State Education Benefits for Veterans
Most states offer their own benefits to help fund your education. Map your future here.
The Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs provides grants of up to $150 per month for as many months as veterans were on active duty for up to 36 months. Veterans who receive GI Bill money are not eligible. In addition, the Oregon National Guard Tuition Assistance Program waives tuition at state-supported schools. This program is also available for Guardsmen who attend private schools but pays only the tuition rate charged by public colleges. Program is for members who do not have a baccalaureate degree. This program may be combined with the Federal Tuition Assistance Program.
The Washington State Legislature requires state community colleges, colleges and universities to waive all undergraduate tuition and fees for eligible dependents of eligible veterans and suggests that these schools waive tuition and fees for other veterans. Also, the Washington National Guard Scholarship Program offers a loan forgiveness program to Guardsmen who complete contracted term of service. Priority is given students who attend institutions in Washington that are accredited by the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges.
Idaho Guardsmen and Reservists who live outside of Idaho but serve with an Idaho unit are entitled to in-state college tuition. The Operation Idaho Scholarship offered by the University of Idaho financially assists severely injured U.S. military personnel with direct educational costs such as fees, tuition and textbooks. A scholarship is also available for children of service members who were listed as missing in action or as a prisoner of war. Guard members called up for duty beyond training for 30 days or more will have lost tuition refunded.
Resident veterans are eligible for a full tuition waiver at state-funded colleges and universities. Children and spouses of service members who were killed in action or died as a result of injury, disease, or other disability or were declared to be prisoners of war or missing in action are also eligible.
The 100% State Educational Assistance Plan for Wyoming National Guard members covers the cost of tuition and mandatory fees at Wyoming junior colleges and at the University of Wyoming. Qualified Guardsmen can use the MGIB and kicker if qualified with the 100% State Educational Assistance Plan. In addition, the state provides free tuition for overseas combat veterans, as well as widows, and orphans of deceased veterans.
The dependent child, spouse or unmarried surviving spouses of a service connected disabled or deceased veteran may be entitled to tuition and fee waiver benefits at any campus of the California State University system, University of California or a California community college.
The Nevada National Guard State 100% Tuition Waiver Program provides free tuition at state universities and colleges for Nevada National Guard members, including recruits.
Utah public institutions of higher learning are required to waive the tuition for Utah residents in undergraduate programs of study if the student has received a Purple Heart as a result of military service. Plus, the state waives undergraduate tuition at state institutions of higher education for surviving dependents of Utah resident military members killed while serving on active duty. In addition, the Utah State Tuition Waiver Program covers all tuition and fees up to $250 per semester hour – up to 15 credit hours per semester for qualifying Guardsmen. This program may also be combined with the Montgomery GI Bill.
Any member of the Colorado National Guard is eligible for state tuition assistance, up to 100% tuition paid at any Colorado state-funded school. State funding can be used in conjunction with federal tuition assistance. The state also provides free tuition in certain state-supported schools for children of prisoners of war or persons missing in actions who were Colorado residents when they entered the Armed Forces, or for children of Colorado National Guardsmen who died or were permanently disabled while on state active duty. These benefits are limited to dependents who do not qualify for federal education benefits.
New Mexico National Guard Tuition Scholarship Program pays 100 percent of tuition costs for Guardsmen working toward any post-secondary degree or vocational training at any state supported institution. The state Vietnam Veteran Scholarship covers the complete cost of tuition and books to Vietnam Veterans at any state funded post-secondary school. Plus, children whose veteran parent was killed in action or died as a result of their wounds incurred in battle, qualify for a full tuition waiver at any state-funded post-secondary school as well as a $150 per semester stipend for books and fees.
A veteran or eligible dependent who has applied for educational benefits under the GI Bill to attend state-supported colleges and universities may defer payment of tuition, fees and required books for a period of 120 days with no interest charges. Arizona also provides a tuition waiver for widows and children under 30 of U.S. soldiers killed in the line of duty.
There are no current educational benefit programs for veterans offered by the state of Hawaii.
The Hawaii Army National Guard “Pay for Credits Successfully Completed” program pays 100% of resident tuition for qualified members attending any state-funded college or university.
