SDCL 13-55-2 to 13-55-5 Provides for certain veterans are eligible to take undergraduate
courses at a state supported university without the payment of tuition provided they are not eligible for educational payments under the GI Bill or any other federal educational program. To qualify the veteran must:
- have been discharged under Honorable conditions
- be a current resident of South Dakota and qualify for in-state tuition
- meet one of the following criteria
- served on active duty at any time between August 2, 1990 and a date to be determined
- received an Armed Forces Expeditionary medal, or other United States campaign or service medal for participation in combat operations against hostile forces outside the boundaries of the United States
- has a service connected disability rated 10%, or more, disabling.
Eligible veterans may receive one month of free tuition for each month of "qualifying service" with a minimum of one, up to a maximum of four, academic years. Qualifying service is defined as: the amount of time served on active duty between the beginning and ending dates of the particular period of conflict or hostilities during which the veteran earned eligibility for this program.
Under the free tuition program, the veteran has twenty (20) years from the ending date of the specific period of service during which he or she served and met the eligibility criteria, or, twenty (20) years after the date that he or she was rated 10%, or more, disabled by the DVA.
The Application for Free Tuition is available at the schools’ financial aids, veterans representative or registrars offices or, they can be obtained from the South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs. The completed application, along with a copy of the veteran’s DD-214 must be submitted to Shane Olivier at the South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs, 425 E. Capitol Avenue, Pierre, SD 57501.