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Yellow Ribbon Program

Benefit overview

The Yellow Ribbon Program can help pay for higher out-of-state, private school, foreign school or graduate school tuition and fees that the Post-9/11 GI Bill doesn’t cover. Normally, Post-9/11 GI Bill payments at private schools are limited to a maximum amount by law. With the Yellow Ribbon Program, schools can enter into a voluntary agreement with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to waive a portion of, or all of their tuition costs that exceed the national maximum Post-9/11 GI Bill reimbursement. The VA will match the amount of the waiver and contribute that to your tuition.

How this benefit helps

This benefit helps Post-9/11 GI Bill beneficiaries by working with schools to reduce the cost of tuition and fees. Normally costs in excess of the annual maximum amount would be the responsibility of the student.

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Use GI Bill benefits to meet educational and career goals.

Continuing your education can help you achieve your career goals, both inside and outside the military.

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Use GI Bill benefits to save money while continuing your education.

GI Bill benefits can save you thousands of dollars per year. Use the benefits you have earned to help pay for your education or training program!

How to access this benefit

First, you need to apply for Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits. If you qualify for benefits, you will get a Certificate of Eligibility. Bring your COE to your school’s certifying official, or to the financial aid, military liaison or other appropriate office. Ask to apply for your school’s Yellow Ribbon Program.

Your school will decide whether it has already enrolled the maximum number of students for the program period and how much funding you’ll receive. Your school decides this amount. They’ll add up tuition and mandatory fees, then subtract any aid you’ve received from other sources — such as scholarships, grants and your Post-9/11 GI Bill tuition payment. Your school will apply the Yellow Ribbon Program benefit to this final amount.

You will get a notice from your school about whether it has accepted you into the program and how much money you’ll receive for tuition and fees.

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