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Time in HSCP relative to transferring Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits

Time in HSCP relative to transferring Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits

The Post-911 GI Bill’s educational benefits can be in part transferred to a service member’s dependents with the requirements that the member has served six years and that they obligate for four additional years of service following the transfer of those benefits. This is an excellent opportunity for Service Members to help their spouse or children pay for education.


It is often asked whether the two years under the Navy Health Services Collegiate Program (HSCP) can be counted toward the above six-year service requirement prior to transferring the GI Bill’s benefits.

Unfortunately, it appears this is not supported by the rules governing the HSCP or the Post-911 GI Bill.


The below information is provided by an Active Duty PA and HSCP recipient who attempted to initiate the benefits transfer after four years’ service as a Naval PA (plus the two years’ service in school under HSCP). The information here is not intended to be definitive, to represent official HSCP (Navy) and GI-Bill (VA) policies, and is not warranted to be up-to-date. It is recommended that individuals interested in these programs contact their recruiter and or the GI Bill program for additional information.


Per a conversation with a Subject Matter Expert at PERS-311 (GI Bill Programs Branch):
HSCP years do not count towards the six years needed to transfer the GI Bill (although they can count towards time in service / pay / retirement).


The US Code that governs the Post-9/11 GI Bill is Title 38, Chapter 33. In Section 3301, it points to Title 38, Chapter 30, section 3002(6) to define what is “active duty.”

In subsection (A) it states:

  • “(6) The term "active duty" does not include any period during which an individual (A) was assigned full time by the Armed Forces to a civilian institution for a course of education which was substantially the same as established courses offered to civilians.”


MILPERSMAN article 1780-011 governs the Transfer of Education Benefits for the USN. At the bottom of section 3, there is a note that addresses HSCP directly:

  • “Note: Service performed in Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Health Professions Scholarship Program, Health Services Collegiate Program, or Financial Assistance Program (medical residents), will not be considered service calculated for six years of eligibility.”


Other things learned about the Transfer of Education Benefits (TEB) Obligation End Date:

  • Those four years of obligated service do not preclude one from entering a new retention bonus during that period (per BUMED special pays, as of this writing on 21Feb2024)
  • If one gets out of active duty Naval service, they can finish out the remainder of those four years in the reserves, but it needs to be with the Navy
  • If one initiates the transfer, but chooses to get out entirely before their TEB obligation end date, the GI Bill goes back to the member, as long as no months have been used by their dependents.
    • If any number of months have been used, the member cannot separate from Naval service until their end date.




Michael "Ford" Tikson

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