Getting Started

The process of receiving your educational benefits from Veterans Affairs can be a daunting task, but we are here to help. It is imperative to be proactive and to contact the Veterans Certifying Official at Western as soon as you decide that you would like to attend Western.

The Veterans Certifying Official is available Monday-Friday, from 8am to 5pm and will be able to assist Veterans and their dependents throughout their academic careers by accurately reporting registration information to the VA, and by being an on-campus advocate for all Veteran students. An eligible Veteran will need to maintain communication with the VA Certifying Official throughout their time here at Western to avoid interruption of benefits.

We understand that the transition to, or back to higher education can seem overwhelming at times, but if you follow the step-by-step instructions below, you should be well on your way to receiving your educational benefits from the VA and enjoying your academic experience here at Western.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Applying to Western and Receiving VA Educational Benefits:

1. Apply for Admission, and be accepted to Western State Colorado University.

  • Request Official Transcripts (Military and/or other) to be sent to Western for transfer credit evaluation

2. Once accepted, contact the Academic Resource Center (ARC).

  • The ARC will assist you with step-by-step instructions regarding the registration process.
  • If you are a Chapter 33 Post 9/11 G.I. Bill recipient, you are eligible for a TUITION DEPOSIT WAIVER. Contact the Office of Veterans Services for details.

3. Apply for Financial Aid

  • Complete the free application for Federal Aid (FASFA)
  • If a resident of Colorado, complete the College Opportunity Fund (COF) application.
  • If you are not a resident of Colorado, you may be eligible for a Military Exemption. Please contact the Office of Veterans Services for more details.
  • For any questions or information regarding loans, aid, scholarships, or grants that you may be eligible for in addition to VA benefits, you may contact the Financial Aid office directly at 970.943.3085.

4. Apply for VA Educational Benefits to determine what benefits you are eligible for:

  • Have you used your VA educational benefits at any other institution? If so, you need to complete a Change of Program or Place of Training Form 22-1995 and submit it to the VA. The VA Certifying Official will also need a copy for your file.
  • The VA Certifying Official will need a copy of your Application for VA Benefits and a copy of your Certificate of Eligibility. These documents can be emailed or faxed (see contact information on the left).

5. Contact the Western Office of Veterans Services directly:

  • Inform the VA Certifying Official that you are an accepted student and when you plan on attending.
  • Ensure that you have completed and sent in all of the necessary paper-work.