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VA Benefits Information
GI Bill Benefits & OJT/Apprenticeship Programs
- NATIONAL GUARD MEMBERS
- ELIGIBLE DEPENDENTS
- SELECTED RESERVES
Did you know that it is possible to use GI Bill benefits for Apprenticeship Training and On-The-Job Training (OJT)? It is possible to receive a monthly educational benefit check from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for training in an approved Apprenticeship or OJT program.
Registered apprenticeships constitute qualified training for a veteran to receive benefits under Chapter 30, Montgomery GI Bill and Chapter 31, Vocational Rehabilitation (Voc-Rehab). Depending on your branch of service, your survivors may be eligible under Chapter 35, Survivors or Dependents programs. Check with OPI for specifics on these programs. All of these programs pay a monthly stipend directly to the eligible beneficiary.
What is Apprenticeship Training?
Apprenticeship Training is supervised on-the-job training coupled with related technical instruction (usually 144 hours per year). Apprenticeships are normally from one to five years in length. In Wisconsin, all apprenticeships must be registered with the Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards. Examples include: Electrician, Ironworker, Carpenter, Plumber, Fire Fighter, Corrections Officer, and Tool and Die Maker.
There are time limits involved and approval of a program may be back-dated for up to one year for benefit purposes. As a general rule, veterans have 10 years after their separation from service to use their GI Bill Benefit. Chapter 34 GI Bill (Vietnam Era) ended on December 31, 1989; however, some Chapter 34 veterans are eligible for benefits under Chapter 30. Chapter 33 veterans normally have 15 years after separation to use their benefit.
What is On-The-Job Training (OJT)?
OJT is training received while actually performing a job and earning wages. OJT programs must be at least six months up to normally not more than two years in length to qualify. An OJT program differs from an apprenticeship program in that there is not a related technical instruction portion to an OJT program.
How to Begin
- If you do not have a job, or are not currently working in the occupation you want, contact a local Wisconsin Job Center Office. The Veteran Representative should be able to find an employer who may offer the kind of training needed to reach your occupational objective.
- Next, have your employer contact the Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards to determine the necessary steps to get the training program approved. Many, but not all, occupations can be approved.
- Contact the Veterans Affairs Office at 1-888-442-4551 to determine your specific eligibility for educational benefits or your local County Veterans Service Officer.
What is the Amount of a Monthly Benefit Check?
While the participation requirements are the same for all GI Bill programs, the payment amount varies depending on the program you are utilizing. See the Veterans Administration website for up-to-date information on payment amounts
VA Benefit Contacts
Who to Contact For Assistance
Questions on basic eligibility for benefits:
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
National Call Center
Website: National VA information www.gibill.va.gov
Website: Local County Veterans Service Office (CVSO)
Employer/Sponsor questions regarding program approval:
Contact your Apprenticeship Training Representative (ATR)