Residency Requirements

General Hazel Johnson-Brown was a career U.S. Army nurse who later became a professor at Mason, where she taught and mentored many nursing students.
The Legacy of Hazel Johnson-Brown
The Legacy of Hazel Johnson-Brown

General Hazel Johnson-Brown was a career U.S. Army nurse who later became a professor at Mason, where she taught and mentored many nursing students.

Military families sacrifice to serve their country, including frequent moves to go where they're needed. Virginia allows families of active-duty service members to get in-state education benefits even if they don't yet have a legal Virginia residence.

Active-Duty Military Eligibility

If you or your child want to be considered for in-state tuition, notify Mason during the admissions process. You'll need to complete an in-state tuition application. If you don't, the application will be classified as out-of-state. Under federal code, active duty stationed in Virginia and their dependents are eligible for in-state tuition.  Under state code, active duty residing in Virginia are eligible for in-state.  Dependents are eligible if the sponsor is stationed in Virginia or a state contiguous to Virginia and reside in the state.  It is possible to be eligible under both federal and state code.  It's important we classify students under the provision most beneficial. Please ensure you complete the application for in-state tuition.

Find details of the requirements in the pamphlet Comparison of Federal and State Military Provisions published by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (PDF).

Veteran Eligibility

If a veteran lives in Virginia and has been discharged for reasons other than "dishonorable" or with a higher characterization, he or she can get in-state tuition. To qualify, fill out the in-state tuition application when applying.

Out-of-State Tuition Exemption

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Mason complies with Section 702 of the Veteran’s Access, Choice, and Accountability Act (PDF) and the Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe, M.D. Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020 (P.L.116-315)  In tandem, the laws grant in-state tuition to:

  • A veteran who was discharged or released after a minimum of 90 days of military service 
  • An individual entitled to assistance under the Post-911 GI Bill (Chapter 33) due to a relationship with a veteran and lives in Virginia
  • Children or surviving spouses who qualify for the Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship and live in Virginia
  • Anyone using transferred Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits who lives in Virginia; the person making the transfer must be a member of the uniformed service on active duty.
  • Anyone using Chapter 31 benefits and lives in Virginia

For more information, read the Veterans Choice fact sheet (PDF) published by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV).

Determining Eligibility

If you're unsure of your status, contact the Office of Military Services (OMS) at 703-993-1316. You can also check the benefits pages on this site, which might offer some guidance.

You'll also need to submit a Veterans Registration Reporting Form (VRRF) requesting certification of your VA benefits. Indicate on the VRRF that you would like to apply for in-state tuition under the provisions of Section 702. You must provide source documentation in conjunction with the VRRF. These documents include:

  1. Certificate of Eligibility for VA Benefits.
  2. Proof of Residency in Virginia. The residency requirement could be satisfied via off-campus housing within Virginia, on-campus housing, temporary housing, rental or ownership housing, or documented confirmation of a non-contract residence with another individual.

Once your status has been confirmed, a tuition exemption will be applied to the student account for the current semester. This benefit is not automatic; you must apply for it each semester.