Veteran Benefits FAQ

GI Bill ® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at

Does Lewis participate in the Illinois Veterans Grant (IVG) program?
No, Lewis University does not participate in the IVG program. This program can only be utilized at Illinois public institutions or community colleges.

Am I eligible for VA Educational Benefits?
Only the VA can determine your eligibility for benefits. Review the program details at and apply for aid, or call a VA counselor at 1-888-GI-BILL-1 (1-888-442-4551).

Find out what Department of Veterans Administration Benefits you qualify for:

The VONAPP (Veterans On Line Application) website is an official U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) website that enables service members, veterans and their beneficiaries, and other designated individuals to apply for benefits using the Internet.

U.S. military veterans and some service members within six months of separation or retirement can apply for compensation benefits and/or pension benefits using VA Form 21-526, and Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment benefits can be applied for using VA Form 28-1900.

U.S. military veterans, service members, members of the Selected Reserve, and dependents can apply for education benefits.

Does the VA pay my full tuition?
No. The VA will pay you a compensatory benefit to help you offset the cost of school. You are responsible for paying your tuition and fees in order to maintain continuous enrollment according to the policies as stated in our student handbook.

Can I receive regular financial aid while receiving VA benefits?
Yes. You may apply for additional financial aid without it affecting your VA education benefits.

How long will it take to receive my Veteran benefits?
New claims typically take from 8-10 weeks for the VA to process - sometimes longer depending on current processing volume. Note: The VA is generally overwhelmed with claims at the beginning of each semester. Always allow the VA six to eight weeks to process any change in your claim as well, and an additional four to six weeks if your main claim folder must be transferred from one VA regional office to another. Once your initial claim is processed, you will receive your payments monthly. A beneficiary is entitled to payment at the conclusion of the month in which he or she trained.

What changes should I report to the VA Certifying Official at Lewis University?
To avoid delays or overpayment of VA education benefits, each VA benefit recipient is responsible for reporting any changes in status to the VA Certifying Official at Lewis University, including:

  • Change of Address
  • Change of Program
  • Change in Enrollment Status (e.g. drop from full- to part-time)
  • Withdrawal from school
You may contact the Lewis University VA Certifying Official at 815-836-5263.

Will I automatically receive benefits next semester?
No. You must submit a Lewis University VA Education Benefit Enrollment Form prior to the start of each semester. The VA Certifying Official will review the student's program of study and certify that the courses are required to complete the degree program. This certification is then sent to the St. Louis Regional Processing Office.

Have more questions?
If you have additional questions, many can be answered at the Federal VA Frequently Asked Questions site. Or feel free to contact the Lewis University VA Certifying Official at 815-836-5263.

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