VA Student FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are the answers to the most frequently asked VA student questions. To learn the answer, click on the question.


VA EDUCATION BENEFITS

First, learn about GI Bill® (eligibility requirements online https://www.va.gov/education/eligibility or by calling the VA Education Call Center 888-GIBILL-1 (888-442-4551), Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. ET.

To apply for the GI Bill® and related benefits, go to www.va.gov or call 888-442-4551.

To apply for Veteran Readiness and Employment Service (Chapter 31), go to https://www.va.gov/careers-employment/vocational-rehabilitation/eligibility
In some cases, the dependent or surviving spouse and children of a Veteran can get educational assistance through a GI Bill® program. Learn more about the Survivors' and Dependents' Educational Assistance Program (Chapter 35)

Also, if the service member has unused Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits, they may be able to transfer up to 36 months of benefits to their spouse or a dependent child. Learn more about Transfer of Eligibility for Dependents and Spouses (Chapter 33)
The VA will mail the Certificate of Eligibility (COE), or award letter, within 30 days from the date the VA application was submitted. The COE includes details of the VA education benefit the student is entitled.

Applicants can call the VA Education Call Center 888-GIBILL-1 (888-442-4551), two-weeks after applying, to learn if they are eligible.

 

NMSU CALENDAR

Spring 2022
Full-Term (16-Week Term): Jan 12 – May 6

1st Eight-Week Term: Jan 12 – Mar 4
2nd Eight-Week Term: Mar 14 – May 6

See Important Dates for Students located on NMSU University Student Records website.
LAST DAY TO DROP A COURSE WITHOUT A “W” (100% REFUND)?
Spring 2022
Full-Term (16-Week Term): Jan 28

1st Eight-Week Term: Jan
2nd Eight-Week Term: Mar 23

LAST DAY TO WITHDRAW FROM A SINGLE COURSE WITH A “W” (NO REFUND)?
Spring 2022
Full-Term (16-Week Term): Mar 31
1st Eight-Week Term: Feb 17
2nd Eight-Week Term: Apr 19

LAST DAY TO WITHDRAW FROM THE UNIVERSITY (by 4:59 P.M.)?
Spring 2022
Full-Term (16-Week Term): Apr 29
1st Eight-Week Term: Feb 25
2nd Eight-Week Term: Apr 29

See Important Dates for Students located on NMSU University Student Records website.
Census Date or Drop Date is the Last Day to Drop a Course without a “W” (100% refund). Class(es) dropped after Census Date or Drop Date receive a 0% refund and class(es) are assigned a “W” grade.

Spring 2022
Full-Term (16-Week Term): Jan 28
1st Eight-Week Term: Jan 24
2nd Eight-Week Term: Mar 23

See Important Dates for Students located on NMSU University Student Records website.

 

 PAYMENT OF VA EDUCATION BENEFITS

SUMMER UNDERGRADUATE
Ten-Week Term: 7 or more
Eight-Week Term: 6 or more
Five-Week Term: 4 or more

FALL/SPRING UNDERGRADUATE
16-Week Term (Full-Term): 12 or more
Eight-Week Term: 6 or more

SUMMER GRADUATE
Ten-Week Term: 6 or more
Eight-Week Term: 5 or more
Five-Week Term: 4 or more

FALL/SPRING GRADUATE
16-Week Term (Full-Term): 9 or more
Eight-Week Term: 5 or more

See Training Time located on the Military and Veterans Programs website.
The pay amount depends on the VA Chapter the student is entitled. Please review the monthly rates for each VA Chapter on the VA Pay Rates located on the MVP website. Students are encouraged to use the GI Bill® Comparison Tool to learn about each of the VA education benefits and compare their pay rate information.
VA determines full-time status for the time they are IN class during the start and end date of each semester.

Please review the examples provided:

Example 1: An undergraduate student is enrolled in 12 credits for Mini-Semester 1 during the Spring semester. The student will receive the full-time rate for the time they are IN class during Mini-Semester 1. Once Mini-Semester 1 classes end, the VA considers the semester over.

Example 2: An undergraduate student is enrolled in 3 credits for Mini-Semester 1 and 9 credits for the Full-Term during the Spring semester. VA will calculate full-time status based on where the dates overlap. Based on this example, VA will pay the full-time rate where the Mini-Semester 1/Full-Term dates overlap. Once Mini-Semester 1 class ends, the VA will start to pay the 3/4-time rate for the 9 credits enrolled during the Full-Term.

Students may contact MVP at mvp@nmsu.edu or (575) 646-4524 to determine full-time status.

