Veterans Benefits

For Chapters 30, 33 (Post-9/11 GI Bill®),1606 and 1607 if you have not applied for Veterans education benefits you will need to do so by completing VA Form 22-1990 which can be done on line at

For Chapter 35 you will need to complete VA Form 22-5490 which can also be done online.

For Chapter 31 the application students must fill out is VA Form 22-1900. However, it is advised they call the VA rehabilitation counselor first. To learn more about or apply for Chapter 31 benefits in NYS, call the following number 1-800-827-1000.

Education Financing

VA Frequently Asked Questions

Download FAQs (pdf)


Memorandum of Understanding Regarding Veterans Education Benefits

Veteran Certification Worksheet (Word document download)
Veteran Certification Worksheet (pdf)

Certification of Enrollment

For all chapter benefits (with the exception of Chapter 31) our certifying official must notify the DVA of your enrollment each semester. It is your responsibility to contact our office at which time you are fully registered for a term. Your enrollment will be certified with the DVA shortly thereafter. The VA Certifying Official is located in the Office of Financial Aid.

What to send Tompkins Cortland’s VA Certifying Official:

  • Copy of completed application for (Veterans education benefits).
  • Copy of member 4 DD-214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty).
  • Copy of official transcripts from all previous colleges (if applicable).
  • Copy of Kicker Program documentation (if applicable).
  • Notice of basic eligibility (NOBE) if you are in the Reserves.
  • Certificate of Eligibility (you will receive this from the Buffalo Regional VA office once a determination on your eligibility is made) or WAVE Benefits or eBenefits Education Status Pages showing education benefits. 
  • Signed copy of Memorandum of Understanding.
  • Copy of Schools VA Enrollment Form.

Veterans receiving VA benefits may select any program that is approved by the Department of Veteran Affairs leading to a degree offered at TC3. Check with the VA Certifying Official if your program is approved by the VA before registering for classes.

Chapter 30 (Veterans GI Bill®)

Educational assistance program available to fully honorably discharged veterans who meet the eligibility criteria explained in detail on the Department of Veterans Affairs website.

Chapter 33 (The Post 9/11 GI Bill®)

The Post-9/11 GI Bill is for individuals with at least 90 days of aggregate service on or after September 11, 2001, or individuals discharged with a service-connected disability after 30 days. The Post-9/11 GI Bill will become effective for training on or after August 1, 2009. More eligibility information on The Post 9/11 GI Bill is provided on the Department of Veterans Affairs website.

Chapter 1606 (Reserves/National Guard)

This program may be available if you are a member of a selected reserve. More eligibility information on Chapter 1606 is provided on the Department of Veterans Affairs website.

Chapter 1607 (Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP)

More eligibility information on Chapter 1607 is provided on the Department of Veterans Affairs website.

Chapter 35 (Survivor's and Dependents Educational Assistance program DEA)

The spouse, child, stepchild or adopted child of a veteran who is deceased (service-connected) or who is 100% disabled (service-connected) may qualify for Chapter 35 benefits. Visit the Department of Veterans Affairs website.

Chapter 31 (Vocational Rehabilitation)

Any veteran receiving at least 10% permanent, service-connected disability from the DVA can apply for this benefit. Approval is made on a case-by-case basis and is managed at the state level. To learn more about or apply for Chapter 31 benefits in NYS, call 1-800-827-1000.

Monthly Enrollment Verification

Each month that you qualify for benefits, you must contact the DVA for enrollment certification. This should be done on the last day of each month, online at Follow the WAVE (Web Automated Verification of Enrollment) link to complete electronic certification or via phone at 1-877-823-2378. If your enrollment certification has been submitted and you would like to check on the status of your payment, you can call the NYS regional office at 1-888-442-4551.

IMPORTANT:   IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO NOTIFY THE VA CERTIFYING OFFICIAL WHEN WITHDRAWING OR ADDING A COURSE. You can stop at our office and bring a copy of your official withdrawal showing the date(s) of withdrawal. Also if you plan on attending SUMMER courses, you need to contact the VA Certifying official at the College as well.

