about your GI Bill benefits, please contact our Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST).


Natural Disaster Guidance - Hurricane Matthew

October 7, 2016 2:28 PM

If your school is, or was, temporarily closed due to Hurricane Matthew, VA will consider your attendance as continuous and your payment will not be affected.

Beneficiaries Using Chapter 33 (Post-9/11 GI Bill) or Chapter 35 (Survivors and Dependents Educational Assistance Program)

As long as the enrollment was submitted prior to the incident, no further action is necessary to receive continued payment.

Beneficiaries Using Chapter 30 or 1606 (Montgomery GI Bill) or Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP)

Should continue to verify their attendance until further notice as if the school did not close, doing this will ensure that payment is not affected. Students may verify their attendance, using the WAVE website or by calling 1-877-VACERT.

Please contact our Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits. If you’re unable to contact us by phone you can send us a secure inquiry at Right Now Web and place “Hurricane” in the subject line.

Please note: If the school remains open, but the student is unable to attend (i.e., if the student has to relocate as a result of the natural disaster), VA is unable to continue payment to a student. When the student is no longer pursuing classes, the school must report the termination to VA as soon as possible.


Additional Resources if You Are an ITT Student

September 28, 2016 1:25 PM

We’re writing to give you some additional resources available to you. We will continue to look for ways to assist you as you work to overcome ITT’s sudden closure.

Knowing that not only are you without a school, but also without the housing allowance to help pay your bills, we recognize this may put you at risk of being unable to stay in your home.

If you face the possibility of losing your residence, please contact our National Call Center for Homeless Veterans at 1-877-4AID-VET (877-424-3838), visit the nearest VA Medical Center and ask to speak with someone from the homeless program, or visit va.gov/homeless for information about our Veterans Health Administration’s homeless programs. If you are at imminent risk of homelessness, you may also contact a local Supportive Services for Veterans Families (SSVF) provider. SSVF can provide services and financial assistance if you qualify. Be sure to frequently visit their website for updated announcements. You may also ask for help at your local Regional Office or Vet Center. The locations of both can be found here. This brochure has some further information to help you with your decisions.

Our last email also told you about a Facebook Live broadcast to address your questions. We partnered with Student Veterans of America, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and the American Legion to talk about the GI Bill and address your concerns. I encourage you to watch the video on our GI Bill Facebook page and ask any questions about resources in the comments section.

As you know by now, our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for questions about your GI Bill benefits, any overpayments, and remaining entitlement. As referenced above, we are answering your questions on our Facebook page or you can follow us on Twitter.


ACICS's Recognition as a Nationally Accredited Agency Was Terminated

September 27, 2016 10:40 AM

You may have seen or heard that the Department of Education has terminated ACICS’s recognition as a nationally accredited agency because of scrutiny from the Department of Education (ED) for allegedly failing to provide consumer protection measures. See affected schools.

How does this impact me?

GI Bill benefits may only be used at higher education institutions that are accredited by a federally recognized accreditor. Fortunately, just this week, the Congress passed and it is expected the President will sign legislation that provides an 18-month grace period for schools to seek accreditation by another federally recognized accreditor. Bottom line – you can continue to attend school using your GI Bill for another 18 months.

What happens while my school seeks alternate accreditation?

This recent legislation allows the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to continue GI Bill benefits for up to 18 months following the withdrawal of recognition of an accrediting agency such as ACICS. This means you can continue to receive GI Bill benefits for up to 18 months while your school seeks alternate accreditation or program approval.

How did this happen?

ED recently released a report to the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI) recommending ED no longer recognize ACICS as an accreditor. NACIQI, a federal advisory committee that reviews all accrediting agencies for federal purposes, reviewed this report and made its own recommendation to end federal recognition of ACICS. ED has reviewed the report and NACIQI recommendations and has made the determination to terminate ACICS’ federal recognition.

What’s the current status?

