University of West Florida supports active duty military, waives academic fees

University of West Florida | news@uwf.edu

In the tradition of the University of West Florida’s ongoing support of military students, the university recently approved a proposal to waive fees not covered by the Tuition Assistance program for active duty military members. The new policy will go into effect for the Summer 2013 semester.

The proposal to waive fees for active duty military students was in response to the U.S. Navy’s recent shift to a centralized tuition assistance processing model. The new model has improved oversight and efficiency for the Navy and the institutions it services, better aligning execution and policy as it relates to payment of fees. It has also created an issue in state institutions that are required to separate fees from tuition, as opposed to those that roll fees into one charge that is packaged only as tuition.

Currently, active duty undergraduate students at UWF pay approximately $180 out-of-pocket per three-credit-hour course for fees not covered by the Tuition Assistance Program. Under the new policy, an active duty student taking four classes will save approximately $720 each semester. The fees covered by the waiver do not include tuition.

“The approval of this policy shows UWF’s commitment to military students and aligns perfectly with the Military Veterans Resource Center’s mission to assist these students with the transition from military to campus life,” said Marc Churchwell, director of the MVRC. “We will continue to be diligent in supporting active duty military and veterans.”

UWF currently funds tuition expenses for eligible military and veteran students through the Yellow Ribbon GI Education Enhancement Program. In 2011, the university voluntarily entered into an agreement with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to fund tuition expenses that exceed the highest public in-state undergraduate tuition rate. The Yellow Ribbon Program is a provision of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008. Only individuals entitled to the maximum benefit rate, based on service requirements, can receive funding through the program.

The MVRC serves as a resource center to assist military and veteran students as they transition from the military environment to campus life. Tutoring, advising and counseling are some of the services that are provided through the center.

For additional information about ways in which UWF supports military and veteran students, visit the MVRC website, uwf.edu/militaryveterans.

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