UWF recognizes that many active
duty military personnel face formidable barriers in their pursuit of a
college degree. As part of the Universityís continuing commitment to
educational opportunities for military personnel, UWF offers a program
designed to assist active duty military men and women in their quest for
bachelorís, masterís, specialist or doctoral degrees. Many departments
have agreed to offer degrees through a system tailored to the specific
needs of active duty military personnel. Previous college credits, work
experiences, service schools, and other forms of nonacademic experiences
will be considered for college credits. For further information, contact
the Office of Admissions.
UWF has been designated as an institutional member of Servicemembers
Opportunity Colleges (SOC), a group of more than 1800 colleges and
universities providing voluntary postsecondary education to members of
the military throughout the world. As a SOC member, UWF recognizes the
unique nature of the military life-style and is committed to easing the
transfer of relevant course credits, while crediting learning from
appropriate military training and experiences. SOC has been developed
jointly by educational representatives of each of the armed services,
the Office of the Secretary of Defense, and a consortium of 12 leading
national higher education associations. It is sponsored by the American
Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) and the American
Association of Community Colleges (AACC). For further information,
contact the Office of Admissions.
The University of West Florida is approved by the Florida Department of
Veterans Affairs (DVA) for the education of veterans, active duty
personnel, reservists, and eligible dependents under current law.
Approximately seven percent of UWF students receive educational benefits
from the DVA. UWFís Office of Veterans Services is part of the Office of
the Registrar, not the DVA. This office is the main point of contact for
students receiving benefits from the DVA. It has a professional staff
augmented by veteran peer counselors to assist in providing information
about entitlements, filing claims to the DVA, and certifying enrollments
at the University.
The office also monitors the academic
progress of students receiving DVA educational benefits. Students who
receive DVA benefits are subject to stricter academic regulations and
should be aware that auditing courses, enrollment status, withdrawals,
repeating courses, changing degree programs, adding majors and minors,
grade forgiveness, and other actions may affect eligibility for
University academic standing is discussed in the academic policies
section of this Catalog. Students receiving veterans benefits are held
to the stricter requirements set forth below.
Undergraduate Standard: A student with a
semester grade point average (SGPA) or cumulative grade point average (CGPA)
below 2.0 will be placed on VA academic probation. If, at the end of the
next semester, SGPA is above 2.0, but the CGPA remains below 2.0, the
student will be continued on VA academic probation for one additional
semester. If, at the end of the second semester of VA academic
probation, the studentís CGPA is below 2.0, the DVA will be notified of
the studentís unsatisfactory progress. Likewise, if a student is placed
on VA academic probation one semester, and both the SGPA and the CGPA
are below 2.0 the second semester, the DVA will be notified of the
studentís unsatisfactory progress. However, a student who receives
consecutive SGPAs below 2.0 will be continued on VA academic probation
if the CGPA remains at least 2.0.
Graduate Standard: A student with a SGPA
or CGPA below 3.0 will be placed on VA academic probation. If, at the
end of the next semester, the SGPA is above 3.0 but the CGPA remains
below 3.0, the student will be continued on VA academic probation for
one additional semester. If, at the end of the second semester of VA
academic probation, the studentís CGPA is below 3.0 the DVA will be
notified of the studentís unsatisfactory progress. Likewise, if a
student is placed on VA academic probation one semester, and both the
SGPA and the CGPA are below 3.0 the second semester, the DVA will be
notified of the studentís unsatisfactory progress. However, a student
who receives consecutive SGPAs below 3.0 will be continued on VA
academic probation if the CGPA remains at least 3.0.
Benefit Re-establishment: Benefits may be
re-established only if there is reasonable likelihood that the student
will be able to attain and maintain satisfactory progress for the
remainder of the program. Based upon correspondence from the studentís
major department chair, a recommendation will be made to the DVA.
Advance payment of DVA benefits may be available to new students and
those students who were not enrolled in the previous semester.
Application should be made through the UWF Office of Veterans Services
no later than 45 days before the first day of classes of the affected
It is the studentís responsibility to inform the instructor(s) of
absence from classes prior to, or as soon as possible after, the
absence. Students must check with their respective instructor(s)
regarding the attendance policy for each class. When a student receiving
DVA benefits is found in violation of the policy, the DVA will be
notified and benefits reduced accordingly.
Courses For Which VA Will Not Pay
Courses not meeting University requirements for graduation cannot be
certified to the DVA for benefits payment. Although not all inclusive,
the following list reflects types of courses that will not be certified
to the DVA:
- Courses not on the Program
Description Sheet (PDS) signed by the advisor and student unless an
addendum is provided before the last day of the drop/add period;
- Repeated courses that have been
previously completed with a grade of ďD-Ē or higher unless the
studentís program requires a higher grade; this includes courses
transferred from other colleges;
- Courses taken to fulfill
requirements at another institution unless a transient authorization
- Courses taken on an audit or
noncredit basis or courses in which the permanent grade is
ďnon-punitive,Ē (e.g., ďWĒ or ďVĒ);
- Courses for which an ďIĒ or ďI*Ē
was assigned, but not changed to a letter grade (A through F) within
one year of the completion of the semester; in this case, the DVA
will be notified retroactively.
To receive educational benefits from the DVA, the student must be
pursuing an approved bachelorís, masterís, specialist, or doctoral
degree at the University. A PDS signed by the academic advisor and the
student must be on file in the Veterans Services Office before the end
of the studentís first semester at UWF. Considerable care should be
taken in the development of this plan as the DVA will consider only
courses listed on the PDS in determining the studentís status.
Off term courses are those beginning and/or ending on other than the
regular semester dates. These are referred to as B, C, D or E term
courses. Students should be aware that the DVA review is made on a
term-by-term basis and not by semester. Taking B, C, D or E term courses
may affect the studentís training rate for pay purposes and eligibility
for break pay.
Recertification of benefits is not automatic and must be requested each
semester. It is the responsibility of each student to keep the UWF
Office of Veterans Services informed of the following.
- Class Registration. After registering, eligible beneficiaries must
visit the UWF Office of Veterans Services to complete necessary
paperwork. In most cases the earlier a student registers and provides
the registration information to this office, the earlier certification
paperwork can be forwarded to the DVA.
- Changes to Schedule. Any additions, drops, withdrawals, or other
interruptions must be immediately reported to the UWF Office of Veterans
Services by the student.
- Failure to Attend Class. Routine class attendance is required for
those receiving DVA benefits. Students who are unable to attend class(es)
for an extended period of time should notify the instructor(s) and the
Office of Veterans Services.
- Change of Major. The DVA must be notified when a student changes a
major. These changes are generally approved if there is only minimal
loss of credit hours previously earned.
- Change of Address. If a studentís address changes, both the DVA and
UWF must be notified.
To prevent overpayment and subsequent
indebtedness to the Federal Government, it is important to notify the
Office of Veterans Services immediately of changes that may affect the
studentís eligibility for benefits.
Florida law generally provides for one semesterís deferment of tuition
per academic year for those students applying for or receiving veterans
benefits. For further information, see the section on Veterans Fee