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FAQs

VA Certification

Certification Requirement
Degree Plan Requirement: All courses certified to the VA must be required for your degree plan at the time of certification. General electives can only be certified if the credit hours are required to graduate.
Repeat/GPA Boosting Courses: If a student successfully completes and passes a course it cannot be certified again to the VA. However, if a student fails the course and the program requires a higher grade than the one achieved, that course may be repeated and certified to the VA again.
Course Substitutions: Once a course substitution has received final approval from the registrar’s office, it can be certified to the VA. Please note of possible certification delays with this route.
Added/Dropped Courses Students must report all added/dropped courses through the Veterans Certification Form on the My Word Portal. In the event of a drop, please be advised a student debt may occur.
Prior Credit Students are responsible to submit all official transcripts to the Admissions Office for prior credit evaluation. Failure to submit transcripts on time may require the school to reverse certification for a course where transfer credit was given.
Processing Time It is our priority to process all students in a timely manner. Once all required documents are received, please allow 10 business days to process your certification. Please note that students not meeting the certification requirements mentioned above can experience delays in their certification.
Hybrid/Blended Courses Per VA standards, hybrid/blended courses must be reported to the VA as “distance” learning hours. To be eligible for the full housing stipend, Students are advised to pair an additional course that is considered fully in residence.

Rate of Pursuit

Undergraduate Rate of Pursuit
Chapters 30, 35, 1606, and 1607:
VA Benefits are paid based on training time. In a standard semester, VA measures training time as follows:

12 hrs Full Time
9-11 hrs 3/4 Time
6-8 hrs 1/2 Time
4-5 hrs < 1/2 Time
1-3 hrs < 1/4 Time

Chapter 33:
**Chapter 33 Housing Allowance is paid if the rate of pursuit is more than 50%.



Graduate Rate of Pursuit
**Chapter 33 Housing Allowance is paid if the rate of pursuit is more than 50%

  Masters Professional Ph.D. Ph.D. (Dissertation)
Full Time 6 hrs 12 hrs 6 hrs 3 hrs
Half-Time 3 hrs 3 hrs 3 hrs 1 hrs

Graduate Rate of Pursuit for Summer
*This PDF is for Summer only.

** Please Note: Students taking 8-week terms must also take 6 hrs each term to be considered full-time.

Tuition and Billing

Billing: Chapter 33 Post 9-11 and Chapter 31 Voc Rehab will pay required tuition/fees directly to the school. Please check your benefit eligibility and remaining time to determine if full payment will occur.
How is the VA Billed?Required tuition/fees minus any discounts and tuition/fee specific scholarships are reported to the VA after the 100% drop date.
When is the VA Billed? Chapters 33 Post-911 and Chapter 31 Voc Rehab are initially certified at $0 to the VA to initiate stipends. Tuition is reported after the 100% drop date. Payment from the VA may take several weeks to arrive.
Can I use financial aid with my GI Bill? Yes, you may - please visit the UIW Office of Financial Assistance Reported tuition and fees under the Post 9/11 GI Bill benefit will be calculated minus any tuition-only scholarships/ aid, but excludes Title IV funds (ex: student loans and Pell grants) The Hazlewood Act (SB639, 82nd Texas Legislature) is available only for students attending Texas public colleges/universities. UIW is a private institution and is ineligible to participate.
Can I receive a tuition discount? Please see the Business Office Policy on tuition discounts. Link Here.
Why do I keep receiving a bill? All students are encouraged to review their bill to ensure charges are accurate and to pay for any cost that are not covered by the GI Bill such as parking permits, fines, housing, or meal plans. This also allows you to see when the VA has paid.
How do I check the status of my tuition payment? Refer to the award letter the VA mailed to you – this includes school payments, monthly housing and book stipends, remaining entitlement, etc., call VA Education Services at 1-888-GIBILL-1, or check your benefits online: www.ebenefits.va.gov/ebenefits-portal/ebenefits.portal
Parking Permit Students parking on campus are responsible to obtain a parking permit from the UIW Business Office. The VA does NOT cover the cost of the parking permit with the exception of Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation Program. The University does grant a parking permit fee waiver for disabled/decorated veterans upon submission of their vehicle registration at the UIW Business Office.
Insurance Fee All full-time Main Campus students are automatically charged for health insurance.  The cost is not covered under VA Educational Benefits and can be waived by the pre-determined deadline on the UIW Business Office website.

