Dependent children of airmen and women can get help to pay for the cost of pursuing a post-secondary degree. Some programs are offered only to dependents of those who were killed or disabled while serving their country, while others are awarded based on the recipient’s personal characteristics or on demonstrated financial need. Scholarship programs are recognizing that not all people going to school pursue their education goals in an on-campus program, and funding for online degree programs is now being offered in some cases.
Freedom Alliance Scholarship Fund
Freedom Alliance provides scholarship funds to dependent children (under the age of 26) of Airmen (as well as soldiers, sailors, Marines and Guardsmen) who died or became permanently disabled on an operational mission or in a training accident. Individual awards are made based on the recipient’s demonstrated need and the scholarships may be renewed for up to three years (four years funding in total). The money received under this program may be used toward the following expenses:
- Books and supplies
- Meal plans
- Room and board
Air Force Sergeants Association Scholarships
The Air Force Sergeants Association offers scholarship assistance to dependent children of Air Force active duty personnel or veterans. Between $500-$3,000 in scholarship funding is available to students attending an accredited post-secondary institution. When determining which applicants will receive scholarship funding, the Selection Committee considers the following criteria:
- Academic record
- Leadership skills
- Potential for success
- Writing ability
General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant Program
The General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant Program was established in 1942. It provides needs-based grants in the amount of $2,000 to dependent children of active duty, deceased or veteran Air Force personnel.
Funds are awarded to high school graduates who are enrolled or accepted into a full-time undergraduate program at an accredited vocational or trade school, college or university. Grant recipients can reapply for funding for subsequent school years, provided they maintain a minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.0 or higher.
Air Force Association Grantham University Online Scholarship
The Air Force Association (AFA) Grantham University Online Scholarship is available to dependents of active duty airmen and women or an AFA member. One full scholarship is offered to help pay for the cost of an online undergraduate or graduate degree from the University.
The total amount of financial support is $36,000 and the money is used to pay for tuition, books and software required for the student’s selected program of study. All applicants must have a high school diploma or GED and meet the school’s minimum admissions requirements.
Dependent children of Air Force personnel may also be able to get funding for their education under the New GI Bill if an eligible parent transfers his or her entitlement to them. Up to 36 months of education benefits would be available to the dependent in this arrangement.
The rules for transferring education benefits to a dependent child require the Armed Services member to have served for a minimum of six years and to re-enlist for another four-year term.