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How to Receive VA Benefits

Step One

Apply to UNC

This is the first step to using the GI Bill® and other VA education benefits at the University of Northern Colorado. Applications for upcoming fall semester open August 1st of the previous year.

Step Two

Eligible for Veteran Benefits?

New Students: Before VA will pay anything, the student must create an account and apply for benefits with the VA: https://www.va.gov/education/how-to-apply/
The application for educational benefits must be completed even if you are receiving transferred benefits from a family member. 
How to Apply Overview

If you need to see the differences between benefits chapters, there is a GI Bill® Comparison Tool online.
GI Bill® Comparison Tool Overview

Transfer Students: If you have used benefits at another school, you will need to update your school and program of study on eBenefits: https://www.ebenefits.va.gov/ebenefits/manage/documents

Only the VA can say for sure whether you are eligible for any benefits.

Step Three

Register for Classes (Ursa)

  • VA will not pay for courses that are not required for your program. 
  • Undergraduate students will receive their registration PINs from their academic advisors.
  • If you still have trouble registering for classes, please contact the Office of the Registrar at registrar@unco.edu or 970-351-4UNC (4862).

Step Four

Apply and Authorize COF

Accept your College Opportunity Fund or "COF." It is Colorado’s way of providing financial support for resident undergraduate students.

Step Five

The VA and Financial Aid

Students utilizing VA Educational Benefits may also utilize Financial Aid opportunities as well, if they choose. In order to apply for Financial Aid, you must apply through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) website. This link can also be found through Ursa, under the “Financial” tab.

The most recent list of fee codes that are billable and not billable to the VA. This list may change.

For questions about financial aid or scholarships, contact ofa@unco.edu or call 970-351-4862, option 1.

Step Six

Submit Veteran Certification Request (VCR)

  • Veteran's Certification Request. Available on URSA on your Student tab. You will use your URSA student login information to access this form.
  • Submit your VCR as soon as registration opens for a given semester. Only one VCR is needed per semester. We can accept back-dated requests for past semesters.
  • If you haven't registered for classes at the time you submit your VCR, the SCOs will hold your request for 30 days before denying it. At that point, you will need to submit another VCR to have your class enrollment certified to the VA.
  • Watch your Bearmail for further information, approvals, or denials from va.sco@unco.edu. This is the email account for the School Certifying Officials, who are the only staff on campus who submit enrollment verifications to the VA.
  • Certification Process
    • Step 1 - Hours submitted to VA upon acceptance of VCR.
    • Step 2 - Tuition and Fees submitted to the VA (selected Chapters), calculated after the drop deadline of the current term
    • Updates to your schedule are automatically tracked by SCOs if you have submitted a VCR after registration begins for that semester.

Step Seven

Certificate of Eligibility (COE)

After your courses are certified to the VA, the VA should send each student an updated statement of remaining benefits. This will come via USPS or email and should be forwarded to va.sco@unco.edu. SCOs do not need a copy of your DD214, but we do need a copy of your COE for your VA file.

On eBenefits, this is alternately called the Statement of Benefits. Please print this page to PDF and email it to the SCOs at va.sco@unco.edu.

eBenefits Guide

Step Eight

Contact SCOs (Registrar's Office)

If you have questions, please contact a School Certifying Official (SCO) at VA.SCO@unco.edu,or call us at 970-351-4UNC (4862), option 2, then option 5.

Step 9

Check in at Veterans Services

Veterans Services in Roudebush Cottage (aka Veterans Cottage) is a great additional resource to ask questions, grab some coffee, and learn more about what services and programs are offered at UNC. New and prospective military-affilitated students are highly encouraged to visit Roudebush Cottage as early in the process to make sure that you have all of the support you need. Plus, you can get your free UNC Student Veteran shirt

(SCOs are only located in the Registrar's Office at this time.)

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.benefits.va.gov/gibill.