Education Benefits - Military Spouses & Dependents

The Department of Defense (DOD) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provide education benefits for spouses and dependents of service members and veterans. These programs help qualified students achieve their educational goals, such as earning a college degree or completing vocational training.

Survivors & Dependents Educational Assistance (Chapter 35)

The Survivor's and Dependents' Educational Assistance (DEA) program (also known as Chapter 35) provides education and training opportunities to eligible dependents of certain veterans. The program offers up to 45 months of education benefits to be used for degree and certificate programs, apprenticeships, and on-the-job training.

Who is eligible for DEA?

To be eligible, you must be the son, daughter, or spouse of:

  • a veteran who died or is permanently and totally disabled as the result of a service-connected disability. The disability must arise out of active service in the armed forces.
  • a veteran who died from any cause while such permanent and total service-connected disability was in existence.
  • a service member missing in action or captured in line of duty by a hostile force.
  • a service member forcibly detained or interned in line of duty by a foreign government or power.
  • a service member who is hospitalized or receiving outpatient treatment for a service connected permanent and total disability and is likely to be discharged for that disability.

Learn moreApply for DEA

Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program (VMSDEP)

The Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program (VMSDEP) provides educational benefits to spouses and children of military service members killed, missing in action, taken prisoner, or who became at least 90 percent disabled* as a result of military service in an armed conflict.

Military service includes service in the United States Armed Forces, United States Armed Forces Reserves, the Virginia National Guard, or the Reserves. Armed conflict includes military operations against terrorism, on a peacekeeping mission, as the result of a terrorist act, or any armed conflict. This program was previously called the Virginia War Orphans Education Program.

*A Veteran’s 90-100% disability must have been directly caused by the Veteran’s involvement in:

  • military operations against terrorism
  • a peacekeeping mission
  • a terrorist act
  • an armed conflict subsequent to December 6, 1941

The service connected disability cannot have been incurred during active duty that coincides with, but was not the direct result of, one of the listed events/missions.

Please note: VMSDEP does not automatically cover classes taken during the summer term. You must complete and submit a summer request form on the VMSDEP website

Apply for VMSDEP 

Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship

The Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship provides Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits to the children and surviving spouses of Servicemembers who died in the line of duty while on active duty after September 10, 2001. Eligible beneficiaries attending school may receive up to 36 months of benefits at the 100% level.

Learn moreApply


The Military Spouse Career Advancement Account (MyCAA) program provides up to $4,000 of tuition assistance to eligible military spouses. The program helps military spouses pursue licenses, certificates, certifications or associate degrees needed to land a job in high demand, portable career fields.

Who is eligible for MyCAA
Spouses of active duty service members in pay grades E-1 to E-5, W-1 to W-2, and O-1 to O-2 who can start and complete their course work while their military sponsor is on Title 10 military orders. This includes spouses married to National Guard and Reserve Components members in the same pay grades. The MyCAA program does not include Coast Guard spouses.

Using MyCAA
Tidewater Community College is approved to provide education and training through MyCAA. Before enrolling in the MyCAA program, we encourage you to visit TCC’s Center for Military and Veterans Education (CMVE). Our representatives will walk you through the MyCAA sign up process and provide assistance with career planning, enrollment, and financial aid.

Learn more & apply

Get started

View step-by-step instructions for military spouses and dependent students to apply to TCC. 

CMVE Offices

Call us at 757-822-7645 or 855-399-7480 (toll-free if outside the U.S.)

Office hours:
Virginia Beach: Mon - Fri: 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. 
Chesapeake: Mon - Fri: 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. 
Norfolk: Mon - Fri: 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. 
Portsmouth: Mon - Fri: 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Please email if you have questions about your  GI-BILL.
Please email if you have questions about your active duty Tuition Assistance (TA)
Please email if you are a PROSPECTIVE active duty or veteran student seeking information about credits from your JST.

CMVE military base contact information

Virginia Beach (Main Office)

Building D (Kempsville)
1700 College Crescent
Virginia Beach, VA 23453

Phone: 757-822-7645

Fax: 757-822-7710


Pass Building
1428 Cedar Road
Chesapeake, VA 23320

Phone: 757-822-7645

Fax: 757-822-5014


Andrews Building
315 Granby St.
Norfolk, VA 23510

Phone: 757-822-7645

Fax: 757-822-1650


Building A
120 Campus Drive
Portsmouth, VA 23701

Phone: 757-822-7645

Fax: 757-822-2136

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