 

MVP PROCESS

To start a file with Military and Veterans Programs (MVP), the student must be registered for courses and have applied for VA Education Benefits (apply at www.va.gov). Once that is complete, please send MVP the following proper documents:
  • - Student Information Sheet 
  • - Student Responsibilities Form
  • - MVP Resident Tuition Waiver 
  • - Certificate of Eligibility (COE) or Chapter 31 VR&E VA Authorization 
  • - Concise Student Schedule and STAR Degree Audit (must be submitted every semester).
Once the proper documents are sent, MVP will inform the student if additional documents are needed. Please be aware that VA certification is not an automatic process, students must submit to MVP their paperwork every semester to get certified. Students may email mvp@nmsu.edu or call (575) 646-4524 for any questions and concerns.

See Student Certification Checklists for proper documents and detailed information.
Students must notify MVP of any changes to their schedule. Failure to notify MVP of any schedule changes may delay the processing of certification, reduction in pay allowance, and/or termination of benefits.

Students must provide MVP with the following:

Added course(s): Concise Student Schedule and STAR Degree Audit Report or Academic Degree Plan or Program of Study for Master’s Students
Dropped course(s): Concise Student Schedule or email notification.

Chapter 31 Students: Before dropping courses, please contact your VR&E Counselor for approval.
A student can change their major, minor, and/or concentration with their academic advisor/faculty.

Undergraduate Students must submit an online request with the Center for Academic Advising and Student Support (CAASS). Changes will take approximately 3 business days to appear on the student’s account.

Upper-level students (Juniors, Seniors) may need to meet with their Academic Department or faculty advisor to request a change.

Graduate Students interested in changing majors must apply to the new program via the electronic application. If the new program will be in addition to your current curriculum please inform the Graduate School first of your intention to study both programs simultaneously or change majors.

Chapter 31 Students: Please contact your VR&E VA Counselor before requesting program changes. The student’s VR&E VA Counselor must approve your academic/career program and reissue a VR&E VA Authorization to MVP.
NMSU will award academic credit to the United States military personnel for courses and Military Occupational Specialties (MOS), based on the American Council of Education Guide (ACE) as well as through national standardized tests, such as CLEP, AP, PEP, and DANTES. Credit for military training is in accordance with NMSU Faculty Senate Legislation Proposition 24-07/08, which was passed in May 2008. Military Training and Military Occupational Specialties (MOS) must have a recommendation evaluation by ACE (in the ACE Guide) for credit to be awarded. Courses accepted for transfer credit become part of the student’s official NMSU transcript and academic record. See NMSU Catalog for more information.

Request military transcripts at:

Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, and Navy Transcripts:
https://jst.doded.mil/smart/signIn.do
Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) Transcripts:
http://www.airuniversity.af.mil/Barnes/CCAF
Military & Veterans Programs will certify the students’ enrollment to the VA in the order proper documentation is received from the student every semester. VA certification is not an automatic process, students must submit to MVP their paperwork every semester to get certified (see Student Certification Checklists). It takes approximately 30 days from the date received for MVP to certify it to the VA. After MVP certifies the students’ enrollment, it takes the VA another 30 – 45 days to award the students’ VA benefit.

To check on payment status, students should call the GI Bill® Hotline 888-GIBILL-1 (888-442-4551).

Chapters 30 and 1606: Students must verify their enrollment with the VA at the end of each month to receive their monthly stipend. If verification is not received, Chapter 30 and 1606 students will not receive their monthly stipend. Students may call 877-823-2378 or submit an online W.A.V.E. verification.
In-state tuition is available to military, veterans, and their dependents. Eligibility is determined by whether the student meets one of the requirements from the waivers listed below. Students must complete the MVP waiver form and email mvp@nmsu.edu or fax 575-646-1113 along with supporting documentation.

US VETERAN WAIVER: On the basis of New Mexico House Bill 427 (2015), I certify that I am a veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard) and that I am eligible for Veterans’ Education benefits under Federal law.

VETERAN/MILITARY DEPENDENT WAIVER (VA benefit eligible): On the basis of New Mexico House Bill 427 (2015), I certify that I am a dependent/spouse of a veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps or Coast Guard) and that I am eligible for Veterans’ Education benefits under Federal law.

ACTIVE DUTY MILITARY WAIVER: On the basis of New Mexico House Bill 427 (2015), I certify that I am in the military service of the United States, on active duty, and that I am eligible for Veterans’ Education benefits and/or Department of Defense (DoD) Tuition Assistance benefits under Federal law.

