Using Military Education Benefits

Main Campus and School of Continuing Studies Degree Programs
To use Military Education Benefits at Georgetown University on the Main Campus and School of Continuing Studies, please refer to the sections below.  If you have additional questions after reviewing the content below, please feel to review our Frequently Asked Questions page and/or contact the Veterans Office.

Proof of Benefits
Benefit Request Form
VA Education Certification Process
Primary/Secondary Certification Process
Financial Aid and Deposit Refunds
Withdrawal from Course(s) Process
Tuition Assistance

School of Continuing Studies Center for Continuing & Professional Education
Non-Credit Certificate Programs

The Center for Continuing and Professional Education manages certification of enrollment for the Non-Credit Certificate Programs. Learn more about the certification process and approved programs for VA Education Benefits. Questions about the certification process at Center for Continuing and Professional Education certificate programs can be sent to 
Ms. Monique Hawkins.

Georgetown School of Medicine
The Office of the Registrar at the Georgetown School of Medicine handles certification of enrollment for all students studying at the School of Medicine. To receive educational benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, please contact the School of Medicine’s VA Certifying Officials Mr. John Hammett and Ms. Margarita Abaunza.

Georgetown Law Center
The Office of the Registrar at the Georgetown Law Center handles certification of enrollment for all Law Center students. Learn more about the certification process at the Law Center.

Proof of Benefits

The Office of the University Registrar manages certification of enrollment for undergraduate and graduate students at Georgetown University's Main Campus and the School of Continuing Studies. The School Certifying Official is Jimmy Sutton in the Office of the University Registrar.

In order to receive educational benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), students must apply for benefits using the VONAPP application. The VA will review the application and if eligible for a chapter of the GI Bill® then the VA will send a Certificate of Eligibility Letter to the student. If a student has used benefits at another institution, the student will need to submit a Change of Program Form using the VONAPP application. A copy of the Certificate of Eligibility Letter dated within one year of enrolling at Georgetown must be submitted to the Veterans Office and a completed Veterans Benefits Request Form is required each semester to receive education benefits. Copies of a Certificate of Eligibility Letter can be submitted to the Veterans Office via email, fax (202) 687-2797, mail, or by scheduling an appointment. In the event that a student has applied for benefits, but does not have access to a Certificate of Eligibility letter, a screenshot of the student's eligibility from the eBenefits portal can serve as a Proof of Benefits. 

If a student's eligibility for VA education benefits have changed (e.g. change in military status, changed benefits, or increased eligibility), the student can either request a new Certificate of Eligibility Letter from the VA or if the student received an award letter from the VA from a previous semester and the eligibility is applicable for the current or upcoming semester, the award letter can serve as an updated Proof of Benefits.

Students can be certified one semester without a Proof of Benefits on file, but subsequent semesters will require a Certificate of Eligibility letter or eBenefits screenshot to be on file to be certified.  

Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation recipients must have their Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor provide VA FORM 28-1905 with the applicable term dates of eligibility to the School Certifying Official. A VA FORM 28-1905 must be on file each semester in order to be certified since Proof of Benefits is not listed in a Certificate of Eligibility letter or eBenefits. 

After you have provided a proof of benefits to the Veterans Office and registered for classes, you will need to complete the Benefit Request Form each semester you are eligible and would like to request benefits. 

Students enrolled in the McDonough School of Business graduate programs or the School of Nursing and Health Studies graduate programs and are eligible to participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program, must complete the Request for Yellow Ribbon Program Form once an academic year. 

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Benefit Request Form (BRF)

Georgetown University Main Campus and School of Continuing Studies Degree Programs
Students who are registered for classes, eligible for benefits, and would like to receive benefits must complete the BRF each semester s/he would like to receive benefits. Since eligibility belongs to the student, the student must request for the school to submit a certification to the Department of Veterans Affairs. If a student does not complete the BRF for a semester, the School Certifying Official will accept that the student is choosing not to use benefits for that term.

It is most beneficial to submit the BRF once the student has registered for classes and finalized their schedule but please submit the BRF before the term start date to avoid late fees and service charges for students where tuition benefits are sent directly to Georgetown that cover the remaining balance on a student's account. When completing the form, please read the instructions carefully and contact the Veterans Office for clarification on any questions before submitting the form.

