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Office of Veteran Services

Please speak with your Education Services Officer (ESO) or an education counselor in your Command prior to enrolling in any university. If you are unsure who your ESO or counselor is, please contact our Veteran Certifying Official- Lucinda Gonderman (, 304-384-5323) or our Veterans Advocate- George Williams (, 304-384-6300) for assistance.

Concord University is proud to welcome all Veterans and their families. We have made a number of changes recently and hope to vastly improve Veteran services on the Campus Beautiful. We are honored to serve the Veterans of our Armed Forces and want to thank you for your service. We offer a wide variety of amenities to both Veterans and their families.

Our School Certifying Official is Lucinda Gonderman.

Our Veterans Advocate is Dr. George Williams.

We invite you to join us in the Veteran's Lounge located in the atrium at the south end of the Rahall Technology Center, on the second floor. All enrolled Veterans have access to the lounge, regardless of whether or not they are receiving benefits to attend Concord. Additionally, the lounge is available to all dependents utilizing a parent’s benefits. The lounge is open most days between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm. It contains a library of textbooks, a kitchen with plenty of coffee and refreshments, a restroom, four computer work stations, a wide-screen television, free printing, and comfortable furniture.

We now have a Charter for SALUTE, the only National Veterans Honor Society. Please click on the link below for more information.

We also have a membership with Student Veterans of America and operate a CU Veterans Club. We highly encourage all student Veterans to become involved in the club.
CU Veterans Club
Under Construction.
Education Benefits

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

If you have not applied for your MGIB Benefits

Montgomery GI Bill Active Duty (Chapter 30)

  • Benefits are payable for 10 years following your release from active duty.
  • You will receive a monthly payment at a rate set by Congress based on your expenses for 36 months, which varies based on enrollment status.
  • Monthly check (via direct deposit) sent to veteran after proof of enrollment and monthly online verification.

$600 Buy-Up program

  • If you take part in the $600 Montgomery GI Bill Buy-Up program, you’ll get more money each month through your GI Bill monthly payments.
Montgomery GI Bill Active Duty (MGIB-AD) | Veterans Affairs (
$600 Buy-Up Program | Veterans Affairs (


Veteran Readiness & Employment VRE (Chapter 31)

  • This program provides effective vocational rehabilitation services to veterans with service-connected disabilities.
  • Benefits determined on an individual basis.
Veteran Readiness and Employment (VR&E) Home (


The post-Vietnam Era Veterans’ Educational Assistance Program (VEAP) (Chapter 32)

VEAP (also called Chapter 32) is a $2-to-$1 government-match program for educational assistance. If you entered service for the first time between January 1, 1977, and June 30, 1985, and put money into a VEAP account, you may be eligible.
Veterans’ Educational Assistance Program (VEAP) | Veterans Affairs (


Post 9/11 GI Bill (Chapter 33) & Transfer of Entitlement (TOE)

  • This program provides financial support for education and housing to veterans with at least 90 days of active service on or after September 11, 2001, and eligible dependents that meet requirements for transfer of benefits. Benefits are available for up to 15 years following discharge.
  • An annual book stipend of $1,000 paid proportionately based on enrollment.
  • Tuition payment will be made directly to the school after registration, not to exceed the maximum in-state tuition/fees at a public institution.
  • Monthly housing allowance when meeting the basic allowance for housing criteria for an E5 with dependents based on the location of the school.
  • If you participated in the $600 buy-up under the Montgomery GI Bill Active Duty, you will not receive that additional benefit under the Post 9/11 GI Bill.
  • You are not eligible to receive Federal Tuition Assistance in conjunction with Ch 33 benefits.


Post-9/11 GI Bill | Veterans Affairs (
Transfer Your Post-9/11 GI Bill Benefits | Veterans Affairs (
Post 9-11 Yellow Ribbon Program

The Yellow Ribbon Program can help you pay for higher out-of-state, private school, foreign school, or graduate school tuition and fees that the Post-9/11 GI Bill doesn’t cover. Keep reading to find out if you’re eligible and if your school takes part in this program.


Survivors and Dependents Assistance—DEA (Chapter 35)

  • DEA provides education and training opportunities to eligible dependents of certain veterans. The program offers up to 45 months of education benefits.
  • For a son or daughter, you must be between the ages of 18 and 26.
  • If you are a spouse, benefits end 10 years from the date VA finds you eligible.
  • For surviving spouses (spouses of service members who died on active duty) benefits end 20 years from the date of death.

You may be able to get these benefits if both you and the Veteran or service member meet certain eligibility requirements.

