By tamaraIt’s hard to believe that this year’s crop of college freshmen were only in kindergarten when America was shaken to its core on September 11, 2001. In fact, they are probably the last group of students who may have some memory of the events that unfolded that day. Future college students will only know of 9/11 through pictures, books, and movies. They won’t know how it felt to watch the Twin Towers fall to the ground like sand sculptures and wonder if someone they loved was still trapped inside. They won’t remember the screaming and crying that echoed in our ears for months. And most of all, they won’t know the feeling of pride and unity we all experienced as we came together to declare, “We are Americans, and we will never forget.” Although it has been 13 years since terrorists tried to bring down our great nation, for many of us it seems like only yesterday. So many lives were changed that day, including more than 3,000 children who lost one or both of their parents. Fortunately, many organizations and businesses stepped up to create funds to help assist the families of those affected by the tragedy. Today, there are still several scholarship programs available to help students whose lives were forever altered on 9/11. 1. September 11th Memorial Scholarship Full-time undergraduate and graduate students who attend a United Methodist institution may be eligible for this $5,000 scholarship. Students must have lost a parent (or guardian) or be direct victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Deadline: Rolling. 2. Twin Towers Orphan Fund The mission of the Twin Towers Orphan Fund is to provide long-term post-secondary assistance to students who lost a parent in the World Trade Center, Pentagon, or onboard any of the four planes that were destroyed on 9/11. Scholarship amounts vary and are provided on a case-by-case basis. Students interested in applying should email [email protected] for more information. Deadline: Rolling. 3. The Needham September 11th Scholarship Fund Needham & Company, LLC provides scholarships to students affected by the tragedy whose families gross income did not exceed $125,000 prior to the September 11 attacks. Scholarships are awarded based on financial need, scholastic merit, and community service. Additional information may be obtained by contacting Kathleen Mumma at [email protected]. Deadline: Rolling. 4. Aon Memorial Education Fund Dependent children of Aon employees who were killed in the September 11 World Trade Center attacks are eligible for financial assistance through this scholarship program. Students interested in applying should contact Beth Gallagher at [email protected]. Deadline: Rolling. 5. University of Virginia The University of Virginia offers three separate scholarships for those affected by 9/11. The Glenn D. Kirwin September 11th Fund provides up to $20,000 in funding, which may be offered to one student or split among several. The Patrick Sean Murphy ’87 Memorial Scholarship provides up to $6,000 in funding annually and may also be awarded to one student or split. Both awards are only open to second and third-year students, and may not be renewed. The third award, the September 11, 2001, Scholarship Fund, will offer up to $3,500 annually and may be renewed if the student maintains a minimum GPA and remains in good standing with UVA. Freshmen, sophomores and juniors may apply. All three scholarships require students to be enrolled full time. For additional information, students can contact Molly Bass at [email protected]. Deadline: Spring 2015 (TBD). 6. Michael Lynch Memorial Scholarship High school seniors and college students who are dependents of New York City firefighters or victims of the September 11 attacks (or other disasters) may be eligible for financial assistance through this scholarship program. Over the last 12 years, more than $3.5 million in scholarships has been awarded. Deadline: February 1. 7. CFA Institute September 11 Memorial Scholarship Program The CFA Institute Research Foundation established a fund to help dependent children, spouses, and domestic partners of those who died or were permanently disabled as a result of the September 11 attacks. Scholarships are awarded each year to part-time or full-time undergraduate students who are majoring in finance, economics, accounting, or business ethics. Deadline: Spring 2015 (TBD). 8. Families of Freedom Scholarship Scholarship America provides scholarships valued between $1,000 and $28,000 per year to students who are the dependents or spouses of someone killed or permanently disabled by the September 11 tragedy. Students must be 24 years of age or younger. Students may also receive matching scholarships from participating colleges and universities. Deadline: May 15. 9. New York State World Trade Center Memorial Scholarship Each year, approximately 600 students receive scholarships to cover up to five years of undergraduate study. Students must be the child, spouse, or financial dependent of a deceased or severely and permanently disabled victim of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Survivors of the terrorist attacks who were severely and permanently disabled as a result of injuries sustained in the attacks are also eligible. Deadline: June 30. In addition to these available scholarship programs, students may also be eligible for financial assistance through their prospective colleges and universities, as well as other funding opportunities for those who have lost a parent.