Special Programs Military Services

Military Program

Department of Defense Voluntary Education Partnership Memorandum of Understanding

West Hills College Coalinga actively supports the philosophy and concepts of this designation as established by the American Association of Community Colleges.  West Hills College acts in accordance with the DOD principles and criteria. Our dedication ensures the following:

  • Reducing barriers to access and completion such as minimum residency requirements
  • Considering American Council on Education (ACE) recommended military training evaluations for award of course credits
  • Providing each matriculating Service member with a Student Education Plan that specifies which transfer courses and prior learning credits have been awarded and which courses will be needed to complete a selected degree.
  • Residency requirements are 12 units of completed coursework.
  • Service members, spouses and their dependents share in the educational opportunities, programs and services available to the general public.
  • Service members, spouses and their dependents can continue their education through the online program.
  • Service members, spouses and their dependents may transfer credits from another accredited college.

 

Credit for Military Schools

A student who is currently Active Duty or a Veteran that has been honorably discharged may petition and be awarded credit. In all cases, the American Council on Education (ACE) ‘Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Forces’ will be followed:

West Hills College Coalinga will award equivalent college course credit for Military Service Schools as recommended by the ACE Directory.

  • A maximum of twenty seven (27) semester units of elective degree credit may be awarded for those service schools that the ACE Directory recommends for specific lower division credit, but for which West Hills College Coalinga does not offer a specific equivalent.
  • In addition, of three (3) semester units for Health Education 35 will be awarded. A petition for HE 35 and twelve (12) semester units of residency must be completed.
  • Students must submit an official Request for Evaluation of Military Record and provide official military transcript.
  • All units granted by West Hills College Coalinga will be placed officially on the current transcript of the student.
  • An evaluation of all the student’s prior credits (military, transfer, exams) in relation to the students declared major should be applied for before or completion of two semesters.

Special Note: Units from the official military transcript are non-transferrable. 

Veterans Resource Services

Our Military Services team understand the unique challenges veterans face, and we arm students with the support and resources needed to meet their personal and academic goals. We are privileged to welcome veterans, reservists, military personnel and their families to our College community. We value your service, and we are here to help ease your transition from the military to college life. West Hills College is approved for training of veterans, dependents of deceased and disabled veterans under applicable federal and state laws administered by the Veterans’ Administration and the State Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

Veteran Education and Vocational Programs

West Hills College Coalinga provides assistance to Veterans and dependents for the following benefit programs

  • Chapter 30- Active Duty Educational Assistance Program, Montgomery GI Bill ®
  • Chapter 31- Vocational Rehabilitation
  • Chapter 33- Post-9/11 GI Bill ®
  • Chapter 35- Survivors and Dependents Educational Assistance Program
  • Chapter 1606- Selected reserve Educational Assistance Program
  • Chapter 1607- Reserve Educational Assistance Program (REAP)

 

Tuition and Fees for Veterans

Fees are due at time of registration. Fees not paid in full, withdraw from all classes for non-payment will take place. Students that are eligible for the Post 9/11 GI Bill ® (chapter 33) and VA Vocational Rehabilitation (Chapter 31) need to contact West Hills College Coalinga VA Certifying Official.

Residency for Veterans

A qualified veteran and/or dependent who reside in California and are attending a California school within 3 years of discharge can receive in state tuition rates. Contact West Hills College Coalinga.

Financial Aid for Veterans

Other financial assistance may be available by completing a FAFSA application (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) at www.fafsa.gov.

Registration for Veterans

Veterans may be eligible for priority registration for 15 years following their discharge from active duty. In order to be eligible, veterans must take a copy of their DD 214 discharge papers to the West Hills College Coalinga, Certifying Official.

Attendance Standards for Veterans Using Educational Benefits

The last date of attendance for each course is reported to the VA when a student officially withdraws, is withdrawn by faculty or stops attending without officially withdrawing. For VA education benefits a “W” grade is considered punitive and the last date of attendance must be reported to the VA.