One of the descriptions listed below must be true. The Veteran or service member:

  • Is permanently and totally disabled due to a service-connected disability, or
  • Died while on active duty or as a result of a service-connected disability, or
  • Is missing in action or was captured in the line of duty by a hostile force, or
  • Was forcibly detained (held) or interned in the line of duty by a foreign entity, or
  • Is in the hospital or getting outpatient treatment for a service-connected permanent and total disability and is likely to be discharged for that disability (effective December 23, 2006)

If you’re the child of a Veteran or service member

  • You can get benefits if you’re between the ages of 18 and 26, except in certain cases. You may be married or unmarried.
  • If you’re over 18 years old and using DEA, you can’t get Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) from us.
Learn about DIC
  • If you join the military, you can’t use this benefit while on active duty. And if you want to use this benefit after you leave the service, you can’t have a dishonorable discharge. Military service can extend your eligibility, but this increase doesn’t usually go past your 31st birthday.
If you're the spouse of a Veteran or service member
  • Your benefits start on the date we conclude that you qualify or on the date of the Veteran’s death, and last for 10 years.
  • If the VA rated the Veteran as permanently and totally disabled, with an effective date that’s 3 years after discharge, you’ll qualify for benefits for 20 years from that effective date. This new policy began on October 10, 2008. The VA won’t pay benefits for training you started before this date.
  • If the service member died on active duty, your benefits end 20 years from the date of death.
  • You can get DIC payments from us and use DEA benefits.

REPS - Restored Entitlement Program for Survivors (Addition to Ch 35)

Restored Entitlement Program for Survivors (REPS) may be available to certain survivors of deceased veterans in addition to Chapter 35 benefits. Eligibility for these benefits is limited to unmarried full-time students between the ages of 18 and 22 whose parent died while on active duty before August 13, 1981, or who died as a result of a service-connected disability incurred before August 13, 1981. These benefits are similar to the benefits eliminated from Social Security. The amount of the benefits is based on information from the Social Security Administration.

Students who are applying for benefits for the first time must complete DVA form 21-8924, Application of Surviving Spouse or Child for REPS Benefits. For eligibility information, contact the Dept of Veterans Affairs (DVA) at 1-800-827-1000.
Survivors’ And Dependents’ Educational Assistance | Veterans Affairs (


Montgomery GI Bill Selected Reserve (Chapter 1606)

  • This program may be available to you if you are a member of the Selected Reserve. The Selected Reserve includes the Army Reserve, Navy Reserve, Air Force Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve, Coast Guard Reserve, Army National Guard, and Air National Guard.
  • Allows "kickers" up to $350 per month.
  • Monthly check (via direct deposit) sent to veteran after proof of enrollment and monthly online verification.

As of May, 2021, Ch 1606 can be used in conjunction with Federal Tuition Assistance. See below.
VA Montgomery GI Bill – Selected Reserve Fact Sheet


Federal Tuition Assistance


Federal Tuition Assistance (FTA) is financial assistance provided for voluntary off-duty education programs in support of a service member’s profession and personal self-development goals.

You must be currently serving in an active or reserve capacity to be eligible to receive Tuition Assistance.

Concord University is approved to accept Tuition Assistance payment from all DOD branches of service.

Tuition Assistance typically covers up to a maximum of $250 per semester hour and up to 16 semester hours per year (the number of funds and/or units may vary by service


To Use TA for Air Force, Navy, Marines

Eligible Service members must receive approval from an Educational Service Officer (ESO) or counselor within their Military Service prior to enrolling in Tuition Assistance (TA).

Once you have completed your TA submission through the appropriate portal, please send approved TA forms to for processing.

Branch Portals

To Use TA for the Army or Army WV National Guard

Recent changes now allow Army Guard and Reserve to utilize Tuition Assistance in conjunction with their WV National Guard Scholarship and Department of Veterans Affairs Montgomery Selective Reserve Benefit (1606).

To use Army TA you must complete all of the steps at least 7 days before the start of the term.

  1. 1. You must be an accepted student and registered for the classes.
  2. 2. You must create an Army Ignited Account and have an accepted Education Path. See the PDF Tutorial – TA-Student – Create a Student User Account Guide.
  3. 3. Complete the ArmyIgnited TA Web Form for the Spring 2022 Semester. We will need at least 1 business day to process your request and upload your courses to ArmyIgnited.
  4. 4. IF you are using another Dept. of Veterans Affairs Benefit, such as 1606, please complete the Veterans Enrollment Card.