If ACICS does not appeal to the Secretary of Education, or if the appeal is taken but the Secretary of Education concurs in the Senior Department Official’s negative decision, ACICS will lose federal recognition. There is no time limit for the Secretary to make a decision if an accreditor appeals the decision of the Senior Department Official. During the entire appeal process, ACICS would remain a recognized accrediting body and there would be no impact on Veterans benefits.

Where can I get more information?

If you want to learn more about what happens regarding student aid from the Department of Education (Pell Grants, federal student loans, etc.) when ED withdraws federal recognition of an accreditor, please read ED’s blog post, “What College Accreditation Changes Mean for Students” on their website.

What is VA doing?

VA is actively monitoring this situation and has worked with Congress and with the Department of Education, Department of Defense, and the State Approving Agencies to identify solutions that would mitigate disruption in your educational pursuits in the event ACICS loses federal recognition. As always, please feel free to contact our Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement, or join the conversation on our Facebook page and Twitter pages.

What should you do?

At this point nothing changes for you for at least the next 18 months. We would, however, suggest you may want to re-evaluate your educational goals and decide that your current school and program will either meet your need for the next 18 months or that you may want to consider other options, courses and/or schools. We would suggest leveraging some of the tools we have developed on the GI Bill website such as CareerScope to help evaluate your interests and aptitudes, our ‘Choosing the Right School’ guide, the brief video ‘Know Before You Go’ and finally our GI Bill Comparison Tool that provides a lot of information on every school approved for the GI Bill. Always keep in mind details such as will other schools accept that school’s credits, what kind of accreditation (regional or national) and does that school provide you the flexibility you need for your career goals.

We will continue to stay in touch and send updates as soon as they occur so you can make the choices you need to make with the best information available. As in all situations like this, it is important that you do what is necessary to plan for all possible outcomes.


New Rates Published

September 27 2016 8:00 AM

The maximum tuition and fee amounts for the Montgomery GI Bill - Active Duty, Montgomery GI Bill - Selected Reserve, REAP, and Survivors' and Dependents' Educational Assistance Program are now available on the Rate Tables Page.


Important Update for Ashford University Students

September 16, 2016 2:40 PM

Background

To recap, Ashford University closed their residential campus in Clinton, Iowa, on June 30, 2016. Based on Ashford’s closure, it was determined that the Iowa State Approving Agency (IA SAA) did not have jurisdiction to continue to approve Ashford’s online programs for GI Bill benefits.

In early August, Ashford filed an amended legal petition to extend approval of their online programs through the Iowa Department of Education until at least June 1, 2017. The Iowa District Court provided a stay until September 18, 2016 to allow time for the court to review the petition and issue a ruling.

Current Status

A judge has temporarily extended the stay past September 18, 2016 until he issues a final decision, which could happen at any time.

This means you may continue to receive GI Bill benefits for any classes that begin on or after September 18, 2016. However, depending upon the judge’s decision, you may not be able to receive GI Bill benefits after a final decision is made.

Given the fact that Ashford has not provided any new information showing how they meet regulatory requirements needed to operate in Iowa, there is a high-risk that Ashford could lose approval for their online programs.

Although this gives you additional time to use your benefits, please still take the time now to consider where you are in your educational pursuits and how to best move forward. Unfortunately, VA does not have the legal authority to restore any GI Bill entitlement you have used to attend Ashford University should they lose approval for their online programs. Please take advantage of the resources below as you make your decisions.

- Our GI Bill Comparison Tool can help you review and compare alternatives to Ashford.

- Student Veterans of America is offering assistance to Ashford students. They have a network of over 1,400 student chapters at colleges and universities and their staff can provide answers to your questions.

- The American Council on Education’s Military Guide is available for any questions you may have about earning school credit for your service.

As always, our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter.


More Information Concerning ITT Tech's Closure

September 13, 2016 3:15 PM 

As you are acutely aware by now, ITT has announced that it has discontinued operations at all campuses. We're providing updates on resources available for you to use to re-map your plan to continue your education and otherwise overcome your school’s sudden closure.

