Florida Gateway College is an approved site for the education and training of veterans and veterans’ dependents. The College maintains a full-time employee whose duties include serving as the Veteran’s Certifying Official. This office is located within the Office of Enrollment Services.
A student interested in applying for veterans’ benefits should complete an application for general college admission and a veteran’s (VA) application. If a veteran has not previously applied for VA benefits he/she should provide the following to the Veteran’s Certifying Official:
- a copy of each DD-214, “member four copy,” and
- copies of marriage certificate, divorce decrees, children’s birth certificates, and/or any other papers depicting VA dependent status.
Due to the lengthy processing time of VA paperwork, veterans are advised to apply for benefits well in advance of registration.
After verification of official enrollment, the College Veteran’s Certifying Official certifies enrollment to the Veteran’s Administration. The College does not determine eligibility or amount of benefits.
Programs of Education
The Veteran’s Administration will only pay benefits if a veteran, or other eligible person, is seeking a degree or certificate. Only courses applicable to fulfilling degree requirements are used for certification. A course taken for audit cannot be approved for benefits.
FGC is approved to certify for practical training/internship/externships as a component of the program training curriculum.
Veteran students are eligible for independent study courses and open circuit TV courses, with the exception of remedial/deficiency (developmental education) courses.
Change of Educational Program/Change of Educational Status
Payment of Benefits
A delay in payments can result from a veteran student not reporting changes in enrollment or changes of program. Since the first VA checks are delayed, it is advisable for the veteran to be prepared to meet all expenses for approximately two months.
A veteran student may change programs and continue to receive benefits only with approval from the Veteran’s Administration and approval of their college academic advisors. If a student changes their educational program without contacting the Veteran’s Certifying Official, he/she will experience a delay in payment of benefits and a hold is placed on their records until necessary paperwork is filed with the Veteran’s Certifying Official. The Veteran’s Certifying Official is located in the Office of Enrollment Services, Building 015.
Change in Status
VA benefits will be reduced if a veteran, by auditing or withdrawing from a class, changes enrollment status. VA benefits are reduced at the time of change and the veteran or dependent is responsible for any overpayment of benefits, which results from that change.
Standards of Progress
Satisfactory academic progress must be maintained by the veteran in order to be certified for VA benefits. For more information, refer to sections of the catalog related to Academic Standards of Progress, Academic Warning, Probation and Suspension, Readmittance After Suspension, and Academic Dismissal.
Students on academic probation will be reported to the VA for unsatisfactory progress. Being placed on academic suspension or academic dismissal will result in the termination of the veteran’s benefits.
Standards of Progress Appeals
A veteran may appeal academic suspension or academic dismissal resulting in termination of veteran’s benefits, by following the Academic Appeals process in the catalog. If the appeal results in authorization for the student to enroll for classes and a change of academic standing to academic probation, it is the student’s responsibility to provide a copy of the authorization to the Veteran’s Certifying Official. The Veteran’s Certifying Official will notify the Department of Veteran Affairs.
Florida law provides for deferment of fee payment for veterans. Students receiving Veterans’ benefits whose receipt of benefits is delayed for reasons beyond their control may apply for a deferment of tuition and fees each semester. Late application for student financial assistance shall not be a sufficient reason to be granted a deferment of fees. The deferment of fees shall begin the first scheduled day of class and must be paid within 60 days for spring and fall semesters and 20 days for summer terms or within 10 days of the end of the semester/term; whichever is less. Repayment of the deferment is due within the specified time limit even if VA benefits have not been received. Veterans or eligible dependents should contact the Veteran’s Certifying Official on campus for more details. Veterans who do not repay their deferment will have a hold placed on their record and will not be allowed to register or receive transcripts until the balance is paid and the hold is lifted.
VA Pending Payment Compliance
In accordance with Title 38 US Code 3679 subsection (e), FGC adopts the following additional provisions for any students using U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Post 9/11 G.I. Bill® (Ch. 33) or Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment (Ch. 31) benefits, while payment to the institution is pending from the VA. FGC will not:
- Prevent the student’s enrollment;
- Assess a late penalty fee to the student;
- Require the student to secure alternative or additional funding;
- Deny the student access to any resources (access to classes, libraries, or other institutional facilities) available to other students who have satisfied their tuition and fee bills to the institution.
However, to qualify for this provision, such students may be required to:
- Produce the VA Certificate of Eligibility (COE) by the first day of class;
- Provide a written request to be certified;
- Provide additional information needed to properly certify the enrollment as described in other institutional policies.
These additional provisions will end on the earlier of the following dates:
- The date on which payment from the VA is made to the institution, or
- 90 days after the date the institution certified tuition and fees following the receipt of the COE.
Punctual and regular attendance is encouraged in all courses, and it is the student’s responsibility to be aware of each instructor’s policy concerning absences. Each instructor is requested to notify the Veteran’s Certifying Official on campus when a veteran or eligible dependent begins to be excessively absent. Excessive absence is defined as unexcused absences exceeding 15 percent of the total classroom contact hours. Any student reported as absent, or not regularly attending, will be reported to the VA as having terminated as of the last date of class attendance.
Assistance for veterans and eligible dependents is available. Students should contact the campus Veteran’s Certifying Official by calling (386) 754-4398 for specific details.
Additional information about veteran’s services is available through the Veteran’s Certifying Official on campus, who may be reached by calling (386) 754-4398 or students may call the VA directly at 1-888-442-4551.