CU Veterans\TA Student - Create a Student User Account.pdf
CU Veterans\TA Student - Create Education Paths and Tuition Assistance Requests (3).pdf
CU Veterans\TA Student - Navigate Student Dashboard.pdf
CU Veterans\TA Student - Withdrawals and Recoupment.pdf

The National Call to Service program

This program allows you to choose an education benefit as an alternative to the Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB). If you performed a period of national service, you may be eligible.
Find out if you're eligible for the National Call to Service program


Veteran Rapid Retraining Assistance Program (VRRAP)

This program offers education and training for high-demand jobs to Veterans who are unemployed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. If you're not eligible for GI Bill or VR&E benefits, you may be eligible for this program.
Find out if you're eligible for VRRAP


Fry Scholarship

If you’re the child or surviving spouse of a service member who died in the line of duty after September 10, 2001, you may qualify for the Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David

Fry Scholarship (Fry Scholarship).
Learn more about the Fry Scholarship


West Virginia National Guard Education Encouragement Program

WV Educational Encouragement Program


Tuition Assistance Top-Up

Does your college tuition cost more than what’s covered by the Department of Defense (DoD) Tuition Assistance (TA) program? Find out if you can get more money to help pay for school through the Tuition Assistance Top-Up program.

Am I eligible for Tuition Assistance Top-Up?

You may be eligible for Tuition Assistance Top-Up if you’re approved for federal TA and you meet both of the requirements listed below.

Both of these must be true:

* You qualify for Montgomery GI Bill Active Duty (MGIB-AD) or Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits, and

* The cost of the course and fees is more than TA will cover
Tuition Assistance Top-Up | Veterans Affairs (


Tutorial assistance

If you’re using VA educational assistance, and you’re struggling with the coursework, we may help you pay for a tutor.

Am I eligible for this benefit?

You may be eligible for this benefit if you’re using VA educational assistance and you meet all of the requirements listed below.

All of these must be true:

* You’re enrolled in an educational program for half-time or more, and

* You’re taking a course that’s difficult, and

* You have to take the course as part of your educational program
Tutorial Assistance | Veterans Affairs (



Changing Courses/Enrollment

Once classes are certified and the tuition and fee amounts are reported by Concord University to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, any changes in enrollment will result in Concord University going into Debt Management with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. As a result, students may be placed into debt with the university.

Instructor Withdrawal

Students can be withdrawn due to non-attendance. When this happens, it must be reported to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as a punitive grade. A punitive grade is a grade assigned for pursuit of a course which is used in determining the student’s overall progress toward completion of the school’s requirements for graduation. Since drops and withdrawals do not contribute towards the GPA, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will not, under most circumstances, pay for a course in which the student is withdrawn for non-attendance. The withdrawal date will be reported to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as the last date of documented attendance in the course. For more information about this, please contact the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, as it is ultimately their policy on how they pay.

Terminating/Cancelling Your Certifications

According to the VA, after a GI Bill® payment has been released to either the student or the school for the certified period of enrollment, the GI Bill® cannot be terminated in order to conserve entitlement. Tuition and fee payments of the Post-9/11 GI Bill are typically made within 1-2 weeks after your tuition and fees are reported to the VA, which occurs after the add/drop deadline for each given sub-term. Monthly Housing Allowance payments for the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and standard payments for students using Chapters 30, 35, and 1606, are released directly to the student the first week of the month following a previous month’s certified period of enrollment. Please note these timeframes are not guaranteed and are beyond the control of Concord University.

If you do not wish to use your GI Bill in a given semester after it has already been processed, you must email Lucinda Gonderman, clearly stating your desire to have your GI Bill® certification terminated for a specific enrollment. After it is confirmed that payment has not been released by the VA, a certifying official will proceed with terminating your certifications. In circumstances where payment has already been released, please note there are exceptions that may allow us to terminate your certifications, outlined below:

* The student drops course(s) in the term.

* The student withdraws from or receives an FN in course(s) in the term (please see the withdrawal policy below for the full ramifications of withdrawing while using veterans benefits).

* The student receives Federal Tuition Assistance for the same course(s).

Students using Chapter 31 VA Veteran Readiness and Employment who wish to have their certifications terminated will need to have their VA Counselor contact Concord University directly.