This is also to let you know that we are listening. Whether it’s your calls to the Education Call Center, comments on the GI Bill Facebook page, or by other means, we are paying attention to you. We are contacting and working with our partners at Veteran Service Organizations, Department of Education, the State Approving Agencies, and others to make you aware of all potential resources that are available to assist you in achieving your educational goals.

We will be doing a Facebook Live broadcast in the near future to share information and answer all your questions…more specifics on that to come.

As a reminder, VA can no longer pay you your housing allowance until such time as you are enrolled in another GI Bill approved educational institution. You should also be aware that there is the possibility an overpayment was created in your account. If your enrollment was submitted for an upcoming term, you may have already received benefits (books and supplies) for a term you are now unable to complete. If this happened, you will receive a letter from VA explaining actions to take in order to resolve any potential issue.

Of Note: If you are a GI Bill user who also has federal student loans, you need to make decisions about what to do next; if you transfer you may not be able to receive a “Closed School Discharge” of your federal student loans.

The Department of Education shared this on their site:

- If you are currently or were recently enrolled at ITT, you may be eligible to have your federal student loans for your program at ITT discharged. Your federal loan debt will be wiped away and you will have the option of restarting your education somewhere new. We will post and update information about how to receive a discharge at our ITT announcements page.

 - If you wish to continue and complete your program at a different school – especially if you are close to graduating – you may be able to transfer your credits. It is important to note that transferring your credits may limit your ability to have your federal loans discharged. Closed school discharge may be an option if you enroll in a different program that does not accept your ITT credits

Here is an updated list of resources available:

GI Bill Comparison Tool can help you review and compare alternatives to ITT.

Student Veterans of America have a network of over 1,400 student chapters at colleges and universities and their staff can provide answers to your questions. They have a website specifically for you with contact information.

Department of Education (ED) has an announcements page with information on how former ITT students can continue their education, apply for closed school loan discharges, retrieve student records, and more. They will continue to update this information for affected students. ED has several webinars planned – more information on those at the link - and VA will be participating to answer your questions. 

State Approving Agencies are working with schools to identify those that will accept transfers as appropriate and possible.

If you took out a federal student loan to supplement your GI Bill, you may be eligible for a “Closed School Discharge,” of that loan but you need to be aware of when to apply…Veterans Education Success has more on this on their website; click “Advice to ITT Students.”

ITT has a listing of institutions that have expressed an interest in helping students complete their programs of study. This list will be updated daily.

We will continue to look for ways to assist you in overcoming this obstacle and we will continue to stay in touch. If you know any students or former students not receiving our emails, please forward this information to them. As always, our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for questions about your GI Bill benefits, any overpayments, and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter @VAVetBenefits.


Important Information From Department of Education Regarding ITT Educational Services, Inc.

September 7, 2016

The Department of Education will be holding informational webinars regarding the ITT closure and the way forward.


Effective Sep 6, 2016, ITT Technical Institute has discontinued operations at ALL campuses.

September 7, 2016

What does this mean for your GI Bill benefits?

This means you can no longer receive GI Bill benefits, including the monthly housing allowance, for any future classes at ITT. Even if your enrollment for the upcoming term was already submitted to VA for classes at ITT beginning after the end of the summer quarter, VA cannot pay for it. This includes payments under any GI Bill benefit program including the Post-9/11 GI Bill and the Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program. VA does not have the legal authority to restore any GI Bill benefits you have used to attend ITT, even if you are not finished with the classes this term. You are, however, free to pursue your education goals at another school or training facility.

What resources are available to you today?

Our GI Bill Comparison Tool can help you review and compare alternatives to ITT Tech to continue your education goals. You must transfer to a new school approved for the GI Bill to continue receiving VA education benefits, including the monthly housing allowance under the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

What can I do if I have additional questions?