The spouse or dependent of an armed services member who died in the line of duty or who died as a result of injuries sustained while in the line of duty or who was listed by the Department of Defense as a Prisoner of War or as Missing in Action is entitled to a waiver of undergraduate tuition and fees the students must be in good standing in a state supported educational institution in Alaska
The North Dakota National Guard offers a tuition waiver to attend state controlled educational institutions. In addition, dependents of resident veterans who were killed in action, disabled or died from wounds or other service-connected causes, were a prisoner of war, or was declared missing in action, can receive a tuition waiver to attend a state supported school.
South Dakota resident veterans are eligible for a tuition waiver for undergraduate coursework at any state supported school. Veteran’s who receive benefits under the GI Bill are not eligible. Also, children of veterans who were killed, wounded or are missing in action may be eligible for a tuition waiver as well. The South Dakota 50% Tuition Program provides Guardsmen a tuition waiver not to exceed 50% of the cost of tuition at a state-supported school.
The Nebraska National Guard State Tuition Assistance Program provides service members a 75 percent tuition waiver at accredited, not for profit, state institutions. Also, children and spouses of deceased state veterans who died as a result of their service or were classified or listed as missing in action or prisoners of war may also be eligible for a full tuition waiver at all state funded colleges and universities.
The Kansas National Guard Educational Assistance Program allows service members to receive up to 100% of tuition and fees at a state supported university, community college, or vocational school. These Soldiers will be required to serve in the Kansas National Guard for an additional period equal to 50 percent of the duration of benefits received or three months for each semester paid. Also, the spouse and dependents of military personnel who died as a result of active military service on or after Sept. 11, 2001, are eligible for a waiver of tuition and fees at any state educational institution. Plus, children of a resident veteran who became a prisoner of war, went missing in action or died during the service in the Vietnam Conflict are also eligible to 12 semesters of tuition waivers at state funded schools.
The Minnesota GI Bill provides grants up to $1,000 per semester to eligible Minnesota veterans who served on or after Sept. 11, 2001.
War Orphans Educational Aid provides $600 for war orphans who attend educational institutions of higher learning. The aid may be used to defray the expenses of tuition, matriculation, laboratory and similar fees, books and supplies, board, lodging, and any other reasonably necessary expense.
Resident veterans who served after Sept.r 11, 2001, receive a reduction in tuition costs and will be required to only pay a maximum of $50 per credit. Also, children and spouses of Vietnam veterans whose death was attributed or caused by exposure to toxic chemicals during the Vietnam conflict may be eligible for a grant equivalent to the amount of tuition charged to a Missouri undergraduate resident enrolled full-time in the same class level and in the same academic major as an applicant at the University of Missouri-Columbia.
Military service members and their dependents are offered in-state tuition to state funded schools. The Ohio National Guard Scholarship Program pays up to 100 percent of tuition and fees at state colleges and universities. It also pays up to 100 percent of average state college or university tuition at private or out-of-state schools.
The Wisconsin G.I. Bill provides full tuition and fees for eligible veterans and their dependents for up to eight semesters or 128 credits at any University of Wisconsin System (UWS) or Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) institution for study at the undergraduate or graduate level. The state urges its residents to get all the facts about the Wisconsin GI Bill before making the irrevocable choice to switch to the Post-9/11 GI Bill.
Michigan provides an annual undergraduate tuition grant of up to $2,800 for the eligible children of certain deceased military personnel or totally and permanently disabled veterans. Also, the National Guard Association of Michigan (NGAM) provides scholarships for eligible members. These scholarship awards vary depending on the number of applications received. Plus, a growing number of Michigan universities and colleges offer tuition grants to members of the Michigan National Guard
The Illinois National Guard Scholarship entitles any enlisted person or lieutenant or captain with at least one year of service in the Illinois Army or Air National Guard to tuition and fees coverage for eight semesters of full-time or part-time undergraduate study or graduate study at any Illinois state-controlled university or community college. Also, dependents of resident veterans who died as the result of a service-connected disability, were prisoners of war or were missing in action may be entitled to full payment of tuition and certain fees to any state-supported Illinois institution of higher learning. Also, the Illinois Veteran Grant (IVG) Program pays tuition and certain fees at all Illinois state-supported colleges and universities. In addition, each county in the state is entitled to issue one honorary scholarship to children of veterans who served in WWI, WWII, Korean and Vietnam conflict periods with preference being given to the children of deceased and disabled veterans.
