Veterans Service Center FAQ
How can I better learn about my G.I. Bill benefits?
The VA is the ultimate source for info about your education benefits. Sometimes if you call to ask a question, you can get different answers from different service reps. Therefore we recommend you use the "Submit a Question" feature on the GI Bill® website so you will have documentation of your questions and their responses. Visit the GI Bill® Web for a Question and Answer session, click on the "My Questions & Answers" tab, and Login or Create a New Account. Please be sure to print out your question and response session. Bring the printout to the VRC if you need further help from our staff.
It is your responsibility to understand the details of your VA education benefits; the School Certifying Official and Veterans Counselor will assist you with any questions you have. It is the responsibility of the VRC to certify your enrollment to the VA. Please see the VA’s website (gibill.va.gov) or contact the VA at 1-888-442-4551 to learn more about your benefits.
How do I get my benefits paid each semester?
Certification for VA Education benefits is not automatic. Students must stop by the VRC each semester they wish to utilize benefits and fill out a new Certification Request form. If you are changing your major, your must meet with the Veterans Counselor to get an approved academic plan to submit with your Certification Request. If you are not changing your major, you are still encouraged to meet with the Veterans Counselor each semester before submitting your Certification Request.
I’m a new student, what do I need to provide to the IVC VRC?
Veterans and other eligible dependents receiving educational benefits under Chapter: 30, 31, 32, 33, 35, 1606, or 1607, who have never used their VA educational benefits and would like to apply for benefits should report to the VRC prior to registering for classes. Students must bring copies of complete VA form 22-1990 (VA form 22-5490 for CH 35 only) or VA Certificate of Eligibility.
Students who have prior educational training must order official transcripts be sent to Irvine Valley College from all colleges, universities, and/or training institutes (including Official Military transcripts) prior to meeting with a Veterans Counselor. You must bring unofficial copies of your transcripts to your first meeting with the Veterans Counselor in case your official transcripts have not yet been received.
If I have already used my benefits at another school, how do I transfer them to IVC?
Students who previously received VA educational benefits at another school must complete VA form 22-1995/5495 (Change of Place of Training) and submit it to the VRC.
If I have attended IVC previously, what do I need to do?
All previously enrolled veterans should follow their most recent academic plan when determining which classes to enroll in. Students must meet with the Veterans Counselor prior to the beginning of the semester to ensure that classes are covered by VA Education Benefits.
Can I use my benefits at two different schools at the same time?
While receiving VA Educational benefits, students may be concurrently enrolled at more than one school during the same semester. Whichever school the student is pursuing a degree from will be the Parent/Primary School. If the student is registered and pursuing courses at a four-year institution, that school will be deemed the Parent/Primary School. Veteran students must provide an authorization letter from the advisor at the Parent School (called Parent Letter or Primary School Letter). This form states that the courses taken at the Secondary/Guest School will be credited toward the current major the student is pursuing. Veteran students are responsible for informing the Secondary/Guest School's Veterans' Office of the request to be certified at the Secondary/Guest School. The Secondary/Guest School will complete the certification for the benefits form (VA form 22-1999) and send this information to the VA.
Students requesting the VRC to generate a Parent Letter for a Secondary/Guest School must show proof of enrollment and officially request for the Parent Letter to be generated by coming into the VRC. Student is responsible for a debt incurred for courses not applicable to declared VA program.
Do I need to verify my continued attendance each month?
Veteran students who receive benefits under Chapter 30, 34, 1606 and 1607 GI Bill®, have to verify their enrollment each month. These students will receive an award letter from the VA Regional Processing Center in Muskogee, OK. Once this is received, the student can verify their enrollment. To insure prompt payment of benefits please verify your enrollment every month. The earliest this can be done is the last day of the month. Monthly verification can be done via one of the following two ways:
Telephone - Using Interactive Voice Response (IVR), 1-877-823-2378
Internet - WAVE (Web Automated Verification of Enrollment).https://www.gibill.va.gov/wave/index.do
Failure to verify your enrollment will cause your benefits to stop. You must do this every month or you will not get paid!
Federal holidays may delay receipt of the Student Verification of Enrollment and/or your check.
Can I have my benefits Direct Deposited in my bank account?
Direct deposit of VA educational benefits payment is now available for Chapter 30, 33, 35, 1606 and 1607 recipients. This program speeds up education and work study payments. It also decreases chance of missing, lost, or stolen checks. As easy as 1-2-3, students may request direct deposit through the VA by calling the VA at: 1-888-442-4551.
The VA will require students to provide their VA file number, bank routing number, and checking/savings account number.
What if I need tutoring for a class?
Tutoring is available through the college free of charge. This can be arranged by visiting the Student Success Center located on the first floor of the BSTIC building. The VRC or Veterans Counselor can provide additional information. Students using VA Education Benefits may also qualify to receive assistance from the VA for individual tutoring. To qualify, they must be enrolled in 1/2 time or more and have a deficiency in a subject which they are currently drawing VA educational benefits for.
If eligible for tutoring benefits under a GI Bill® students may receive up to $1200 maximum for tutoring. For further information and to apply for VA tutorial assistance, contact the VRC.
IMPORTANT: Students who wish to utilize VA tutoring assistance must first have approval by the VRC. Failure to do so could result in your tutoring not being covered by the VA tutoring program. Please contact the VRC for the "Tutorial Assistance Approval Form".
I have heard about Work Study, what is it?
The VA Work Study Program is tax-free employment program through the VA. The rate is minimum wage, state or federal – whichever one is higher ($9 per hour as of 2014). Veteran students must be enrolled in and receiving educational benefits at the 3/4 time rate or more. For more information contact the VRC.
How much will my benefit be each month?
