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Military Benefits

Please note:
CalVet Fee Waiver is not eligible to be used on Extended Learning programs.

Veterans and dependents are required to turn in a copy of their DD-214*, their Certificate of Eligibility (COE), and a Student Responsibility Agreement (SRA) to the MVSO office located at Cougar Central in order for your education benefits to be processed.

*Veterans only

All students are encouraged to submit a FAFSA each aid year to ensure timely and accurate processing of funding.

Jump to a benefits section: 

GI Bill

  • Post-9/11 GI Bill: For approved programs, the Post-9/11 GI Bill (Chapter 33) provides up to 36 months of education benefits to eligible veterans and servicemembers. For more information about the Post-9/11 GI Bill, please visit the Department of Veterans Affairs GI Bill webpage
  • Montgomery GI Bill:
    • The MGIB-AD (Chapter 30) provides education benefits to veterans and servicemembers who have at least two years of active duty. For more information about the Montgomery GI Bill, please visit the Department of Veterans Affairs MGIB-AD webpage
    • The MGIB-SR (Chapter 1606) provides education and training benefits to eligible members of the Selected Reserve including the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard, Army National Guard or Air National Guard. For more information about the Montgomery GI Bill, please visit the Department of Veterans Affairs MGIB-SR webpage
  • DEA Program: The Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program (Chapter 35) offers education and training opportunities to eligible dependents of veterans who are permanently and totally disabled due to a service-related condition or of veterans who died while on active duty or as a result of a service-related condition. For more information on the DEA Program, please visit the Department of Veterans Affairs DEA Program webpage 

Key Information

The GI-Bill provides tuition and fees, book stipend (up to $1,000 per year) and a Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) based on number of units enrolled.

  • BAH is paid out as percentages of full-time enrollment, students under 50% of full-time enrollment are not eligible for any BAH
  • Active Duty personnel are not eligible to receive BAH under the GI-Bill
  • BAH is pro-rated according to actual time enrolled in classes (for example: summer and winter breaks)
  • BAH is paid monthly on the first of each month after the start of the term

Full-Time BAH:

  • San Marcos Campus: $2,640 per month
  • CSUSM Temecula Campus: $2,100 per month
  • Online Classes: $894.50 per month

View programs eligible for Gi Bill

Vocational Rehabilitation

Vocational Rehabilitation and employment sometimes referred to as the Chapter 31 program, provides services to eligible servicemembers and veterans with service-connected disabilities to help them prepare for, obtain, and maintain suitable employment or achieve independence in daily living.

For more information on the vocational rehabilitation program, please visit the Department of Veterans Affairs VR&E webpage.

Tuition Assistance

Tuition Assistance (TA) is a program that is available to active duty, National Guard and Reserve Component service members. TA can lessen your financial concerns about attending college since the program now pays up to 100% of tuition expenses for semester hours costing $250 or less, not to exceed $4,500 per fiscal year.

Courses and degree programs may be academic or technical and can be taken from two- or four-year institutions on-installation, off-installation or by distance learning. An accrediting body recognized by the Department of Education must accredit the institution. Your service branch pays your tuition directly to the school. Service members need to first check with an education counselor for the specifics involving TA by visiting their local installation education office or by going online to a virtual education center.

Tuition assistance may be used for the following programs:

  • Vocational/Technical programs
  • Undergraduate programs
  • Graduate programs
  • Independent study
  • Distance-learning programs

Tuition Assistance Eligibility

All four service branches and the U.S. Coast Guard offer financial assistance for voluntary, off-duty education programs in support of service members' personal and professional goals. The program is open to officers, warrant officers and enlisted active duty service personnel. In addition, members of the National Guard and Reserve Components may be eligible for TA based on their service eligibility. To be eligible for TA, an enlisted service member must have enough time remaining in service to complete the course for which he or she has applied. After the completion of a course, an officer using TA must fulfill a service obligation that runs parallel with - not in addition to - any existing service obligation.

Application Process

Each military branch has its own TA application form and procedures. To find out how to get started, visit your local installation’s education center, go online to a virtual education center or click on the following links for each service branch:

Prior to course enrollment, you may be required to develop an education plan or complete TA orientation. Your service branch's education department must approve your military tuition assistance before you enroll in a course. Below are some additional links to the education departments of local military installations:

View programs eligible for TA


The My Career Advancement Account (MyCAA) Scholarship Program is a workforce development program that provides up to $4,000 of financial assistance to eligible military spouses who are pursuing a license, certification or associate’s degree in a portable career field and occupation. 

CSUSM Extended Learning offers education programs that will assist you in preparing for your future! Our courses will provide you with education in preparation for in-demand portable careers such as healthcare, web design, hospitality, and business. Most certificate programs can be completed within a 12 month or less timeframe and many courses are available online. 

Who is eligible for MyCAA? Spouses of active-duty Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine, or National Guard/ARG service members in paygrades E1-E5, O1-O2, and W1-W2.

View programs eligible for MyCAA

Military Spouse Portal

VA Work Study

If you are a full-time or 3/4-time student in a college degree, vocational, or professional program, you can “earn while you learn” with a VA Work Study allowance.

Who is eligible?

The VA work-study allowance is available to persons training on a full-time or ¾ time basis under the following programs:

  • Post-9/11 GI Bill--(38 U.S.C. Chapter 33) (Veterans and transfer-of-entitlement recipients)
  • Montgomery GI Bill--Active Duty (38 U.S.C. Chapter 30)
  • REAP Participants
  • Montgomery GI Bill--Selected Reserve (10 U.S.C. Chapter 1606)
  • Post-Vietnam Era Veterans' Educational Assistance Program (38 U.S.C. Chapter 32)
  • Dependents’ Educational Assistance Program (38 U.S.C. Chapter 35)
  • Eligible dependents under 38 U.S.C. Chapter 35 may use work study only while training in a state
  • National Call to Service Participants
  • Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment Program -- (38 U.S.C. Chapter 31)

Students using CalVet are not eligible to use the VA work-study program.

What type of work should I expect?

Services you perform under a VA work-study program must be related to VA work. Examples of acceptable work include the following. View a VA Work Study Job Description.

  • The preparation and processing of necessary papers and other documents at educational institutions
  • Any activity at a VA facility
  • Any activity at Department of Defense, Coast Guard, or National Guard facilities relating to the administration of Chapters 1606 or 1607 of Title 10 U.S.C.
  • Any activity of a State Veterans agency related to providing assistance to Veterans in obtaining any benefit under Title 38, U.S.C. or the laws of the state
  • A position working in a Center for Excellence for Veteran Student Success, as established under 20 U.S.C. 1161t, which purpose is to support and coordinate academic, financial, physical, and social needs of Veteran students
  • A position working in a cooperative program carried out jointly by the VA and an institution of higher learning
  • Any veterans-related position in an institution of higher learning, such as:
    • Assisting with dissemination of general information regarding veteran benefits and/or services
    • Providing assistance to veteran students with general inquiries about veteran benefits via phone, email, or in person
    • Maintaining and organizing veteran-related files

Funds paid to the VA Work Study are non-tax reportable. These funds are treated the same as BAH. Pay is based on the highest between state minimum wage and federal minimum wage, current California minimum wage is $12.00 per hour.

VA Work Study Application

View the VA Work Study Agreement