Liberty University appreciates your service and the sacrifices you make to secure our freedom. When you are faced with a deployment or unexpected duty, we have processes in place to ensure your academic progress is not harmed. If you find that your duty may have an impact on your academic progress, you must contact us as soon as possible so that we may help you through this transition.
Below we have outlined the steps you need to take when you are notified of an upcoming deployment.
Step One: Prepare
Here are a few tips we believe are important to effectively balance your service and educational goals. These are not required, but may be helpful if you need a trusted individual to assist you in managing your education while you are away.
Complete FERPA Release Form
- Using Liberty University’s FERPA PIN system, a student may grant permission to release some or all private information to persons that he or she designates. The FERPA PIN can be accessed through the student’s ASIST account. Go to the General Information tab on ASIST, and then select the FERPA Personal Identification Number menu option. A student may grant permission to release some, or all, private information to persons they designate in their ASIST account. A designated point of contact must have the FERPA PIN and their name on the student’s account to access their information. A FERPA can be used for an individual to discuss your student account, but a Power of Attorney is required to allow someone else to add/drop courses and sign any documents in your place.
Grant Power of Attorney (POA)
- A POA is needed so someone else may act on your behalf when you are away on military orders with limited or no internet and phone access.
- There are different kinds of Power of Attorney (POA):
- A Special POA is just that — it is used for specific acts that you want done. Special POAs can be good for a short period of time but not longer than a year.
- A General POA allows the person to act as if they were you. They can do everything that you can do. It is important that you give a General POA to someone you completely trust.
- It is very hard to revoke a POA once you have given a person the power. Provide the original POA to the person you are giving the power to, and keep a copy for your records.
- See your local military Legal Assistance Office or Judge Advocate General (JAG), for preparation and execution of a POA.
Make copies of all applicable Education & Military documents
Give them to a person you trust (i.e. the person you gave POA/FERPA).
- DFAS only retains Leave and Earnings Statement (LES) records for 1 year. LES documents from prior years may be required for Financial Aid Verification.
- Keep at least 5 years of W-2s in case you are audited by the IRS or if these records are needed for Financial Aid Verification.
- Military Orders
- Keep a copy of your current orders and provide a copy to a person you trust (i.e. the person you gave POA/FERPA).
Step Two: Contact your professor(s)
If you are enrolled in courses, you should let your professor(s) know about your situation as soon as possible. Our professors are aware of the issues that face military students and, although it is not guaranteed, they can often work with you by giving extensions or assigning work so you can complete the course while fulfilling your military obligation.*
*Reviewed on a case-by-case basis depending on the course, nature of required coursework, and time requirements for assignments.
Step Three: Review your options
Review your Course Schedule for the semester (or upcoming semester*) and identify any scheduling conflicts. If you will be in class during the time you are going to be deployed, you may have the following options:
- Drop the course: Online students that have not yet started the course or completed any coursework, and residential students that are still within the add/drop period, may be able to drop the course without any tuition being charged.
- Complete the course: If you have already started the course and your professor is able to work with you to overcome any challenges related to your deployment, you may stay enrolled and complete the course.
- Withdraw from the course: If you have already started the course, but you do not feel you will be able to successfully complete the course due to your deployment, you may consider withdrawing. Please see Military Withdrawals for more information on withdrawing and the process for requesting a military withdrawal.
* Special Note: Residential students that are able to complete the current semester but will not be able to attend the following semester due to deployment will need to contact Professional Advising before deploying.
Step Four: Follow up on your benefits
If changes to your enrollments are necessary, any military benefits you are using may need to be adjusted.
- If you are utilizing military Tuition Assistance, please contact your local Education Office and notify them of your change in enrollment. Many Education Offices will need to get a copy of your orders or require other documents in order to avoid the recoupment of your Tuition Assistance funds.
- If you are utilizing GI Bill benefits, we will report your change in enrollment status to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for you. You will receive correspondence directly from the VA regarding the effect your change in status may have on your GI Bill benefits.
Once you are back from your deployment and ready to resume your program, you will need to contact us so we can walk you through the process of being readmitted to your program. Online students and residential graduate students should contact the Office of Military Affairs directly. Residential undergraduate students should contact the Professional Advisor in the College of Applied Studies and Academic Success listed below.
The Office of Military Affairs is the contact for:
Online undergraduate and graduate
Contact us by phone or email:
- (855) 355-4947 (toll-free)
- (434) 592-5990 (direct/overseas)
The Professional Advisor is the contact for:
Contact Professional Advising:
- (434) 592-4202
- Location and Hours: Professional Advising
Step Two: Application/Reinstatement
Next, you will need to submit a new application online or by contacting an Admissions Counselor. Once you have been reaccepted into a new program you will need to submit documentation to Military Affairs verifying that your broken enrollment was due to your military deployment. Once we have confirmed your broken enrollment was due to deployment your application will be processed as reinstatement under your original degree plan.
Online students may call (800) 424-9595 to reapply
Residential students may call (800) 543-5317 to reapply
All supporting documentation may be emailed to email@example.com
Residential undergraduate students who are returning from military duty after breaking enrollment may work with the Professional Advisor listed in Step 1 to complete a Financial Aid Scholarship Appeal form to request that previous aid be reapplied to the new semester.
Step Three: Get connected
We are here to assist you with resuming your education and using your military benefits. Please contact our office to see if any updated documentation is needed to ensure your benefits are posted to your account without delay. Residential students may visit our Veterans Center military student liaison for in-person assistance.
You may also want to join the Student Veterans Association (SVA). The mission of the SVA is to provide fellowship for student veterans, to support new student veterans in coordination with the Office of Military Affairs, and to create veteran-oriented Christian service opportunities. Visit Liberty.edu/SVA or email firstname.lastname@example.org to get connected.
*GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.