The natural or legally adopted child(ren) of a disabled veteran may be eligible for remission of fees (free tuition) at any state-supported post secondary school or university. The remission is good for 124 semester hours of education and may be used for either undergraduate or graduate level work.
The Hazelwood Act provides wartime resident veterans a tuition waiver and also a waiver of some fees at state-funded schools. This benefit is also available to children of servicemen and women who died or were killed in military service, to children of military personnel who are shown to be missing in action or prisoners of war, and to children of veterans receiving 100 percent payment for service-connected disabilities. Plus, the Texas State Tuition Reimbursement Program pays tuition and fees to public colleges and universities for up to 12 hours per semester for 10 continuous semesters or 5 years.
The Oklahoma National Guard Tuition Waiver Program waives tuition at state supported two-and four-year colleges for in-state resident Guardsmen. Out-of-state residents can receive a waiver of the non-resident fees at state-supported schools.
The Arkansas Department of Higher Education has the authority to provide free tuition and fees at any state-supported college, university, technical school, or vocational school to the spouses and children of any resident veteran declared to be Prisoner of War or placed in a missing-in-action status since Jan. 1, 1960, or any service member resident killed in action.
Louisiana National Guard members are eligible for 100 percent tuition exemption at any Louisiana public institutions of higher learning for up to five academic years. The State Tuition Exemption Program (STEP) allows these service members to pursue a degree at the next higher level, up to the masters and professional level in a period of a six year reenlistment. Plus, children and surviving spouses of certain state veterans who died in service in the Armed Forces or died of a service connected disability incurred during a wartime period are exempt from paying tuition and school imposed fees at any state-supported college, university, trade or vocational technical school.
The Veterans Re-education Act Fund provides tuition assistance to veterans who need a new vocation due to dislocation or unemployment. These veterans must have exhausted GI Bill benefits and be in need of tuition assistance. In addition, West Virginia National Guard Educational Encouragement Program (WVEEP) provides full tuition coverage for certificate, associate, bachelors, and masters level courses up to $6,000 per year for Guardsmen attending in-state institutions.
The state waives tuition for spouses and children of veterans who attend state-supported schools. Room and board may not be waived. In addition, as soon as Guardsmen complete training they are eligible for 100 percent payment of tuition and fees at any University of Maine System or Maine Community College institution. Accredited private colleges and universities also qualify but are capped at the University of Maine tuition rate.
Pennsylvania provides state grants to qualified veterans who need financial assistance to complete approved programs of postsecondary education. All veterans are considered without regard to the financial status of their parents. The Armed Forces Loan Forgiveness Program provides a grant of up to $2,500 for veterans who haven’t defaulted and who were on active duty between Sept. 11, 2001 and April 30, 2008. Plus, the Pennsylvania National Guard Education Assistance Program covers tuition funding for resident Guardsmen at state system of higher educations schools
The Veterans Tuition Award program provides awards to cover the full cost of undergraduate tuition for New York state residents at the State University of New York, or actual tuition charged, whichever is less. Awards are prorated by credit hour for part-time study. Students enrolled in undergraduate programs are eligible for as many as eight semesters and graduate students are eligible for as many as six. In addition, the New York Recruitment Incentive and Retention Program covers the cost of tuition for credit bearing courses at state institutions for eligible members of the New York National Guard.
There are three scholarship programs tailored to veterans in Maryland: the Edward T. Conroy Memorial Scholarship, the Veterans of the Afghanistan & Iraq Conflicts Scholarship Program and Hodson Trust Star Scholarship – Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans. Not all veterans and/or dependents will be eligible, and the number of scholarships is limited. For more information visit www.mdva.state.md.us/state/scholarships.html.
Massachusetts offers its veterans a tuition waiver at any state-supported public college or university. To be eligible, a veteran must also be a legal resident of Massachusetts and he/she must not be in default of any federal student loans. Members of the Massachusetts National Guard also receive tuition waiver as well as a fee waiver at all state-supported colleges and universities. In addition, service members are not required to make certain payments to their student loans during deployments.
Active members of the Delaware National Guard are eligible for funding support by the Delaware National Guard for certain post-secondary education tuition and fees. Delaware also provides educational benefits for the children of deceased veterans, military service personnel held prisoner of war and military service personnel officially declared to be missing in action.
The state waives tuition for resident veterans who attend a public state college or university.