As a reminder students must be logged into their Georgetown email account and logged out of any other Gmail account to access the BRF.

2016-2017 Academic Year
Fall 2016 BRF
Spring 2017 BRF
Summer 2017 BRF

2015-2016 Academic Year
Fall 2015
Spring 2016
Summer 2016

2014-2015 Academic Year
Fall 2014
Spring 2015
Summer 2015

If you are eligible and would like to be retroactively certified for benefits for a term that is not listed above, please email the Veterans Office

To avoid payment and processing errors, please update your request AND notify the School Certifying Official when there are any changes to your enrollment. If necessary, the School Certifying Official will amend your certification to reflect the appropriate courses and dates upon the conclusion of the Add/Drop period. Learn more about the process of withdrawing from courses while using VA education benefits.

***Law Center (including Joint-Degree), Medical School (including Joint-Degree), and non-credit certificate students at the School of Continuing Studies should contact the certifying official at their campus.***

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VA education certification Process

To ensure an accurate certification and help avoid potential delays, be sure that the Veterans Office has a current Proof of Benefits on file. Please note that Georgetown University will only submit a certification without Proof of Benefits (Post-9/11, Chapters 30, 35, 1606, and 1607 only) once and subsequent semesters require a letter to be on file. Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation recipients will need to have the VA-FORM 28-1905 on file each semester to be certified.

To ensure enrollment and tuition information is up to date, certifications are typically sent 1-3 weeks prior to start of the semester. Once a certification has been submitted to the VA, an automated email will be sent to the student's Georgetown email account with the update.

Chapter 33 Post-9/11  Recipients
Once a student submits the online BRF, the request will be evaluated by the Main Campus Certification Team. The Office of Third Party Billing review the student's request and will calculate the net tuition and fees. If a student is receiving tuition-specific scholarships, grants, employer aid, or Tuition Assistance, the Certifying Official is required to deduct tuition specific aid from the tuition and fees reported to the VA. Federal loans are not required to be reported to the VA. The expected amount from the VA's tuition benefits sent to Georgetown, if any, will be posted on the student's Student Account as a memo item to act as a placeholder until the actual VA payment arrives. The memo will protect the student from late fees as the school waits for payment to be received. If the VA payment is not expected to cover all of the billed charges on the account, the student must pay the remainder by the due date listed on the billing statement or set up a payment plan with the Office of Billing and Payment Services. The School Certifying Official will then submit a certification to the VA to specify the student's credit hours, dates of enrollment, rate of pursuit, and tuition certified to the VA . 

Students who are enrolled in academic programs that have per credit hour tuition will have their tuition reported as $0 in the initial certification and after the add/drop period an adjusted certification will be submitted to list the tuition amount. The $0 certification process is allow the VA to begin processing any housing and book stipend payments (if eligible) that can be issued before tuition and fees are finalized and reported to the VA. As long as there are no processing delays, the first housing allowance payment (if applicable) is sent directly to the student's bank account the first week of the month  for the previous month's enrollment. As a reminder, the VA will only send applicable housing allowance payments for the specific dates you are enrolled in classes. The book stipend payment (if applicable) is sent directly to the student's bank account between 2-4 weeks after a certification is submitted to the VA.

Please note that students enrolled in module courses where the start date is in the middle of the semester, the certification for this term will be submitted to the VA closer to the start date of the course. This process is to avoid incorrect benefits being issued in the event that the student drops the course before the start date of the course. 

Chapter 31 Vocational Rehabilitation Recipients
Students receiving Vocational Rehabilitation benefits, must have their Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor submit a 28-1905 form to the School Certifying Official. Most counselors provide a form to last an entire academic year, but confirm if the School Certifying Official has an up-to-date form, please contact the Veterans Office.

