Before You Start
Here are some options that can help you lessen the expense of going
- Finish School Sooner: High school students can
take the College Board's Advanced Placement examinations and/or
concurrent enrollment courses and earn college credit.
- The Military: Educational benefits and
scholarships are available to those who serve in the U.S. Armed
Forces. In some programs, enlistees receive an education first, and
serve an equivalent amount of military time after graduation. Other
programs allow you to accumulate money for an education while
completing an initial enlistment period. Some scholarships pay full
tuition and all instructional fees, and may include a living
allowance. Loan repayment is also available to Army service
personnel. For more information, contact your local Armed Forces
- AmeriCorps: This service program is
administered by the Corporation for National and Community
Service and allows people of all ages and backgrounds to
earn help paying for education in exchange for a year of
- Work While You Learn: It may not be possible
to earn all your own college costs, but a part-time or summer job
can help reduce the amount you'll need to borrow. School employment
offices can help you find a job on or off campus. On some campuses,
work-study or student assistant programs help students find
career-related jobs. Jobs funded through need-based work-study
programs can also have additional financial aid advantages.
You may also be eligible for additional financial aid if you
fall into some of the categories below:
Students with Disabilities
Veterans and Their Dependents
Native American students who can prove membership in a federally
recognized tribe may receive education grants from the Federal Bureau of Indian
Affairs (BIA). Information about scholarship
or grant programs available to members of your tribe may be
available in your tribe's education office.
Students with Disabilities
Students with disabilities who meet the academic qualifications
for a college should apply for admission and, if needed, financial
aid. By law, a qualified student cannot be excluded from college
solely because of a disability.
All public schools and colleges and many independent
schools provide services to students with disabilities. Benefits
may include counseling, tutoring, readers, interpreters, note
takers, special parking zones and loan of special equipment. You
may also request that a class be relocated to a more accessible
place on campus.
Your student budget, as calculated by the colleges, should
include all educational expenses necessary to accommodate your
disability. Be sure to work with your financial aid offices if you
apply, so they understand your particular circumstances.
For more information, contact the schools' disability services
office, the Oklahoma Department of
Rehabilitation Services, or the national
organizations serving your particular disability.
For information on benefits for service-disabled veterans, call
the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at 800.827.1000.
Veterans and Their Dependents
Federal Educational Benefits
Montgomery GI Bill
The Montgomery GI Bill provides educational benefits to Veterans
and Servicemembers who have at least two years of active duty.
You may be an eligible veteran if you got an honorable
discharge, AND you have a high school diploma or GED or, in
somecases 12 hours of college credit, AND you meet the requirements
of one of the categories below:
- Entered active duty for the first time after June 30,
- Had military pay reduced by $100 a month for first 12
- Continuously served for three years OR two years if that is
what you first enlisted for OR two years if you
entered Selected Reserve within a year of leaving active
duty and served four years ("2 by 4" Program).
- Entered active duty before Jan. 1, 1977.
- Served at least one day between Oct. 19, 1984, and June 30,
1985, and stayed on active duty through June 30, 1988, (or June 30,
1987, if you entered Selected Reserve within one year of leaving
active duty and served four years).
- On Dec. 31, 1989, had entitlement left from Vietnam Era GI
- Not eligible for MGIB under Category I or II.
- On active duty on Sept. 30, 1990, AND separated involuntarily
after Feb. 2, 1991, OR involuntarily separated on or
after Nov. 30, 1993, OR voluntarily separated under
either the Voluntary Separation Incentive (VSI) or Special
Separation Benefit (SSB) program.
- Before separation, had military pay reduced by $1,200.
- On active duty on Oct. 9, 1996, AND had money remaining in a
VEAP account on that date AND elected MGIB by Oct. 9,
1997, OR entered full-time National Guard duty under
Title 32, USC, between July 1, 1985, and Nov. 28, 1989, AND elected
MGIB during the period Oct. 9, 1996, through July 8,
- Had military pay reduced by $100 a month for 12 months or made
a $1,200 lump-sum contribution.
To learn more, visit https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/mgib_ad.asp.
Montgomery GI Bill Selected Reserve
The Montgomery GI Bill Selected Reserve program provides
education and training benefits to eligible members of the Selected
Reserve, including the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or
Coast Guard Reserve, Army National Guard or Air National Guard.
