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Veterans Educational Benefits

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University Policy for Students Called to Active Duty

James Madison University supports students called to active duty in the armed services by providing for tuition relief and refunds, and for reinstatement of students whose documented service in the uniformed services has required their sudden withdrawal or prolonged absence from their enrollment in the institution. Included is service in the uniformed services whether voluntary or involuntary on active duty in the Armed Forces, including such service by a member of the National Guard or Reserve. When a JMU student is under call or ordered to active duty for a period of more than 30 days, the following provisions will apply.

Called to Active Duty - Undergraduate and Graduate Students

Documentation

Students should complete Withdrawal or Leave of Absence forms and include a copy of the applicable military orders to qualify for the considerations detailed in this policy.

The Withdrawal Process is appropriate for students who are enrolled in a semester, are deployed to active duty military service and must begin that duty before the current semester has ended. Withdrawal forms are available through the Office of the Dean of Students located in Taylor Hall Room 300 (540-568-6468).

A Leave of Absence is appropriate for students who are deployed to active duty military service, but do not need to begin duty during a current semester; for example, if duty will begin during a future semester before classes begin. The Leave of Absence Form is available online at http://www.jmu.edu/registrar/wm_library/non_returning_loa_notice.doc

Tuition Charges and Student Account Balances

If an enrolled student is deployed to active duty military service during the semester, the student can:

  • Drop all classes and all tuition charges will be waived with:

    • Personal payments refunded
    • Financial aid adjusted as required
    • Financial aid refunds repaid by student if appropriate
    • Maintain all or part of enrollment with:
      • Tuition adjusted accordingly
      • Financial aid adjusted as required
      • Financial aid refunds repaid by student if appropriate

If there are unpaid student account balances at time of deployment, the university will work with individual students on payment arrangements. No collection actions will occur during deployment; however, student must resolve any unpaid balances prior to subsequent enrollment.

Room and Board

If an enrolled student is deployed to active duty military service during the semester, the student's dining and residence hall contract will be adjusted as follows.

  • Board fees will be prorated from the dining hall opening date.

  • A per diem refund of the room rent will be issued based on the student's official check-out date.

Textbooks

When a student is called to active duty, a full refund for textbooks purchased for the semester in progress is available through the university bookstore by presenting the textbooks and a copy of the applicable military orders.

Deposits

For new students, an enrollment deposit is required to confirm their acceptance of the offer of admission. If a student is deployed to active duty military service before beginning the planned semester of enrollment, the deposit will be refunded.

For returning students, deposits made with the intent of securing facilities or services in a future session will be refunded in full.

Academic Credit

If an enrolled student is deployed to active duty military service during the semester, the student will have three options concerning grades assigned for the semester in which the call to active duty occurs.

  • If the student leaves at any time during the semester and elects to receive a full tuition refund, no notation of courses or grades will be recorded on the student's transcript.

  • If the student elects to receive an "I" (Incomplete), the regulation regarding conversion of an "I" to "F" grade will be suspended until the student returns to campus. Should the student not return to JMU, the "I" will revert to a "W" (Withdrawal).

  • If the student leaves at a point in the semester after which a significant amount of work has been completed, the student may request the assignment of a grade for work completed. This option requires joint agreement of the student and faculty member(s).

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Undergraduate - Deferral of Enrollment and Re-entry

Deferral of Enrollment

If an undergraduate student has been admitted to James Madison University and is called to active military duty or enlists in the National Guard before enrolling, the student may request a deferral of admission using the process below.

The student must submit a letter to the Director of Admissions requesting a deferment. In the letter the student should provide the reason for the request (call to active duty or National Guard boot camp will not end until after the start of the semester that the student intended to enroll) and indicate the term they wish to enroll (the term can be changed if needed).

The request is reviewed by the director of admissions who sends a letter notifying the student that his/her request has been granted and indicates when JMU expects the student to enroll. The director of admissions will also inform the following offices of the deferment: Registrar's Office; University Business Office; Financial Aid & Scholarships; Orientation Office; Residence Life; Career & Academic Planning; and University Advising (for transfer students).

During the semester prior to scheduled enrollment, JMU will send the student a letter explaining what needs to be done prior to the start of his/her enrollment at JMU.

If the student's discharge from the service is delayed, the student contacts the director of admissions and requests an extension of his/her deferment. The director will approve the delay and inform the following offices: University Business Office; Financial Aid & Scholarships; Orientation Office; Residence Life; Career & Academic Planning; and University Advising (for transfer students).

Re-entry

Formerly enrolled undergraduate degree-seeking students who have not attended JMU for one or more semesters and who wish to return to their studies at JMU are classified as re-entry students. The re-entry process is contingent upon the student's length of absence and academic standing at the time of departure. To avoid delays in registration, the Intent to Enroll Form (for undergraduate students who have been absent from JMU for less than two years) or the Office of Academic Student Services Re-entry Form (for students who have been absent for two or more years) must be submitted by the indicated deadline for the anticipated semester of return. All registration holds must be cleared before the student will be eligible to register.