ACTIVE DUTY DEPENDENT/SPOUSE MILITARY WAIVER: On the basis of New Mexico House Bill 427 (2015), I certify that I am a dependent/spouse of a military service member of the Armed Forces of the United States (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps or Coast Guard) who is presently stationed within the exterior boundaries of the State of New Mexico, including Ft. Bliss, or that I am eligible for Veterans’ Education benefits and/or Department of Defense (DoD) Tuition Assistance benefits under Federal law.
Chapters 30, 33, 35, and 1606: To change from one school or training program to NMSU, students will need to complete the Request For Change of Program or Place of Training (VA Form 22-1995) and send it to VA Regional Office. Students may also complete the electronic form and select “Updating my program of study or place of training” through www.va.gov

Mail the completed form to:
WESTERN REGION
VA Regional Office
PO Box 8888
Muskogee, OK 74402-8888

Chapter 31: The student’s VR&E Counselor must provide NMSU with a VR&E VA Authorization (formerly known as VA Form 28-1905) listing NMSU as the primary school and approved degree program.

 

VA POLICY

Students pursuing a bachelor’s degree may not have to declare a major before their junior year. If a freshman or sophomore has not declared a major, MVP will report the student’s program as “Bachelor (undeclared)”. The student cannot be certified beyond his or her sophomore year unless a major is declared. VA will pay for Undeclared Majors but only “General Education” courses can be certified prior to the declaration of a major. VA will not pay for a course that is not part of the “General Education” courses.

See the NMSU Catalog for a listing of the General Education Courses.
Yes, students may pursue a dual major or a minor as part of a single objective for VA to pay. Only courses required to complete the dual major, including the minor, can be certified.

The student’s academic advisor must complete the MVP Dual Major Form and return to MVP for certification.
Remedial/deficiency (developmental) courses are courses designed to correct deficiencies in basic mathematics, English, and reading at the elementary or secondary level (i.e. CCDM 112 N. Developmental Algebra I, CCDE 110 N. General Composition, etc.).

VA will pay for remedial/deficiency (developmental) courses. These courses can be certified as part of an approved program, but only for students whose placement test results show the course is needed. VA will not pay for a course in which the placement score indicates the student tested into a higher-level course.

Remedial/deficiency (developmental) courses offered online cannot be approved and cannot be certified by VA. These courses are required to be taken on-campus (face-to-face). However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and passed VA legislation, VA will pay/allow for these courses to be taken online. The law only authorizes this special authority only until June 1, 2022.
A prerequisite is a course or requirement that you must complete before taking an advanced course. For example, you must complete General Chemistry I (CHEM 111G) before taking General Chemistry II (CHEM 112G). A corequisite is a course that must be taken at the same time as another course. For example, you must take General Supplemental Instruction I (CHEM 101) at the same time as General Chemistry I (CHEM 111G).

VA will pay for prerequisite and corequisite courses that are required, and noted in the NMSU Catalog, to advance the student toward their academic degree program.

See the Course Listings in the NMSU Catalog to identify prerequisite and corequisites courses.
Yes, VA will pay for repeated courses until the course grade meets degree requirements. However, courses that are successfully completed may not be certified again for VA purposes if they are repeated. Course(s) that are being repeated will appear in the student’s STAR Degree Audit Report under the “In-progress Repeat Summary” area.

Please review the examples provided:

Example 1: If a Nursing program requires a “B” or better in Biology, then that course may be repeated if a “B” or better was not earned. That requirement must be in the NMSU Catalog.

Example 2: If a course is required for graduation, a student may repeat the course and be certified for it until it is successfully completed. No further information needs to be provided to VA regarding those courses.

Example 3: If a student chooses to repeat a course that was successfully completed, just to improve their GPA, that course cannot be certified by VA.
No, VA does not pay for recommended courses. VA will only pay for courses required to meet degree requirements. The student’s academic advisor must complete the MVP Course Approval Form and provide a valid reason. The reason provided must adhere to VA Certification Policy.

Chapter 31 Students: If your academic advisor does not provide a valid reason, then please contact your VR&E Counselor for approval. VR&E Counselor must annotate approval in Chapter 31 VR&E VA Authorization in order for the course(s) to be certified for VA benefits.
No, VA does not pay for courses that help improve GPA. If a student chooses to take a course or repeat a course that was successfully completed, just to improve their GPA, that course cannot be certified by VA. VA will only pay for courses required to meet degree requirements. The student’s academic advisor must complete the MVP Course Approval Form and provide a valid reason. The reason provided must adhere to VA Certification Policy.
Students seeking reimbursement for test costs must complete the Application for Reimbursement of Licensing or Certification Test Fees. Reimbursement is issued after the student submits proof of payment to the VA. In addition to including proof of payment, make sure to include documentation supporting your request for test reimbursement. Please call VA TOLL-FREE at 1-888-GI-BILL-1 (1-888-442-4551) for assistance.

