Paying for college and being aware of what financial aid options are available can be a confusing process for students and families, particularly if the student or a family member is a military veteran or serving in active duty.
In this session, David Renza of Northeastern University discussed the variations in Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits and financial aid for veterans – or their dependents – who are attending graduate or professional school. Renza, along with his colleague Edmund Lizotte of Johnson & Wales University, wrote a book about the complexities of college tuition benefits and financial aid available to military members, veterans, and dependents.
Overall, Renza said, military graduate education funding programs will vary depending on several factors, including the type of institution the student is attending, the education path of the student, the branch of service, and the individual. At the institutional level, VA benefits and financial aid can vary based on the scholarships and aid package awards available at the school, the type and duration of the student’s program, the overall tuition level and cost of attendance, and the types of waivers that might be available in a certain state.
“Different states have different programs that they offer,” Renza said. “Some have tuition waivers. Some schools just offer in-kind awards for students.”
Financial aid administrators should also keep in mind information about the education goals of the individual, such as how much of their benefits have been used and how much is left.
“One of the key things to remember is it does run out after a while,” Renza said.
Publication Date: 7/10/2016