All changes in credit must be reported to the West Hills College Coalinga Certifying Official. If changes are not reported in a timely manner it can cause an overpayment of VA education benefits. Causing a student bill owed to the VA.

Reporting “F” Grades for Veterans Using Educational Benefits

Each semester the academic progress of VA students will be monitored for “F” grades. If a failing (“F”) grade is received in a course, the VA will only be notified if the failing grade is due to a lack of class attendance or lack of completing assignments or the final.  If a student received an “F” grade, an email will be sent to the instructor. The instructor is required to state whether the student completed the class and received the “F” on the basis of work completed, or if the student received the failing grade based on lack of class attendance or participation. In the latter case, the instructor must indicate the month and the day they last attended and/or stopped participating.

No further action will be necessary for those who received a “F” grade based on work completed in the class. If the “F” grade is a result of non-attendance, the VA will be notified of the last date of attendance or assignment/final reported by the instructor. Due to the reported information a possible overpayment of VA education benefits can be generated.

Special Note: Online attendance is based on assignments, tests, quizzes, discussion boards etc. Logging into an online class does not count as attendance.

Prior Credit for Veterans

All prior credit must be reviewed and credit granted as appropriate to an approved program that has been selected by the veteran student. Individuals may apply for military credit at West Hills College based on recommendations by the ACE Guide. A petition for Health Education 35 must be completed. An evaluation of all the student’s prior credits (military transcripts, prior colleges) in relation to the student’s declared major should be applied for before or upon completion of two semesters.

Academic Counseling for Veterans

The new student advisement is especially important for veterans because the veteran is required to select an approved program and can only receive benefits for taking courses that are required to complete the approved program.

Non payable courses include physical education (except for dependents and P.E. majors); health education (except for dependents and H.E. Majors); NP (no pass reported as a drop at the end of the semester); and “F” grade as the result of non-attendance; or general work experience classes.

Students enrolled in short-term classes should be aware they will only be paid for those units during the time of actual class time. The VA will only pay for classes that have been completed. If a student must drop a class due to “Mitigating circumstances”, the student will have to provide documentation to VA if an overpayment is in result.

The student is required to repay all benefits received for a withdrawn class from the day the class was dropped. This applies when there is no “Mitigating circumstances”.

Students are required to report any changes in classes, units, address, phone number or program to West Hills College Coalinga Veteran’s Services staff or by contacting the VA Certifying official at  559-934-2324.

Probation and Disqualification for Veterans

The law requires that educational assistance benefits to veterans and other eligible persons be discontinued when the student ceases to make satisfactory progress toward completion of his or her training objective. The VA will allow two semesters of academic probation (grades below 2.0). Students will not receive benefits for the third consecutive semester of academic probation. (Students are recommended to make an appointment with the VA counselor for student options).

Veterans Upward Bound (VUB)

The West Hills College Coalinga partners with West Hills College Lemoore’s Veterans Upward Bound program. This is a FREE program that helps prepare Veterans to enter, be successful, and to graduate from college.

Services

  • Individualized career assessment and planning
  • Application assistance
  • Financial aid and GI Bill® information
  • Help obtaining military and other transcripts
  • Advisement and assistance with college admission and enrollment steps
  • Academic Counseling
  • College preparation instruction and tutoring for Math and English skills improvement
  • Preparation and testing for academic placement exams
  • Access to other resources: study areas, campus library, computer labs, and student union
  • Referrals to additional college and community resources

Eligibility

  • Meet military service requirements
  • Received other than a dishonorable discharge
  • Completed a minimum of 180 days of active service; or was a member of a reserve component of the Armed Forces called to active duty for more than 30 days; or was a member of a reserve component of the Armed Forces who served on active duty on or after September 11, 2001
  • U.S. Citizen, resident or applying for residency
  • Low-income and/or first-generation

For more information on these and other services, call: 559-925-3345