Military Spouse Scholarships

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What are Scholarships for Military Spouses?

Military spouse scholarships are one of the benefits available to military dependents. Scholarships for military spouses go to the husband or wife of a member of the nation’s armed forces. Also, while there are many military scholarships, they are not all for spouses too. There are active duty spouse scholarships for military students who want to transition into a civilian career.  

Scholarships for military spouses are a valuable source of aid. They often help a military spouse pursue a post secondary degree and fulfill their career goals.  

Unlike a loan, one usually does not have to pay back the funds. But one does have to abide by the terms that the scholarship comes with. Others may provide financial aid for college in return for service.  

What is a Military Spouse?

A military spouse is the wife or husband of a service member. They can be spouses of active duty and veteran military members. 

That said, there are a few forms that a scholarship for a military spouse might take. Some scholarships may offer to wives and husbands of currently serving military personnel. Others are scholarships for widows. These are for spouses of service members who died or became disabled while in service. 

 The U.S. Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society grants one such award. The Gold Star Scholarship Program is for the dependent children and spouses of Navy and Marine personnel killed in the line of duty.  Awards range from $500 to $2500 per academic year. The Navy Marine Corps Relief Society also provides education scholarships.

Many scholarships for military spouses will look at your financial need and GPA if you qualify. There are seven Uniformed Services which may have scholarships set aside for military spouses:     

  1. Air Force 
  2. Army 
  3. Coast Guard 
  4. Marine Corps 
  5. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 
  6. Public Health Service 
  7. Navy 

Do Military Spouses Receive Free College?

There are many resources in place to help military spouses pay for college. But whether college is ‘free’ depends on two main factors such as cost of attendance and amount of financial aid received.  

One is the net cost of attending (COA) college or career school. Another, the amount of aid received. This varies between scholarships and other benefits that spouses may be eligible for.  

Yes, it is possible to apply for several military spouse scholarships at once. But the amount of aid received cannot exceed the COA.   

Can Military Spouses Get Tuition Assistance? 

Each branch of the military offers education assistance programs. These are for their branch’s service members and dependents.  

One example is the Spouse Education Assistance Program. The program is sponsored by the U.S. Army and offers a need based scholarship. It is for the spouses of Army soldiers who are pursuing an undergraduate degree.  

Do Military Spouses Get College Benefits?

There are a range of college benefits for military spouses. One example is the Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA) Program. MyCAA is an employment assistance program.  

It provides up to $4,000 of financial help to eligible military spouses. Spouses must be pursuing a license, certification or Associates degree. It must be in a portable career field and occupation. There are lists of approved schools in each state. Many schools also offer a reduced tuition. Military spouses may enjoy this benefit too.

What does the GI Bill Cover for Spouses? 

Military members may transfer their Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits to a spouse or dependent. The request to do so needs to be while the member is in service. Then, the Department of Defense either approves or denies the request. 

The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) also extends other benefits. These education benefits may go to dependents and survivors. They are also called Chapter 35 benefits. There are two main programs.  

Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship (Fry Scholarship) assists military spouses. It is for children and spouses of service members who died in the line of duty after September 10, 2001. This military spouse scholarship may cover tuition, housing, books and supplies.

Another is the Survivors’ and Dependents’ Educational Assistance (DEA) program. It offers education and training to qualified dependents of Veterans.  

Veterans who are disabled in a permanent and total way because of a service-related condition or who died while on active duty or as a result of a service related condition.  

Who Offers Military Spouse Scholarships?

Many entities honor the service and sacrifices military members and their families make. Many state and federal governments, nonprofits and colleges may offer scholarships for military spouses.

At last check, 87% of dependents of service members and veterans receive financial aid if they qualify. Most were pursuing a degree at the undergraduate level. A wide range of military spouse scholarships come from branches of the military such as the Army, Navy and Marines. Others may also come from Federal and State governments.  

One example is the Maryland Veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq Conflicts Scholarship. Spouses of armed forced personnel who served in these conflicts are eligible to apply.  

You need to fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). It may award from $4,498 to $7,152. 