Our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter. The Department of Education has more information about ITT’s closure and as Secretary King states, we will do all we can to continue to provide information to you on your options.


Critical Information for Students Attending ITT Technical Institute Campuses in California

September 2, 2016

The California State Approving Agency for Veterans Education (CSAAVE), the agency responsible for the approval of GI Bill benefits in California, has disapproved VA education benefits at all California ITT campuses effective September 1, 2016.

What does this mean for your GI Bill benefits?

This action by CSAAVE means you can no longer receive GI Bill benefits, including the monthly housing allowance, for any class beginning after September 1, 2016. Even if your enrollment was already submitted to VA for classes beginning after that date, VA cannot pay for it. This includes payments under any GI Bill benefit program including the Post-9/11 GI Bill and the Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program.

Unfortunately, VA does not have legal authority to restore GI Bill entitlement you have used to attend ITT Tech.

What resources are available to you today?

- California is providing guidance to students discharging their federal student loans and can help you obtain transcripts. If you have questions or need additional information, you can call them toll-free at (888) 370-7589 or visit their website at www.bppe.ca.gov.

- California encourages Veterans and beneficiaries using the GI Bill at a California ITT campus to visit their website: www.calvet.ca.gov/VetServices/Pages/GI-Bill-Suspension-Information.aspx. Questions about the withdrawal of CSAAVE approval at your campus may be e-mailed to CSAAVE at: csaaveinfo@calvet.ca.gov.

- Our GI Bill Comparison Tool can help you review and compare alternatives to ITT Tech. You must transfer to a new school approved for the GI Bill to continue receiving VA education benefits, including the monthly housing allowance under the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

What can I do if I have additional questions?

Our Education Call Center is available at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter.

This update is based on our current information from California but is subject to change. We will post any new developments here as soon as we receive them.

Important Announcement for GI Bill Students Attending ITT Educational Services, Inc.

August 25, 2016

The Department of Education (ED) announced today that they are imposing new and significant requirements on ITT Educational Services, Inc.’s (ITT) continued participation in Title IV, Higher Education Act (HEA) programs (i.e., federal student aid programs such as Pell Grants and Federal Direct Loans) that includes the GI Bill.

What did ED announce?

First, ED has placed ITT on what is known as, Heightened Cash Monitoring 2 (HCM2). It is the highest level of financial monitoring. Under HCM2 the named school will no longer receive Title IV funds from ED in advance. You can learn more about HCM2 and the restrictions it places on a school by visiting ED’s website.

Next, ED also announced it is requiring that ITT post an additional $150 million of “surety,” which means the school needs to put up cash or a letter of credit from a financial institution as an insurance policy with ED in case the institution’s financial situation worsens. You can learn more about what, why and when ED requires a letter of credit by visiting their website. According to ED, “the most common reason why an institution is required to remit a letter of credit is because they are not deemed financially responsible.”

Finally, in order for ITT to continue to receive Title IV funds, ED has required a number of reporting and operational requirements, such as restricting campuses from enrolling new Title IV students and requiring ITT to provide “teach-out agreements” – an arrangement that identifies other institutions where students can continue their education programs if that becomes necessary.

What is the Impact to GI Bill Benefits?

At this point ED’s actions do not directly affect GI Bill benefits. However, these actions do raise significant concerns about the financial viability of ITT. It’s important that students understand that if ITT goes out of business before they complete their education, they will not be able to use their GI Bill benefits to keep attending that school and under this scenario, a student would no longer be able to pursue a course of education at that school. Finding another school where a student can complete his or her educational objectives may take time as not every school offers the same programs as ITT. Also, it is not guaranteed that another school offering the program a student is pursuing will accept transfer credits from ITT.

Bottom line, while ED’s actions do not directly affect a student’s ability to use GI Bill benefits at ITT at this time, they should carefully consider the potential impact that ED’s actions may have on whether they can achieve their educational goals by continuing to attend ITT .

