Military & Veterans Services
The Columbus State Military and Veterans Services Department provides individualized enrollment and referral services to assist community members in successfully meeting their educational and career goals. We are committed to providing uncompromising service by adhering to the highest standards of compassion, commitment, excellence, professionalism, integrity, accountability and stewardship.
AUTUMN SEMESTER 2020 IS UNDERWAY
Question: What is the impact, if any, to GI Bill recipients when their schools are either closed or have directed their students to take classes online as a result of precautions taken due to COVID-19?
Bottom line up front: Benefit payments may continue at the same rate for some period of time; however, as time progresses, the amounts payable for monthly benefits will decrease or end, even if students are still taking classes.
Answer: The answer will depend on the type of action taken by the school, the timing of the action, and the current program approval.
- If a school temporarily closes due to an established policy based on an Executive order of the President or due to an emergency situation, VA may continue benefit payments (including the Monthly Housing Allowance under the Post-9/11 GI Bill) for up to 4 weeks during a 12-month period. This authority, and limitation, are codified in statute (38 U.S.C. § 3680(a)(2)(A)).
- If the school remains open (virtually, rather than physically), and students are transitioned to pursuit solely through online classes, then benefit payments will be impacted as follows:
- If the switch from training in-residence to online classes occurs during the term, and the program has been approved by the State Approving Agency for delivery through an online modality, then benefit payments (including the Monthly Housing Allowance under the Post-9/11 GI Bill) will remain unchanged for the remainder of that term.
- However, for any subsequent terms pursued solely online, the Monthly Housing Allowance (MHA) under the Post-9/11 GI Bill will be reduced to one-half of the national average of DoD’s Basic Allowance for Housing rates for an E-5 with dependents. The limitations on MHA rates are codified in statute (38 U.S.C. § 3313(c)(1)(B)(iii).
- Lastly, if the program has not been approved by the State Approving Agency for delivery through an online modality, benefit payments will completely stop (including the Monthly Housing Allowance under the Post-9/11 GI Bill) when students begin training online.
Please note: There is a draft bill to address our limitations, but until that passes, we are restricted to what is described above.
If there are any questions, please email the Executive Management mailbox at EDUSERVEXMGMT.VBACO@va.gov.
For general coronavirus updates, please see Coronavirus Info & FAQs.
Have Questions or Need Assistance?
Simply email the Military and Veteran Services Department at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (614) 287-2644 to request assistance with your question or issue from a Columbus State representative.
Review the admission and registration deadlines at cscc.edu/deadlines.
Apply for Admissions at cscc.edu/apply. Enter your Selective Service Number when asked. Provide a copy of your DD Form 214 with the application when prompted.
Apply for VA Education Benefits via VA.GOV. If you have attended school before, utilizing your G.I. Bill benefits, and you used your benefits at a school other than Columbus State Community College, you will need to transfer your benefits. Complete and submit online a VA Form 22-1995.
Apply for Financial Aid by completing the FAFSA at fafsa.ed.gov.
Request Official copies of your JST or CCAF transcript be sent to the college.
Take the placement test(s) and meet with an Academic Advisor. This unlocks your account so that you can register for classes.
Register for your first semester of classes.
Once you have registered for classes, complete the request for VA Certification at the CougarWeb link at https://cougarweb.cscc.edu/. This request for VA Certification must be completed every semester.
Once you have received your Certificate of Eligibility (COE) from the VA, submit it to Military & Veteran Services through the CougarWeb request for VA Certification link.
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