General GI Bill Benefit Information
How many months of benefits will I have?
Generally, eligible veterans have 36 months of benefits. For active duty service members, these benefits expire 10 years after separation from the service. For members of the reserve components, they expire 15 years after service member becomes eligible (normally upon completing IDAT (initial date active training) of 2 or more weeks).
Benefits may be used while attending school to earn a degree, diploma, or certificate.
Yellow Ribbon Program
Does the University of West Georgia participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program?
Since our tuition is reasonably low in comparison to other institutions, UWG does not participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program (YRP).
Tuition and Fees
Are VA Educational Benefits taxable?
No, any veterans benefits paid under any law administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) should not be reported as income to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Will Post 9/11 GI Bill pay for out-of-state tuition and fees?
No, Post 9/11 GI Bill only pays for in-state tuition and fees. The University of West Georgia grants out-of-state tuition waivers to all students using GI Bill benefits earned within the last 120 months. Please contact the Registrar's Office in Parker Hall to determine your residency status.
When will I get paid my tuition and fees?
Tuition and fees are paid to the school for Post 9/11 and Chapter 31 shortly after certification has been completed. We are not able to estimate an arrival time of the tuition and fees. The VA Regional office frequently experiences delays in processing certifications. These estimations can range from 2-5 weeks. Please prepare financially. If you would like to receive estimation as to when your certification will be processed and paid to you please call the VA Regional Office at 1-888-442-4551.
How can I verify that my enrollment has been certified with the VA?
You will receive a letter from the VA explaining how many credits you were certified for and what payments the VA will provide. The letter also contains a section explaining how many months of benefits you have remaining.
**We do suggest you visit this office to request your certification ID number before you call the Regional Office to assist them in finding your certification.**
What is a third party memo?
A "third party memo" is not a credit or a payment. IT IS A PLACE HOLDER FOR POST 9/11 (based on eligibility percentage) & CHAPTER 31 benefits. It tells you and us (UWG) how much money we anticipate to be disbursed on your behalf from the VA. You are responsible for ensuring you see a "memo" on your bill. You need to let us know if you do not see this "memo." It is also important to remember that Financial Aid such as: Pell Grants, student loans, scholarships, and waivers are used first towards the bill. If you do not have enough "Fin Aid" to cover the cost of your entire bill (includes GI Bill "memo") you will not receive a refund at the beginning of the semester. You will have to wait until your GI Bill has paid UWG before you receive any applicable refunds. You are responsible for any amounts not covered by the Post 9/11 GI Bill.
Why did my loan and/or Pell grant pay my bill?
All financial aid such as a scholarship, loan, and/or Pell grants will always pay the students bill first. If the financial aid pays the entire account balance the student will receive a full refund when VA payment is received by the school.
Does the Post 9/11 pay for minors?
Yes, if the minor is required and built into the curriculum program you are currently getting your degree in.
Will the Post 9/11 pay for any class I want to take?
No, the Post 9/11 only pays for classes that are required for your degree program!
Exception: In a student's graduating semester, as long as the student takes one class that is required for the student to graduate and receive their degree, the student can register for any course they choose in order to meet the 12hrs (full time) requirement for benefits. This is called "rounding out." The VA only allows this in a students graduating term.
Does the Post 9/11 GI Bill pay for my housing and meal plans?
No, the GI Bill does not cover any Housing or Meal plans at UWG. The VA has determined that these are not fees.
Does the Post 9/11 GI Bill pay for my admission deposit or application fee to UWG?
No, per VA regulations we cannot certify this deposit for payment through the VA.
I'm taking a free elective class. The instructor said there are extra fees associated with this class, but that these fees will not be charged to my account. Will the Post 9/11 pay for these fees?
No. Fees that are not identified on your UWG Bursar Bill cannot be covered/paid for by the Post 9/11 GI Bill.
Do VA Educational Benefits cover classes that are audited?
VA benefits do not pay for classes that are audited.
Where can I find my Program of Study?
Students receiving VA benefits must adhere strictly to a planned program of study as indicated in their school catalog. You can find your catalog at https://www.westga.edu/student-services/registrar/course-catalogs.php.
Do VA Educational Benefits cover Independent Study Courses at UWG (Graduate & Undergraduate)?
Independent study courses will be measured on the number of credit hours assigned to them by the institution. Students should check with the Veteran Certification Official (VCO) prior to submitting documentation to the Office of the Registrar requesting registration for an independent study course.
Are Internships (Graduate & Undergraduate) covered by VA Educational Benefits?
Anyone interested in registering for a NON-TEACHING internship should speak to the department head and dean of the college in which the course belongs and present complete documentation to the Office of the Registrar as far in advance as possible. If they are offered through the University, they will usually be covered.
How do VA Educational Benefits work during the Summer?
UWG has multiple summer sessions and classes begin at various times throughout the summer semester. The veteran or dependent cannot receive payment for any full calendar month in which he/she does not enroll in classes. In other words, if your summer schedule ends June 5th, and your fall semester classes begin August 18th or later, you cannot get paid for July or any break between semesters, because the full calendar month of July intervenes between enrollments. It is advantageous for the student to sign up for classes that extend to the end of the summer semester.