Please keep in mind that VA cannot restore GI Bill benefits used at ITT if for some reason ITT closes its doors before a student achieves his or her educational goals there.

What is VA doing?

First, VA is actively monitoring this situation and continues to work with ED to assess any further developments regarding ITT and any associated impact on our delivery of GI Bill benefits.

Next, we notified current ITT students directly, and reached out to prospective students by placing a caution flag for the affected institution on the GI Bill Comparison Tool. If a prospective student searches for “ITT” today he or she will notice a caution flag for Heightened Cash Monitoring and more. These caution flags are intended to alert potential students of a school’s status and encourage them to carefully consider the school’s status before enrolling in its education program. Technically, a caution flag means VA or other federal agencies like ED or the Department of Defense have applied increased regulatory or legal scrutiny or additional requirements to an education program.

As always, GI Bill students are free to contact our Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST). While we cannot counsel GI Bill students on which school to attend and why, they are encouraged to call with any questions about GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. Also, please join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter.


VA Joint Symposium Meeting Minutes

August 18, 2016 1:45 PM

A symposium was held in early August to assist with opening the communication lines between government and service organizations, and to enhance the dialogue as to how to best protect the interests of our Veteran students. Meeting minutes can be found here.  

Updated Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

 

June 30, 2016 12:15 PM

The updated transcript of the June 2, 2016 Education Service Webinar is now available including answers to unanswered questions asked during the Webinar.


Yellow Ribbon Program Information Available for 2016-2017 Academic Year

June 29, 2016 3:15 PM

The Post-9/11 GI Bill Yellow Ribbon Program 2016 - 2017 list of participating schools and rates is now available.

Updated Information for Students Attending Ashford University Online

June 27, 2016 2:30 PM

This is the latest development in Ashford University’s approval for GI Bill benefits:

The short answer is the current dilemma is averted for now and our GI Bill students can continue to attend Ashford until the California State Approving Agency makes a decision between now and the middle of September.

The longer answer is the Iowa State Approving Agency granted a stay of withdrawal for the next 90 days effective June 20, 2016, which pushes the June 30th withdrawal date to either September 18th, (90 calendar days from the date of the letter), or until the California State Approving Agency (CSAAVE) completes its review and issues a decision regarding the approval of Ashford in California – whichever is soonest.

What does this mean to you?

In our last post, we explained what would happen if the California State Approving Agency (CSAAVE) did not approve Ashford’s online programs before June 30, 2016 – that you would be able to finish any class beginning before June 30th but you would not be able to receive GI Bill benefits for classes beginning after that date.

The stay of withdrawal pushes the June 30th date to either September 18th, (90 calendar days from the date of the letter), or until the CSAAVE completes its review and issues a decision regarding the approval of Ashford in California – whichever is soonest.

What are the possible outcomes?

- If CSAAVE approves your online program at Ashford, your benefits will not be affected because of the transferal of approval from Iowa to California.

- If CSAAVE does not approve your online program at Ashford, you will receive benefits for any classes you are actively attending as of the date of the denial of program approval. This means that benefits may only continue for, in general, a maximum of five weeks for undergraduate classes and six weeks for graduate classes. VA will not be able to pay benefits for any class(es) that begin after the date of the denial of program approval, should that occur.

As always, you can call our Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on Facebook.


Updated Information for Students Attending Ashford University Online

June 13, 2016 11:15 AM

We continue to stay engaged with the California State Approving Agency (SAA) and Ashford regarding their application for program approval. As of yesterday, Ashford has submitted all the required documents to the California SAA. The California SAA is working hard and expeditiously to go through those documents to ensure due diligence is done and Ashford fully complies with the appropriate laws and regulations. We at VA have offered to provide whatever resources necessary to help the California SAA make an appropriate decision.