Re-entry after Absence of Less Than Two Calendar Years

Undergraduate Students in Good Standing
Students who left the university in good standing and who have been absent for one semester or more without declaring a formal leave of absence must submit an Intent to Enroll Form to the Office of the Registrar. Students in good standing who have declared a formal leave of absence due to being called to active military duty will be automatically activated and eligible to register for the stated semester of return without further action on their part, provided there is resolution of outstanding registration holds.

Undergraduate Students on Academic Probation or Suspension
Students who were on academic probation or suspension when they left the university for active military duty, and who have been absent for one semester or more, must submit an Intent to Enroll Form directly to the Director of Academic Student Services. A personal statement describing the student's intended academic and study plans must accompany the form. Re-entry and continued enrollment are not guaranteed, but are contingent upon review by an academic review committee chaired by the Director of Academic Student Services. Such review may result in denial or conditional re-entry.

Re-entry after Absence of Two Calendar Years or More

Students who plan to re-enter after an absence of two or more calendar years, regardless of their academic standing at the time of departure, must apply for readmission through the Office of Academic Student Services by completing the Re-Entry Form. Re-entry is not automatic but subject to committee review of the application, the personal statement citing the reason for absence and evaluation of work completed at JMU as well as work completed at other institutions during the student's absence from JMU.

If a degree-seeking student leaves James Madison University after earning a portion of General Education credits and earns an approved Virginia Community College System (VCCS) Associate Degree, JMU will accept it in fulfillment of General Education requirements. Students who earn the approved degree while on academic suspension status from James Madison University are only eligible to re-enter James Madison University by agreeing to apply for the Transfer Equivalent Option upon their approved return to James Madison University.

Reinstatement into Specific Undergraduate Program of Study

When a student with a declared major wishes to return to the same program at the university after an absence of more than two years, the course work taken prior to withdrawal must be reviewed by an advisor/academic unit head prior to the student's re-enrollment. This counseling is required to assure that the previously completed coursework is current and applicable to the major. The adviser will assist the student to develop an appropriate academic plan for degree completion. Students without declared majors wishing to return to study should consult with an adviser in Career and Academic Planning to receive assistance in developing an academic plan.

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Graduate - Deferral of Enrollment and Leave of Absence

Deferral of Enrollment

If a graduate student has been admitted to James Madison University and is called to active military duty before enrolling, the student may request a deferral of admission using the process below.

  1. The student must submit a request (i.e., letter or email) to the Graduate Program Director requesting a deferment. In the communication, the student should provide the reason for the request (call to active duty) and indicate the term he/she wishes to re-enroll (the term can be changed if needed).

  2. The Graduate Program Director approves the deferment and informs the Director of Graduate Admissions that the deferment has been approved.

  3. The Director of Graduate Admissions notifies the student that the request has been approved and informs the student to notify The Graduate School and their Graduate Program Director at least 30 days prior to the first class day of the return semester.

  4. If the student's discharge from the service is delayed, the student contacts the Director of Graduate Admissions and requests an extension of his/her deferment. The Director of Graduate Admissions will approve the delay and inform the Graduate Program Director.

Leave of Absence

A military leave of absence is granted to graduate students deployed for active military service. The graduate program director of the program in which the student is enrolled must request a military leave of absence for a student in a graduate program. The request must be approved by the dean of The Graduate School. Continuous enrollment is granted for a specified time period that may not exceed four semesters total, excluding summer session. Any extension of the approved continuous enrollment period must be requested by the student 30 days prior to the deadline and approved by the dean of The Graduate School.

When a student on leave plans to resume graduate study, he/she must inform the graduate program director and The Graduate School at least 30 days prior to the first class day of the return semester. All registration holds must be cleared before the student will be eligible to register.

In the case of a military leave of absence, the time clock related to the time limit for the completion of the degree (i.e., master's and educational specialist students must complete all degree requirements within six years; doctoral students must complete all degree requirements within eight years) will be stopped at the semester in which the leave begins. The time clock will resume upon the student's return to the program. While all academic credit, including transfer credits taken before enrollment in the graduate program, will remain on the graduate transcript, courses originally approved to be counted toward the degree program which now fall outside of the original time limit must be reviewed and approved by the program director in terms of content relevancy. In some cases, additional course work may be warranted due to outdated information.

Red and blue stars

Thinking of continuing your education while away from JMU??
If so, please be aware of the following:

  1. Be sure to verify that the school you wish to attend (physically or online) is institutionally accredited by an agency approved by JMU's Office of the Registrar.

  2. Have a signed permission form in place, so that your work, time, and financial expense do not go unrewarded. If you're deployed, please make a note of this at the top of the permission form. Be sure to provide an active email or mailing address on the form.

  3. Not all courses will transfer, so be sure to include course descriptions when you request permission to take the course.

  4. Only grades of "C" or better can be transferred.

  5. You will receive credit only for work done away from JMU. Transfer credit does not figure into your JMU GPA. Courses will show up on your transcript with "CR" in the grade column.

For reference, use the following websites:

For FAQ's about accreditation: US Department of Education FAQ webpage

To verify a school's accreditation, go to the US Department of Education Institution Search webpage

For JMU information, go to Office of Admissions Transfer Process page and/or the JMU Transfer website.

Please feel free to contact the Office of the Registrar for additional help - 540-568-6281.