Student Affairs

Veteran Services

Green River College is committed to the success of their student veterans and their families. We strive to be the most veteran-supportive campus in the United States. This is because we realize that these men and women bring a tremendous amount of life experience and diversity to our campus. Our lives have been greatly enhanced by their personal sacrifices and we are humbled when they choose our community to return to. 

Please feel free to use this site to find important information about veteran-related resources and services. If you feel that we are missing something please feel free to let us know!

Thank you for choosing Green River College and WELCOME to our campus! It is our honor to serve you!

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Latest News

January 2, 2015- Veteran's compensation benefits updated for 2015

The Department of Veterans Affairs recently updated their compensation benefits rate tables. The updates took effect on 12/1/2014 and are published online for public viewing. The updated rates can be viewed here and information about disability compensation benefits can be found here

January 16, 2015- Green River student selected to 'Warpaint' finals

The Student Veterans of America (SVA), a national non-profit organization started by student veterans, recently announced the top forty finalists for their first-ever 'Warpaint' art competition. Amongst those finalists is Tony Bunyan, a student veteran at Green River College. Tony's work will be heading to Washington D.C. to be featured in an exhibit there and then will travel across the country for several months after that. Congratulations Tony for all of your hard work and determination!

Upcoming Events

January 19, 2015- Martin Luther King Jr. Day (campus closed)

All Green River College campuses are closed for the day in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

January 20, 2015- Green River Student Veterans meeting

Veterans Resource Center (Lindbloom Center room 130)

12:00-1:00

The Green River Student Veterans association will be meeting at noon in the Veterans Resource Center (Lindbloom Center, room 130). All veterans- students, staff, and faculty- are encouraged to attend and participate in the hour long discussion. 

January 21 & 28, 2015- Veterans Information Session

11:00-12:00 and 4:00-5:00 (both days)
Veterans Resource Center (Lindbloom Center room 130)

Are you new to Green River? Interested in learning more about VA education benefits? Come on out and join us for our weekly veterans information session. Each of our information sessions provides you with an overview of your VA education benefits and a chance to have an interactive discussion about being a student veteran at Green River College. You'll be able to learn about resources available to you and meet some other student veterans. Email us to sign up or to learn more details.  

February 6, 2015- Free Veterans Pizza Lunch

12:00-1:00
Glacier Room (Lindbloom Center)

Each month our partners at VFW Post 1741 sponsor a free pizza lunch for veterans at Green River College. Students, staff, faculty, and community members are all encouraged to break bread and connect with others who have served. Many of the events feature keynote speakers on veteran-related topics. Please join us for this great event! 

February 9, 2015- Priority registration begins

Green River College offers all veterans priority registration. This allows you to get into the classes before they fill up (especially important for those on VA education benefits). For current students priority registration starts on February 9th. For new or incoming students priority registration will begin February 23rd. Please ensure that Enrollment Services has a copy of your DD-214 so that you will be able to take advantage of our veteran's priority registration. 

Education Benefits

All of the information within this tab has been compiled and condensed in order to provide you with specific steps and/or requirements relating to VA education benefits. While it may not contain everything that you need to know, it should give you enough information to get you started. 

Future Students

Checklist for Getting Started:

  • Apply for VA education benefits

You want to make sure that you apply for your VA education benefits as soon as possible. The VA system is very large and it can take some time for your paperwork to be processed. Applying well in advance will help you minimize unexpected delays. Keep in mind that you do not have to choose your program of study or the college/university that you're interested in at this point.

  • Explore your Academic Options

You have a lot of options when considering which education program you want to pursue. Students can major in anything from Anthropology to Zoology and everything in between. Take some time to explore your interests and identify a career that matches those interests. The Washington Occupational Information System (WOIS) has some great career interest surveys that can help you get started. Once you've narrowed it down a bit you'll be ready to look at different institutions of higher education. 

  • Choose a School and Program of Study

Once you know what you want to do you'll want to pick the school and program of study that best matches your interests and other considerations (location, etc.). Figure out what their entry requirements are and make sure you select a backup school just in case. Many students find that community colleges are easy ways to transition into higher education and begin preparing for larger institutions. Keep in mind that not all schools and programs of study are approved for VA education benefits. You'll want to double check to see if your choices are approved by the VA before you make your final decision.

  • Apply for Admissions

Once you know which school you want to attend you'll want to apply for admissions. During this process you will give the institution information about who you are, what your goals are, and what courses you might have previously taken. Make sure you take your placement exams. You will also select a program of study. This is required by the VA, as they will only pay for courses that are required by the program you select. 