Charitable foundations also extend scholarships to military spouses. The National Military Family Association offers military spouses who hold a valid military ID. Awards range from $500 to $1,000. Scholarship funds may be used towards degrees, certifications, and licensures.

Private donors, and individual colleges are yet another option. These may provide scholarships that also pertain to specific fields of study. One example is the Army Nurse Corps Association (ANCA) Scholarship. Military spouses who are also nursing or anesthesia students may apply. 

List of Scholarships

Scholarships for military spouses may help the husbands and wives of enlisted service members and veterans. Check out our list of 7,692 awards worth $18M.

General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant

This award is available for U.S. high school seniors or older students planning to enroll full time in an undergraduate program of study. Students must have a grade point average of 2.0 or higher and be the son, daughter, spouse, or surviving spouse of an Air Force member. Learn more and apply today!

Total: $2000

Awards: 5000

Deadline: April 30, 2021

NMCRS Gold Star Scholarship Fund

The U.S. Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society sponsors the Gold Star Scholarship Program. It is for the dependent children and spouses of Navy and Marine personnel who were killed in the line of duty. Awards are decided by a blend of financial need and academic merit. Awards range from $500 to $2500 per academic year.

Total: $2500

Awards: 30

Deadline: May 01, 2021

Massachusetts Public Service Grant

This award is avialable to Massachusetts undergraduate students who are planning to enroll full-time at a Massachusetts college or university. Students must have a parent and or spouse who is killed or missing in the line of public service duty in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Total: $1500

Awards: 20

Deadline: May 01, 2021

James A. Wells Sr. Veterans Scholarship

The James A. Wells Sr. Veterans Scholarship is available for a U.S. Military Veteran, or to a spouse or child, of a Veteran living or deceased.

Total: $2000

Awards: 2

Deadline: May 17, 2021

George Sink, P.A Injury Lawyers Veterans & Military Family Scholarship

The George Sink, P.A Injury Lawyers Veterans & Military Family Scholarship is available for U.S. veterans who are currently enrolled in or accepted to an accredited undergraduate or graduate program. Applicants must have a grade point average of 3.0 or higher.

Total: $1000

Awards: 1

Deadline: June 15, 2021

Navy Seal Foundation Scholarships

These scholarships are for NSW active duty service members, their spouses and dependent children, SEAL and SWCC Post-9/11 veterans, and Gold Star/Surviving Spouses and dependents. Opportunities include vocational, certificate, licensure and post-secondary programs, undergraduate and graduate degrees for qualifying applicants.

Total: $20000

Awards: 10

Deadline: June 30, 2021

NY Military Service Recognition Scholarship (MSRS) – Spouses/Dependents

This award is available to U.S. undergraduate students who are children, spouses and financial dependents of members of the armed forces of the United States or state organized militia who, at any time on or after Aug. 2, 1990, while New York State residents, died or became severely and permanently disabled while engaged in hostilities or training for hostilities. Students must be attending or planning to attend an eligible postsecondary institution in New York.

Total: $24250

Awards: 1

Deadline: June 30, 2021

EducationConnection Military Scholarship

This scholarship is available for U.S. undergraduate students (ages 18 and older) who are military active duty, honorably discharged, veterans, or spouses from any branch of the military.

Total: $1000

Awards: 1

Deadline: September 30, 2021

Military Order of the Purple Heart Scholarship Program

This award is available for U.S. undergraduate and graduate students who are a Purple Heart recipient OR are the spouse, child, grandchild, or great-grandchild (natural or adopted) of a Purple Heart recipient. Students must also have a grade point average of 2.75 or higher.

Total: $3000

Awards: 1

Deadline: February 15

Bernard E. Dillon Vocational Skills Scholarship

This award is for students attending vocational-technical classes at an accredited vocational-technical school. Students must be current members of American Military Retirees Association (AMRA), their spouses or dependent children, or their grandchildren (who can be claimed as dependents on their parents’ income tax return).

Total: $5000

Awards: 5

Deadline: March 01

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