Since withdrawals do not contribute toward your GPA, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will not, under most circumstances, continue to pay for a withdrawn course. If you are unable to continue in the course due to Mitigating Circumstances, you may qualify to have your course covered by your benefits up to the withdrawal date. The withdrawal date, in accordance with federal guidelines, is recognized as the date the student notifies Concord University of the intent to withdraw, either in writing or orally. To learn more about Concord University’s Withdrawal Policy, please visit the

When a student withdraws from a course, Concord University must submit an adjustment of enrollment to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Because the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will not continue to pay for the course, debt may be created on the school by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Concord University will pay back any required debts with the VA, which may result in you owing a debt to Concord University. Typically, the only documentation that Concord University may require for withdrawals is for Military Withdrawal requests. If the Office of Veteran Services is notified that a student has been approved for one of these withdrawals, a School Certifying Official will make an update to your certification indicating the Mitigating Circumstances that led to the withdrawal. All other requests or documentation for Mitigating Circumstances, including for medical reasons, should be submitted directly to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has an F.A.Q. that may provide further clarification.

Credit for Military Experience
Concord University accepts credit for military service. All veteran students and potential veteran students should request their Joint Services Transcript (JST) be sent to Concord University. You can create a JST account and make that request HERE.
Resources for Veterans & Families

Below are online resources for Veterans.  Please notify us if you have suggestions, corrections, updates, etc.


Phone Number(s)

Veterans Crisis Help Line 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1 to confidentially speak with a trained, caring VA responder and get connected to services that can make a difference.
West Virginia Department of Veterans Assistance 304-425-5194 for Princeton office
Financial Aid Guide for Military and Veterans See Link for Contact Information 
The College Guide for Service Members and Veterans See Link for Contact Information 
Job and Career Network Resources for our Veterans Veterans Advantage Jobs and Career Network is supported by vet-friendly companies who are looking to fill positions with former members of our military. New positions are posted daily, nationwide.
VA Mortgage Loan Document Checklist This checklist is so you can be prepared for the rest of the VA loan process.
VA Home Loan Calculator Use this calculator to help estimate the monthly payments on a VA home loan.
Moving Companies Offering Military Discounts To help you streamline your search for moving help, we compiled a list of moving companies that offer discounts and deals for military members (with proof of service or a veteran ID)—so you don’t have to go far to find moving companies that honor the sacrifices you and your family make.
Family Services and Resources Near You A list of resources helping Veterans in need.
Military Buddy Finder | With our tool, you can have instant access to 1 billion public records in the United States. Rely on us to ensure you know how to find old Army buddies, as well as those in the Air Force, Marines, Navy and Coast Guard.
Military Discounts Offered by Stores, Services, and Online Sites 2019 veterans and military discount list of hundreds of companies that offer military discounts to service members, retired military, veterans, spouses and their families.
Veteran Healthcare Resources A list of healthcare resources for Veterans.
7 Medicare Facts Every Veteran Should Know Medicare covers veterans in the same way as it covers most other Medicare beneficiaries. But there are a few things that veterans of the armed forces should know about Medicare.
Mental Health Resources for our Veterans Families Mental Health First Aid is a valuable resource that can make a difference in the lives of the more than 22 million veterans, their families, and the communities they live in.
A Guide for Veterans on Creating a Peaceful At-Home Atmosphere After Returning Home In this guide, we’ll talk about some of the most common challenges veterans face upon return and what you can do to ease them.
What Veterans Should Know About Sleep An overview of common sleep problems many Veterans face.
Alcoholism in Veterans Current and former military face an array of challenges – unpredictable deployments, the risk of injury and being away from home. Unfortunately, alcohol is sometimes used as a coping mechanism during these difficult times.
Alcohol and PTSD Addiction to alcohol and PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) are very commonly present together as those who have experienced trauma often turn to alcohol to numb their pain.
Substance Abuse Resources for Veterans Information on how to help veterans dealing with PTSD and substance abuse.
Detox Local: Veterans Addiction & Alcoholism Guide The United States is in the middle of a drug crisis, one of the most affected groups are our veterans. Veteran substance abuse and alcoholism rates continues to be a growing problem throughout the country. Military members from all branches are returning from deployment suffering from a variety of physical/mental health problems and disabilities due to what had happened while they were deployed. This has caused substance abuse and alcohol abuse disorder rates among veterans to become more prevalent.
VA Cares Various resources to help Veterans transition back home and into meaningful careers.
CHAMPVA Benefits Are you the spouse or surviving spouse of—or a child of—a Veteran with disabilities or a Veteran who has died? If you don’t qualify for TRICARE (the Department of Defense’s health care program for active-duty and retired service members and their families), you may be able to get health insurance through the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs (CHAMPVA).
SALUTE National Veterans Honor Society
SALUTE Veterans NHS was established at Colorado State University, and currently has over 330 colleges as active chapters encompassing over 17,000 student veterans!
By applying through the Concord Chapter, students receive membership into the only academic military national honor society, along with the local benefits that your Chapter offers.
A major focus of SALUTE is to assist in shifting the narrative around veterans in this country that depicts them as broken or “less than” based on their service – to the narrative that we support, and promote as highlighting the significant value of veterans, with SALUTE members as the highest achieving veterans in the academic landscape. 

