VA Ch33: Post 9/11 GI Bill®
Tuition and Fees
Tuition and fees are paid directly to the school on behalf of the student when the school’s enrollment certification is processed. Tuition and fees are prorated by the student’s benefit level.
Monthly Housing Allowance
The housing allowance is prorated by the student’s length of service percentage (e.g. length of service determines benefit level) and the student’s rate of pursuit (RoP). The MHA paid is based upon the Department of Defense’s Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) for an “E-5 with dependents” and the zip code of the campus or training location where the student physically attends the majority of their courses. More information on monthly housing allowance benefits can be found on the GI Bill® website.
MHA is paid directly to the student at the beginning of each month for the previous month. MHA will only be paid while the student is not on active duty (e.g. MHA payments will stop immediately on the day a member enters on active duty or will begin the day after when a member is released from duty when enrolled and otherwise eligible).
For students affected by Colmery section 501 of PL 115-48 (First used chapter 33 on or after January 1, 2018) will receive the capped Department of Defense (DoD) rate based on the physical campus location where he or she is taking the majority of their credit hours.
Rate of Pursuit and the Monthly Housing Allowance
Rate of pursuit (RoP) applies specifically to chapter 33. It differs from training time, which is used for all other chapters. Schools certify actual credit. VA calculates RoP by dividing the number of credit (or credit hour equivalents) being pursued by the number of credits considered to be full-time by the school. The resulting percentage is the student’s RoP.
- Examples: If full-time is12 credits, then RoP:
- 6 credits (or credit equivalents) is 50% (6 ¸ 12 = 50%)
- 7 credits (or credit equivalents) is 58% (7 ¸ 12 = 58%)
The MHA is paid if the student’s RoP is more than 50%. Rate of pursuit determines whether a student receives or doesn’t receive the housing allowance. If pursuit is more than 50% the student receives the housing allowance. If the RoP is 50% or less, then the student doesn’t receive the housing allowance. (Active-duty personnel receiving chapter 33 benefits or spouses of active duty personnel receiving Transfer of Entitlement (ToE) benefits are not eligible for the housing allowance).
Monthly Verification of Enrollment (PL 116-315, section 1010)
Section 1010 has required all recipients of chapter 33 monthly housing allowances to verify their enrollment status each month. VA has determined the first phase of this verification will affect students enrolled at a NCD facility. Other chapter 33 students will be required to participate in this process by December 2021.
Verifications must be received through a text messaging solution known as Twilio. Students enrolled in a program which begins on or after August 1, 2021 will either receive an option to opt into the text messaging process to verify their attendance monthly OR they will be required to contact the 1-888-442-4551 toll free number monthly to verify.
Greater details regarding this monthly verification process is available on the gibill.gov website
Schools cannot verify for students. The student must verify they continue to be enrolled by stating “yes” or if not enrolled as stated, should respond as “no” and the VCEs will contact the schools to determine where and when the change occurred.
This monthly verification process is ONLY for chapter 33 students. This differs from the monthly certification process non-chapter 33 students are required to provide to release their monthly stipend.
Chapter 33 students must respond monthly to verify their enrollment. However, their MHA payments will continue to be released until two consecutive months have elapsed without any verification from the student. Additional guidance regarding when a student has failed to validate for two consecutive months will be released prior to September 30, 2021.
Books and Supplies Stipend
The books and supplies stipend is a lump sum payment (each quarter, semester or term attended) paid directly to the student when the school’s enrollment certification is processed. The stipend is prorated by the student’s length of service percentage. The books and supplies stipend pays $41.67 per credit certified, up to 24 credits for the academic year (08/01/YY-07/31/YY). The start date of an enrollment period determines the academic year to which the enrollment period belongs. The maximum stipend is $1,000 per academic year.
Historically, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Education Service (EDU) has allowed the practice of “rounding out” in which VA allows a school to certify courses for payment which are not a part of the beneficiary’s approved program of education to increase a beneficiary’s training time or rate of pursuit. Rounding out is only allowed during the beneficiary’s final academic term. By authorizing payment for these extra courses (courses which are potentially completely unrelated to the beneficiary’s program of study or vocational objective) non-Chapter 33 students are eligible for up to full-time benefit payments and Chapter 33 students can receive the maximum allowable housing allowance (MHA) during this final term. This procedure can be done only once per program.
