What is the Yellow Ribbon Program?
Most veterans are not aware of all of the benefits they have earned. The Yellow Ribbon Program is a prime example of yet another under-used military benefit.
The Yellow Ribbon GI Education Enhancement Program (Yellow Ribbon Program) is a part of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008. It allows institutions that offer degrees for higher learning in the United States to enter into an agreement with VA to fund tuition expenses that go over the highest public in-state undergraduate tuition cost. The institution can contribute up to 50% of those expenses and VA will match up the same amount.
The Institution of Higher Learning (IHL) must comply with the following requirements:
- It must provide contributions to eligible individuals who apply for the Yellow Ribbon Program on a first-come first-served basis. Regardless of the rate at which the individual is pursuing training in any given academic year.
- Provide contributions during the current academic year and all subsequent academic years in which the student maintains satisfactory progress, conduct, and attendance.
- Contribute toward the program on behalf of the individual in the form of a grant, scholarship, etc.
- State the amount of money that will be contributed for each participant during the academic year.
- State the maximum number of individuals that will be granted contributions made in any given academic year.
What are the benefits?
- The Post-9/11 GI Bill pays up to the highest public in-state undergraduate tuition.
- The student’s tuition and fees may exceed that amount if they are attending a private institution, graduate school or attending in an out-of-state status.
- If the student is enrolled at a Yellow Ribbon participating institution and the tuition and fees exceed the highest public in-state undergraduate tuition, additional funds may be available for their education program without an additional charge to their entitlement.
- Institutions that voluntarily enter into a Yellow Ribbon Agreement with VA choose the amount of tuition and fees that will be contributed. The VA will match that amount and issue payment directly to the institution.
Who is eligible?
Only individuals entitled to the maximum benefit rate (based on service requirements) may receive this funding. Therefore, you may be eligible if:
- You served a period of active duty after September 10, 2001 for at least 36 months.
- You were honorably discharged from active duty for a service linked to a disability and they served 30 continuous days after September 10, 2001.
- You are a dependent eligible for Transfer of Entitlement under the Post-9/11 GI Bill based on a veteran’s service under the eligibility criteria listed above.
How will Students Know a School is participating in the Yellow Ribbon Program?
To qualify veterans need to be enrolled in an approved program offered by an Institute of Higher Learning. Students can search to see which institutions honor this program at
When Will Benefits under the Yellow Ribbon GI Education Enhancement Program Be Available to Veterans.
Benefits are payable for training pursued on or after August 1, 2009. Payments will not be funded under this program for training pursued before that date.
For more information, you can visit their site at www.GIBILL.VA.gov or email your questions about the “Yellow Ribbon Program” to their corporate mailbox at http://www.gibill.va.gov/gi_bill_info/ch33/yellow_ribbon.htm
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