Veterans Benefits Information

Benefit Enrollment

Veterans, dependents of veterans, National Guardsmen, or Reservists who are eligible for educational benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs must contact the VA Certifying Official on campus for certification. Recipients will be given instructions and the forms necessary to apply for benefits. Contact should be made at least 45 days prior to the first day of attendance as processing time may take six to eight weeks.

VA Certifying Official:
located on the Willmar Campus - Racheal Nonweiler       320-222-7476

A person applying for VA benefits needs to complete a 22-1990 form. Along with this form, a certified copy of the DD-214 for prior active duty and a NOBE for National Guard is required to process the application.

Once you are an enrolled student, you will be required to verify your enrollment each month that you attend class for payment purposes. This can be done by phone or internet. If your enrollment status changes at any time during the semester, it is imperative that you notify the VA Certifying Official immediately.

Because certain veterans and their children may be eligible for benefits under the GI Bill and other laws, all veterans, war orphans, and children of disabled veterans must notify the Admissions/Counseling Office of their status at the time of their application. (For more information on these benefits, see Financial Aid.)

Veterans' benefits are available for training of students under the following:

Chapter 1606 - Reservists and National Guard Persons
Chapter 1607 - Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP)
Chapter 30 - Active Duty Veterans
Chapter 31 - Vocational Rehabilitation
Chapter 32 - Veterans under Veterans Educational Assistance Program (VEAP)
Chapter 35 - Dependent of a veteran who had a service related death/disability
Application forms for Chapter 1606 and 30/32 (VA FORM 22-1990) and Chapter 35 (VA FORM 22-5490) can be downloaded from

Service connected disabilities

If you are an active duty service member anticipating at least a 20% service-connected disability rating, or a veteran with a 20% disability rating or greater, you should first determine any benefits to which you are entitled under Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E, chapter 31).

NOTE: If you need any help making your choice, VA Vocational and Employment counseling help is available to all veterans toll free at 1-800-827-1000. You also can discuss your options with a VA education benefits specialist by calling toll-free 1-888-GIBILL-1 (1-888-442-4551) or TDD at (800) 829-4833.

For more information, visit: AND

Additional information about Veteran's Benefits

Note: Ridgewater College is approved by the Minnesota State Approving Agency for Veterans Education Benefits.

GI Bill Checklist for Success

Depending on your individual circumstances, you may be eligible for multiple chapters of the GI Bill. While you are the only person who can choose which program meets your needs, meeting with the Higher Education Veterans Program Regional Coordinator can help explain your options.

Find a School

Collect Your Paperwork and Information

Compare the Programs:

  • Post-9/11 GI Bill (chapter 33)
  • Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB, chapter 30 and chapter 1606)
  • Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP, chapter 1607)
  • Post Vietnam Era Veterans' Educational Assistance program (VEAP, chapter 32)

Apply Online

Make contact with the Certifying Official

Post 9/11 GI Bill "CH 33"

Helpful Links

Post 9/11 GI Bill Overview
Post 9/11 GI Bill Application Step by Step Guide
Higher Education Veterans Programs Post-9/11 GI Bill-Considerations
Chapter 33 Calculator
Federal Register: Final Regulations - Post 9/11 GI Bill
Comparisons between the Post-9/11 GI Bill and the Montgomery GI Bill (Active Duty and Reserves) and REAP program

Benefit Rate Info:

Update on correction of Post 9/11 BAH rates

New GI Bill Rates effective October 1, 2010

Minnesota GI Bill

The Minnesota GI Bill program was established in 2007 to provide postsecondary financial assistance to eligible Minnesota veterans who served on or after September 11, 2001. Full-time undergraduate or graduate students may be eligible to receive up to $1,000 per semester or term and part-time students may be eligible to receive up to $500 per semester or term.

To be eligible, you must be a Minnesota resident enrolled at Minnesota institutions who is a:

  • Veteran who is serving or has served honorably in any branch of the United States armed forces at any time on or after September 11, 2001, or;
  • Non-veteran who has served honorably for a total of five years or more cumulatively as a member of the Minnesota National Guard or any other active or reserve component of the United States armed forces, and any part of that service occurred on or after September 11, 2001, or;
  • Surviving spouse or children of a person who has served in the military at any time on or after September 11, 2001, and who has died or has a total and permanent disability as a direct result of that military service.

Apply Online Now

Ridgewater College is an equal opportunity employer and educator.