IMPORTANT: Chapter 33 (The Post 9/11 GI Bill). The veteran is responsible for any overpayment incurred as a result of not completing courses. In the event a veteran does not complete a course, schools should follow their established student refund policy. VA will work with student to resolve overpayment.

Bottom Line: Tuition and Fee payments are paid to the school on behalf of the veteran, overpayments for Tuition and Fees will be charged to the veteran.

Scholarships and Awards for Veterans: For further information about scholarships and awards for veterans and to apply please visit the Military Corner. Questions may be addressed to 1-888-697-4372 or email at

Transfer Students

Transfer of Benefits

Students who were receiving veteran's benefits at another college must complete a Change Program/Place of Training form (VA form 22-1995) for Veterans, Servicepersons, & Members of the Selected Reserve or (VA form 22-5495) for Survivors' & Dependents' Education Assistance to receive benefits at your place of training. These forms can be completed online by going to A copy of this form needs to be sent to the VA Certifying official at Tompkins Cortland.

What to send Tompkins Cortland’s VA Certifying Official:

  • Copy of member 4 DD-214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty).
  • Copy of official transcripts from all previous colleges.
  • Copy of Change of Program/Place of Training form.
  • Copy of Certificate of Eligibility or WAVE Benefits or eBenefits Education Status Pages showing education benefits.
  • Signed copy of Memorandum of Understanding.
  • Copy of Schools VA Enrollment Form.

Continuing Students

Continuing Students are asked to contact the VA Certifying Official immediately when they have registered for classes not only for the FALL and SPRING semesters but if they are planning on taking any SUMMER classes as well!

What to send Tompkins Cortland’s VA Certifying Official:

  • Copy of Schools VA Enrollment Form.

Have questions?

Class Attendance

IMPORTANT: The VA requires veterans receiving benefits to attend all scheduled class meetings. Failure to do so may result in the loss of benefits and pay back of veterans benefits already received for the semester in question.

VA Standards of Progress

Veterans’ Services will NOT pay educational benefits if one of the following should occur:

  • The veteran registers for classes that are not specified as necessary for the declared program of study. Depending on circumstances, deficiency or remedial courses may be certified for benefits.
  • The veteran fails to submit all previous college transcripts for evaluation.
  • The veteran registers for two or more courses and receives “F” (Fail), “NC” (No Credit) or “IP” (In Progress) grades for all courses for one semester.
  • The veteran fails to convert an “I” (Incomplete) grade to a letter grade within one year from receipt of the “I” grade.
  • The veteran fails to attend class for the semester for which VA benefits are received.
  • The veteran fails to achieve the minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 for two consecutive semesters or sessions.

All VA students must meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy as disclosed in the College Catalog. The veteran, like all students of the college, will be placed on academic probation until they meet the standards of academic progress set by the school. Students affected by these requirements must receive a financial aid waiver in addition to any academic probation interview or academic reinstatement procedure (see Financial Aid Waivers section).The VA Certifying Official will need a copy of the probation agreement and is required to report a termination of benefits if you remain on academic probation for more than two semesters with an overall GPA below 2.0. Student’s certification will also be terminated if student is on progress probation more than two semesters regardless GPA

Entitlement to Benefits

This school certifies your enrollment status, programs and academic progress. All questions concerning payment are to be referred to the Department of Veterans’ Affairs at 1-888-442-4551 or by sending an electronic inquiry by going to


The first check should arrive SIX TO EIGHT WEEKS after the first day of classes or later if the veteran should apply for certification after classes begin. Make sure that you register for your courses on time to ensure prompt certification of your enrollment. Remember to register in courses according to your educational plan.

Information about qualifying pay rates and payment dates is available only through direct contact between the student and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Go to the rate tables or call 1-888-442-4551.

Your payment rates are based on your enrollment status.