BAH and Book Allowance
When will I receive my book allowance?
UWG Center for Adult Learners and Veterans (CALV) cannot estimate as to when you will receive any of your benefits. If the certification process is completed without delay generally the VA pays book allowance before the start of the term. If it is your first term on VA benefits this is usually delayed. You may call the VA Regional Office at 1-888-442-4551 for further clarification.
How will I receive my book allowance?
The Post 9/11 GI Bill pays the student a book allowance that will be sent via direct deposit to the bank account indicated by the student on the VA-1990/E (VONAPP Application). If you have questions concerning this account, or if you need to change this direct deposit account, you must contact the VA Regional office at 1-888-442-4551.
Where do I get my books?
Since the book allowance comes directly to you, it is entirely up to you to decide where you want to purchase your books in order to receive the best deal. Many students prefer the off-campus bookstores or online shopping, but the fact is that some courses require UWG specific books that can only be purchased in the UWG Bookstore. Chapter 31 students must utilize the campus bookstore to purchase their books.
How is the amount of book money I receive determined?
The Post 911 GI Bill pays a book allowance at the rate of $41.67 per credit hour taken. This stipend has a maximum payable amount of $1,000 per school year (Fall, Spring, and Summer). Therefore, if you are taking 12 hours in the Fall Semester you will receive approximately $500.04 in book money for that semester if you are rated to receive 100% of GI Bill benefits. If you are rated at less than 100%, then you must multiply the dollar amount ($500.04) times the percentage that you are rated. You also can use the GI Bill Comparison Tool to estimate your book allowance.
Why is the amount I received for the Spring Semester less than the Fall Semester when I am taking the same amount of credit hours?
The most likely answer to this question is that you have reached the maximum amount ($1,000) of allowable book stipend for the school year. An example of this would be, if you take 15 credit hours in the fall, you will receive approximately $625 in book allowance for that term. Then, if you take 15 credit hours the following spring semester, instead of receiving $625, you will only receive $375 because of the $1000 cap per school year.
Why did I not receive a book allowance for the summer semester?
The most likely answer to this question is the same as the answer to the previous question. If you have already been allotted $1,000 in book allowance for the previous fall and spring semesters, then unfortunately you will not receive any book allowance for the summer terms. In this case, your $1,000 per school year allowance would restart in the following fall term because the school year starts in the fall.
How much do I receive for my monthly housing allowance (BAH/MHA)?
"All BAH/MHA rates are based off the current DoD rates for Carrollton area (zip 30118) at the E5 with dependent rate and your percentage of eligibility for Post 9/11 GI Bill. Current DoD BAH rates can be found at: https://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/bahCalc.cfm
If I fail a class or if a receive a "D" in a class that requires a "C" or better, will the Post 9/11 GI Bill pay for me to retake it?
Yes, if a "C" is the required passing grade for the course the VA will cover the cost of retaking the course.
What if I fail a class because I did not attend or withdrew a class?
If you fail to attend or withdraw from a class and/or receive a grade of "W," "WF" or "F", for that class your schedule will be recertified indicating the cost difference. The VA will not pay for any courses in which a punitive or non-punitive grade was received. This will often times result in VA indebtedness which you will be required to pay back. Repayment is based on the withdrawal date or end of term date.
Scholarships (HOPE), Graduate Assistant Waivers
How do Scholarships affect my Post 9/11 GI Bill?
If the stipulations state the scholarship is to be allocated directly for tuition and fees (only for tuition and fees, solely for tuition and fees, the equivalent of tuition and fees, etc.)then the funds will be taken into consideration when determining the amount of tuition and fees to request from VA. The scholarship will be deducted from the VA eligible tuition and fees and we will request the remaining balance from the VA. NOTE: If the Scholarship does not state what it is to be used for, then it is considered a General Scholarship and it will not affect the Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits.
How does University and/or Outside Waivers, Grants or Fellowships affect my Post 9/11 GI Bill?
Any tuition/fee waivers or funds that are designated for tuition/fees will be considered when determining the amount of your tuition and fees that can be requested from the VA. Any tuition/fee designated waiver, grant or fellowship will be deducted from the VA eligible tuition and fees and the remaining balance will be requested from VA.
Credit for Military Training
Am I eligible to receive credit for military training?
Most vets can get some college credit for their military training and experience. Although the school is required to review the transcript for prior credit, it does not have to grant any. Any credit granted shortens the time to your degree, allowing you to retain more of the 36 months of benefits. Military transcripts should be submitted to the Registrar's Office, located in Parker Hall.
For more information, please consult the Registrar's Office website: https://www.westga.edu/student-services/registrar/transfer-credit-criteria-and-requirements.php
Will my military training replace the Physical Education requirements for my program?
You must consult the catalog under which you entered UWG or your advisor to determine Physical Education requirements since they are not required for all majors. Veterans who served at least two years of ACTIVE DUTY may contact the Registrar’s Office for additional information about Physical Education requirements and/or waivers.
Note: Title IV aid (Pell grant, Stafford loans, etc.) does not affect GI Bill.