United States Department of Defense (DoD) policy requires that educational institutions wishing to participate in the DoD Tuition Assistance (TA) Program sign a Voluntary Education Partnership Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in order to receive TA funds. Recently, the DoD revised the MOU, requiring, among other things, that institutions offer Title IV federal financial aid (FFA) in order to continue participating in the DoD’s TA program.
After careful consideration, California Southern University has chosen not to offer Title IV FFA and, as a result, will be unable to accept TA funds after September 5, 2014. This decision reflects the university’s long-standing belief is that FFA too often subjects students to unmanageable debt and contributes significantly to the rising cost of education. In addition, participation in FFA would require CalSouthern to greatly reduce the flexibility offered by the university’s 100-percent online learning format. This flexibility is a hallmark of CalSouthern’s learning methodology, and its benefits are relied upon heavily by the university’s military learners and veterans, as well as the rest of its student body.
CalSouthern will continue to offer discounted tuition to military service members and veterans, as well as spouses and immediate dependents of active-duty service members, and will remain approved to accept GI Bill and other education benefits offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs. In order to minimize the impact of the new DoD requirements on its military learners, CalSouthern also has implemented a customized monthly payment plan available to those learners who previously utilized TA.
CalSouthern’s military programs administration will work individually with its current and future military learners to determine the best option for each learner as they work toward their academic and professional goals.