VA Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I retake a course that I have completed with a passing grade?

All VA students are prohibited from taking a class that they have already completed with a passing grade.

2. Can I obtain enrollment verification from an institution that is not my home campus?

Yes, if the VA representative from their home campus submits a 315 Parent Letter.

3. How many credits must I take during a semester to receive full funding for tuition and for BAH (housing)?

A VA student must take 12 credits during a semester to receive full benefits.

4. How many credits must I take during the summer to receive full funding for tuition and for BAH (housing)?

A VA student must take six credits during the first summer session and six credits during the second summer session.

5. Will the VA pay for me to take online courses?

Yes. A VA student can take any number of online courses as long as he/she is taking at least one credit physically on campus each session or semester they are in school.

6. Will I have to pay the VA back if I receive "W" or "N" grades?

Yes, unless the VA student can provide documentation indicating that they were physically ill and could not continue with the class. This documentation should be given directly to the VA Certifying Official.

7. What if I earn a "F" grade. Will I have to repay the VA?

If the student is enrolled in four classes and earns (for example) two "As" one "B" and a "F" then the VA student will not need to pay the VA back. But if a VA student received all F grades it will be reported and the VA student will probably have to pay the VA back. This is also based on the last date of attendance.

8. If I drop a course, do I have to repay the VA the amount of the course I dropped?

It depends on when the VA student dropped the class. The best advice we can give is for the student to pay close attention to our drop dates. For example, if the student dropped a course before school started and they did not receive any payments such as Housing (BAH), a book stipend, and/or tuition/fees then they have nothing to pay back. If the VA student received a payment for tuition and fees and they never attended any classes then a portion of the tuition and fees will be returned to the VA. If the student received a housing and book stipend they will need to repay a portion of it back to the VA. VA will notify them concerning the amount they must pay back.

9. If I am a Post 9/11 student, will I receive a book stipend and/or money for tools?

Yes, Chapter 33 Post 9/11 students do receive a book stipend after their courses have been certified. But unfortunately they do not receive extra money for tools.

10. What courses and programs are covered by the VA?

Any course or program at Honolulu Community College that is listed in our college catalog may be covered. However, a VA student must register for courses that are pertinent to their specific major.

11. If I add or drop a course do I have to resubmit the VA Certification form?

Yes.

12. Do I have to submit all of my educational transcripts for evaluation?

Yes, as a VA recipient you are required to submit all educational transcripts. The VA does not want to pay for a course that you have already completed successfully.

13. What should I do if school begins and I haven't received my book stipend yet?

You should pay for your books out of your own pocket knowing that your VA money will reimburse you.

14. What if I am taking classes at more than one institution or at multiple UH Campuses?

Inform Honolulu CC's School Certifying Official as soon as possible so that he/she can contact the secondary campuses and submit a 315 Parent Letter.

15. I am enrolled at Honolulu Community College. When will I receive benefits?

Once you turn in your enrollment certification, the School Certifying Official will process it in order by date received. This may take about 3-4 weeks. Once the School Certifying Official has sent your enrollment certification to VA Muskogee you will receive an email from him/her that it has been processed. Five days after receiving this email you may call VA Muskogee to follow up on the status of your benefits and expected payment date. As the VA is generally overwhelmed with enrollment certifications at the start of each semester, it could take a few weeks for your papers to be processed. Your patience is appreciated.

16. I tried to log into the WAVE system but it says I don't have a record on file. Why does this happen?

You will not have a WAVE record if:

  • VA hasn't yet processed your application for benefits
  • You're receiving Tuition Assistance Top-Up
  • You've been out of school for six months and your WAVE record became inactive
  • You're receiving benefits under the Post 9/11 GI Bill, CH32 (VEAP) or CH35 (DEA) and therefore don't need to verify your enrollment in WAVE
  • You've received an accelerated payment
  • You're receiving benefits for on-the-job training, apprenticeship training, flight training, or correspondence courses

17. My check is less than the amount I was told the monthly rate would be. Why did this happen?

The most common reason a check may be less than the monthly rate is that checks are prorated based on the number of days in the month for which you are enrolled. For example: Your full time rate is $800.00; however your term starts on August 19th and continues through December 14th. Payment for the month of August would include the 19th to the end of the month. (All months are based on 30 days, so months with more or less than 30 days would not affect the rate). Thus your payment for the month of August would be approximately $320.00. Payments for September, October, and November would be $800.00 each month and payment for December would be approximately $373.36 (prorated from the 1st to the 14th).

  • OR: An overpayment was deducted from your payment
  • OR: You reduced your training time after you received your award letter

18. What if my class does not run the entire length of the semester (i.e. an accelerated course)?

You are certified as enrolled in classes for the exact attendance dates of your course(s). For example, in the fall semester, if your class ends in October, your certification will reflect the course dates (not the semester dates), and VA payments may be reduced. For more assistance on this please see a counselor.

19. What is the difference between verification and certification?

"Certification" is done by a school certifying official and lets VA know how many hours or credits you will be enrolled in so we can determine your payment rate.

"Verification" is done by you at the end of each month and lets VA know that your enrollment information has not changed.

20. Why is there a financial hold on my account?

The VA disperses funds to UH Manoa who then disperses the appropriate funds to the Community Colleges. Once the Community Colleges receive their money they are able to disperse those funds amongst their VA/Military students and post the funds to each students account. However, this process can take up to 4-6 weeks and may result in a financial hold on your account. Students shouldn't be alarmed, but they are encouraged to talk to the Business Office and make sure this is indeed the reason for the hold on their account.

View complete list of questions in PDF document