Veterans Affairs Education Benefits

Note: All policies are subject to change based on institutional and federal guidelines.

Quick Reference:

Eligibility, Enrollment Certification Process (22-1999)
Verification of Enrollment (Chapters 30 and 1606)
Notification from the Department of Veterans Affairs
Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)
Changes to: Address/Phone Information, Enrollment Status, Program of Study
Websites for Further Information

Central Piedmont is proud of its long-standing relationship with the men and women in uniform who bravely serve this country, those who have served, and their families. Central Piedmont is dedicated to providing the highest quality and comprehensive support to student veterans in an atmosphere that provides commitment, respect, and academic excellence.

The North Carolina State Approving Agency approves Central Piedmont for the enrollment of persons eligible for education assistance benefits from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. The college provides training opportunities for veterans, eligible National Guard/Reservists, and eligible dependents (spouse and/or children).

For additional information regarding these benefits, which are administered by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, contact one of the following offices:

Priority Registration for Veteran Students

Central Piedmont offers priority registration to students using veterans' benefits and veterans who submit a member 4 or service 2 copy of their DD214 to Student Records. Veteran students are encouraged to register early to ensure availability in the courses required for their program and to achieve timely program completion.

Eligibility for Enrollment Certification Process (Electronic Form 22-1999)

Veteran students are in the unique position of having to meet requirements as specified by both the Department of Veterans Affairs and the North Carolina State Approving Agency (NCSAA). The college strives to meet the Department of Veterans Affair's goal of “Putting Veterans First.”

For eligibility to receive VA education benefits, students are required to complete the following six steps:

1. Apply for VA education benefits.

All Veterans, National Guard/Selected Reserve, and Survivors and Dependents of Disabled Veterans can apply online for benefits. Applications are available at benefits.va.gov/;gibill. From there, applicants are directed to the eBenefits website for the online application. A Certificate of Eligibility from the Department of Veteran Affairs is sent to the student after the application is processed.

2. Complete all Central Piedmont admission steps.

All admission steps are available under Veterans on the Central Piedmont home page.

3. Submit official transcripts to Central Piedmont Records for evaluation.

Request official copies of high school, military, and all prior college transcripts to be sent to Student Records in the Central High Building along with the member 4 or service 2 copy of the DD214.

Evaluation of Transcripts
Students receiving Veterans Affairs education benefits need to request official academic transcripts be sent from all previous schools to the Central Piedmont Student Records Office, regardless of whether they received credit for the courses. VA regulations require that all prior college credit be evaluated toward the student’s current degree plan and re-evaluated if/when the student changes programs or place of training. Students are not eligible to be certified for any course they already have received credit, even if the course was completed before the establishment of eligibility for benefits.
Important Notice: A VA file is not complete until all official high school, military (including DD214 member 4 copy), and college transcripts are evaluated by the Student Records office. A DD214 member 4 copy is also required (except students using Chapter 35 benefits).

4. Meet with an Academic Counselor in Military Families and Veterans Services to be admitted into a VA Approved Program of Study

Selection of Degree Program
To receive veterans' affairs education benefits, VA regulations require that students have a “predetermined and identified educational, professional or vocational objective.” Benefits cannot be authorized for courses that do not lead to the completion of this objective. Courses that do not apply to the selected program are considered unrelated courses and are not eligible for benefits. Therefore, any such courses will not be certified. Students need to access their MyCollege account to confirm all courses are required for their program of study before they register for classes.
Important Notice: 
Chapter 35 students must pursue a degree program to be eligible for certification in virtual/distance learning courses. Chapter 35 students seeking a diploma or certificate cannot be certified for virtual courses, per federal regulations.

Transitional Courses
According to federal guidelines, all transitional courses must be taken in seated classroom settings for VA certification. Examples of developmental courses are ENG 001, ENG 011, MAT 001, and all courses that start with 0.

Dual Degrees
Central Piedmont is approved for VA students to pursue dual degrees simultaneously. Diplomas and certificates do not qualify for the dual degree program. Students must meet certain criteria to be certified for Veterans Affairs benefits while seeking two degrees. Students desiring a second degree should contact the Center for Military Families and Veterans/Education Benefits for more information. Students can only be enrolled in two Certificate programs simultaneously (exceptions may apply for students using Chapter 31 benefits).