The New Jersey National Guard Tuition Program provides tuition free enrollment to any state public institution of higher education. Also, free undergraduate college tuition is available to children whose parents were officially declared a prisoner of war or person missing in action after Jan. 1, 1960 as well as children of service personnel who died while serving. These same people may also qualify for a $500 annual scholarship renewable for four years. The Vietnam Veterans Tuition Credit Program provides a $400 grant in addition to federal benefits for veterans who served on active duty from December 31, 1960 to May 7, 1975.
The Rhode Island National Guard State Tuition Assistance Program (STAP) waives the basic tuition for as many as five courses for Guardsmen attending any state college or university.
Tuition costs are waived up to 100% after applying other federal benefits at state-supported postsecondary institution on space-available basis for members of the New Hampshire National Guard. There is also a $500 scholarship available to Guradsmen. In addition, children of resident veterans who died in service during wartime may qualify for free tuition at New Hampshire public institutions of higher learning. A scholarship for board, room, rent, books and supplies up to $2,500 per year for a period of no more than four years at such educational institutions may be furnished to these children if they are in need of financial assistance.
The Vermont National Guard Scholarship Program provides Guardsmen scholarships up to $5,000 to cover tuition and fees at any state college, university, or regional technical center.
A tuition waiver is provided for the dependents of certain Kentucky veterans who attend schools that are operated and funded by the Kentucky Department of Education. The tuition waiver is provided for spouses who have not remarried, children, stepchildren and adopted children of veterans who died during active duty, as a result of a service connected disability or are totally disabled as a result of service. Plus, the Kentucky National Guard Tuition Award Program offers a tuition waiver for Guard members in good standing up to the in-state, full-time tuition rate.
Tennessee National Guardsmen may qualify for tuition assistance to attend state education institutions. The state also provides a tuition freeze at state schools for Guardsmen who are mobilized. In addition, the state offers a tuition waiver for dependents of National Guard members killed during a qualifying period of armed conflict.
Members of the Georgia Air National Guard may receive tuition assistance not to exceed $2,790 per school year, or the rate of $116.25 per semester hour. The National Guard Service Cancelable Loan Fund provides up to 100% of tuition charges not to exceed $3,643 per school year. The Georgia Helping Educate Reservists and their Offspring (HERO) Scholarship Program provides educational grant assistance to members of the Georgia National Guard and Reservists who served in combat zones or the children of such members. The grant is to attend an approved school for a maximum of up to four years with $2,000 per year. The Georgia Military Scholarship provides a full four-year scholarship to members who serve in the Cadet Corps at North Georgia College and State University and agree to serve at least four years in the Georgia Army National Guard as a commissioned officer after graduation
Veterans who receive benefits under the GI Bill and attend one of Florida’s public universities, community colleges or vocational schools is entitled to one tuition deferment each academic year and an additional deferment each time there is a delay in the receipt of benefits. Active Florida National Guard members who enlisted after June 30, 1997, are eligible for full exemption of tuition and fees. Florida also provides scholarships for dependent children of Florida veterans who died in action or died from service-connected diseases or disabilities.
Active-duty service members and activated members of National Guard and Reserve units who are stationed in Virginia but are not Virginia residents are eligible for in-state tuition rates at state schools. In addition, the Virginia National Guard Tuition Assistance (VNGSTAP) funds 100 percent of remaining tuition costs after federal tuition assistance benefits are applied at any state supported school not to exceed $6,000 per year.
The Adjutant General of Mississippi is authorized to pay the tuition for certain members of the active Mississippi National Guard enrolled in accredited Mississippi institutions of higher learning, vocational education schools or junior colleges. Also, service members stationed in Mississippi are classified as state residents and receive in-state tuition rates at state colleges and universities. Plus, children of resident veterans who were either a prisoner of war or listed as missing in action may be eligible for a tuition scholarship for eight semesters at any state-supported college or university within the state.
Active-duty stationed in North Carolina, and their dependents, receive in-state tuition rates at public universities. Plus, children of certain class categories of deceased, disabled, combat or POW/MIA veterans may be eligible for a four-year scholarship to approved schools in the state.
South Carolina National Guard members receive free tuition at state-supported colleges and universities and some private institutions. The state also offers free tuition to the children of veterans who were killed, wounded or are missing in action.
The Alabama GI Dependents Scholarship Program provides five standard academic years at any Alabama state-supported institution of higher learning for resident veterans and dependents.