Other Common Questions

What if I receive a failing grade? If you fail a class, you will receive what is called a punitive grade for that class. A punitive grade is one that does not count as earned credit, but is counted in determining your progress toward graduation requirements. That means the grade you receive counts negatively toward your overall degree progress. Since the grade does count toward your graduation process (albeit negatively) you are not required to repay any GI Bill benefits you received for that class. You may take the class again to attempt to receive credit towards graduation, or to raise your GPA, and you may receive GI Bill benefits to retake the class.
Why did I receive a letter from the VA stating no tuition and fees were charged? Post 9/11 GI Bill benefit for tuition and fees will is based on net cost to the student. To meet this requirement:
• Your certification request will be initially submitted to the VA with $0 cost for tuition and fees.
• This process will be repeated for each mini-term (Spring I, Spring II, etc.).
• After the 100% refund drop date for each program (Main Campus and SPS), we will resubmit the certification request with the net cost for the enrollment.
• Students will receive a new award letter from the VA with payment information included.
What Causes debts with VA Education Programs? If you decrease your training time (i.e. drop classes, leave school, etc.) and VA has already processed a payment for tuition and fees, an overpayment will occur. When UIW notifies VA of a change, a debt is created against your account. The school will issue any refunds in accordance with internal policy, which may not fully cover the debt with the VA. If the amount refunded by the school does not satisfy the debt, you are responsible for the remainder. If the school refunds money directly to the VA, then VA will credit your account any amount the school refunds.
If UIW refunds money directly to you, you must clear the debt with VA. A decrease in your credit hours could also result in changes to your housing allowance and books & supplies stipend. If VA has already issued you a payment for the term a debt will be created on your account. You are responsible for keeping track of your tuition and fee account balance and payments. Be sure to review your student business account and ensure the charges are correct and that payments and refunds are processed correctly Contact us to if the certification information does not match your schedule Please contact the Debt Management Center if you receive a debt notification from the VA. The Debt Management Center is the authoritative source of debt collection information. You can reach them at 800-827-0648 or e-mail them at dmc.ops@va.gov
Can I change degrees while using my GI Bill? Yes, please see your academic advisor to change degrees and inform us ASAP. Your school record must be updated before we may certify your new classes How do use my VA Benefits at another college or University? Download and submit the Request to Study at Another Institution form to request approval of class(es) from another institution; approval signatures are required from your advisor and the Registrar’s Office. If approved for transfer credit, forward the approval email from the UIW Registrar's Office to the UIW Center for VA email: veterans@uiwtx.edu with the contact name of the other school's VA Office. We will email the student a PDF copy of the approval letter, listing the class(es), term, and chapter of benefits – students may then deliver or email the letter to the secondary school. Students must follow-up with all processes required by the other school’s VA Office.
Are GI Bill benefits taxable? No. GI Bill benefits paid should not be reported as income to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and you will not receive a W-2 from the VA.

Graduation

The UIW Veterans Tribute stole recognizes and honors our students who have serviced our country. The stole is free of charge to veteran students by the UIW Center for Veterans Affairs. Stoles are given on a first come, first served basis. Please request a stole early to allow our office to order your stole.

How do I request a veterans stole? You can sign up for a Veterans Stole at Senior Solute (check the Registrar’s website for date and time) or after Senior Solute with the Center for Veterans Affairs (veterans@uiwtx.edu).  Proof of service will be required.
When are stoles distributed?  Stoles will be distributed during Graduation Finale (check the Registrar’s website for date and time) or can be picked up at the Center for Veterans Affairs beginning the day after the graduation finale. Stoles must be collected by the Friday before commencement by 5pm. Stoles cannot be mailed but students may designate someone local to assist by sending us a copy of the authorization form.
Can I receive more than one veterans stole? No. Only 1 stole per veteran is provided.

Study Abroad


• For VA Certification, courses taken abroad must apply to your degree plan.
• The VA is only billed for tuition and fees required for your degree plan.
• The VA does not pay any fees specific to study abroad including travel, lodging, host school fees, or third party charges.
• Chapter 33 Post 9-11 may still receive a BAH and a book stipend according to the hours certified.  Please see the following document from the VA on study abroad.  Click Here
• Chapter 35, 30, 1606, & 1607 will only receive their monthly stipend paid directly to them according to the hours certified.
• Ch 31 Vocational Rehabilitation must contact their VA Counselor for approval to study abroad beforehand

Chapter 31 Vocation Rehabilitation Program


Click here for Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation Handout

Yellow Ribbon Program

We are pleased to announce UIW’s 2017-18 Yellow Ribbon Program is now open!

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VA Center

The UIW Center for Veterans Affairs employs a dedicated staff to assist you with VA benefits. Call today at 210-832-5651 or e-mail veterans@uiwtx.edu

Location

Office Hours

Fall 2018 Hours

Monday-Thursday:
8AM-6PM
Friday: 8AM-5PM

Send documentation or questions to veterans@uiwtx.edu

Tribute Stole for Grads

UIW Veterans are honored during graduation with a Tribute stole. It is worn during the graduation ceremony and is provided free of charge. Contact us to receive your stole for commencement.

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