To reiterate, if Ashford University is not approved by the California SAA by June 30th, you will be able to finish any class you have started before that date and we will continue to process those benefits on your behalf. However, you will not be able to start any new classes after July 1st and use your GI Bill benefits. For example, if you begin a five-week class on June 27th, you will continue to receive GI Bill benefits until the conclusion of that course. If you begin another class on July 2nd, and the California SAA has not approved your program at Ashford for the GI Bill, then you will not receive education benefits for that class.

We remain committed to the best outcome for our GI Bill students. As any Veteran knows from their military service – it is important to hope for the best and plan for the worst. Here are a few helpful options:

- Our GI Bill Comparison Tool is a good place to start.

- Student Veterans of America is offering one-on-one assistance. With a network of over 1,400 student chapters at colleges and universities their staff can provide answers to your questions.

- The American Council on Education’s Military Guide is available for any questions you may have about earning school credit for your service.

You can call our Education Call Center at 1-888-442-4551 (Monday – Friday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. CST) for any questions about your GI Bill benefits and remaining entitlement. You can also join the conversation on Facebook.


Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

June 9, 2016 1:00 PM

The transcript of the June 2, 2016 Education Service Webinar is now available. We will be answering some of the unanswered questions and including them in an updated version of the presentation.


Info for Students Attending Ashford University Online

June 6, 2016 7:35 AM

The Iowa State Approving Agency has informed VA that it is withdrawing Ashford University’s approval for GI Bill benefits on June 30, 2016, due to the planned closure of Ashford University's residential campus in Clinton, Iowa. This closure will affect Ashford University’s online courses as well.

Here’s what this means if you are attending or thinking of enrolling in Ashford University’s online courses:

- Ashford University has applied for approval from the California State Approving Agency, as the university’s main campus is located in San Diego.

- If the California State Approving Agency approves Ashford University’s online programs before June 30, your benefits won’t be affected.

- If the online programs are not approved before July 1, 2016, you will be able to finish any term beginning before June 30, but you won’t receive benefits (that means housing, tuition, books/supplies stipend) for any future enrollments until the programs are approved by the California State Approving Agency.

Ashford University is working with the California State Approving Agency to prevent any disruption in the delivery of benefits to our student Veterans and eligible dependents.

We will provide you with updates and approval status of Ashford University’s online programs as additional information becomes available. We will post new information we receive here and on our Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/gibillEducation). If you have questions, we will answer in the comments, and our Call Center is also available to address your concerns at 1-888-442-4551.


Yellow Ribbon Program Open Season for School Participation Ends May 15

May 12, 2016 2:45 PM

March 15 to May 15, 2016 is the open season for the Yellow Ribbon Program for the 2016-17 academic year. Schools may apply for initial participation, modify existing open-ended agreements, take no action and continue to honor the terms of existing open-ended agreements, or withdraw from the Yellow Ribbon Program. Please see the Yellow Ribbon Program home page for more information.


Updated Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

March 17, 2016 11:00 AM

The updated transcript of the February 17, 2016 Education Service Webinar is now available including answers to unanswered questions asked during the Webinar.


Yellow Ribbon Program Open Season

March 15, 2016 7:55 AM

From March 15 to May 15, 2016 we are accepting new Yellow Ribbon Program agreements, modifications to existing open-ended agreements, or withdrawal from participation. See our Yellow Ribbon Program schools web page for instructions and forms.


New Post-9/11 GI Bill Rates Published

March 14, 2016 2:00 PM

The tuition and fee, Monthly Housing Allowance, and distance learning rates under the Post-9/11 GI Bill for academic year 2016-2017 are now available on our Rate Tables Page.


Veteran Outcome Measures - UPDATED

March 4, 2016 3:30 PM

Outcome measures school data can now be accessed directly from the GI Bill Comparison Tool. Search by school to see their reported data or you can click on the “Download Data on All Schools” link while accessing the Comparison Tool. The About this Tool page provides comprehensive “What You Should Know” information about this data to help you choose an education program and school that is right for you. Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Education, and Department of Defense developed and published these outcome measures which are designed to provide Veteran-specific information on approved programs of education.


Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

February 18, 2016 2:00 PM

The transcript of the February 17, 2016 Education Service Webinar is now available. We will be answering some of the unanswered questions and including them in an updated version of the presentation.


Pat Tillman Military Scholarship Now Accepting Applications

February 3, 2016 10:00 AM

The Pat Tillman Foundation is pleased to announce the opening of the annual application process for the Tillman Military Scholarship. As a supplement to the Post 9-11 GI Bill, the scholarship covers direct study-related expenses, including tuition and fees, books and living stipend, for eligible service members, veterans or military spouses who are pursuing undergraduate, graduate or post-graduate degrees as full-time students at a public or private, US-based accredited institution. The application for the 2016-2017 academic year will remain open until Tuesday, March 1, 2016 at 11:59:59 EST at http://pattillmanfoundation.org/apply-to-be-a-scholar/.


Institutions of Higher Learning (IHLs) with Contracted Flight Programs Webinar Slides Are Available

January 13, 2016 12:55PM

The transcript of the December 14, 2015 IHLs with Contracted Flight Programs Webinar is now available.


GI Bill Resident Rate Requirements

December 9, 2015 11:10AM

All states and territories are now compliant with the GI Bill Resident Rate Requirements, Section 702 of the Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act of 2014. Check out our website to see if you qualify as a covered individual and to learn how to take steps if you believe your school has incorrectly charged you.  You can call 1-888-GIBILL-1 (1-888-442-4551) or go to the GI Bill Comparison Tool and research your school to learn more about this program and to see if your school is eligible.


Check Out Our New Choosing A School Guide!

October 29, 2015 5:00PM

The new version includes information about the different types of degrees/programs that you can use with the GI Bill, the importance of school accreditation, and much more valuable information to help you make the right decisions on where to use your hard earned benefits!

See it here: http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/docs/factsheets/Choosing_a_School.pdf


Updated Education Service (School Certifying Official) Webinar Slides Available

October 28, 2015 9:05 AM

The updated transcript of the September 16, 2015 Education Service Webinar is now available including answers to unanswered questions asked during the Webinar.


New Policy for Mitigating Circumstances Begins November 15, 2015
October 22, 2015 11:00AM

Beginning November 15, 2015, VA will require students using the Post-9/11 GI Bill to provide mitigating circumstances when they withdraw from or drop a course after the drop/add period and receive a non-punitive grade.

Acceptable mitigating circumstances must be provided in order to pay benefits for the period of attendance prior to the drop date. If they are not provided and accepted, any benefits paid from the beginning date of the term will be considered an overpayment, and a debt may be established.

If you've dropped classes after the drop/add period or had to stop attending and received a grade that isn't factored into your Grade Point Average, chances are the term "mitigating circumstances" was mentioned in a letter we sent you. So what are "mitigating circumstances" and why should you care?

To learn more, read our Mitigating Circumstances FAQs


Statement about University of Phoenix Probation Status with DoD
October 9, 2015 4:30PM

The recent actions taken by the Department of Defense (DoD) do not have an immediate effect on GI Bill beneficiaries attending University of Phoenix (UoP) schools. GI Bill payments for those enrolled in an approved UoP program are not impacted. VA is working with our DoD and State Approving Agency partners to further evaluate any potential impact to UoP's GI Bill approval and their status as a Principles of Excellence participant. We encourage everyone to use the GI Bill Comparison Tool to compare eligible colleges and universities based on affordability and value.


Veteran Outcome Measures
September 29, 2015 3:15PM

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Department of Education (ED), and Department of Defense (DoD) have developed and published outcome measures that are designed to provide Veteran-specific information on approved programs of education.

See our Outcome Measures website for more information.


New Rates Published
September 29, 2015 2:15 PM

The maximum tuition and fee amounts for the Montgomery GI Bill - Active Duty, Montgomery GI Bill - Selected Reserve, REAP, and Survivors' and Dependents' Educational Assistance Program are now available on the Rate Tables Page.


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