Crista Hill, the director of Veteran and Military Affairs, spoke with The Scribe about the new Active-Duty Tuition Assistance Grant.
The grant was created to make the cost of attending UCCS more affordable for active-duty undergraduate students. Military tuition assistance covers $250 per credit hour, and the grant eliminates any remaining tuition costs and fees a student may have.
The grant is automatically applied on or around the census date to eligible students with no application necessary. According to the Veteran and Military Affairs website, students need to request tuition assistance before their classes begin as well as apply for and authorize the College Opportunity Fund to be eligible.
Hill says having a degree can be life-changing for members of the military.
“It’s important for promotion reasons in the military to have an advanced education,” Hill said, “It helps the service member, and it helps their families.”
Hill thinks that service members won’t be the only people benefiting from the new grant. She thinks an increase in active-duty enrollment will benefit the entire UCCS community.
“The military community brings a lot to the classroom. They bring life experience. They bring discipline. They bring different ideas and maturity,” Hill said.
The grant has been in the works for over nine years, and Hill wants to extend the same offer to active-duty graduate students eventually but said that is not on the table for now.
According to Hill, 1 in 5 students at UCCS are affiliated with the military, and she and the rest of Veteran and Military Affairs are committed to serving that community.
Hill hopes the grant’s impact will extend outside of UCCS and create a better community within Colorado Springs.
“The hope is that we educate our active-duty population that’s here in Colorado Springs, and that they go on to get their degree, and, hopefully, they come back and finish their master’s degree with us as well. Or they stay in the community. We would love for them to become citizens even after they get out of the military,” Hill said.
Students can learn more about Veteran and Military Affairs on their website.
The Veteran and Military Affairs Center located in Gateway Hall. Photo by Meghan Germain.