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New tuition benefit for dependents of deceased, disabled Oregon veterans launched today at public universities

Contact:
Di Saunders – Office: 503-725-5714; Cell: 971-219-6869
Source: Lisa Zavala, Office: 503-373-7490 (in Salem; dial 1 first if calling from Portland)

New provision passed in the 2008 Supplementary Legislative Session

PORTLAND, March 31, 2008 – The Oregon University System wants to ensure that all eligible dependents of veterans are aware of a new tuition benefit that begins today, Spring Term 2008, and which was approved by the Oregon Legislature in the February 2008 Supplemental Session. The benefit provides a full tuition waiver for a bachelor’s or master’s degree at an OUS institution for a child or spouse of a member of the United States Armed Forces who either died in active duty, became 100% disabled in connection with military service, or died as a result of a disability sustained in active duty after September 11, 2001.

Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski said, “Helping the surviving children and spouses of soldiers attend one of our public universities without the worry of tuition costs is an important benefit that lets Oregonians say, ‘thank you’ to the men and women who gave their lives or their physical well being serving our state and nation, and to acknowledge the sacrifices also made by their families.”

A key supporter of Senate Bill 1066 which authorized the tuition benefit, Senator Vicki Walker (D-Eugene) said, "I am pleased our committee's hard work could deliver on this extraordinary educational opportunity for the families of Oregon's veterans."

Eligible children for the tuition waiver – including adopted or step children – must be 23 years old or younger at the time of application, be admitted to a bachelor’s or master’s degree program at an OUS campus, and must meet Oregon residency requirements. Eligible spouses must be un-remarried. Some programs may be excluded from the benefit such as certificate programs, additional undergraduate degrees, and distance education classes, among others. A waiver form, called the OUS Veterans’ Dependent Tuition Waiver Application, needs to be submitted to the Veterans Affairs Clerk at the applicable campus no later than 14 days before the applying term, with exceptions made on a case by case basis.

Chancellor of OUS, George Pernsteiner said, “All of Oregon’s public universities are proud to be able to offer this type of benefit to the Oregon families who have done so much for the state and this country. There is no way to compensate for the sacrifices made by these soldiers, but this is at least one acknowledgement we can make to offer our respect and gratitude for their service.”

Additional information on the tuition waiver as well as the application form can be found on the home page of the OUS website under “Featured Documents” at www.ous.edu, and is available at any of the seven OUS institutions: Eastern Oregon University (La Grande); Oregon Institute of Technology (Klamath Falls); Oregon State University (Corvallis); Portland State University (Portland); Southern Oregon University (Ashland); University of Oregon (Eugene); and Western Oregon University (Monmouth).


Oregon University System comprises seven distinguished public universities, reaching more than one million people each year through on-campus classes, statewide public services and lifelong learning. For additional information, go to www.ous.edu

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