Office of Veterans Affairs Support for veterans and their dependents at WSU Tri-Cities

Apply for Benefits

How to apply for and maintain your VA education benefits

GENERAL: The purpose of this webpage is to:

  • Assist you in processing your initial application for VA Educational Benefits and completing the actions required for enrollment certification.
  • Assist you in completing the administrative actions necessary to ensure you receive your monthly VA Educational payments.

The WSU Office of Veterans Affairs is committed to assisting you in achieving your educational goals while at WSU.

Please feel free to contact us at 509-372-7364 or veterans@tricity.wsu.edu for assistance with all VA programs and WSU related inquiries.

Step One:

Determine in which VA Educational Program (i.e. "Chapter") you are eligible to participate.

Step Two:

Decide on a specific program of study and officially apply to Washington State University. If you have less than 60 cumulative semester credit hours you may enter your program of study as "BA-Undeclared" in the VA Forms noted below. If you have 60 cumulative credits or more you must enter a specific program offered by WSU.

NOTE: The WSU VA Office will only certify enrollment in classes that a required to obtain a degree in your specific program of study. If for example you choose Mechanical Engineering as your program of study and enroll in 12 credits but 3 of the credits are not required for a Mechanical Engineering degree then you will be certified for 9 credits. This will result in a reduction in your monthly education benefit payments.

Step Three:

FIRST TIME APPLICANTS (have never applied for Educational Benefits from the VA or are applying for or transferring to the Post 9/11 GI Bill-Chapter 33 for the first time)

1. First time (new) applicants under Chapter 33, 30, 32, 1606 or 1607: If you are applying for Chapter 33 (Post 9/11 GI) bill you can apply online via VONAPP (preferred method) or you can complete a hard copy VA Form 22-1990 and fax or mail to the VA Regional Office in Muskogee, OK. If you are applying for Chapter 33, 1606, 1607, or 32 you can submit an application online via VONAPP or you can complete a hard copy VA Form 22-1990. You can also come to the WSU-TC VA Office and complete the application or mail the completed Form to the WSU VA Office for processing. In addition to the VA Form 22-1990 provide:

  • For Chapter 33, 30, 32, 1607 provide copy of your DD 214 (member copy 4) that shows characterization of discharge
  • Copy of your Education Kicker contract (if applicable)
  • Copy of receipts or LES for $600 buy-up (if applicable)
  • For Chapter 1606 provide Notice of Basic Eligibility (NOBE), DD Form 2384

NOTE: If you mail or fax the above listed documents directly to the VA Regional Office (preferred) then you must fax, mail or deliver a copy of all documents to the WSU VA Office.

NOTE: The WSU-TC VA Office will not certify your enrollment until it recieves a copy of your VA Certificate Of Eligibility for Chapter 33.

2. First time (new) applicants under Chapter 35: You must complete the VA Form 22-5490 on-line at VONAPP or download the VA Form 22-5490 and mail it to the VA Regional Office in Muskogee, OK. You can come to the WSU VA Office and complete the application or mail the completed Form to the WSU VA Office for processing. In addition to the VA Form 22-5490 provide:

  • Copy of your parent’s/spouse’s VA disability paperwork establishing 100% disability status.

NOTE: If you mail or fax the above listed documents directly to the VA Regional Office (preferred) then you must fax, mail or deliver a copy of all documents to the WSU VA Office.

RETURNING APPLICANTS (previously applied for GI Bill benefits and/or received benefits but not at WSU-Pullman)

1. Returning applicants under Chapter 33, 30, 32, 1606, 1607: You must complete the VA Form 22-1995 and mail, fax, or deliver the Form to the WSU-TC VA Office. In addition to the VA Form 22-1995 provide:

  • Copy of your DD 214 (member copy 4) that shows characterization of discharge.
  • Certificate of Eligibility from the VA or original VA application (VA Form 22-1990) if available.

2. Returning applicants under Chapter 35: You must complete the VA Form 22-5495 and mail, fax, or deliver the Form to the WSU-TC VA Office. In addition to the VA Form 22-1995 provide:

  • Certificate of Eligibility from the VA or original VA application (VA Form 22-5495) if available.

