College of the Siskiyous Veterans' Services is responsible for assisting veterans, dependents and survivors, with their VA education benefits:
Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP)
Congress passed, and the President has signed into law, the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011. Included in this new law is the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP). VRAP offers up to 12 months of training assistance to unemployed Veterans. The Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) and the Department of Labor (DOL) are working together to roll out this new program on July 1, 2012. For more info go to the United States Department of Veterans Affairs VRAP website
Chapter 30, Montgomery G.I. Bill: This chapter can provide educational assistance for eligible veterans who have served on active duty for two or more years, have enrolled in the educational benefits program while on active duty, and have been honorably discharged from the service. You will need a copy of your DD214, Application for Education Benefits (22-1990), and all transcripts from previous schools. You can also request an application at the COS Financial Aid/Veterans Office.
Chapter 35, Survivors & Dependents: Educational assistance paid to dependents (spouse/children) of veterans who are permanently and 100% disabled due to a service connected condition or who died in the service of a service-connected disability. Chapter 35 recipients might also be eligible for a fee waiver through the “Cal-Vet” program. Inquire at the COS Financial Aid/Veterans Office for more information.
Chapter 1606, Montgomery G.I. Bill for Selected Reserve: This program provides educational assistance for active members of the selected reserves, including members of the Army Reserve, Naval Reserve, Air Force Reserve, US Marine Corps Reserve, Coast Guard, Army National Guard, and Air National Guard. Basic eligibility requires a six-year obligation to serve in the selected reserves and satisfactory participation in required selective reserve training.
Chapter 1607, Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP): The Reserve Education Assistance Program (REAP) provides education assistance to Guard members and Reservists who have served 90 days or more in a contingency operation after September 22, 2001. Benefits vary depending on the amount of time the reservist spent on active duty.
Post-9/11 GI Bill
The post-911 GI bill provides financial support for education and housing to individuals with at least 90 days of aggregate service on or after September 11, 2001, or individuals with a service-connected disability after 30 days. You must have received an honorable discharge to be eligible.
For more detailed information you can visit www.gibill.va.gov and apply for your VA Benefits.
Applying for veterans benefits
Veterans must complete an Application for Education Benefits, Form 22-1990. A copy of the veteran’s DD-214 must be turned in with the application. For Chapter 1606 the reservist must turn in a “Notice of Eligibility” which is furnished by the reserve unit. For Chapter 35 benefits, students must complete an Application for Survivor’s and Dependent’s Education Benefits, Form 22-5590, and submit with a copy of the veteran’s DD-214.
THE VA COUNSELOR WILL VERIFY ALL COURSES FOR ACCURACY REGARDING CLASSES WHICH CAN BE CERTIFIED. THE VA COUNSELOR WILL EXPLAIN COURSES IN YOUR MAJOR, GENERAL ED, OR POSSIBLE ELECTIVES THAT CAN BE CERTIFIED.
Continuing Veteran Students: A veteran who has attended College of the Siskiyous before on any GI Bill program MUST make an appointment with the VA counselor prior to each semester before registering for classes.
Transferring from Another School: Students who have attended other schools and used VA educational benefits will need to complete a “Change of Program” form 1995 or 5495 (dependents) available at the COS Financial Aid/Veterans Office. You must make an appointment to see the VA counselor and bring with you the Change of Program form and transcripts (unofficial copies are ok).
Student Responsibility: It is the responsibility of each student to notify the COS Veterans Office of changes in unit status. Before adding or dropping any classes please contact the Veteran Counselor. In order to receive benefits on time or avoid the possibility of an overpayment, notify the office promptly of any adjustments.
Students are also required to maintain satisfactory academic progress as outlined in the “College of the Siskiyous Satisfactory Academic Progress Requirements for Financial Aid Recipients” located on the COS financial aid webpage.
Withdrawing from Classes: Students are required to notify the COS Veterans Office of any withdrawals from courses. The VA will adjust or terminate benefits retroactive to the beginning date of the term. If the change of enrollment is due to reasons beyond the student’s control, which VA accepts as mitigating circumstances, benefits are adjusted on the effective date of the reduction.
Mitigating Circumstances: Mitigating circumstances are those which directly hinder a student’s pursuit of a course(s) and which are judged to be beyond the student’s control. Following are some general categories of mitigating circumstances: serious illness of the student, serious illness or death of an immediate family member, immediate family or financial obligations, discontinuance of a course by the school.
When Can You Expect Payment? Approximately six to eight weeks after the application and enrollment certification is submitted to the VA by our office, the student will receive a computer-generated award letter from VA showing the enrollment period certified, remaining entitlement, delimiting date, and claim number.
The COS certifying Veteran Official will send a letter letting you know that your enrollment was certified.
Monthly Verification: You will be required to verify your enrollment on a monthly basis to the Department of Veterans Affairs; you can do this either by phone or by internet. This initiates your monthly benefit from the VA Department. It is your responsibility to verify your monthly enrollment. To verify your monthly enrollment please call the following number on the last day of each month:
1-888-GI BILL 1 (1-888-442-4551) or online at: www.gibill.va.gov
Veteran dependents who are California residents are eligible to apply for a CA Fee Waiver through your local county VA Office. Veterans cannot apply for the CA Fee Waiver, but they can apply for a BOGW (Board of Governors Fee Waiver). We encourage Veterans and Dependents to visit our Financial Aid Office for more information on other sources of funding, programs and services.
Department of Veterans Affairs
Monthly Verification of Continued Enrollment
Denis Hagarty, Veteran Counselor
Jennie Cannon, Certifying Official