Whether you’re a new or returning student, Off-Campus Student Services (OCSS) and the Registrar’s Office are excited to welcome you to the fall semester at UMBC. Both of our offices are dedicated to providing support to veteran students at UMBC. We recognize that this is an unprecedented time in higher education and the world at large. As such, we want to outline some basic information about the services offered by both of our offices.
Programming for Veteran Students through OCSS
Throughout the fall semester, OCSS will be hosting a variety of events for our veteran students. One of these is “Coffee and Conversations”; this is a series of conversations around topics related to the veteran community at UMBC. C&C is a great opportunity for veteran students to connect with one another while learning about different resources that can support them through their educational journey. Some of our upcoming events for the semester include Hail & Farewell, our send-off for graduating veteran students, and collaborative events with various organizations focused on veterans. OCSS not only works on behalf of veterans, but also adult learners (undergraduate students 25 years or older), commuters, and transfer students. If you are a part of any of these populations, we would love for you to take part in our events. You can find more information at ocss.umbc.edu.
If you’re looking for another connection to the veteran community, consider becoming a part of the RetrieVets student veteran association. RetrieVets regularly meets and holds events throughout the semester. If you would like more information, please email email@example.com and follow them on myUMBC.
To learn more about veteran students, you can visit veterans.umbc.edu. This site includes general resources about benefits, enrollment, and financial support.
General Information about UMBC’s Certification Process
For veterans making use of the GI Bill, the Registrar’s Office is dedicated to ensuring that you are aware of our process and when you can expect to receive your funds. We’ve included some general information to answer some of our more frequently asked questions.
Where can I find the appropriate form to submit my certification?
You can find the submission form here. This Docusign form is the only method to submit your certification; paper forms are no longer accepted.
What role does UMBC/VA play in the GI Bill process?
UMBC certifies enrollment and mandatory tuition and fees and provides this certification to the VA. Based on this certification and your eligibility, the VA disburses your benefits. Please note that the VA pays only for classes that are required for a student’s degree program. Students must submit a certification form for each semester in which they are hoping to use VA benefits. Because the VA issues benefits based on what courses are being taken an updated form must be submitted if a student adds or drops courses so that the Registrar’s Office can provide updates to the VA.
What is the timeline after I submit my certification forms to the Registrar?
Students are strongly encouraged to submit certification requests as soon as registration has occurred for the term being requested. For example, if a student registers for spring classes during advanced registration in November, a form should be submitted at that time rather than waiting until the registration deadline in early February. This allows us to submit initial certifications for book and housing allowances as soon as possible. A new certification from should be submitted when a schedule adjustment (i.e. adding or dropping a course) occurs.
Initial certifications (credit hours) are submitted for book and housing allowance within 7-14 business days of receipt. Final certification, including all mandatory tuition and fees, is submitted after the add/drop period when schedules for the term are finalized. This helps mitigate overpayments/debts being created with regards to tuition/enrollment changes being made. The VA generally takes 3-4 weeks to process claims. While there are no deadlines for submitting VA Certification requests, students should keep in mind that the start of Fall and Spring semesters are peak certifying times and therefore should expect delays in addition to normal processing times if requests are submitted late.
How can I receive updates regarding my benefits?
Students receive an email from The Registrar’s Office to confirm our receipt of a certification request and again when initial certification is submitted to the VA. The VA also sends an automated notification every time they receive an initial, final, or updated certification. In addition, students can contact the VA for inquiries regarding first time application/activation of VA benefits, percentage of eligibility, months of entitlement, specific questions regarding their benefits, and transfer of entitlement.
Students can contact The Registrar’s Office for inquiries about how to use VA benefits with UMBC, VA certification requests, and payment inquiries.
For questions or information about veterans’ programming general assistance, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
For general information about the benefits process at UMBC, please visit veterans.umbc.edu.
For assistance regarding the certification process at UMBC, click here to submit a help request.
In addition to questions about benefits, students in need of assistance with registration, transfer credit services, graduation, degree audits, and student records can find the appropriate contact information here. This page contains information about the Virtual Front Counter, where you can receive assistance in real-time.
We are invested in your success. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions.
Off-Campus Student Services and The Registrar’s Office