Veteran Students and GI Bill Recipients

Veterans, the UCSC Study Abroad office would like to thank you for your service and congratulate you on continuing your pursuit of education. We support your journey into intercultural education. 

Using Your VA Benefits to Cover Study Away Costs 

Many veterans are able to use their benefits to help fund their study away experience. If you are interested in using your VA benefits to assist in payment of a study abroad program, you must plan ahead. You will need to work closely with UCSC Study Abroad and the Office of the Registrar to find a program that fits the requirements of the VA and your study abroad goals. All UC Study Abroad programs should meet the GI Bill benefit requirements.  Email to help you in determining what, if any, the VA can cover.

If you are planning to use your Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits to assist in payment of your overseas program, please plan ahead.

With questions specific to your VA benefits, email

For academic planning and general veteran support, contact the Veteran Office within STARS

Gilman McCain Scholarship

The Gilman-McCain Scholarship is offered through the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State. It offers awards of $5,000 for child dependents of active duty service members to study or intern abroad.  For more information and to apply, visit their website here.


Q: Can I use my GI Bill education benefits while studying abroad? 

A: For all GI Bill benefits, you can use your VA benefits as long as the courses count toward your degree. There are a few extra steps involved. You will need a letter and signature from your college academic adviser approving that your classes will be transferable to your UCSC transcript.

For Post 9/11 GI Bill recipients, you must make sure the program meets graduation requirements.

Q: I am a dependent of a veteran and have the Cal Vet fee waiver. Can I use it to study abroad?

A: You can only use the Cal Vet waiver for study abroad if enrolled in UC’s UCEAP. It only qualifies for the UC’s tuition for the program; it does not cover program (travel, excursion, etc.) fees. After approval for UCEAP, you will need to submit a copy of your Cal Vet eligibility letter to your UCEAP Finance Accountant in the UCEAP Systemwide office in Santa Barbara. They will assess charges and apply the fee waiver.

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