Education Benefits and Eligibility Requirements

Of the million veterans currently alive, nearly three of every four served during a war or an official period of hostility. About a quarter of the nation's population — approximately 70 million people — are potentially eligible for Veterans Affairs benefits and services because they are veterans, family members, or survivors of veterans.

Central Piedmont's Veterans Affairs Education Benefits Office strives to meet the Department of Veterans Affairs goal of putting veterans first.

Central Piedmont Community College is approved by the North Carolina State Approving Agency for the enrollment of persons eligible for education assistance benefits from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. The college provides training opportunities at both college and secondary levels for veterans, and eligible dependents (spouse and/or children).

    Benefits 

    • Chapter 33 Post-9/11 GI Bill®
    • Chapter 30 Montgomery GI Bill, Active Duty (MGIB-AD)
    • Chapter 31 Veterans Affairs Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E)
    • Chapter 33 Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship
    • Chapter 33 Post - 9/11 Transfer of Entitlement
    • Chapter 35 Survivors and Dependents Assistance
    • Chapter 1606 Montgomery GI Bill Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR)

    GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

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

    • Central Piedmont Veterans Affairs Education Benefits Office 704.330.6552
    • Mecklenburg County Veterans Service Office 704.336.2102
    • District Office of the North Carolina Division of Veteran Affairs 704.563.2037

    Requirements

    Students electing to use Veterans Affairs education benefits are in the unique position of having to meet requirements as specified by both the Veterans Affairs Educations Benefits Office and the North Carolina State Approving Agency. Although Central Piedmont's VA Education Benefits Office does not work for the Department of Veterans Affairs, it is our job to work closely with them to ensure that your needs as a student are met.

    • Eligibility

      • Apply for VA educational benefits.
      • Request official copies of high school, military transcripts, all prior college transcripts, and Member 4 DD-214 to be sent to Student Records. 
      • Important notice: Your VA file will not be complete until all high school, college, military transcripts, and Member 4 DD-214 are in Student Records and evaluated. To request military transcripts: 
      • Meet with an academic counselor to be admitted into a VA-approved program of study.
      • Request Certification by completing the VA certification request form and submitting a copy of your class schedule.
      • Chapter 33 students: Submit a copy of your Certificate of Eligibility or eBenefits Summary to the Veterans Affairs Education Benefits Office.
    • Academic Standards

      Satisfactory Academic Progress

      Students receiving VA education benefits are required to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (a grade point average of 2.0 or better). Educational assistance benefits to veterans and eligible persons will be discontinued once the student ceases to make satisfactory progress toward completion of his/her training. These standards are described in the Veterans Affairs section of the Central Piedmont catalog.

      Veterans and other eligible persons are required to seek academic assistance by contacting their instructor, counselor, advisor, or the Center Piedmont Veterans Affairs Educations Benefits Office before academic difficulties place them on ‘Probation’ or ‘Suspension.’

      • Probation: If a student receives a semester grade point average (GPA) that is less than 2.0, they are placed on probation. Students on probation must complete an “on-track” meeting with an advisor from the Center for Military Families and Veterans prior to being certified. If a student’s term and cumulative GPA are above a 2.0 at the end of the semester while they serve their probation they come off probationary status.
      • Continued Probation: If a student who is on probation makes satisfactory academic progress for a term, but still has a cumulative GPA below 2.0, they are on continued probation. Students on continued probation must complete a follow-up “on-track” meeting at the end of the semester and will remain on continued probation until both the term and cumulative GPA are both above a 2.0. 
      • Suspension: If a student on probation or continued probation does not make satisfactory academic progress for a term while on probation they will go on VA education benefit suspension. At CPCC, we cannot certify a student on suspension until a student has made satisfactory academic progress for one semester. If a student on VA education benefit suspension makes satisfactory academic progress they can use their benefit for following semesters as long as the student continues to make satisfactory academic progress.

      If you are requesting benefits and are currently on probation or suspension, a letter of notification of unsatisfactory progress is sent to your Central Piedmont email account and it is your responsibility to comply with the requirements stated. If you are on Suspension, your eligibility is terminated until you meet the Standards of Academic Progress required to place you back into an eligible status to receive your VA education benefits.

      The VA Education Benefits Office is required to work with instructors to monitor attendance and/or participation. When a cessation of attendance/participation is identified, it is required that VA be notified so that monetary adjustment can be made, if necessary. An overpayment from VA may result, which you will be held responsible for. 

      Failures

      If you are using VA education benefits and receive a grade of “F” and complete the class, you may still receive VA benefits for that course. An exception would be if you did not complete the final exam and did not attend class according to the college policy. If you do not attend class and/or take the final exam, the VA Regional Office is notified and you are classified as having received an overpayment of funds. Any overpayments are your responsibility. You may receive benefits to retake a required course if you previously received a failing grade. 

      Also see Withdrawal on this page for information on how benefits may be affected by withdrawing from a course.

      Incompletes

      You should not register again for a course that you have received an Incomplete (the letter grade of "I" will appear on your record) for, but you should follow the arrangements you originally made with the instructor in order to convert the "I" to a grade after the requirements are completed. The course will always remain associated with the original term. Please contact the VA Education Benefits Office if you receive an “I” as a course grade.

    • Withdrawal

      It is your responsibility to report all withdrawals or attendance issues to Central Piedmont's VA Educations Benefits Office immediately to prevent overpayments. You are required to complete a VA Schedule Adjustment form and submit mitigating circumstances in writing for evaluation and approval within five business days. To request the VA Schedule Adjustment form, email VeteransAffairs@cpcc.edu .

      What are mitigating circumstances?

      If you drop a course or withdraws from school after the drop period and receive a non-punitive grade, VA will reduce benefits effective the first day of the term unless mitigating circumstances are found. Mitigating circumstances are circumstances beyond your control that prevent you from continuing in school or that cause the you to reduce credits.

      Examples are:

      • illness or injury afflicting you during the enrollment period
      • illness or death in your immediate family
      • unavoidable change in your conditions of employment
      • unavoidable geographical transfer resulting from your employment
      • immediate family or financial obligations beyond your control that require you to suspend pursuit of the program of education to obtain employment 
      • discontinuance of the course by the school
      • unanticipated active military service, including active duty for training
      • unanticipated difficulties with childcare arrangements that you have made for the period you are attending classes

      The last date of attendance must be verified by the instructor for all withdrawals. 

      The VA allows a one-time exclusion from being penalized for withdrawing for up to six credit hours. You can be paid up to the last date of attendance for those six hours. After that time, you have to provide the VA Education Benefits Office with mitigating circumstances or repay any benefits received. If you attended classes throughout the semester and receive a “W” (non-punitive) as a grade, this has to be reported to the VA Regional Office and is not part of the six-hour, one-time exclusion even if you can document that you attended through the last day of class. You are responsible for overpayments resulting from non-punitive grades.

      Failure to notify the VA Education Benefits Office of withdrawals and continued acceptance of educational funds may be considered fraud. You are encouraged to register only for those classes that you know you can complete.

    • Programs

      The VA Educations Benefits Office is unable to certify the following courses:

      • that are not required for completion of your degree, diploma, or certificate program
      • that are considered Adult Basic Literacy Education
      • previously completed successfully, including "D" grades unless the program requires a higher grade.
      • that transfer credit has been granted for
      • taken while not admitted to a VA-approved diploma, certificate, or degree program
      • not leading to an educational, professional, or vocational objective (i.e. continuing education courses)
      • which credit by examination have been received for
      • being audited rather than taken for credit
      • that are Developmental (DRE and DMA) and RISE Support courses taken online
      • or program not approved by the State Approving Agency

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