5. Submit a request for certification and a copy of your class schedule.

Verification of Enrollment (Chapters 30 and 1606)

After the Veterans Affairs Education Benefits Office has certified a student’s enrollment to the VA Regional Processing Office, students using Chapter 30 and 1606 benefits need to verify their hours have not changed. This action is required on the last calendar day of each month by calling 877.823.2378 or using WAVE (Web Automated Verification of Enrollment) through benefits.va.gov/gibill/.

Effective December 17, 2021: Students using Chapter 33 benefits are required to electronically verify their continued enrollment in school with the VA directly (separate from certification each semester with CPCC). If a student fails to certify with the VA for two consecutive months, VA will withhold housing allowance payments until the student certifies. (Guidance on how to certify will be sent to the student directly from the VA.)

To prevent student debt, the Central Piedmont Veterans Affairs Education Benefits Office is responsible for transmitting all enrollment changes immediately to the VA Regional Processing Office.  Students are responsible for notifying the Veterans Affairs Education Benefits Office immediately:

  1. when changes are made to their enrollment, and
  2. must complete a VA Schedule Adjustment Form.

Notification from the Department of Veterans Affairs

All enrollment certifications are electronically transmitted through the VA Once Reporting System. The Department of VA transmits an electronic message directly to a students' Central Piedmont email account when any activity is transmitted by a VA Certifying Official to the VA Regional Processing office. A student's Central Piedmont email address is the official means of communication from the college. It is always important to notify the Department of Veterans Affairs, Central Piedmont's Military Families and Veterans Services, and the Student Records Department of address, phone number, or email address changes to prevent communication delays. 

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

VA education benefits are discontinued for students who cease to make satisfactory progress toward completion of their program. Veterans and eligible dependents/spouses are required to seek academic assistance by contacting their instructor and  Military Families and Veterans Services before academic difficulties place them on “Probation” or “Suspension.” A grade point average at the end of each semester/term of 2.0 or higher is required to meet the criteria for satisfactory academic progress for VA eligibility. 

Unsatisfactory Attendance: Unsatisfactory attendance in courses may result in an administrative withdrawal. An administrative withdrawal is reported to the VA Regional Office, and education benefits are discontinued at that time.  Students need to contact Military Families and Veterans Services if they have excessive absences and/or have stopped attending.

Satisfactory Progress: Students receiving VA education benefits need to maintain a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.000 to be considered making satisfactory progress

If a veteran student requesting benefits is currently on “Probation” or “Suspension,” notification is sent to the student’s Central Piedmont email. If the student is on Suspension, eligibility is terminated until the student meets the Standards of Academic Progress required to regain eligibility for VA education benefits.

Unsatisfactory Progress, Probation: Students who fail to achieve a semester GPA of 2.0 and a cumulative GPA of 2.0 are placed on probation of Veterans Educational Benefits for the next semester. Students on probation are required to attend an On Track meeting with a counselor in the Center for Military Families and Veterans during the probationary term before they can be certified. 

Unsatisfactory Progress, Suspension: If a student on VA probation fails to achieve a semester GPA of 2.0  or cumulative GPA of 2.0 at the end of the first probationary semester, the student is reported to the Veterans Affairs Regional Office as terminated due to unsatisfactory progress.  The student is placed on suspension of Veterans Affairs Educational Benefits . The student is no longer eligible for certification until both the term and cumulative GPA are brought up to a 2.0. The Department of Veterans Affairs discontinues VA education benefits for any student reported for unsatisfactory progress. These standards are in accordance with the Department of Veterans Affairs Code of Federal Regulations, Title 38, Part 21, Subpart D, Section 21.4277.

Failing Grades: Veteran students who complete a course but earn a grade of “F” may still receive VA benefits. Any student who does not complete the final exam and does not attend class through the last scheduled day receives an unearned grade of “F.” The VA Regional Office is notified of any student who fails to attend class and fails to take the final exam. Such students are classified as having received an overpayment of funds. Any overpayment is the student’s responsibility. VA students may receive benefits to retake a required course if they previously received a failing grade.

Note: Courses completed with a grade of “D” cannot be re-certified if the college accepts the grade toward graduation.

Graduation: Students applying for Graduation must inform the Military Families and Veterans Services once they have verified they are in their last semester at the college. 

