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Veterans Affairs

Getting Started 

In order to start using your VA Educational Benefits, there are several things that must be done.

The following checksheet will guide you through the steps. Print this page and use it to make sure that you don't miss any of the steps.

By following this guide we will take you through the process.

Prior to starting this process, you need to apply for admission to the university. 

Step 1: Determine which benefit (chapter) you will be applying for.

CH 30: Active duty service members who have paid in $1200 for the GI Bill.

CH 1606: Reservists / Guard members who have completed boot camp and/or training and must be in good standing with their unit.

CH 1607 (Reap): Reservists / Guard members who served active duty on or after 9/11/01 for at least 90 consecutive days under a contingency operation.

CH 33 (Post 9/11): Individuals who served on active duty on or after 9/11/01 for at least 90 aggregate days of active duty and are still on active duty
OR
released from active duty for further service in a reserve component of the Armed Forces
OR
had this benefit transferred to you by an eligible service member or veteran

CH 31: Eligible for the Montgomery GI Bill and have at least a 10% disability.

CH 35 (DEA): Dependents of a 100% permanently and totally service-connected disabled or deceased due to a service-connected disability.

Step 2: Have you used these benefits before?

If no, proceed to Step 3. If yes, proceed to Step 7.

Step 3: Begin the application process.

For Chapters 30, 1606, and 33 and 35, students can complete the application for the benefit at: https://www.vets.gov/education/.

(Don't forget to submit any documentation that is also required. 
Instructions are listed on this website on how to submit it.)

Chapter 31 students need to contact 1-800-827-1000 to start the process. After you have been approved and have been assigned a VA Vocational Rehabilitation counselor, go to step 5.

Step 4: Have you submitted your application online?

 If yes, proceed to Step 5. If no, go back to Step 3. Chapter 31 students, if you have applied for VA Vocational Rehabilitation educational benefits, proceed to Step 5.

Step 5: Complete the online orientation process.

All Chapters must complete the online VA orientation. Make sure to take the appropriate orientation for your chapter. (See chapters listed above).

Step 6: Submit a Certification Request Form.

EVERY semesterafter you register for your classes, you must submit a Certification Request Form online. Failure to submit a Certification Request Form every semester will prevent your educational benefits from being processed.

In order to have your benefits processed in a timely manner, you should turn in your Certification Request Form as soon as you register for classes. Failure to submit this form will prevent your benefits from being processed.

Certification Request Forms are processed in the order they are received. The VA Office at WKU will submit a 22-1999 to VA, and you will be notified by VA (through your WKU email account) when WKU certifies your classes to VA.

Step 7: Follow transfer procedures, if applicable.

If you are transferring your benefits from another school to WKU and:

•You are a Chapter 30, 33, or 1606 student, you must complete the 22-1995 by selecting it from the drop-down menu on the first page of the Veterans On-Line Application (VONAPP) website (the VA electronic application portal).

•You are a Chapter 35 student, you must complete the 22-5495 1995 by selecting it from the drop-down menu on the first page of the VONAPP website.

•You are a Chapter 31 student, you must contact your previous VA Vocational Rehabilitation counselor before proceeding any further.

These forms may be faxed to: 270-745-6586.

THEN return to Step 5.

More Information

More information on each of the VA educational chapters can be found on VA's website

VA pamphlets and factsheets

VA educational benefits rates

Transfer Chapter 33 benefits to dependents and additional information about transferability

Yellow Ribbon Program (Although Western Kentucky University is currently a Yellow Ribbon participating school, WKU only charges the in-state rate of tuition for all students using VA educational benefits. Therefore, no Yellow Ribbon is required). 

LAST but NOT least

Every semester you are encouraged to participate in Priority Registration. The VA Office at WKU will send an email (to your WKU email account) notifying you of Priority Registration.

Turn in your Certification Request Form by the Priority Deadline in order to be certified by the first day of the semester/term. This date will be published in the email (see above) sent by the VA Office at WKU.

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 Last Modified 10/10/17