To qualify, you must meet the following requirements:
- Have a six-year obligation to serve in the Selected Reserve
signed after June 30, 1985. If you are an officer, you must have
agreed to serve six years in addition to your original obligation.
For some types of training it is necessary to have a six-year
commitment that begins after Sept. 30, 1990.
- Complete your initial active duty for training (IADT).
- Meet the requirement to receive a high school diploma or
equivalency certificate before completing IADT. You may not use 12
hours toward a college degree to meet this requirement.
- Remain in good standing while serving in an active Selected
Reserve unit. You will also retain eligibility if you were
discharged from Selected Reserve service due to a disability that
was not caused by misconduct. Your eligibility period may be
extended if you are ordered to active duty.
To learn more, visit https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/mgib_sr.asp.
Veteran's Educational Assistance Program (VEAP)
VEAP is the post-Vietnam era Veterans Educational Assistance
Program for those who entered active duty for the first time
between Jan. 1, 1977, and June 30, 1985, and contributed to the
VEAP fund while on active duty or had contributions made for them
by the military.
To qualify you must meet the following requirements:
- Entered service for the first time between Jan. 1, 1977, and
June 30, 1985 (for all branches other than Air Force).
- Opened a contribution account before April 1, 1987.
- Voluntarily contributed from $25 to $2,700.
- Completed your first period of service.
- Were discharged or released from service under conditions other
If you are currently on active duty and wish to receive VEAP
benefits, you must have at least three months of contributions
To learn more, visit https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/veap.asp.
Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment
Service-disabled veterans may be eligible for vocational
rehabilitation from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
Benefits may include education or training to qualify for
employment, counseling, tutorial assistance and medical
To learn more, visit https://www.benefits.va.gov/vocrehab/.
Survivors and Dependents Assistance
Educational benefits also are available to veterans' dependents
if the veteran (spouse or parent) died in service, was totally
disabled, or is listed as missing in action or captured in the line
of duty by a hostile force or a foreign government power.
The transferability option under the Post-9/11 GI bill allows
Servicemenbers to transfer all or some unused benefits to their
spouse or dependent children. The request to transfer unused GI
Bill benefits to eligible dependents must be completed while
serving as an active member of the Armed Forces. If you're
eligible, you may transfer benefits to the following
- Your spouse
- One or more of your children
- Any combination of your spouse and child
To learn more, visit https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/survivor_dependent_assistance.asp.
Veterans' Work-Study Program
If you're a full-time or 3/4-time student in a college degree,
vocational, or professional program, you can "earn while you learn"
with a VA work-study allowance.
VA will select students for the work-study program based on
different factors. Such factors include:
- Ability of the student to complete the work-study contract
before the end of his or her eligibility to education benefits
- Job availability within normal commuting distance to the
The number of applicants selected will depend on the
availability of VA-related work at your school or at VA facilities
in your area. Veterans with service-connected disabilities of at
least 30% may be give priority consideration.
To learn more, visit https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill/workstudy.asp.
State Educational Benefits
National Guard Tuition Waiver
The Oklahoma National Guard Tuition Waiver is established as an
incentive for qualified young men and women to join the Oklahoma
National Guard and as a means to retain skilled, productive
citizens within the state.
Who is eligible?
A student who is a member of the Oklahoma National Guard shall
be eligible for a full resident tuition waiver (up to 18 credit
hours per semester per institution), provided the student:
- Is a bona fide member of the Oklahoma National Guard at the
beginning of the semester for which he/she is applying for a
scholarship or by the scholarship application deadline determined
by the institution.
- Has been certified as a member in good standing by the Adjunct
- Is an Oklahoma resident.
- Does not currently hold a baccalaureate or graduate degree.
(Must be pursuing an associate or baccalaureate degree and enroll
in a minimum of three credit hours.)
- Meets all admission and retention requirements of the
To learn more, visit the National Guard
Tuition Waiver page, contact the Oklahoma National Guard at
800.GO.GUARD or visit https://ok.ng.mil/Pages/Tuition-Waiver.aspx
Athletes considering a National Collegiate Athletic Association
college should contact the NCAA for information on college
recruiting rules, grade point average and testing requirements.
Visit www.NCAA.org or write to the NCAA at 700 W. Washington
Street, PO Box 6222, Indianapolis, IN, 46206-6222, or call