Changes to: Address/Phone Information, Enrollment Status, Program of Study

Changes to Address/Phone Number
To report a change of address/phone number, veteran students should update their address/phone number through the Student Records Department or at mycollege.cpcc.edu.  Students are also to contact Military Families and Veterans Services at 704.330.6552 and the VA Regional Office at 1.888.442.4551 to report changes to address/phone number.

Veteran students are responsible for and required to notify Military Families and Veterans Services immediately of any withdrawals, attendance issues, change of address, phone number or email address, pending or approved program changes, course substitutions, and/or waivers for graduation. Veteran students are responsible to the US Department of Veterans Affairs and/or the college for repaying overpayments.

Change of Enrollment Status

  • Withdrawn, Non-Attendance: It is the student’s responsibility to report all withdrawals or attendance issues to the Central Piedmont Center for Military Families and Veterans immediately to prevent overpayments. Students are required to complete a VA Schedule Adjustment form within five business days of the enrollment change. The instructor must verify the last date of attendance for all withdrawals. VA students are allowed a one-time penalty exclusion by the VA Regional Processing Office for officially withdrawing up to six credit hours. Students can be paid up to the last instructor-confirmed date of attendance for those six hours. This exclusion must be approved and processed by the Department of Veterans Affairs. After that time, students must provide the VA  Regional Processing Office in Buffalo, New York, with mitigating circumstances or repay any benefits received. If the student attends classes throughout the semester and receives a “W” (non-punitive) grade, this must be reported to the VA Regional Processing Office and is not part of the six-hour, one-time exclusion - even if a student can document attendance through the last day of class. Students are responsible for overpayments resulting from non-punitive grades. Failure to notify the Military Families and Veterans Services of withdrawals and continued acceptance of educational funds may be considered fraud. Students are encouraged to register only for those classes they know they can complete.
  • Withdrawn, Never Attended - A grade of “WN” is assigned when a student registers for a class and never attends the class before the census date. “WN” grades are not included in the SAP calculation as attempted credit hours or assigned any GPA rating. The Department of VA does not pay education benefits for any courses assigned a “WN” grade. 

Change in Program of Study
Changes in the program of study must be submitted to the VA Regional Processing Office by the Veterans Affairs Certifying Official. This is necessary because the re-evaluation of all prior credits earned must be completed to ensure their full utilization. VA students can be certified only for courses fully accepted for their program of study as reflected in the college catalog. VA students desiring a program change should contact a VA Academic Advisor first. However, all program changes are initiated through Academic Counseling Services or a counselor in Military Families and Veterans Services. One of the required forms below must be completed:

  • Application for Change of Program, VA Form 22-1995 (Veterans, National Guard/Reservists, CH 33 Transfer of Entitlement)
  • Application for Change of Program, VA Form 22-5495 (Dependent/Spouse & Fry Scholarship).

This form is accepted only after an Academic or VA Counselor has officially updated the program code.

Dual Degrees

Students using Veterans Affairs (VA) educational benefits generally are approved for only one program of study at a time. However, exceptions can be made for students pursuing two programs at the same school if the veteran can provide reasonable justification that both programs apply to a single career field. Students have a dual degree when they are enrolled in two degrees simultaneously at the same school.

Conditions Permitting Dual Degrees

  • School policy allows dual degrees.
  • Dual degrees are approved at the school by the North Carolina State Approving Agency (NCSAA)
  • Students must maintain a GPA of 2.5 or higher in dual degree programs.
  • Students using VA Education Benefits can only be enrolled in 2 degree or certificate programs at a time. There may be exceptions to students using Chapter 31 benefits.


     

VA forms available at benefits.va.gov/gibill/ are:

  1. VA Form 22-0296 - Direct Deposit Enrollment
  2. VA Form 22-1995 - Application for Change of Program or Place of Training – Veterans, National Guard/Reservists, Transfer of Entitlement
  3. VA Form 22-5495 - Application for Change of Program or Place of Training for Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance, Fry Scholarship

Websites for Further Information

American Legion: legion.org/
Apply for financial aid: studentaid.gov
DD 214 online request: vetrecs.archives.gov
Department of Veterans Affairs: va.gov/
Disabled American Veterans: dav.org/
Education Benefits online application: va.gov/education/how-to-apply
GI Bill Programs, Pay Rates, Applications, Forms: benefits.va.gov/gibill/
Returning service members: oefoif.va.gov/
Veterans’ Benefits Administration: benefits.va.gov/benefits