Education: The best strategy before a new career.
Here at UMA, veterans and active duty military personnel will find a wide range of courses, degrees, and services available to them at both our campuses, our statewide UMA centers, and through online and distance delivery.
Since our founding in 1965 when a simple “Welcome Veterans” sign encouraged Vietnam-era Veterans to enroll, we have continued a rich tradition of supporting military-experienced students. This commitment was recognized in June 2009 when UMA was awarded one of only twenty $100,000 grants from the American Council on Education/Wal-Mart Foundation to support success for veterans. In 2017, with the support of the Windover Foundation, UMA was able to renovate an existing space on campus to provide a state-of-the-art Veteran Academic Center. UMA has been recognized throughout the years as a top military-friendly school from various national organizations.
Hundreds of Veterans, National Guard members, and active military personnel are enrolled in courses and degrees while still serving, many of those courses taken via distance education. All of our Admissions Staff work with veteran and military students. Don’t hesitate to contact us by email or phone if you have any questions – and thank you for your service to our nation.
Our School Certifying Official (SCO) is located in the Office of the Registrar on the Augusta campus and all veterans seeking VA funding (regardless of location) must complete the Veterans Request for Certification prior to the beginning of each term.
Get to Know UMA’s Veterans Program
Who We Serve
- Veterans who were on active duty and contributed to the “Montgomery G.I. Bill®*”
- Active duty military personnel attending UMA and using the “Montgomery G.I. Bill®*”
- Veterans who have served since 9/11 and will be taking advantage of the Post 9/11 G.I. Bill®*
- Members of the active Reserve and National Guard
- Disabled veterans retraining through VBA Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment program
- Eligible dependents of 100% disabled or deceased veterans
- All other veterans that do not fall under any of the above
*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 at https://www.vets.gov/.
Military and Veterans Leadership Team
Support for veterans is augmented by the Military & Veterans Advisory Council composed of UMA alumni, local community members, faculty, and staff. Key members provide the following support:
Laurie A. Krzywda
Laurie can assist with the required paperwork to access veteran educational benefit programs.
Amy is a Navy veteran, UMA alum and adjunct faculty member. She can help you navigate military and veteran benefits and campus resources.
Bethany J. Vigue
Beth has over 30 years of experience in higher education and can assist with the transfer process and articulated credit transfer agreements before a service member’s enrollment.
Resources for Veterans & Military Personnel at UMA
This checklist is a guide to assist you with your veteran educational benefits.
**For first semester student veterans accessing benefits, please allow ample time for processing benefits. At peak time, it can take six to eight weeks for the VA Buffalo Regional Office to process requests.**
- Apply for an eligibility determination from the VA for education benefits at Vets.gov. The VA will send you a Letter/Certificate of Entitlement.
- Remember to forward a copy of your Letter/Certificate of Entitlement to the UMA Registrar’s Office.
- Below are the websites to review and order your military transcripts. To have your transcripts sent directly to UMA, please address them to Transfer Evaluator, ATTN: Bethany Vigue, 46 University Drive, Augusta, ME 04330.
- All veterans seeking VA funding must complete the Veterans Request for Certification prior to the beginning of each term. To be completed by student every semester, which they wish to receive benefits. Our School Certifying Official (SCO) is located in the Office of the Registrar on the Augusta campus.
- Access and manage your VA benefits and health care.
- Contact the Maine Bureau of Veteran’s Services (MVBS) and self-identify as a veteran to ensure access to all benefits to which you are entitled.
- The Maine Veterans’ Benefits and Resources Guide provides information on a broad range of benefits, services, and veterans-related organizations.
Students with inquiries regarding military activation and the effect on their enrollment in a traditional, compressed video, or interactive television class on a campus or at a center should send a copy of their orders and contact the UMA Student Accounts Office (207-621-3412).
