Yellow Ribbon Program: Guide for 2022

Have you served time on active military duty? You might be eligible for financial aid for tuition through the Yellow Ribbon Program.

TCM Staff

31st January 2022

If you’ve served in the US Military, you’re eligible for benefits, be it through paid time off, healthcare, or financial aid for school. You can find many scholarships for veterans, and some schools offer adjusted tuition for military personnel and their families. 

The Yellow Ribbon Program is an example of financial aid offered by participating schools and the government to certain individuals who have served in the army. Yellow Ribbon schools are post-secondary institutions that participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program. 

But exactly what is the yellow ribbon program, and who’s eligible for it? Read on to find out more about Yellow Ribbon benefits, how to apply for the Yellow Ribbon Program. 


What is the Yellow Ribbon Program?

Military students can apply for the Post-9/11 GI Bill for financial assistance for tuition, housing, textbooks, and more, provided they meet a few eligibility requirements. However, not all military personnel will have all their expenses covered by the Post 9/11 GI Bill. 

That’s where the Yellow Ribbon Program comes in. If you didn’t receive enough coverage from the Post 9/11 program, you might be eligible for support through the Yellow Ribbon Program. 

The Yellow Ribbon military program offers financial assistance for tuition fees not covered by the Post 9/11 GI Bill. Not every military service member is eligible, however, and not every American college is part of the program. Here are some eligibility requirements:

  • You aren’t currently on active duty (some exceptions after August 2022). 
  • You served at least 3 years(straight or with breaks) on active duty and were honorably discharged.
  • You were honorably discharged but received a Purple Heart on or after September 11, 2001.
  • You served at least 30 days straight on active duty and were released after a service-related injury causing a disability.
  • You’re using benefits transferred by a Veteran parent. 
  • You’re a Fry Scholar


How Does the Yellow Ribbon Program Work?

Participating schools allocate funds to support veterans with their tuition, up to 50%. Then, Veteran Affairs matches the aid given, sometimes cumulatively covering a student’s entire tuition. The money directly goes towards the cost of tuition, making the process easier for veteran students. 

In addition to the above personal requirements, the school you seek tuition assistance for must meet the following criteria:

  • Higher-learning institution
  • Offers the Yellow Ribbon Program
  • Hasn’t reached the maximum amount of Yellow Ribbon Program offers to students
  • Certified your enrollment


Keep in mind though that your Yellow Ribbon allotment might not be identical to a peer. For example, some schools may have a bigger reserve of funds for undergraduate students than for master’s students. 

However, not all schools participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program. Let’s move on to see which US colleges participate in the program. 


Colleges Participating in the Yellow Ribbon Program

Several schools participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program — even online schools! The fastest way to find out if your college participates in the program is by using Veteran Affairs’ Find a Yellow Ribbon School search function. 

Hundreds of schools participate in the program, so you should explore the government website list to learn if your college of interest participants. Some examples of schools in the program are Harvard University, the University of Florida, Stanford University, the University of Southern California, and more. 



The Veterans’ Yellow Ribbon Program is one small way to thank veterans for their service. Meant to supplement the Post 9/11 GI program, the Yellow Ribbon Program makes university education accessible for aspiring students that have served in the army. 
The Yellow Ribbon Program military benefits are incredible to support tuition, but they aren’t the only means out there. If you’re looking to secure funds through the Yellow Ribbon, scholarships, or any other means of aid, consider starting with the College Monk’s $1,500 No Essay Scholarship.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • 1.1) How to know whether my school participates in the Yellow Ribbon Program?

    Mostly all colleges usually say beforehand only whether they participate in this program or not. But if you want you can check them in the official website of GI Bill.

  • 2.2) If I participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program this year, will I be considered next year automatically?

    Not necessarily as sometimes you have to reapply for it every year.

  • 3.3) Do I need to attend full time to be in the Yellow Ribbon Program?

    No, to be eligible for the Yellow Ribbon Program you don't need to be a full-time student.

  • 4.4) Can I receive YRP fund for the summer term?

    Yes, but it depends upon your school whether they provide a fund for the summer term or not.

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