The Veterans Affairs offers many services for veterans such as education, VA Home Loans, and health benefits. Visit their main page to find out about other services and your eligibility.
The Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs offers consultation and services for Veterans health benefits, education benefits, employment assistance, and scholarship programs.
eBenefits is a portal and central location for Veterans, Service Members, and their families to research, find, access, and manage their benefits and personal information.
Requesting Use of VA Benefits
All students using VA benefits must complete UMBC’s Semester Certification Form every semester online through the Registrar.
Semester Certification Request and Responsibility Checklist
Purpose: A form is completed each semester by students to be certified for VA benefits and ensure that students fully understand their responsibility as recipients of VA benefits.
Procedure: Complete the form online.
Processing Time: 3-5 business days (Registrar’s Office) and 6-9 weeks for the VA to process once it is received.
PLEASE MAKE SURE THAT WE HAVE YOUR CERTIFICATE OF ELIGIBILITY ON FILE PRIOR TO SUBMITTING THIS FORM. WE CANNOT PROCESS IT, WITHOUT THE COE.
Questions, please contact VACertifying@umbc.edu
A ticket will then be created for you. Questions or documents must be attached to your ticket. All semester certification requests must be submitted via DocuSign. We will accept hard copies or attachments of the Certificate of Eligibility.
Applying For First-time VA Benefits Through the VA
Make sure that you have applied for VA benefits through the Department of Veteran Affairs. Once you are approved, they will send you a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) which you can forward a copy to the Registrar’s Office by attaching it to your ticket once you’ve submitted your request. It is not necessary to submit your COE every semester unless your eligibility changes.
To avoid any delays, you can also verify that your UMBC program is in the VA’s catalog, WEAMS.
If you do NOT see your program listed on WEAMS, please submit an RT ticket to submit your program to be included ASAP.
The VA typically takes 30 days for approval and update of programs into WEAMS. Be sure to check on this before the start date of classes to avoid delays.
Certifications for tuition and fees are submitted every semester after the add/drop period.
UMBC’s SCO first certifies for Book and Housing Allowance (BAH) as soon as requests are received on a first-come, first-served basis (so be sure to submit your request online early as soon as registration opens and you are enrolled in classes).
You will be notified on your ticket once your certification is submitted.
Late Payment Fee, Past Due Messages, and Hold Notices
Once the School Certifying Official receives your request, a Late Payment Fee hold is requested to be placed by SBS for CH. 33 students only, to prevent any late fees from applying on your account pending VA payments. While awaiting VA payments, you are allowed to continue taking classes.
You will be notified if any further information or additional paperwork is needed.
Newly Admitted Student
Follow these steps after being admitted into UMBC
- Contact a Department of Veterans Affairs counselor at 1-888-442-4551 to discuss your education benefits.
- Complete the VA’s online application which may be quicker than sending in an application to the VA. The VA requires you to apply to start using your education benefit.
- Submit your Certificate of Eligibility (COE) to firstname.lastname@example.org. After the VA processes your application, they will mail you a “Certificate of Eligibility” detailing your education benefit.
- Submit your Request for Certification. You will submit this form to us with your “Certificate of Eligibility” once you have registered for classes after orientation. This form is the form you will do EVERY semester that you are using your benefits.
- Fill out the FAFSA. Every student, regardless of if they are using VA benefits, should complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to see if they qualify for additional student aid. Check with the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships for aid eligibility or if you have any questions regarding the FAFSA.
- If you change your registration in any way, you will need to complete a new Request for Certification form and submit it to email@example.com
- Veteran Education Benefits are certified on a semester basis. You will need to complete the Request for Certification form every semester to be able to use your benefits.
Note: If you have used VA education benefits previously at another university, you must complete VA Form 22-1995 (Request for Change of Program or Place of Training) through VONAPP (Veterans Online Application).
This process is for those students who have completed at least one semester while using their military education benefits at UMBC.
NOTE: Returning students need to submit the Request for Certification each semester that they are enrolled in classes.
- Register for Classes
- Submit your Request for Certification. You will submit this form to us with your “Certificate of Eligibility” once you have registered for classes for the upcoming semester.
Registration and Certification Information and Updates
Below are some helpful resources if you still need to register or adjust your schedule.
- Registration Information
- Registration Deadlines/Academic Calendars
- Departmental Advising Information
Please remember: VA certification requests for the semester should be submitted as soon as possible after you have registered for classes. Initial certification for books and housing will take place within 14 business days after receiving your request.
The final certification process for tuition and fees for all VA students begins following the add/drop deadline and can take up to 30 days. This does not include VA processing time to send tuition payment to UMBC which can take an additional 3 – 4 weeks.
Students using GI Bill® benefits wishing to register for upcoming terms with an overdue balance for the current term can contact firstname.lastname@example.org requesting permission to register.
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 Web site.
Please be mindful that all classes taken must be required towards the degree being pursued as shown in your degree audit. You should consult with your academic advisor if you have questions regarding degree requirements. You can also contact the Registrar’s Office degree audit team.
As always, we work closely with the VA to ensure enrollments are accurately certified and processed. Should you have questions about the certification process, please reach out to email@example.com. Your patience during peak times is greatly appreciated. Best wishes for a safe and successful semester.
- Submit your Certificate of Eligibility to our office
- Obtain a Parent Letter from your current school’s School Certifying Official. The parent letter must be:
- printed on official letterhead and signed
- Sent to us as a copy via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
The parent letter must contain the following information:
- Official letterhead
- Student name
- Student ID from Parent School
- Exact courses being taken at UMBC
- Statement from School Certifying Official that the credits being taken at UMBC will apply to the guest student’s degree.
- Register for your classes
- As soon as you register for courses, be sure to complete your Request for Certification.
- Once the parent letter is received by UMBC’s School Certifying Official and the student has registered for courses and requested certification, we will certify the guest student’s enrollment to the VA.
UMBC students requesting to be a guest student at another school should follow this process:
- Complete a verification of transferability form (VoT) with the Registrar’s office.
- Submit a copy of your approved VoT to the UMBC School Certifying Official email@example.com requesting a Parent Letter be sent to the school at which you will be taking courses.
- Once we review your VoT, we will create a Parent Letter and send it to you.
Questions About VA Benefits
Questions or documents must be attached to your ticket when you submit your Semester Certification request every semester. If you still have pertinent questions, you can submit an RT ticket.
We ask students to please manage all questions during the initial processing times so that your certification can be submitted in a timely manner. You may also schedule appointments to meet with the SCO in advance.