**The rest of the steps listed are specific to Green River College (GRCC)**

  • Receive your Student ID Number & Email Address

After you've applied for admission Enrollment Services will send you your student identification number and GRCC email address. This email address is how staff and faculty will get a hold of you while you are attending school. Once you receive these two pieces you'll need to notify the Veteran Services Office that you are new to Green River and would like to receive information about the Veterans Information Session. Please make sure to include your full name, student id. number, and which VA education benefit you would like to use. Our office will then email you information about the orientation. 

  • Send all Prior Education & Military Transcripts to Enrollment Services

One of the most important things you must do is send all prior education and military transcripts to Enrollment Services to be evaluated. This information helps them determine how much credit they can award you for all of your prior education and/or life-experience.  Keep in mind that all transcripts must be sealed and official. If you have attended another college you can request the transcripts directly from that institution. Military transcripts can be ordered through Joint Services Transcripts (Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, and Navy) or Air University (Air Force). Once you have requested these transcripts you must also fill out and turn in a transcript evaluation request to Enrollment Services. 

  • Sign up for a Student Orientation, Advising & Registration (SOAR) Session

All new students must attend a SOAR session. These sessions are given by the Career and Advising Center and help students get familiar with the systems that we have in place at Green River. In this session you will learn how to register for classes, set academic goals, as well as learn when and where you can meet with an academic advisor. 

  • Fill out a Quarterly Enrollment Request (QER) 

Students who would like to use VA education benefits must fill out a QER and have it verified by an academic advisor every quarter. This form helps us reduce the amount of overpayment situations that are encountered; resulting in greater confidence for our students. 

  • Attend Class and Complete the Attendance Verification Form 

In order to be certified for your VA education benefits we need you to complete a quarterly attendance verification form and turn it in the first week of school. This will help us to be able to process your paperwork in a timely manner. This process may be different for chapters 30, 1606, and 1607. Don't worry, we'll walk you through it!

  • Regularly Monitor your Green River Email

Your @mail.grcc.edu email address is how the college notifies you about events, activities, updates, and alerts. Make sure that you're checking it regularly, at least two times per week, so that you don't miss important information and/or deadlines. 

Current Students

  • Requesting Certification...

Students collecting VA education benefits are required to have their courses certified each quarter. This is because the VA will only pay for courses that are required in the chosen program of study (they want you to be successful in obtaining a degree and/or certificate). In order to help us process your information and certify your courses in a timely manner we ask that you:

1. Check your registration appointment/access time

*Student veterans at Green River are granted priority registration. Make sure to turn in a copy of your DD-214 to Enrollment Services so that you're eligible. 

2. Register for classes

*Steps 3 to 8 must be completed within four days of you registering.

3. Print a copy of your course schedule

4. Print a copy of your updated degree audit

*Make sure to print the expanded version.

5. Print a quarterly enrollment (QER) form

6. Print a QER Checklist

7. Complete the QER form and QER checklist

8. Turn in the completed QER packet (QER checklist, QER form, course schedule, degree audit) to the Career and Advising Center

*You may want to ask to see someone for a registration appointment if you have additional questions. Keep in mind that the completed QER packet is due within four days of you registering. 

9. Regularly check your student email account

*The college will notify you via student email if there are any issues with your registration, etc. 

  • Verifying my Attendance...

Chapters 30, 1606, and 1607: Complete monthly, online or by calling 1-877-823-2378.

Chapters 33 and 33T: Complete the attendance verification form and turn in to the Veteran Services Office at the beginning of each quarter. 

Chapter 35: You do not need to verify your attendance. 

  • Changing my Program of Study...

Chapters 30, 33, 33T, 1606, and 1607: Print this change of program form, complete as much as possible, and then turn it in to the Veteran Services Office. 

Chapter 35: Print this change of program form, complete as much as possible, and then turn it in to the Veteran Services Office. 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the Veterans Information Session?

One of the most common complaints that we've heard is that the VA policies and procedures are difficult to understand. We've tried to simplify things for you. At the Veterans Information Session we will explain what the VA will and will not cover, as well as the procedures you must follow when using VA education benefits.  

  • Where can I find the new student orientation?

You can learn about the new student orientation at the Veterans Information Session. These information sessions are hosted most Wednesdays at 11:00 am and/or 4:00 pm. Please check the upcoming events tab to see when the new few are scheduled.  

  • Do I need to have my previous taken courses evaluated?

Yes! All student collecting VA education benefits are required to transfer in all of their previously taken courses, as well as their military transcripts. This is because the VA wants to ensure that they pay for only the classes you need in order to graduate. It may mean that you will have to take less courses, because you may have credit and/or experience that will satisfy some of the program requirements. Remember, you must have your transcripts turned in no later than the end of the second quarter you are here. Please visit the Future Students tab for more detailed instructions. 

  • What academic standards must I maintain?