Mail the completed application to:
WESTERN REGION
VA Regional Office
PO Box 8888
Muskogee, OK 74402-8888

See U.S. Veteran Affairs Licensing and Certification Tests and National Testing Programs information.
Yes, a VA student can round out to a full-time schedule in order to receive benefits at the full-time rate in their last term of enrollment. This procedure can be done only once per (graduating) program.  

VA has recently amended its policy for “rounding out” to specify that any additional class(es) taken during the last term for the purpose of increasing training time or rate of pursuit, up to full-time, while not required for the specific beneficiary to graduate, are included within the program and would count toward an enrolled individual’s graduation requirements. Such classes must be specified by name in the approved program curriculum, and not have been already completed. This allows students to continue to receive benefits at the full-time rate in their last term of enrollment, even though fewer credits are required to complete the program.

EXAMPLE: A student needs to complete 120 credit hours to obtain a B. A. degree. After passing 117 credit hours, the student enrolls in four 3-credit-hour courses (to bring him/her to full-time). VA will pay the student educational assistance for full-time training during this last term.
Note: Monthly Housing Allowance (MHA) payments are based on the Department of Defense’s Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) rates for an E-5 with dependents. See BAH Calculator. MHA is based on the zip code of the school or college the student is attending.

If a student enrolls in only online courses for a semester, the VA will only pay 50% of the national average the Monthly Housing Allowance (BAH), even if the student is enrolled full-time. If at least ONE credit of the student’s classes is face-to-face or hybrid (combination of face-to-face and online), then the student will receive the full-time Monthly Housing Allowance (BAH). Students can take online courses, but in order to receive a regular/full Monthly Housing Allowance, at least 1 credit has to be on-campus or hybrid (combination of face-to-face and online).
Chapters 31 and 33: In order for the student to receive the minimum amount of their Monthly Allowance, the student would need to be enrolled ABOVE half-time status. If a student is enrolled below half-time, then the student will NOT receive any Monthly Allowance.

To determine the enrollment status (i.e. full-time, part-time), see Training Time on the MVP website. Monthly Housing/Subsistence Allowance Rates are found on the VA Pay Rates on the MVP website.

Chapters 30, 35, and 1606: Monthly stipend, see VA Pay Rates on the MVP website, are calculated based on the student’s Training Time.
Note: Census Date or Drop Date is the Last Day to Drop a Course without a “W” (100% refund). Class(es) dropped after Census Date or Drop Date receive a 0% refund and class(es) are assigned a “W” grade.

Chapters 31 and 33: If the student dropped class(es) on or before Census Date, then the student may receive a refund from NMSU. If VA paid for the student’s tuition, then VA will mail out a debt letter to the student for overpayment of benefits. It becomes the student’s responsibility to return any refund received from NMSU to the VA for dropped class(es). VA may also ask students to pay back a portion of the allowance benefits.

Chapters 30, 35, and 1606: If the student dropped class(es) and it affects the student’s certified training time (i.e., full-time, part-time, etc.), then it can result in an overpayment of allowance benefits. VA will mail out a debt letter to the student if this occurs.
Note: Census Date or Drop Date is the Last Day to Drop a Course without a “W” (100% refund). Class(es) dropped after Census Date or Drop Date receive a 0% refund and class(es) are assigned a “W” grade.

Chapters 31 and 33: If the student dropped class(es) after Census Date, then VA will mail out a debt letter to the student for overpayment of benefits. It becomes the student’s responsibility to pay back the VA.

Chapters 30, 35, and 1606: If the student dropped class(es) and it affects the student’s certified training time (i.e., full-time, part-time, etc.), then it can result in an overpayment of allowance benefits. VA will mail out a debt letter to the student if this occurs.
Chapters 30, 33, 35, and 1606: An “F” grade is considered a failing or non-passing, or punitive grade. Students under these chapters do not have to pay back the VA.

Chapter 31: An “F” grade is considered a failing or non-passing or punitive grade. MVP will report “F” grades to the VA for Chapter 31 students, but only if the student did not attend class until the last day of the term. VA will determine if the Last Day of Attendance reported (for Chapter 31 students) created an overpayment of allowance benefits. VA will mail out a debt letter to the student if this occurs.
No, students placed on Academic Probation do not have to pay back the VA or hold them from future certifications. MVP strongly recommends for students to reach out to tutoring services available to them at the school and tutorial assistance benefits available through VA.
Yes, students placed on Academic Suspension are required to pay back the VA. Unsatisfactory Progress (Academic Suspension) must be reported to VA as a termination. MVP will terminate the semester the student is suspended and include “Unsatisfactory Attendance, Conduct, or Progress” as the reason.

