The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) needs a sufficient number of workers in this field, so the Health Professional Scholarship Program (HPSP) offers financial aid to students pursuing education or training in a direct or indirect health-care services discipline (Title 38 and Hybrid Title 38 occupations).
The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) needs qualified healthcare workers, but it is difficult to find or keep them. HPSP supports the VHA. Keep reading this blog till the very end because we got you covered with every single detail you need. Scholarships are determined and published for VHA workforce needs.
In FY2023 (October 2022 – September 2023) scholarships will be offered in the following areas:
- Nursing(CNA, LPN, LVN, ADN, BSN, and MSN)
- Nurse Practitioner (NP) Mental Health
- Physician Assistant (PA) (See below)
- Physician Scholarship (MD/DO)
- Medical Laboratory Scientist (MLS) or Clinical Laboratory Scientist (CLS)
- Diagnostic Radiologic Technologist (DRT)
- Social Worker (MSW)
- Psychologist (Doctoral Degree) (See below)
- Psychiatric Mental Health NP (PMHNP) only.
HPSP scholarships awarded to Physician Assistants (PA) trainees will only be awarded to Physician Assistant (PA) trainees who have veteran status. School Psychology degrees are not eligible for this scholarship.
- Tuition and Fees – The Health Professional Scholarship Program HPSP award pays a participant’s school tuition and approved fees through direct payment to the school.
- HPSP assistance includes topping off any existing grants and scholarship to ensure 100% of tuition and required/mandatory fees are paid.
- Required/Mandatory Fees are defined as those fees assessed by the college or university to all students in the academic program for which the scholarship was awarded.
If the fee is optional, the fee is not required by all participants in the plan of study, or if the student at any time can opt out of the fee, they do not qualify for reimbursement.
Stipend: HPSP will pay a monthly stipend directly to the participants. The payment is made for each month a participant is enrolled in coursework, beginning with the first month of the school year. The current stipend amount is $1200 per month.
Book Stipend: HPSP will pay an additional stipend to help cover books, paper, pens, pencils, computers, etc. This stipend is usually paid out annually during the July/August timeframe while under scholarship.
Health Professional Scholarship Program HPSP Eligibility:
These are the eligibility requirements for the Veterans Administration scholarship programs. Application packages that do not confirm the applicant’s eligibility based on these requirements will not be considered for the scholarship programs.
Applicants must be currently enrolled or been accepted for full-time enrollment in an accredited academic program that will qualify for employment in one of the professional fields associated with the scholarship program.
The academic program must be at the educational level required, and the academic program must be located in the United States.
Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) Eligibility:
Applicants must have a Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of at least 3.0.
- Applicants must be citizens of the United States.
- US Citizenship is defined as by birth or naturalization only.
- Those on Green Cards or Resident Alien status are not eligible for VA scholarship programs.
Federal Debt Eligibility:
Applicants must not be delinquent on payment of federal debt. This includes:
- delinquent taxes,
- audit dis-allowances,
- guaranteed or direct student loans,
- Federal Housing Administration (FHA) or VA mortgages, and
- other miscellaneous administrative debts.
Delinquent is defined as 31 days past due on a scheduled payment.
Health Professional Scholarship Program HPSP Application Process:
Application Package Submission
The application process requires the student applicant to complete an online application which includes the submission of these requirements:
- Application (Completed by student applicant)
- Academic Verification (Completed by Dean of Program or equivalent)
Evaluations and Recommendations:
- Required: Academic Faculty
- Required: Either an Employer/Manager or Other
- (VA Employee) Required: Supervisor
- DD214 (current and former service members)
- SF50 (current and former VA employees)
- The VA’s Application Management System (VA AMS) enables students to provide the required data and documents for the successful submission of the scholarship application package.
The application package includes two requirements that are completed by outside parties other than the student applicant. These are the Academic Verification and Evaluation/Recommendations.
The Academic Verification is completed by the Dean (or equivalent) of the academic program associated with the scholarship. The Evaluation and Recommendations are completed by academic and personal/professional references of the student applicant. The VA AMS is also used by these parties to submit the necessary requirements.
Application Package Review
Once the application package has been submitted by the student applicant, it is reviewed within ten days by the VA Scholarship Program Office to confirm all of the required information and requirements have been provided. In instances when the package is incomplete, the student applicant is notified and is requested to address the deficiencies.
Application Package Evaluation
After the VA Scholarship Program Office confirms that the application package is complete, the application package is evaluated by the Scholarship Program Selection Committee specific to your field of education. The members of the Selection Committee evaluate the student applicant’s academic and professional details, as well as the essay responses that are part of the application package.
The Selection Committee members also review the academic and personal/professional references that are part of the application package. The Selection Committee evaluation is usually completed within 30 days of the submission of the complete application package.
Scholarship Award Decision
The VA Scholarship Program Office makes scholarship award decisions after the Selection Committee has completed its evaluation of the application package. The award decisions are based upon the following criteria:
- Veteran status of the applicant (being a Veteran is not required)
- Selection Committee evaluation and recommendation
- Total cost to fund the scholarship
- The application package of each student scholarship candidate is compared against the submissions of the other student candidates.
The VA Scholarship Program Office will usually make an award decision within 90 days of the submission of a complete application package.
Tentative Scholarship Award Notification and Acceptance
Student applicants are notified immediately after the scholarship award decision has been completed. Students that have been awarded the scholarship are required to formally accept the award in order to complete the application process.
Student applicants that have been awarded the VA scholarship are initially offered a tentative scholarship award. The student applicant must complete a security background check. Selected student applicants have 15 days to accept or decline the tentative scholarship award.
Security Background Check
Applicants must pass and maintain a background investigation commensurate with the VA occupation for which the scholarship is being offered. If selected to receive the scholarship, the student applicant will be contacted by the VA Security Office with requirements to complete the investigation. A complete investigation is required prior to the final scholarship offer.
Final Scholarship Award Notification and Acceptance
Once the background check is complete, the student applicants will receive their final scholarship award offer. The student applicant must accept the final award offer and agreement forms in order to complete their enrollment in the VA scholarship program.
Accepting the final award offer includes the acceptance of the terms of the scholarship program. These terms include the service obligation to the VA after the completion of their academic program and professional licensing.
The acceptance of the formal scholarship award is a contract between the VA and the student applicant. A breach of the contract will enact penalties against the student.
Selected student applicants have 15 days to accept or decline the final scholarship award.
The student applicant is officially enrolled in the VA scholarship program once the final scholarship award is accepted and the scholarship agreement forms are completed.
Other scholarship opportunities: