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Friday, December 5, 2014 - 11:09am

JCC now offers qualifying veterans who live outside of New York state the in-state tuition rate.

On August 19, 2014, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law Chapter 328 of the Laws of 2014, amending Section 6305 of the NYS Education Law to provide that: “[a]ny student attending a community college in accordance with the federal GI bills and in compliance with all applicable eligibility requirements thereof, whether or not a resident of this state, shall be charged the tuition rate for residents as approved by the state university trustees.”

In addition to this state law, a newly enacted federal law, Veterans’ Access to Care through Choice, Accountability, and Transparency Act of 2014 (Choice Act), requires all state-operated campuses and community colleges to grant veterans and their dependents in-state tuition, effective July 1, 2015. 

Section 701 of the Choice Act has also expanded the Fry Scholarship to include the surviving spouses of service members who died in the line of duty after September 10, 2001. Previously, the Fry Scholarship, honoring Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry, served children. Effective January 1, 2015, spouses and children are entitled to 36 months of full benefits, equal to 100% of the Post-9/11 GI Bill, which includes tuition and fee payments, a monthly housing allowance, and a stipend for books and supplies.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs anticipates that the number of post-9/11 veterans will reach approximately 2,340,000 by the end of 2014. New York state has the sixth largest veteran population in the nation with a projected 84,142 veterans from the post-9/11 era and the number is expected to more than double.

SUNY had an enrollment of more than 9,000 veterans or active duty military personnel in fall 2013. SUNY expects many returning veterans will pursue educational opportunities as they transition into civilian life and seek long-term employment. 

Additional information can be obtained by contacting JCC’s veterans’ coordinator at 716.338.1018.

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