The VA requires that you maintain a quarterly GPA of 2.0 or above. If you fail to maintain this standard for one quarter you will be placed in academic probation status. You will have to pull your grades up above a 2.0 the next quarter to be removed from this status. If you fail to maintain the 2.0 standard for a second quarter in a row you will be placed in academic termination status. This means that you will have to pay for one full quarter out of pocket and maintain a 2.0 or above in order to have your benefits restored. This term must be at least 3/4 time status. There is a one-time waiver that students may apply for if there are circumstances that impacted your ability to earn satisfactory academic progress. See the Veteran Services Office for more details. In addition to maintaining a 2.0 GPA you must also earn all credits that you attempt. If you withdraw from a class you may end up owing the VA an overpayment and be placed in probation/termination status.

Resources

Below are some resources that you may find useful. If you see something that could benefit other veterans, but is not listed please feel free to bring it to our attention. 

Federal Resources

American Lake VA Hospital

9600 Veterans Way, Tacoma, WA

253-582-8440 or 800-329-8387

Federal Way Vet Center

32020 32nd Avenue S, Suite 110, Federal Way, WA

253-838-3090

Federal Benefits Guide for Veterans, Dependents and Survivors

This guide is an online version of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) publication. It is a comprehensive guide to all VA benefits that veterans and their families are entitled to. Some of the more notable chapters include: healthcare benefits, service connected disabilities, education and training, home loan guarantee.

E-Benefits

The VA has shifted many of their processes and applications online. Visit this site to apply for a wide variety of their programs and/or manage your personal information online. 

Federal Employment

Federal agencies grant veterans preference points during the hiring process. Learn more about that process, as well as find current opportunities here. 

Disability Compensation
The disability compensation process can be difficult to navigate and it helps to have current, up-to-date information. This site provides some general guidelines about the compensation claim process.

Make sure you visit the local resources tab to find a local Veteran Service Officer (VSO) to help you navigate the process! 

Invisible Wounds

Post-Traumatic Stress

Traumatic Brain Injury

Military Sexual Trauma

State Resources

Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs

1102 Quince Street S.E., Olympia, WA

360-725-2200 or 1-800-562-0132

Counseling Services

Washington State provides free counseling services to qualifying veterans and their families. Visit the WDVA website for more information and a list of providers near you. 

State Employment

Washington State provides veterans preference for state employment opportunities. 

Free and Reduced Rate Passes

Many veterans and disabled veterans are eligible to receive reduced and/or free rate passes for various services in Washington. Some of these include: fishing and hunting licenses, camping in state parks, ferry rides.

Emergency Funding

Several state-wide grant opportunities exist for veterans who may be in financial need. These programs are operated by the Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs (WDVA). 

County Resources

King County Veterans and Human Services Levy

King County is one of the first counties in the nation to pass a voter-backed veterans levy. The levy provides for social services and programs aimed at reducing veteran homelessness, criminal justice system involvement, and increasing self-sufficiency by means of employment. 

King County Veterans Program

Local Resources

Veteran Service Officers

VFW Post 1741

John Ely and Roger Flygare

253-640-1111 or vfw1741@gmail.com

Veterans Emergency Transitions (VET) Fund

The Green River College has created an emergency transitions fund for veterans in order to help with unexpected financial hardships for student veterans. If you or someone you know is experiencing a financial crisis while they are attending classes please feel free to contact us for a VET Fund application. 


Veteran Scholarships

Green River offers many different veteran scholarships. Please visit the Foundation's webpage for more information about available opportunities and information about upcoming deadlines. 

Jobs/Internships

The following opportunities are currently available by outside agencies, businesses, companies, and institutions. While veterans' preference may be given to qualifying candidates, the positions listed may be open to all candidates regardless of prior military service.  

Fare Enforcement Officer

Organization: Securitas

Location: Bellevue

Closing Date: Continuous

Description: The Fare Enforcement Officer is responsible for inspecting customer fares on the transit system to ensure customers are riding with valid passes. This is accomplished by inspecting tickets and passes, taking enforcement actions when appropriate, and dealing with customers who may potentially become uncooperative.

Requirements: 21 years or older, high school diploma or GED, reliable means of communication, reliable means of transportation, able to pass pre-employment drug screening and background check, effective communication skills (written and verbal English), use of personal computer and standard office productivity software (including word processing and spreadsheet applications), acceptable personal appearance, 2 years prior high-level security or military or law enforcement required.

Point of Contact: Kevin Hoyt, 425-653-1454 

Transit Security Officer

Transit Security Officer

Organization: Securitas Location: Seattle Metro Area and Puget Sound

Closing Date: Continuous

Description: Observes and reports activities and incidents at an assigned client site, providing for the security and safety of client property and personnel. Make periodic patrols to check for irregularities and inspect protection devices and fire control equipment. Preserve order and act to enforce regulation and directives for the site pertaining to personnel, visitors, and premises. 