Once a student submits the online BRF, the request will be evaluated by the Main Campus Certification Team. The Office of Third Party Billing review the student's request and will calculate the net tuition and fees. If a student is receiving tuition-specific scholarships, grants, employer aid, or Tuition Assistance, the Certifying Official is required to deduct tuition specific aid from the tuition and fees reported to the VA. Federal loans are not required to be reported to the VA. The expected amount from the VA's tuition benefits sent to Georgetown, if any, will be posted on the student's Student Account as a memo item to act as a placeholder until the actual VA payment arrives. The memo will protect the student from late fees as the school waits for payment to be received. If the VA payment is not expected to cover all of the billed charges on the account, the student must pay the remainder by the due date listed on the billing statement or set up a payment plan with the Office of Billing and Payment Services. The School Certifying Official will then submit a certification to the VA to specify the student's credit hours, dates of enrollment, rate of pursuit, and tuition certified to the VA . 

Please note that students enrolled in module courses where the start date is in the middle of the semester, the certification for this term will be submitted to the VA closer to the start date of the course. This process is to avoid incorrect benefits being issued in the event that the student drops the course before the start date of the course. 

To receive the Vocational Rehabilitation Book Voucher, the VA FORM 28-1905 must be on file and up to date. Once the form is on file, contact the Third Party Billing Office to arrange for a book voucher to be provided to the Georgetown University Bookstore. Once a student has received the book voucher, books can be purchased at the Georgetown University Bookstore.

Chapter 30 Montgomery, Chapter 35 Dependents Educational Assistance, Chapters 1606 and 1607 Reserve Recipients
Once a student submits the online BRF, the request will be evaluated by the Main Campus Certification Team. After this review, the School Certifying Official will have credit hours, dates of enrollment, the tuition and fees, and rate of pursuit certified to the VA. Since these benefits are paid out based on your rate of pursuit (full-time/part-time status), instead of tuition reported, initial certifications will include tuition amounts. The VA will send monthly benefit payments directly to the student while the student is enrolled in classes.  Students receiving these benefits are required to pay their tuition and fees balance in full by the specified due date on the billing statement or set up a payment plan with the Office of Billing and Payment Services.

Recipients of Chapter 30, 1607, and 1607 are required to verify their enrollment each semester through the VA's WAVE system

Please note that students enrolled in module courses where the start date is in the middle of the semester, the certification for this term will be submitted to the VA closer to the start date of the course. This process is to avoid incorrect benefits being issued in the event that the student drops the course before the start date of the course. 

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Primary/Secondary Certification Process

If your primary school is Georgetown University and your degree program has approved for you take classes at another higher education institution to apply to your degree at Georgetown, then you will need to take the following steps: 

►Get the approval of your program or dean’s office for approved courses at another institution to apply to the degree at Georgetown
►Register for the course at the Secondary School
►Contact the School Certifying Official at Georgetown University to provide name and contact information of the Secondary School Certifying Official and request Georgetown’s School Certifying Official to complete Primary School Letter to send to the Secondary School’s School Certifying Official
►Follow certification requirements at Secondary School

If your primary school is NOT Georgetown University and your degree program has approved for you to take classes at Georgetown University to apply to your degree at the primary institution, then you will need to take the following steps:

►Register for the course at Georgetown University
►Request your Primary School’s School Certifying Official to complete a Primary School Letter. The Letter will need to be sent to Georgetown University’s School Certifying Official
►Provide a Proof of Benefits to the Veterans Office
►Complete the Term’s Benefit Request Form
►Read and follow certification process information and expectations of students on the Veterans Office website

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Financial Aid and Deposit refunds

Financial Aid Refunds
If a student is receiving other non-tuition specific financial aid in addition to your VA education benefits, the certification process described above may impact when such aid can be refunded to you if you will be due a refund. If you expect a refund of financial aid and want to know how the certification of VA benefits will impact it, please contact the Veterans Office. For specific questions about Financial Aid, please contact your Office of Student Financial Services counselor

Deposit Refunds
If a student paid a down deposit when accepting attendance at Georgetown University and VA education benefits will cover the first semester's account statement in full, a credit will generate on the student's account once the university receives tuition payments from the VA. Once a credit is listed on the student's account,  the money can remain on the account to apply to a future semester or the student can request a refund with the Office of Billing and Payment Services. 

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Withdrawal from course(s) process

If You Withdraw from a Class or Classes

If there are changes to a class schedule before the end of the Add/Drop period, then on the BRF the student should indicate the number of credits s/he anticipates enrolling in once the Add/Drop period ends and email the School Certifying Official with the update. 