VA will mail out a debt letter to students placed on Suspension or Termination for unsatisfactory progress. Students are required to pay back benefits received during the semester, this includes allowance benefits and book stipends.
It depends. An Incomplete Grade is given for passable work that could not be completed during the term. The instructor assigning an Incomplete Grade must indicate the steps necessary to complete the remaining coursework and receive an earned grade. VA will allow students to complete the remaining coursework within one year. If the Incomplete grade is not replaced by an earned grade within one year, then MVP will report the student’s Incomplete Grade as non-punitive to the VA. VA will mail out a debt letter to the student.

Chapters 31 and 33: All incomplete grades will be reported.

Chapters 30, 35, and 1606: An incomplete grade doesn’t need to be reported if training time isn’t affected. Example: A student takes 15 credit hours, completes 12 credit hours, and receives 3 credit hours incomplete. Training time isn’t affected because the incomplete doesn’t change the student’s full-time training time. If training time is affected, then incomplete grades will be reported.
A punitive grade is earned credit that counts toward degree requirements and is calculated into the grade point average (i.e. “A” grade). An “F” grade is also considered a punitive grade. MVP will report “F” grades to the VA for Chapter 31 students, but only if the student did not attend class until the last day of the term. VA will determine if the Last Day of Attendance reported (for Chapter 31 students) created an overpayment of allowance benefits. VA will mail out a debt letter to the student if this occurs.

A non-punitive grade does not count as earned credit and is not calculated into the grade point average (i.e. “W” grade). Non-punitive grades get reported to the VA. The Last Day of Attendance or Withdrawal Date is also reported. VA will determine if this action created an overpayment of benefits. VA will mail out a debt letter to the student if this occurs.

 

OTHER THINGS TO CONSIDER

Please do one of the following:
  • Login to WAVE (WAVE is not available for Post-9/11 GI Bill® recipients). On the main menu page, click the link to the left that says “Direct Deposit Enrollment Form” or “Change of Address” depending on the request. Both procedures can be completed online.
  • Call 1-888 GI BILL 1 (1-888-442-4551)
  • Login to eBenefits
  • Complete a direct deposit form and mail it to:
    WESTERN REGION
    VA Regional Office
    PO Box 8888
    Muskogee, OK 74402-8888
NMSU understands that our military students may be called to active duty, specialized training, or disaster relief efforts with little notice. U.S. active-duty military students wishing to withdraw from all their classes must present their orders and their request for full withdrawal, as indicated below. However, the below policy does not pertain to a student’s basic and/or annual training. A student who has an order for training is encouraged to formally request, through the proper military chain of command, a postponement of their orders until the summer or the end of the semester they are currently enrolled in. If a student’s request for postponement is denied, the student may then follow the below steps but must provide documentation that their postponement request was formally denied.

Students must take the following steps in order to withdraw from all their classes due to military reasons:

1. Military and Veterans Programs (MVP): TA/VA students ordered to Active Duty must provide a copy of orders to the MVP office, in Corbett Center Student Union, Room 244, or by email at mvp@nmsu.edu. To assist in reporting accurate information to their military service or the VA Regional Office, the student should also provide, in writing, the last day of class attendance.

2. NMSU University Student Records: All students presenting their orders to the University Student Records Office, (575) 646-3411 or records@nmsu.edu, will receive a military withdrawal from classes and full tuition and fees refund for that semester.

3. Bookstore: Students who still have their receipts for textbooks purchased the semester in which they are called to active duty will be given a full refund for these textbook purchases when they present their orders. Please contact the NMSU bookstore for assistance at 575-646-4431 or 2218mgr@follett.com.
The Military Experience Waiver can be given to students who “have served at least four weeks of U.S. Military Foreign/Sea Service in a foreign country”. This academic waiver grants the student 3 credits under the NMSU Viewing the Wider World Requirement.

To apply for the waiver, a DD Form 214 or Memo from the Commanding Officer proving the 4-week deployment must be provided to the academic advisor. The waiver request will then be assessed and approved by the appropriate college.

See the Military Experience Waiver page for more information.
MVP does not verify a student’s enrollment status for purposes other than the processing of VA education benefits. Students must submit their CHAMPVA enrollment form to University Student Records.

NMSU University Student Records is located at:
Educational Services Building, Suite 200
575-646-3411
records@nmsu.edu


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 website at https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.