Vets can now attend Cal Lutheran for free

Yellow Ribbon awards for qualified students increased

The Veterans Entrepreneurship Institute offered by the School of Management in early 2014 is one of many ways Cal Lutheran has supported former service members.

Photo: Brian Stethem

(THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – Oct. 6, 2014) California Lutheran University is stepping up its commitment to veterans by working with the government to cover all tuition and fees for an unlimited number of qualified undergraduate and graduate students.

The Post-9/11 GI Bill covers a maximum of $20,235 a year in tuition and fees for veterans attending private colleges. Through the Yellow Ribbon Program, universities and the Department of Veterans Affairs can work together to provide additional funding. Last year, Cal Lutheran covered $2,500 in additional costs and the VA provided a matching amount. The program was limited to 45 students.

Cal Lutheran is now contributing 50 percent of the tuition and fees not covered by the GI Bill, and the VA will match that amount for an unlimited number of qualified undergraduate and graduate students taking classes at the main campus in Thousand Oaks, at the centers in Oxnard and Woodland Hills, and online. For undergraduate students, that means Cal Lutheran’s total tuition and fees of $36,690 will be covered for all qualified veterans.

This is the latest of many steps Cal Lutheran has taken to support veterans. In recognition of this, U.S. News & World Report ranked Cal Lutheran third among regional universities in the West in the Best Colleges for Veterans list released in September. The university moved up one spot from its ranking in the inaugural list released last year.

To qualify, universities had to score well in the 2015 U.S. News Best Colleges rankings. Cal Lutheran ranked 15th among regional universities in the West. Universities also need to be certified for the GI Bill, participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program or charge in-state tuition to out-of-state veterans, and belong to the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges Consortium. There are a total of 29 institutions in 15 Western states on the regional universities Best Colleges for Veterans list.

Cal Lutheran has a veterans coordinator who organizes events and helps with enrollment, financial aid and academic issues. In early 2014, the School of Management offered a Veterans Entrepreneurship Institute to help former service members start their own businesses or improve their prospects in the job market. On campus, the university has a Military Veterans Club that helps students connect with and support one another. Online, the California Institute of Finance has an interactive website where veterans and active duty personnel can meet, exchange ideas and learn about an online MBA program.

For more information about Cal Lutheran’s Yellow Ribbon Program and other veterans programs, contact Jenn Zimmerman at 805-493-3648 or