If a student withdraws from one or more classes at any time after the Add/Drop period has ended,  the student is required to update their BRF for the semester and inform the School Certifying Official of this change. 

If a student drops classes after the add/drop period or withdraws altogether, the VA is required by law to retroactively stop payments as if the student never attended - unless the student gives the VA a reasonable explanation – usually something that happened beyond the student's control - that caused the student to drop one or more classes (also known as mitigating circumstances).

If a student gives the VA a reasonable explanation, then benefits may be paid until the day the student stopped attending. If a student has already been paid in benefits and the VA accepts the explanation, the student will only be responsible for paying back a prorated amount of money for benefits issued for course(s) effective the date the student withdrew thre the end of the term, rather than paying back all the benefits the VA paid for the withdrawan class(es).

The first time a student drops classes or withdraws after the add/drop period for a drop of six credits or less, the VA does not need a reason.  It’s called the “six credit hour exclusion." For any reductions after the exclusion is granted, the VA must ask for any mitigating circumstances causing the drop.  This is a one-time use exclusion; once it is used, it doesn’t reset for the next term, year, etc. Also, it cannot be “saved” for another time.

What does VA consider to be acceptable “mitigating circumstances”?  In general, they are events that are unavoidable or beyond the student’s control. Examples can be found on the VA's FAQ website, but here are some specific examples: illness or injury (either the student’s own or a family member), a change in work schedule, unforeseen financial obligations, military service, and discontinuance of a course by the school are all acceptable reasons.

If a student needs to submit mitigating circumstances, please notify the School Certifying Official within two business days of your enrollment change so that he can list Mitigating Circumstances in the adjusted certification.  By doing this, the student can avoid the creation of a larger debt and the need to submit additional documentation to VA. This also allows, the Certification Team to flag the student's account and work more closely with the VA to determine how much Georgetown University should be requesting in Post-9/11 tuition benefits and Yellow Ribbon Program (if applicable) for future terms in the same academic year.

If a student chooses not to tell the Certifying Official, the student will receive a letter stating that the VA found out about the change in hours and will ask for the student to submit any mitigating circumstances that led to the drop.  In response, the student can write up the reason(s) for the drop and mail them to the Regional Processing Office or send it using the Submit a Question feature on the VA's website. The VA will notify the student by letter if the reasons are accepted and indicate the amount of any remaining benefit debt.

To reiterate, if  a student uses the six credit exclusion once in their academic career while using Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits, any drop of credits or withdrawal that is not due to mitigating circumstances will assess a debt from the first date of the term. Therefore, if the student does not receive a full tuition refund from Georgetown University due to when the courses are dropped or withdrawn, then the student will be responsible for paying the amount that remains on the Student Account once the VA is repaid a tuition debt.

Please contact the Veterans Office if you have any questions about the process.

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Tuition Assistance

Tuition Assistance (TA) is authorized for active duty and reservists by a branch of service. Each service has its own portal for the student to apply for TA and receive a TA Authorization form.

Once a student has acquired their authorization form, email the Office of Third Party Billing a copy of the Authorization Form. The Office of Third Party Billing will process the authorization form to send an invoice to the branch of service so payment can be sent directly to the school. To learn about TA and accessing your Authorization Form, please select the link appropriate to the branch of service: 

U.S. Army 
U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps
U.S. Air Force

Students using Post-9/11 benefits and TA can both be used for the same term, but the School Certifying Official will have to report the net tuition cost of what is expected to be sent in TA. This policy is in accordance to a VA regulation where the VA deems themselves as the last payer for tuition-specific funding. For example, if your tuition is $10,000 and you are expected to receive $2,500 in TA, Georgetown will report the tuition to the VA for Post-9/11 GI Bill as $7,500.

Students using chapters 30, 1606, or 1607 cannot use both VA benefits and TA for the same courses. For example, if you are enrolled in 3 courses and you use TA for all 3 courses, then you cannot be certified for VA benefits, but if you are enrolled in 3 courses and use TA for 2 courses, then you can receive VA benefits for the remaining course.

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