Status Fall & Spring Summer
Full-Time 12 Hours 6 Hours
3/4 Time 9 Hours 5 Hours
1/2 Time 6 Hours 3 Hours

***Rates will be pro-rated if a student is enrolled in a non-standard term(s) classes or classes that have a beginning and end date different from the semester's beginning and end dates (For example: nursing classes and late start classes).

Certifying Official

The Certifying Official is responsible for the accurate and prompt certification of enrollments and changes in enrollment of eligible students to the VA. The certifying official is an employee of the College, not the VA. The certifying official cannot determine eligibility for VA Educational Benefits.

The Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020

The Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020 requires educational institutions to make certain disclosures to students using federal military and/or VA educational benefits. To view and print a copy of an estimated personalized cost of attendance visit the SUNY Net Price Cost Calculator and select Tompkins Cortland Community College from the dropdown. Additional financial information can be found at the NCES College Navigator.

The SUNY Financial Aid Plan (FAP) will provide a more in-depth analysis and accurate picture of student cost once the student has filed their FAFSA, completed a SUNY application, and has been accepted by a campus. 

To Apply For Financial Aid or State Programs, You Will Need to Complete These Following Programs:

(Forms 1, 2, and 3 are available in the College's Financial Aid Office)

  1. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The School Code for Tompkins Cortland Community College is 006788
  2. Aid for Part-Time Study application (for part-time students only)
  3. The Express TAP application can be completed online while filing the FAFSA. If you do not complete your application at this time, New York state Higher Education Services will contact you to complete the application. TAP code is 2260

State Programs

Veterans Tuition Awards

Veterans Tuition Awards (VTA) is awards for full-time study and part-time study for eligible veterans matriculated at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution or in an approved vocational training program in New York state.

Eligible students are those who are New York State residents discharged under honorable conditions from the U.S. Armed forces and who are:

  • Vietnam Veterans who served in Indochina between February 28, 1961 and May 7, 1975.
  • Persian Gulf Veterans who served in the Persian Gulf on or after August 2, 1990.
  • Afghanistan Veterans who served in Afghanistan during hostilities on or after September11, 2001.
  • Veterans of the armed forces of the United States who served in hostilities that occurred after February 28, 1961 as evidenced by receipt of an Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Navy Expeditionary Medal or a Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal.

These students must also:

  • Establish eligibility by applying to HESC.
  • Be New York State residents.
  • Be US Citizens or eligible non-citizens.
  • Be matriculated full or part- time at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution in New York State or in an approved vocational training program in New York State.
  • Have applied for the Tuition Assistance Program for full-time undergraduate or graduate study.

How to Establish Eligibility

Complete the NYS Veteran Tuition Award application at NYS Higher Education Services Corporation - Veterans Tuition Awards” or contact HESC at 1-888-NYSHESC (1-888-697-4372) or

Questions regarding eligible service or how to document service should be directed to the HESC Scholarship Unit at 1-888-697-4372. NYS VETERANS TUITION AWARDS - THIS IS A NY BENEFIT FOR VIET NAM, PERSIAN GULF, AFGAN. AND IRAQ VETS.
HESC Veterans_Tuition_Awards

Be sure to print the Web Supplement Confirmation, sign and return it along with the required documentation according to the instructions.

NYS National Guard Educational Incentive Program

This program provides up to $4,350 of tuition assistance to members of the NYS National Guard or Naval Militia who are in good military and academic standing. To be eligible, Guard members must:

  • be a legal resident of New York State
  • have successfully completed Initial Active Duty training, Naval enlisted Code, or Commissioning Program
  • be pursuing their first Baccalaureate Degree
  • be enrolled in a degree program for at least 6 credit hours at a Board of Regents accredited college or university in New York state
  • apply for all available tuition assistance and grants (i.e. Federal Pell Grant & NYS TAP).


For more information, call the NYS National Guard at (800)356-0552 or (518)786-4681, or visit their web site at

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at