UMA Veterans Attendance Policy
The Veterans Administration (VA) closely monitors student grades and attendance while they are taking classes. The Registrar’s Office is required to report non-attendance which can be indicated by an L grade to the VA. L grades are assigned to students who stopped or never attended a class but don’t officially withdraw from that class. To officially withdraw from a class, the student must take action either by communicating with the Registrar’s office / Enrollment Services or by self dis-enrolling in Mainestreet.
Before notifying the VA of any non-attendance, an attempt will be made to get the last date of participation. If there is no date available, the mid-point date of the semester will be used when notifying the VA. Failure to notify the Schools Certifying Official that you have withdrawn from a class can create an “overpayment” of benefits from the VA. Students will be required to pay back any over-payments to the VA.
If a student is reported as not in attendance, UMA will not certify future semesters for the student until a grade is posted for that semester. If UMA has already certified any future semesters, they will be de-certified until grades are posted for that semester. Communication will be sent notifying the student that they will not be certified until this situation has been resolved.
Any questions on this policy please contact the School Certifying Official located in the Registrar’s Office.
TUITION ASSISTANCE: Voluntary Education Institutional Compliance Program
Next compliance review: September 2020
Eligible Service members must receive approval from an Educational Service Officer (ESO) or counselor within the Military Service prior to enrolling at UMA.
The VolEd program provides Service members with increased educational opportunities to advance their professional development and education, and develop the skills needed in our competitive 21st century marketplace.
The Department of Defense (DoD) Voluntary Education (VolEd) program vision is to shape quality educational experiences that result in meaningful value for Service members, the military services, and society.
Consistent with that vision, VolEd developed the Institutional Compliance Program (ICP), using best practices from across industry and government to ensure a rigorous, transparent assessment of educational institutions, focusing on compliance with the tenets of the DoD VolEd Partnership Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).
Four main sections:
- Recruiting, Marketing, and Advertising:
The TA Program is designed to provide opportunities for Service members to realize their educational goals while maintaining judicious use of taxpayer dollars. In doing so, the practices that educational institutions use to attract prospective Service members must adhere to specific legal and ethical guidelines established in the MOU.
- Financial Matters:
Financial matters pertain to the cost of attendance, pre- and post-enrollment tools and processes, and the ease with which prospective Service members can access information. MOU compliance requires that Service members have easy access to clear, accurate, and accessible information regarding financial aid options. This includes access to trained counseling staff who can provide accurate and up-to-date information regarding the institutional cost, breakdown, and recommendations regarding individual financial choices.
All institutions must be accredited by a national or regional accrediting body recognized by the Department of Education (ED) and conduct programs only from among those authorized by the institution’s main administrative and academic office in accordance with standard procedures for authorization of degree programs established by the institution. An institution must keep this information up-to-date and easily accessible to the general public.
- Post-Graduate Opportunities:
Institutions should make information readily available to prospective and current Service members and designed to aid them in their post-academic life. This information should include the unchanging degree plans and requirements needed to complete an academic program, guidance on professional opportunities available upon completion of a degree/program, and processes regarding readmission policies for Service members fulfilling military obligations while attending the institution.
Return of Tuition Assistance
Military Tuition Assistance (TA) is awarded to a student under the assumption that the student will attend school for the entire period for which the assistance is awarded. When a student withdraws, the student may no longer be eligible for the full amount of TA funds originally awarded.
To comply with the new Department of Defense policy, University of Maine at Augusta will return any unearned TA funds on a prorate basis through at least the 60% portion of the period for which the funds were provided. TA funds are earned proportionally during an enrollment period, with unearned funds returned based upon when a student stops attending. These funds are returned to the military Service branch. This could result in a debt due to the institution.
Instances when a Service member stops attending due to a military service obligation, the educational institution will work with the affected Service member to identify solutions that will not result in student debt for the returned portion.
The following is the schedule percentages of unearned TA that will be returned
- Prior to the end of the second week: 14 days 100%.
- Prior to the end of the fourth week: 28 days 75%.
- Prior to the end of the sixth week: 42 days 50%.
- Prior to the end of the eighth week: 50.4 days 25% (60% completion point) day 50.2.
- After the eighth week: 51 -84 days 0%.