NOTES:

  • If you previously attended WSU-TC and received VA Educational Benefits, but your last date of attendance was more than a year ago, you need to submit a VA Form 22-1995 or 22-5495 (as applicable) to the WSU VA Office.
  • A new 22-1995 or 22-5495 (as applicable) must be submitted to the WSU VA Office each time you change your program of study (major) or change university.
  • For enrollment certification purposes your class schedule will be evaluated against the program of study you selected on your original application (22-1990 / 22-5490) or the most recent copy of the 22-1995 / 22-5495 on file. It is your responsibility to notify the VA Coordinator of changes in program. Failure to do so will result in a delay of payments.

Step Four:

1. You must complete a Supplemental Applicationfor the semester in which you will be enrolled. The Supplemental Application must be completed prior to the start of the Fall Semester and will cover both the Fall and Spring Semesters. In addition a Supplemental Application must be completed prior to the start of the Summer Session. If you did not attend the Fall Semester and begin your studies in the Spring Semester then you must complete a Supplemental Application prior to the start of the Spring Semester.

NOTE: If you do not submit a Supplemental Application the WSU VA Office will not certify your enrollment with the VA, and you will not receive your monthly educational benefit payment.

2. The Supplemental Application will ask if you want Break Pay. Break Pay are payments made between semesters when you are not enrolled in school. Breaks are paid at the rate paid on the ending date of the semester preceding the break. Break Pay will NOT be paid if:

  • The break is more than 8 weeks (56 days)
  • The term before or after the break is shorter than the break.
  • Training time the last day of the preceding semester is less than 1/2 time
  • You withdraw from all courses during the preceding semester.
  • A Chapter 30’s entitlement will exhaust and not paying the break is to the student’s advantage
  • You request no pay for a break before payment for the break is authorized
  • You are on active duty

3. The Supplemental Application will ask if you want Advance Payment. Advance Payment provides funds at the beginning of the school term to help you meet expenses concentrated at the beginning of the term. Advance Payment is the amount payable for the initial month or portion of a month the semester begins plus the amount payable for the following month. If the semester begins on Aug 25 the Advance Payment would be for the portion of August that you are enrolled in classes and for the month of September. You would not receive another payment from the VA until early November. Advance Payment can be paid if:

  • You request advance pay, and
  • There is more than 30 days between semesters and break pay won’t be paid, and
  • You are enrolled at least half-time, and
  • VA receives the advance payment request at least 30 days but not more than 120 days before the start of the semester.

Step Five:

1. If you mail the documents directly to the VA Regional Office then mail the documents to VA Regional Office, PO BOX 8888, Muskogee, OK 74402.

2. The fax number to the VA Regional Office is 1-918-781-7863

3. As noted above mail copies of all documents to the WSU-TC VA Office at Office of Veterans Affairs, 2710 University Drive, Richland, WA 99354. The WSU VA Office is located in the Office of the Registrar, West 201.

4. The fax to the WSU VA Office is 509-335-7823. The telephone number is 509-372-7351.

Step Six:

Complete a Form 34 Veteran’s Benefits Verification for Fall/Spring Semesters and/or a Form MV Veteran’s Education Benefits for Summer 2009 and submit it to the WSU Financial Aid office. Veterans benefits are evaluated when determining financial aid. Failure to submit this form may delay the processing of your financial aid.

NOTES:

1. The VA Regional Office will process your enrollment application in 45-75 days. (all processing times are subject to change). They will send you a Certificate of Eligibility which will outline your entitlements under the specific educational program in which you are enrolled.

2. Once you are registered for classes and the class list is available through the WSU Automated Information System, the WSU VA Office will certify your enrollment with the VA for those classes which apply towards your specific program of study.

3. You will receive your monthly education benefit payments only if your application has been approved by the VA Regional Office AND the WSU VA Office has certified your enrollment with the VA.

4. An excellent resource is the Department of Veterans Affairs Questions & Answers website. You can search archived Q&A or ask a question via email.