Effective August 1, 2021, VA EDU amended its policy for “rounding out” to specify that any additional class(es) taken during the last term for the purpose of increasing training time or rate of pursuit up to full-time, while not required for the specific beneficiary to graduate, are included within the program, and could count toward an enrolled individual’s graduation requirements. Such classes must be specified by name in the approved program curriculum, and not have been already successfully completed.
On December 21, 2021, PL117-76 or "REMOTE ACT" was signed into law. Section 4 of the REMOTE Act not only codifies EDU’s authority to continue our current rounding out policy but also adds authority under paragraph 3(B)(ii) to allow for classes that are not offered in the program of education if that student has already taken every course offered in the program.
Effective July 5, 2022, based on the REMOTE ACT, VA’s policy is that a student may round out during their last term with any additional class(es) that are included within the student’s program of education even though not required for the specific beneficiary to graduate. Such classes must be specified by name in the approved program curriculum, and not have been already completed.
A student may round out with classes that are not offered as part of their program of education with any class offered by the educational institution only under the following circumstances:
- The student has taken (or is enrolled in) every class offered as part of their program.
- The remaining course options in the student’s program are not offered during the student’s final term.
- This policy also reiterates the following:
- A VA student can “round out” a schedule with additional courses to bring his/her course load up to a full-time schedule in his/her last term only.
- “Rounding out” is available to any student whose training time or rate of pursuit is less than full-time.
- A student may only round out once per program.
A student may take courses at more than one school that apply to his or her degree. The school that will grant the degree is the student’s “primary” school. All other schools are “secondary” schools.
VA can pay benefits for courses taken at secondary schools. If the student is only enrolled at the secondary school (supplemental enrollment), VA will pay for the credits taken at the secondary school. If the student is enrolled at the primary school and the secondary school at the same time (concurrent enrollment), VA will pay for the combined credit, taking overlapping enrollment dates into account.
Edith Nourse Rogers Science Technology Engineering Math (STEM) Scholarship
Effective August 1, 2019, VA launched the Edith Nourse Rogers STEM Scholarship. It is a provision of the Harry W. Colmery Veterans Educational Assistance Act (Forever GI Bill®) that gives extra benefits to students training in the high-demand fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). Obtaining a degree in these areas may require more training than other fields. This provision aims to help cover that difference and give additional incentive for students who choose the careers our society needs most.
The STEM Scholarship will provide up to nine months of additional Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits (to a maximum of $30,000) to qualifying Veterans and Fry Scholars seeking an undergraduate STEM degree or who have earned a STEM degree and are seeking a teaching certification.
Who is eligible for the Rogers STEM Scholarship?
Student must be enrolled in an undergraduate STEM degree or an undergraduate dual degree that includes at least one STEM program requiring at least 120 semester (or 180 quarter) credit hours for completion or
- Hold a bachelor’s degree in a STEM field and accepted or enrolled in a Teaching Certification program. or
- Hold a bachelor’s or graduate degree in a STEM field and enrolled in a covered clinical training program; and
- Must have completed at least 60 semester hours or 90 quarter credit hours toward the STEM degree and;
- Must have or will exhaust their Post-9/11 GI Bill® entitlement within six months based on their current enrollment(s)
More factors to know:
- Priority will be given to individuals who are entitled to 100% of Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits and to those who require the most credit hours.
- Chapter 33 private school academic year maximum rates apply to the STEM scholarship program.
- The Yellow Ribbon Program is not available with STEM. Schools may apply Yellow Ribbon funding, but VA can't match it.
- These additional benefits can't be transferred to dependents.
- Fry Scholars are eligible to apply for the Rogers STEM Scholarship.
What fields of study qualify for the Rogers STEM Scholarship?
Students must be enrolled in or have earned a degree in one of the following areas listed on this site: https://benefits.va.gov/gibill/docs/fgib/STEM_Program_List.pdf
- Please complete the VA BENEFIT REQUEST FORM (VBRF) and attach your Certificate of Eligibility (New UCR First Year/Transfers).