Please see Dr. Williams or Mrs. Gonderman for more information.
Student Veterans Advocates


Makayla Kelly

Makayla is a Secondary Education Major English 5-Adult from Princeton, WV who aspires to be a middle school English teacher one day. She also currently studying to become an ordained minister and hopes to be in ministry as well. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, reading, and visiting coffee shops.


Michael Shrader

"I enlisted in the military when I was 18, in 2013. I am currently 24. Although I am still young, I have spent most of my adult life serving in the military. I was stationed in South Korea and Fort Hood, Texas. I left active duty military in 2017 to pursue a college education. After a while, I began to miss serving, so I enlisted in the Army Reserves. Here at Concord, I am studying Business Administration and am one of the Student Veteran Advocates. I hope to be a teacher one day and become more involved with Veteran oriented help groups because even though I have served, I have only given a little bit of my time for this country, but some have given more than just their time."
The Veterans Lounge

Stop by for a coffee, or just relax in between classes.

The Veteran Student Lounge located in the Rahall Building (across from room the Academic Success Center) gives you the opportunity to study at one of our computers, sink into one of our couches, drink a tall cup of coffee, and meet other veteran students here at Concord University. It is equipped with comfortable furniture, computers, CAC reader, television and other amenities. You can also find the Veteran Advocate’s office inside the lounge.

Veterans Lounge 1Veterans Lounge 2Veterans Lounge 3
                                Veterans Lounge 4

The Yellow Ribbon Program

The Yellow Ribbon GI Education Enhancement Program (Yellow Ribbon Program) is a provision of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008. This program allows institutions of higher learning (degree granting institutions) in the United States to voluntarily enter into an agreement with VA to fund tuition expenses that exceed either the annual maximum cap for private institutions or the resident tuition and fees for a public institution. The institution can contribute up to 50% of those expenses and VA will match the same amount as the institution.

Only Veterans entitled to the maximum benefit rate, as determined by service requirements, or their designated transferees may receive this funding. Active duty Service members and their spouses are not eligible for this program. Child transferees of active duty Service members may be eligible if the Service member is qualified at the 100 percent rate.

Concord University is proud to be a participant of the Yellow Ribbon program and takes great pride in helping our veterans in any way possible.

Yellow Ribbon Program

Veteran's Upward Bound
Concord Veterans Upward Bound

What do we offer?

Veterans Upward Bound is a program that helps veterans receive basic instruction in pre-college or GED courses to help prepare them for college, technical, or vocational school enrollment, GED exam and career development.  Classes are offered online and in person at various locations in WV and VA. We offer college preparation, college admissions assistance, peer tutoring and mentoring. Academic, career and personal advising are offered, as well as financial aid awareness and referrals to community veterans services. Visits to colleges and universities, as well as special visits to sites such as museums and theaters may be offered as well.

How much does it cost me?

Our services are free except for your time, commitment and a little hard work! The Veterans Upward Bound program is funded by a grant from the United States Department of Education under Title IV.

You may also earn stipends for satisfactory participation and attendance.

Who is eligible?

If you concluded your service in the Armed Forces in good standing; and either you receive a modest income and/or neither of your parents attained a bachelor’s degree; and you have the desire to improve your life through higher education, you are invited to receive the benefits of Veterans Upward Bound.

Visit our Webpage for more information!
Check out our Facebook!

Contact Us Today!

P.O. Box 1000, Campus Box D-144
Athens, WV 24712
Phone: 304-384-5278

Fax: 304-384-5186​
8:00 A.M to 4:00 P.M., Monday through Friday

Kristen Williams, Program Director

Concord Veterans Upward Bound
Steven Kennedy, Veterans Upward Bound-Academic Advisor


Our Staff

Kelly, Sophia
Sophia Kelly
Program Assistant
(304) 384-5278
Nealen, Kesha
Kesha Nealen
Program Coordinator- Center of Excellence for Veteran Student Success
(304) 384-5277
Gonderman, Lucinda
Lucinda Gonderman
Program Specialist / VA School Certifying Official
Williams, George
George Williams
Assistant Professor of English / Veterans Advocate
Concord University Veterans

Stay Connected with Concord University Veterans




Lucinda Gonderman
Veteran Certifying Official


Dr. George Williams
Veteran Advocate



An Approved Chapter of Student Veterans of America

Proud member of AVECO