UA reduces the tuition rate for military undergraduates
Active duty members and veterans engage in a discussion about emphatic verb use for college assignments July 15 during the Warrior-Scholar Project. The project, aimed at helping members of the military better adapt to college life, runs on campus from July 13 through July 29.
All military undergraduates will benefit from reduced tuition costs beginning this semester as a part of the Department of Defense Tuition Assistance Program.
All members of the National Guard, Reserves or any active duty branch of the military are eligible for tuition assistance at $250 per unit, applicable at the University of Arizona main campus, as well as online and through UA’s distance learning programs, per a new program through the Department of Defense.
The Tuition Assistance Program is administered through the Department of Defense and is not to be confused with the GI Bill.
The GI Bill and DOD tuition program may both qualify to be used together, and the university provides education counselors at the virtual education center for each military branch to help decide which options are available.
According to Joel Hauff, the associate vice president of student affairs & enrollment management, the benefits of the new reduction are a big plus for military students.
“It allows a student to manage their education on a pace that works with their busy life, at a price they can afford,” Hauff said.
There is a cap of 16 units or $4,000 per year, which Hauff said he thinks is a reasonable amount.
“Active duty students are on active status, which means they typically cannot take more than one course at a time.”
From the reduced price comes higher savings for the student, depending on their campus.
“A student attending classes on the Main Campus pays $791 per unit for a degree in general studies, for example, while a student in Arizona Online pays $500 per unit for a degree in general studies,” Hauff said. “A student at UA North Valley pays $300 per unit for that same degree in general studies. So, the savings varies by campus and location, from $50 up to $541.”
Students who are active in the military and transferred to another duty post or station also benefit from the changes, as they can continue to work towards their degree at the UA, or any of the distance learning programs, without having to start over.
The Tuition Assistance Program covers tuition only, with all fees being charged at their standard rates. Students who are forced to drop a class without completing at least 60 percent of the course are also required to return funds, with returns prorated based on how much class is completed.
For many military personnel, this assistance, along with the GI Bill, can open the door to a college education. According to military.com, the GI Bill itself has no time limit of use, meaning veterans can go to school at the time that suits them best. Students are also still eligible for student loans, scholarships and Pell Grants upon using it.
Darrell Magee, a U.S. Senior Airman who is looking to enroll during his tour of duty at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base here in Tucson, says he finds the assistance crucial to an education.
Magee has begun the process of looking into courses with an emphasis in becoming a public health major, and said tuition assistance is a big help to not just him, but all military members looking to gain an education.
“The GI Bill and tuition assistance programs allow us to have options during and after service,” Magee said. “I know so many people with student loans who have a hard time paying for school and struggle to focus because they worry so much about debt, so having school paid for makes it all worth while.”
Application forms are found and filled out for each specific branch through their education center. Students who use the DOD assistance must first be pre-approved before enrolling in a course. Once this process is approved by the corresponding military branch, enrollment must take prior to the first day of class or the assistance will not be approved.
For your tuition assistance to be approved and invoiced, an email must be sent to Deborah Milora in the UA DoD Tuition Assistance Office. The DOD requires UA staff to approve of the enrollment, so long as the class meets the degree requirement of the student.
For more information on the tuition assistance program, you can contact the office at Reg-TuitionAssistance@email.arizona.edu, or by phone at 520-626-8488.
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