Requirements: 2 years current military or law enforcement experience or 3 years past military or law enforcement, 21 years or older, US citizenship or resident alien admitted to work in the United States, high school diploma or GED, Valid Washington State Driver's License, ability to pass minimum driving requirements, reliable means of communication, reliable means of transportation, able to pass a pre-employment drug screen and criminal background check, effective communication skills, user of personal computer and standard office productivity software, acceptable personal appearance.

Point of Contact: Kevin Hoyt, 425-653-1454  

Customs & Border Protection Officer

Organization: U.S. Customs and Border...

Location: Nation-wide

Closing Date: Opens on July 1 and will stay open for 2 weeks or until 10,000 applications are received.

Description: CBP Officers detect and prevent terrorist and weapons from entering the United States at seaports, airports, and land border crossings. They enforce U.S. immigration and customs laws while also enforcing the laws for over 40 federal agencies.

Requirements: U.S. Citizenship with Veteran Status. Pass a written exam, interview, background, medical, drug test, and polygraph.

Point of Contact: Jack Ramsey, 206-553-6944 ext. 1929

VA Work Study

Organization: GRCC

Location: Green River College (main campus)

Closing Date: Once position is filled.

Description: The Veteran Services team is looking for qualified students to work as a VA Work Study. This position reports to the School Certifying Official and helps prepare documentation relating to VA education benefits. They will also assist staff in general office duties that provides direct service to student veterans and dependents. Some duties may include: answering and returning phone calls, scheduling appointments, answering general questions, directing students to appropriate resources.

Requirements: The VA Work Study program is a provided for by the Department of Veterans Affairs and requires that all candidates: (1) report to the School Certifying Official, (2) be receiving VA education benefits, (3) be certified for at least enrollment status (6 credits or more for summer, 9 credits or more fall/winter/springs quarter).

Point of Contact: Sandra Mathews, smathews@greenriver.edu 

Hours/Contact

The Veteran Services Office is located upstairs in the Lindbloom Student Center (LC building) near Financial Aid and Counseling Services. 

The Veterans Resource Center is located on the first floor of the LC building in room 130. 

Krystal Austin, Vet Corps Navigator

Krystal is one of our Vet Corps Navigators and is located in our Veterans Resource Center. She assists veterans, and their family members, by connecting them to resources both on and off campus. Please feel free to drop by, say hello, and learn about the available resources. Krystal is proudly serving in the Washington National Guard.  

Office Location: Veterans Resource Center- Lindbloom Center (LC) room 130

Office Hours: Mon. Wed. Fri.= 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, Tues. Thurs. = 11:00 am to 4:00 pm

Phone: 253-833-9111 ext. 2277

Email: kaustin@greenriver.edu 

Steve Thompson, Vet Corps Navigator

Steve is our second Vet Corps Navigator and is also located in our Veterans Resource Center. Steve is here to help all veterans and their family members by connecting them to the resoruces that are available. Steve proudly served over 20 years in the United States Army.

Office Location: Lindbloom Center (LC) room 130

Office Hours: Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 3:00 pm

Phone: 253-833-9111 ext. 2277

Email: sthompson@greenriver.edu

Timm Lovitt, Director of Veteran Services

Timm is the Director of Veteran Services and provides general oversight and strategic direction for the Veteran Services program. He serves in a wide variety of ways on campus and can help students connect to resources and services on-campus and in the community. Timm proudly served 5 years in the Army.

Office Location: Lindbloom Center (LC) room 233

Office Hours: Monday to Friday 6:30 am to 4:00 pm      

Phone: 253-833-9111 ext. 2559

Email: tlovitt@greenriver.edu

Sandra Mathews, Program Specialist 2

Sandra is our School Certifying Official and helps certify all of our VA funded students. She is the face of VA compliance for the institution and works hard to ensure that students are able to make informed decisions about using their VA benefits. Sandra has been a proud member of the Gator community for over 22 years. 

Office Location: Lindbloom Center (LC) room 237

Office Hours: Monday to Thursday 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, Fridays 9:30 am to 4:00 pm

Phone: 253-833-9111 ext. 2465

Email: smathews@greenriver.edu

Manila Mercurio, Program Coordinator

Manila is the program coordinator for Veteran Services and helps students navigate the paperwork that is required for VA education benefits. She also helps provide information to new students about enrolling and taking courses at Green River. Manila proudly served 5 years in the Navy.

Office Location: Lindbloom Center (LC) room 236

Office Hours: Monday to Thursday 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, Fridays 9:30 am to 2:30 pm 

Phone: 253-833-9111 ext. 2466

Email: mmercurio@greenriver.edu