Scholarship programs of Fisher House Foundation
Did you know that commissaries have awarded more than $10 million in scholarships to almost 7,000 military children over the past 12 years?
Commissaries are an integral part of the quality of life offered to service members and their families. The Scholarships for Military Children Program was created in recognition of the contributions of military families to the readiness of the fighting force and to celebrate the role of the commissary in the military family community. It is the intent of the program that a scholarship funded through contributions by business partners of the Defense Commissary Agency - manufacturers, suppliers or vendors - and others be awarded annually for each military commissary worldwide.
A minimum of one $1,500 scholarship is awarded at every commissary location where qualified applications are received. More than one scholarship per commissary may be available based on response and funding. The scholarship provides for payment of tuition, books, lab fees and other related expenses.
Only dependent unmarried children under age 23 of active duty personnel, reserve, Guard and retired military members, survivors of service members who died while on active duty, or survivors of individuals who died while receiving retired pay from the military may apply for a scholarship. Applicants should ensure that they, as well as their sponsor, are currently enrolled in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System, or DEERS, database and that they have a current dependent military ID card.
Applicants must be enrolled, or plan to enroll, in a full-time undergraduate degree program at an accredited U.S. college or university in the fall term. All applicants must also have a minimum un-weighted GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) to be eligible to apply. Students attending a community or junior college must be enrolled in a program of studies designed to allow them to transfer directly into a four-year program.
Where to apply
Applications can be picked up at your local commissary and are also available as a PDF file during the application timeframe. Completed applications must be printed and hand-carried or mailed to your local commissary. Applications sent by email or fax will not be accepted. Individuals may apply at only one commissary; typically, this will be the commissary where the applicant's family does their shopping.
Scholarship Managers, an independent, professional scholarship service, selects the recipients based on the following criteria:
- Academic achievement
- Participation in school and community activities
- Work experience
- A submitted essay
When to apply
The scholarship program application process begins in December. Applications must be completed and returned to local commissaries by mid-February, and scholarships are awarded in May.
For more information, read the fact sheet for Fisher House Foundation and visit the website for the Scholarships for Military Children Program.
Heroes' Legacy Scholarships
Another scholarship opportunity for military children is the Heroes' Legacy Scholarships program, which honors not only those who have fallen in battle, but all who have died or have become disabled through their active military service since Sept. 11, 2001. Prior to taking the oath of office, President Barack Obama wrote a children's book titled "Of Thee I Sing: A Letter to My Daughters." The president chose to donate his after-tax proceeds to Fisher House Foundation specifically to establish a scholarship fund for the children of fallen and disabled service members.
Dependent unmarried children under age 23 of active duty personnel, reserve, Guard and retired military members or survivors of service members who died while on active duty may apply for a Heroes' Legacy Scholarship if they meet one of the following additional criteria:
- One of the parents died while serving on active duty on or after Sept. 11, 2001, in any branch or component of the U. S. armed forces.
- One of the parents, while serving on active duty on or after Sept. 11, 2001, became disabled - meaning that the parent qualified for receipt of Traumatic Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance.
- One of the parents, who was on active duty on or after Sept. 11, 2001, received a permanent and total compensation rating of 100 percent from the Department of Defense or Department of Veterans Affairs.
Applicants must be enrolled, or plan to enroll, full-time in the fall term in an accredited U.S. college or university, or junior/community college. They must have a minimum cumulative un-weighted grade point average of 2.5 or higher (on a 4.0 scale). College freshmen must submit a first semester college transcript.
Recipients may be asked to provide an 'awards letter‘ from the college or university they plan to attend to verify the costs to attend a particular college or university and to list any grants they have been qualified to receive.
Application requirements and how to apply
The application package consists of the two-page application, a transcript or copy of grades and a typed essay of 500 words or less, double spaced and no longer than two pages. The essay topic for 2013 was: Discuss in detail how one of the First Ladies (since 1933) has made an impact on a social issue in the United States.
Completed application packages are sent to Scholarship Managers, an independent, professional scholarship service, for review. Applications are typically due in mid-March.
For more information, visit the website for Heroes' Legacy Scholarships.
Scholarships are an excellent way to finance post-secondary education because, unlike financial aid and student loans, the money does not have to be paid back. Learn more about scholarship opportunities for your children's education by visiting Scholarships for Military Children.