2024-2025 Catalog

Veterans, National Guard and Reserves

The Registrar’s Office assists veterans, their dependents or spouses, and members of the National Guard/Reserves in determining their eligibility for education benefits. Students who are eligible for benefits through a program administered by the Veterans Administration are provided with assistance in filing for benefits.


  • Post 9/11 G.I. Bill® Veterans Education Assistance Act of 2008, Chapter 33;
  • Montgomery G.I. Bill® — Active duty (MGIB-AD), Chapter 30;
  • Montgomery G.I. Bill® — Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR), Chapter 1606;
  • Reserve Educational Assistance Program, Chapter 1607;
  • Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance (DEA) Chapter 35; and
  • Vocational Rehabilitation (VR&E), Chapter 31.
  • In addition, the Registrar’s Office administers the Commonwealth of Massachusetts tuition waiver programs for eligible veterans with specified wartime service and eligible members of the National Guard. As each program has a different set of eligibility, filing and compliance rules, students are encouraged to contact the Registrar’s Office for an explanation of program benefits and requirements.

See Valor Act Academic Credit Policy.

Delayed VA Payments

Under SS248 PL 115-407 Section 103, BCC will not impose a late fee, denial of access to facilities, or other penalty against a veteran or eligible dependent due to a late payment of tuition and/or fees from the VA up to the certified benefits amount. Any portion of the student bill not covered by VA benefits is still expected to be settled by the due date.

In accordance with Sec. 103 of the Veterans Benefits and Transition Act of 2018:

Berkshire Community College permits any covered individual* to attend or participate in the course of education during the period beginning on the date on which the individual provides to the educational institution a certificate of eligibility (COE) for entitlement to educational assistance under Chapter 31 or 33 (a “certificate of eligibility” can also include a “Statement of Benefits” obtained from the Department of Veterans Affairs” (VA) website-eBenefits, or a VAF 28-1905 form for Chapter 31 authorization purposes) and ending on the earlier of the following dates:

  1. The date on which payment from the VA is made to the institution
  2. 90 days after the institution certified tuition and fees following the receipt of the COE.

*A covered individual is any individual who is entitled to educational assistance under Chapter 31, Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment, or Chapter 33, Post-9/11 GI Bill® benefits.

BCC does not penalize Chapter 31 or 33 students if/when the VA is late making payments.  BCC does not have any policies in place that would do any of the following while waiting for VA payments:

  • Prevent enrolling
  • Assessing a late penalty fee
  • Requiring alternative or additional sources of funding
  • Denies access to school resources

In order to prevent outstanding student accounts, chapter 31 or 33 students must:

  • Submit a COE or Statement of Benefits by the first day of classes
  • Submit a written request to be certified
  • Provide any additional information needed for certification

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).  More information about education benefits offered by the VA is available at the official U.S. government Website at https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.

Public Law 116-315 Section 1005 amendment

Effective August 1st, 2021 Public Law 116-315 Section 1005 amends the definition of covered individuals in Title 38 USC 3679(c)(2)(A) by removing the requirement to be within 3 years of discharge in order to receive in-state tuition.  

The Department of Veterans Affairs has requested confirmation that the SAA confirm your institution will be in compliance with the provisions of Public Law 116-315 Section 1005 by August 1st, 2021. Compliance includes notifying the VA where the updated definition of a covered individual is posted on your institution's website and in your academic catalog.  Guidance and instructions were sent by the VA through an earlier communication.  

Veterans Affairs (VA) Education Service (EDU) Policy Advisory:

Because marijuana remains illegal at a federal level, Congress has not provided any exception for students seeking to use their VA educational benefits on courses involving the cultivation, sale, or distribution of marijuana, and to be consistent with VR&E, EDU will prohibit a student from using VA educational benefits for such courses. This prohibition includes programs in states in which either the recreational or medicinal use of marijuana is legally permissible.

This includes BCC's Cannabis Industry Certificate.

Read the full policy disclosure here.


Berkshire Community College has withdrawn its participation in Yellow Ribbon Program. The state now gives all veterans in-state rates which is what the Yellow Ribbon Program was designed to off-set.