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What is 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 the highest public in-state undergraduate tuition rate. The institution can contribute up to 50% of those expenses and VA will match the same amount as the institution.

Who is eligible for the Yellow Ribbon Program?

Only veterans entitled to the maximum benefit rate of 100%, as determined by the service requirements, or their designated transferees may receive Yellow Ribbon benefits from Pacific and the VA. Active-duty service members and their spouses are not eligible for this program.

The general eligibility requirements for the Yellow Ribbon Program include:

  • You served an aggregate period of 36 months in active duty after Sept. 10, 2001
  • You were honorably discharged from active duty for a service-connected disability and you served 30 continuous days after Sept. 10, 2001
  • You are a dependent eligible for Transfer of Entitlement under the Post-9/11 GI Bill® based on the service eligibility criteria listed above

We encourage all veterans to review the eligibility criteria directly from the VA's Yellow Ribbon Program website.

What are Pacific's Yellow Ribbon eligibility requirements and benefits?

Only undergraduate/graduate students seeking their first degree are eligible to participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program at Pacific, if you are seeking a second undergraduate/graduate degree you will not be eligible to participate in the Yellow Ribbon program.

  • This award will be offered to a maximum of fifty eligible undergraduate veterans and thirty eligible graduate veterans who are seeking approved Yellow Ribbon degrees at Pacific
    • In the graduate school we offer Yellow Ribbon spots in the School of Health Sciences, 10 spots in the School of Education, 10 in the School of Engineering, 5 in the School of Business and 5 in College of the Pacific
  • They will receive up to 50% of the unmet established charges per academic year with a matching contribution from the VA, to result in 100% of tuition and fees being covered
  • The actual amount will vary based on number of units taken and charged for each term but will generally range from $10,000 to $12,000 for full-time, full academic year students
  • In the graduate school we offer 10 Yellow Ribbon spots in the School of Education, 10 in the School of Engineering, 5 in the School of Business and 5 in College of the Pacific

How will Pacific select Yellow Ribbon Program benefit recipients?

Students will be selected for the Yellow Ribbon Program award is based on a first-come, first-served basis, determined by the date and time your application is received by the VA representative. Once the maximum awards available have been offered, no additional Yellow Ribbon Program awards will be offered by Pacific.

The University strongly encourages all applicants for the Yellow Ribbon Program to apply for federal and state assistance. For more information on the Financial Aid Application process, please refer to the University's Financial Aid website.

How do I apply for Yellow Ribbon Benefits under the Post-9/11 GI Bill®?

The Department of Veterans Affairs is now processing applications for the Post-9/11 GI Bill®. Interested students should complete and submit the application form online at

To complete an application online, you will need Pacific's VA Code number: 3-1-8911-05.

You will receive written notification explaining the VA's decision regarding your eligibility for the Post-9/11 GI Bill® and the Yellow Ribbon program. If you are eligible, you will receive a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) that specifies you are "potentially eligible for the Yellow Ribbon Program." The final funding decision, however, will be made by Pacific.

For questions regarding COE, contact the veteran's administration at 1-888-GIBILL1 (442-4551) to speak with an Education Case Manager.

Once you receive your COE and are deemed potentially eligible for the Yellow Ribbon Program, complete Pacific's Yellow Ribbon Application and submit your COE along with your application to Pacific's Office of the Registrar. Upon receipt of your COE, the Office of the Registrar will verify your eligibility to participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program.

How will I know if I have received the Yellow Ribbon Program benefit from Pacific?

If you receive a Yellow Ribbon award, it will be coordinated into your financial aid award in accordance with all federal, state and institutional rules and regulations. You will be notified of the award by email, from Pacific's certifying official.

How is this benefit applied to my student account?

The Pacific portion of your Yellow Ribbon award will credit to your account once you meet all enrollment and disbursement requirements.

The VA match of your Yellow Ribbon award will issue payment directly to the University on your behalf after your enrollment certification is processed by the VA.

Will my Yellow Ribbon Award be renewed?

University of the Pacific will offer you a Yellow Ribbon Program award as long as the following apply:

  • Pacific continues to participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program*
  • You remain in good academic and conduct standing as defined in the University Catalog and Handbook
  • You have remaining entitlement as defined by the VA

*The University of the Pacific's participation in the Yellow Ribbon program is voluntary. Pacific may choose not to participate or change the contribution amount offered in future years.

For Additional Information

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