On-Ramp Eligibility

Client Eligibility


On Ramp funds may be used to provide financial assistance to students taking occupational noncredit courses, including sequences of courses or a credit bearing program of study, such as a certificate or associate degree that can lead to an industry certification, a state licensure or other portable workforce credential as defined by Achieve 2015. Awards shall be made on a firstcome, first-served basis or through a priority of service policy developed and documented by a participating On Ramp Program. In order to participate in the On Ramp Program and receive student aid for credit or non-credit courses, individuals must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Be age 18 or older;
  • Be classified as a Dislocated Worker as defined by Workforce Investment Act criteria.  Dislocated Workers are eligible workers who have been laid off or terminated through no fault of their own or have received an official layoff notice. The Virginia Workforce Network eligibility guidance tool for Dislocated Workers can be found at:  http://www.elevatevirginia.org/ ;
  • Select a degree or certificate seeking credit program of study or be enrolled in a noncredit course or sequence of courses that are designed to lead to an industry validated certification or licensure. Selected programs of study, whether credit or non-credit, must be targeted to the objective of providing clients with an industry recognized credential, as defined by Achieve 2015, designed to train clients for a specific occupation or occupations and increase client prospects for job placement and persistence. In addition, selected programs of study must be linked to in demand employment opportunities based on local Labor Market Information. On Ramp funds may not be used to support programs of study that require more than two years of full-time study to complete, and may not be used to support a program of study that does not prepare a client for direct entry into the workforce, such as a program that prepares a client to transfer to a university program.  For example, an On Ramp student may elect to begin a program of study that might lead to an associate degree in an allied health field, but On Ramp funds may not be used to support the first two years of general study towards a baccalaureate degree in occupational therapy; and
  • Complete the Financial Aid Eligibility Process to ensure the client meets federal eligibility criteria (including the identification of any default on federal financial aid or loans) and to identify additional sources of federal or state aid that can be used to pay for the training.


Individuals must meet General Eligibility, which consists of Citizenship or Eligible to Work, Age, and Selective Service Registration.

Citizenship or Eligible to Work – participation in programs and activities financially assisted in whole or part under WIA shall be open to citizens and nationals of the United States, lawfully admitted permanent resident aliens, lawfully admitted refugees and parolees, and other individuals authorized by the Attorney General to work in the United States (applies to all programs under Title I). [Act 188(a)(5)]

Selective Service Registrant – the Secretary shall ensure that each individual participating in any program established under WIA, or receiving any assistance or benefit under WIA, has not violated Section 3 of the Military Selective Service Act (MSSA) (50 U.S.C. App. 453) by not presenting or submitting to registration as required pursuant to such section. The Director of the Selective Service System shall cooperate with the Secretary in carrying out this section.

NOTE: Males born on or after January 1, 1960 must register with the selective service system within 30 days after their 18th birthday or at least before they reach the age of 26. [Act 189(h)]

Procedures outlined in TEGL No. 4-89, dated March 19, 1990, and TEGL No. 8-98, dated November 4, 1998, must be followed.

Age – to be eligible for the dislocated worker program, an individual must be 18 years of age or older. [20 CFR 663.110]

In addition, individuals must meet the following Specific Eligibility: A dislocated worker must meet the definition of one of the five dislocated worker categories.

A dislocated worker is an individual who has been:

  • Terminated/Laid Off and Eligible for UC and Unlikely to Return – has been terminated or laid off, or who has received a notice of termination or layoff, from employment and is eligible for or has exhausted entitlement to unemployment compensation; OR has been employed for a duration sufficient to demonstrate, to the appropriate entity at a one-stop center referred to in Section 134(c), attachment to the workforce, but is not eligible for unemployment compensation due to insufficient earnings or having performed services for an employer that was not covered under a State unemployment compensation law and is unlikely to return to a previous industry or occupation;


  • Permanent Closure/Substantial Layoff – has been terminated or laid off, or has received a notice of termination or layoff, from employment as a result of any permanent closure of, or any substantial layoff at, a plant, facility, or enterprise;


  • General Announcement of Closure – is employed at a facility at which the employer has made a general announcement that such facility will close within 180 days; or for purposes of eligibility to receive services other than training services described in Section 134(d)(4), intensive services described in Section 134(d)(3), or supportive services, is employed at a facility at which the employer has made a general announcement that such facility will close;


  • Formerly Self-Employed/Currently Unemployed – was self-employed (including employment as a farmer, a rancher, or a fisherman) but is unemployed as a result of general economic conditions in the community in which the individual resides or because of natural disasters; or


  • Displaced Homemaker – an individual who has been providing unpaid services to family members in the home and who

(A) has been dependent on the income of another family member but is no longer supported by that income; AND

(B) is unemployed or underemployed and is experiencing difficulty in obtaining or upgrading employment.