Rates depend upon amount contributed and/or length of time in service (Number of months of contribution), as well as enrollment status. Students can check current payment rates for Chapters 30, 1606, 1607, and 35 at http://gibill.va.gov/resources/benefits_resources/rate_tables.html
Please note VRAP benefits are paid at the same rate as CH 30.
For CH 33 current payment rates go to https://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/bahCalc.cfm
"Duty Zip Code" will be 92618 for IVC. "Pay Grade" is always "E-5". Students are paid at the BAH rate that reads "With Dependents". Increase in payment rates will take effect August 1st of the respective calendar year.
Students may also inquire at the VRC for current payment rates for VA Education Benefits.
Do I have to be a full-time student to receive benefits?
Different program (Chapters) pay different rates based on attendance or "rate of pursuit". Also how long a class meets (i.e. 8 or 16 weeks) affects your rate of pay. The SCO can help you determine your rate of pay each semester based on your enrollment.
|8-week Terms (1st 8 week,
2nd 8 weeks or Summer)
Do I get school credit for my military training?
Credit is given for formal service school training as recommended by The American Council on Education through its Commission on Accreditation of Service School Experiences, and the IVC evaluation process. For complete information contact the Veterans Counselor.
How do I change my Major?
Majors can only be changed by meeting with the Veterans Counselor to receive a new education plan. The paperwork must then be submitted to the VRC upon certification for the semester at which you are taking classes under the new major.
What happens if my schedule changes because I add, drop or withdrawal from a class?
FEDERAL LAW REQUIRES YOU TO REPORT IMMEDIATELY TO THE VRC ANY CHANGES IN YOUR STUDENT STATUS (i.e. Adds, Drops, Withdrawals, Incompletes, last day of attendance, or contact info). Schedule changes MUST be done by a written request in person with the VRC or Veterans Counselor.
You must report any grades of “W” (Withdrawal) or “FW” (Failure to Withdrawal) to the VRC. VA payment to you is based on “pursuit” of your program so you must be enrolled, attending, and successfully completing your courses to be eligible for VA benefits. All grades of “W” or “FW” will be retroactively reported to the VA and may result in the retroactive loss of benefits.
What happens if I am placed on Academic or Progress Probation?
In compliance with the Department of Veteran Benefits, Circular 22-80-38, the college has developed standards of progress. Each veteran student must conform to these standards to be eligible of VA Educational Benefit Certification. Students using VA Education Benefits MUST maintain a 2.0 GPA. Failure to maintain a term and cumulative GPA at or above a 2.0 for three consecutive semesters will result in suspension of VA educational benefits at IVC. Summer session is included in standards of progress for ALL students using VA Education Benefits.
What happens if I am dismissed from school?
For a veteran student who falls into academic (term and cumulative GPA falls below 2.0, regardless of units attempted) or progress probation for any semester or session (including summer), the Veterans Services Office is required to notify the Department of Veteran Affairs (DVA). If the cause for probation has not been removed at the end of three consecutive semesters or sessions (including summer session), the student would be ineligible for benefits for one semester at IVC and must follow the reinstatement policy. Effective fall 2014, students placed on academic or progress probation for a second consecutive term will result in the loss of priority registration until the student is no longer on warning or probation status.
Can I come back to school after being dismissed?
Reference: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs School Certifying Official Handbook for VA Education Benefits; Section: Unsatisfactory Progress, Conduct, and Attendance – Recertification of VA Claimant. After a student has been academically dismissed from IVC for GI Bill® benefits and wants to pursue reinstatement, the following process must be completed:
- The student must take a full term off from using GI Bill® benefits.
- The student is required to meet with a Veterans Counselor to get an updated academic plan.
- During or after the term taken off, the student must complete a petition to be reinstated for VA GI Bill® Benefits at IVC.
- The student must turn in the petition for reinstatement and academic plan to the VRC for approval by the Director of the VRC. The approval/denial is determined by the Director’s assessment of the likelihood that the student can be successful in attaining the educational objective.
- If the petition is approved by the Director, the student will be allowed to certify their GI Bill® benefits after enrollment. If denied, the student has the opportunity to make an appointment with the Director of Veteran Services.
- If the student’s term GPA falls below a 2.0 in any future term after reinstatement, the student will be dismissed indefinitely from using GI Bill® benefits at IVC.
What happens if I fail a class?
Courses that are failed or for which the grade does not meet minimum requirements for graduation may be certified for VA purposes if they are repeated. If the student repeats a course they previously received an “F”, “D”, or “NP” in, and receive another “F”, “D” or “NP”, the first “F”, “D”, or “NP” is reported to the VA. This will cause a reduction of certifiable units to the VA effective the first day of the term you first received the punitive grade in. This could result in a debt to the student from the VA.
For example, if a student is enrolled in 12 units in the fall semester and received an “F” in English 100, they will be allowed to retake the course and certify it for VA benefits. If the student takes English 100 again in the spring semester and receives another “F”, the first “F” becomes non-punitive. IVC’s VRC is required to report this non-punitive grade. In this example the student’s total certifiable units will drop from 12 to 8 units effective the first day of the fall semester. This reduction may result in a debt owed to the VA by the student for tuition and/or monthly housing allowance.
Can I take any class I want to?
Any students using VA Education Benefits must ensure that classes taken apply to the program they have on file with the VA. Classes that are not covered by VA Education Benefits, regardless of declared VA major, include any audited class, remedial classes offered as distance education (online), and classes that a student has previously and successfully completed. Students should refer to their degree evaluation and/or see a Veterans Education Counselor to ensure they are enrolled in classes that will apply to their program. VA Work Study personnel who work in the VSC are not trained academic counselors. If there is confusion about a course’s applicability please ask to see the Veterans Counselor or Certifying Official.