Veteran BenefitsIn addition to TC's institutional scholarships, there are several opportunities for U.S. military personnel to receive both federal and state financial aid.
Yellow Ribbon Program
Teachers College is pleased to announce its participation in the Department of Veteran Affairs' Yellow Ribbon Program. The scope of benefits provided by the Post 9/11 GI Bill and the Yellow Ribbon Program will help make obtaining a Teachers College education possible for eligible veterans, regardless of socio-economic status.
Please click here to see the Teachers College Veteran Benefits website to learn more about the Yellow Ribbon Program and how to apply. You are also able to read TC's official announcement of its Yellow Ribbon Program participation here.
Federal Benefits for Members of the Armed Forces
- Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) Interest Rate Cap – Interest on federal student loans obtained prior to your military service is limited to 6% during periods of active duty. The interest rate limitation also applies to any private education loans you may have.
- Military Service Deferment – You can postpone federal student loan repayment during certain periods of active duty, such as during war, other military operation, or national emergency, and immediately following active duty.
- Public Service Loan Forgiveness – You may qualify for forgiveness of the remaining balance of your Direct Loans when you've made 120 qualifying payments after October 1, 2007, while employed in public service, including military service. Click here for more information.
- Deferments After Active Duty – You can postpone repayment while you prepare to return to school following your active duty.
- 0% Interest – While you are serving in a hostile area that qualifies you for special pay, you do not have to pay interest on Direct Loans made on or after October 1, 2008, for up to 60 months.
- Repayment Based on Income – Repayment plans that base your monthly payment on your income are available. Under these plans, you may qualify for a low or zero payment amount with the possibility of forgiveness of the remaining balance in the future. Click here for more information.
- HEROES Act Waiver – While you are on active duty, the Department of Education waives many of the documentation requirements attached to program benefits. For example, if you are on a payment plan based on your income and military service prevents you from providing updated information on your family size and income, you can request to have your monthly payment amount maintained.
- Department of Defense (DOD) Repayment of Your Loans – In certain circumstances, as determined by the DOD, all or a portion of your loans may be repaid by the DOD.
- Veterans Total and Permanent Disability Discharge – If you have a service-connected disability, you may qualify for discharge of your federal student loans.
Helpful Tips for Active Duty/Deployed Servicemen and Servicewomen
- Know the name of your loan servicer (also known as a lender). Your loan servicer is the company that manages your loans and handles your repayment plan. It will also be the organization to whom you make your payments. Find your servicer's name and contact information on the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS). Be aware that your loan servicer can change from time to time and it is your responsibility to be aware of those changes. If you have not consolidated your loans, it is possible to have more than one servicer if you have borrowed more than one loan.
- Consider granting power of attorney to an individual you trust to allow them to manage your financial matters, including your student loans. The person to whom you give power of attorney can sign documents and act on your behalf. The legal assistance office on your military base can assist with establishing power of attorney. As an alternative, you can provide you servicer with the name of the person you approve to receive information about your loan(s).
- Establish an account on your servicer's website, which will allow you to view information about your student loan and make payments online.
- Provide your servicer with your current contact information, including an e-mail address, to ease communication.
- Make interest payments, even if you have military deferment available to you. This will keep your balance from increasing and could save you money in the long run.
- Review your repayment options. Repayment plans based on income may provide a better outcome for federal student loans, as you may qualify for a low payment and loan forgiveness.
- Sign up for automatic payments to help keep your loan in good standing.
- Place an active duty alert on your credit report to reduce the risk that you'll become a victim of identity theft.
- US Department of Veterans Affairs Homepage
- US Department of Veterans Affairs GI Bill Website
- Federal Student Aid - Learn more about repayment plans, deferment and forbearance, and other options to help you repay your federal student loans. This website can also be used by current students as they navigate the world of federal financial aid.
- DOD Student Loan Repayment Program - Information and resources for student loan repayment in various service branches.
- Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) - Get more information about the benefits available through SCRA.
- Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion - These are nationwide consumer reporting agencies where you can place an active duty alert on your credit report. Simply enter "active duty alert" in the website search box for forms and contact information.
- Veterans Disability Discharge Program - Get more information on loan discharge for disabled veterans.
- New York State Higher Education Services Corporation Military Corner – Provides up-to-date information for those who currently serve or have served in the military and are interested in obtaining grants and scholarships for higher education for themselves or their family members. It also provides links to veterans' sites with valuable information on education benefits.
- New York State Division of Veterans' Affairs offers Veterans Tuition Awards (VTA) for full-time study and part-time study for eligible veterans matriculated at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution in New York State. Students must re-apply each year.
- New York State Division of Military & Naval Affairs – Information for current and former New York State National Guard members.
- Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation – Scholarship opportunities for children of current and former Marines.
- Military.com Scholarship Finder
- National Military Family Association Joanne Holbrook Patton Military Spouse Scholarship Program – Scholarships are awarded to spouses of Uniformed Services members (active duty, National Guard and Reserve, retirees, and survivors) to obtain professional certification or to attend post secondary or graduate school. Scholarships range in amount from $500 to $1,000, and the number awarded each year varies depending on funding.
- ThanksUSA Scholarships – Scholarships are awarded to spouses and dependent children of active-duty military personnel.
- Pat Tillman Military Scholarship – The Tillman Military Scholarships support educational opportunities for servicemembers and their families.
- VA Mortgage Center Military Education Scholarships – The VA Mortgage Center offers scholarships twice a year, in May and November. Visit the page to learn about the eligibility requirements.
- Veterans' Scholarship, Fund for Veterans' Education – The Fund for Veterans’ Education will provide scholarships to help meet the financial needs of veterans from all branches of the United States Armed Forces who served in Afghanistan or Iraq since September 11, 2001 and who are now enrolled in college.
Most questions related to Veterans' Benefits certification will be best answered by the Office of the Registrar. Any issues relating to payments made toward your Teachers College student account will be handled by the Office of Student Accounts. If your question is related to a scholarship that you have received through Teachers College or if you have questions related to your federal aid package, please contact our office.
Some information contained on this page was developed collaboratively by the US Department of Education, FedLoan Servicing, Nelnet, Great Lakes, and Sallie Mae. Teachers College does not endorse one specific loan servicer over another.