In addition to TC's Scholarships, there are several opportunities for U.S. military personnel to receive both federal and state financial aid.
Yellow Ribbon Program – Teachers College participates 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 help make obtaining a post-graduate education possible for eligible veterans, regardless of socio-economic status. Visit the Teachers College Veterans’ Benefits website to learn more about the Yellow Ribbon Program and how to apply.
Service members 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 (e.g., 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).
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.
HEROES Act Waiver – While you are on active duty, the U.S. 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.
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 and is the organization to whom you make 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 borrowed more than one loan and have not consolidated your loans, it is possible to have more than one servicer.
Consider granting power of attorney to an individual you trust to allow him or her 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 your loan 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 loan servicer with your current contact information, including an e-mail address, to ease communication.
Make interest payments, even if military deferment is 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.
Federal Student Aid – Information about repayment plans, deferment and forbearance, and other options available to assist with repayment of federal student loans.
DOD Student Loan Repayment Program - Information and resources for student loan repayment in various service branches.
Veterans Disability Discharge Program - Information on loan discharge for disabled veterans.
Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion - 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 to access forms and contact information.
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. Also provides links to veterans' sites with valuable information about 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 who will matriculate 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.
National Military Family Association 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 average $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 Scholarship supports educational opportunities for service members and their families.
VA Mortgage Center Military Education Scholarships – The VA Mortgage Center offers scholarships twice a year, in May and November. Visit their website to learn about eligibility requirements.
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 TC student account will be handled by the Office of the Bursar. If your question is related to a scholarship that you have received through TC or to your federal aid package, contact our office.