Military Scholarships

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Even if no one thing can genuinely convey our thanks to the 1.3 million1 courageous men and women who have faithfully served our nation, a grateful nation tries to at least provide them with greater possibilities at home. Giving educational grants and scholarships to active-duty military personnel, veterans, and their families is one way a grateful nation pays tribute to its servicemen and women. The federal government, military groups, schools and institutions, and private donors all support scholarships and honors for veterans. This article details all the forms and ways active military personnel, veterans, kith, and kin would be able to draw scholarships for furthering their educational pursuits.


Scholarships for Military

When talking about scholarships for military personnel, the G.I. Bill is one of the most well-known financial aid programs in the U.S. that comes to mind. The idea that the Montgomery G.I. Bill2, which allowed returning warriors access to higher education, changed the nation’s trajectory is not exaggerated. The middle class, which would sustain the country in many ways, was greatly aided by the G.I. Bill. This bill continues to provide vital financial assistance to veterans seeking a college degree despite several changes since it was initially presented.

In addition to the G.I. Bill, to encourage and support veterans who want to pursue a college degree, a variety of other scholarships are available. These scholarships, funded by both public and private sources, are offered to deserving veterans who have been discharged from service with honor. Program-specific conditions and prize amounts may vary.

Other noteworthy mentions would be the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC)3 which offers a range of scholarships based on merit rather than need, from full tuition to supplementary support for housing and board to allowances for books and fees. Similar scholarships are provided by the U.S. Air Force ROTC4 to assist students in lessening the cost of their college education. Scholarships for the Air Force ROTC pay for the bulk of lab costs as well as college tuition. A maximum of $500 in monthly spending money and a textbook allowance is also given to students.

Additionally, the Army and Navy also have ROTC programs that work with several institutions around the nation. Further, one can be qualified for the Illinois National Guard (ING) Grant, given each year to undergraduate and graduate students, if they are members of the Illinois National Guard.

List of Scholarships for
Military Persons

Examples of military scholarships and awards worth applying for are provided below. Read on to learn more about them.

Scholarship Description Award/AmountApplication Deadline
Pat Tillman FoundationThe Pat Tillman Foundation’s Leadership Through Action – Tilman Soldiers Scholars program offers financial aid to veterans and active-duty military personnel who desire to start, continue, or finish their academic education. Candidates must maintain a 3.0 GPA and submit two essays to be considered.Award amounts vary, and eligibility is evaluated considering both merit and financial need.February 28, 2024
Troops to Teachers ProgramThe U.S. Department of Defense oversees the Troops to Teachers Program, which offers financial help to veterans who want to attend college or become teachers. To qualify for financing, candidates must consent to a time of service in a community or school with a high need. Academic standing and financial necessity are considered while determining eligibility.$10,000July 31, 2024
Marines’ Memorial Tribute ScholarshipThe Marines’ Memorial Tribute Scholarship is intended to assist military individuals transitioning from full-time service to an undergraduate or graduate program. It is supported by the generosity of the Marines’ Memorial members and supporters. There are no restrictions on majors or courses of study. [Note: Marines’ Memorial also provides other scholarships to active service members, veterans, and their families.]$2,500 to $5,000 x (up to) 9 awardsApril 11
Raytheon Patriot ScholarshipThe Patriot Scholarship is available to former soldiers of the United States Army who decide to pursue higher education. The Student Veterans of America and Raytheon Missiles and Defense (RMD) created the award to honor student veterans who have excelled in their academic disciplines and exhibited leadership in their communities. Army veterans enrolling in a graduate program at a recognized four-year institution enrolled full-time may be qualified. Applicants must also have a clean record and an honorable discharge from the service.$10,000April 1, 2024
AMVETS ScholarshipsAMVETS provides several scholarships and grants to veterans, active duty, guard and reserve personnel, and their spouses, children, and grandchildren. These scholarships are intended to fill a financial void left by the exhaustion of all Federal or State grants and/or scholarships available to eligible applicants.Up to $12,000Varies
NBCC Foundation Military ScholarshipThe NBCC Foundation provides military scholarships for service personnel, veterans, and their spouses pursuing professional counseling careers. These scholarships were established to expand the number of counselors available to support military people and their families.$8,000 x 3 awardsDecember 31, 2024
Council of College and Military Educators (CCME) ScholarshipsThe Council of College and Military Educators (CCME) awards scholarships yearly to U.S. service personnel (active duty and veterans) and service members’ spouses and children pursuing higher education degrees, certifications, and licensures.$1,000 (x 50 awards for 2024 on account of CCME’s 50th anniversary)October 17, 2024
Education Connection’s Military Scholarship for Veterans, Active Duty and Military SpousesEducation Connection offers scholarships to military personnel and their families to help offset the costs of obtaining a degree and taking the next steps in their civilian career path. Applicants must be active duty, honorably discharged, veterans, or spouses of service members from any branch of the military. Recipients can apply the awarded money toward any college-related expenses; however, depending on the school, some restrictions may apply.$1,000September 30
Wings Over America ScholarshipsThe Wings Over America Scholarship Foundation provides annual and renewable scholarships that cover community college, trade and technical school, and regular college. The foundation also administers scholarships for other naval aviation organizations.Average of $5,000 for tuition (x 50 awards, one-time and renewable)March 1

STEM Scholarships for
Military Personne

The set of academic subjects, “science, technology, engineering, and mathematics,” is referred to as (STEM). Usually, this phrase refers to a school’s curriculum choice or educational policy. Concerns about national security, immigration policy, and workforce development are all impacted in this critical field of study. The scholarships available for this significant field are:

Scholarship Description Award/AmountApplication Deadline
Google SVA ScholarshipEach year, veterans seeking computer science degrees are given a $10,000 grant thanks to a partnership between Google and Student Veterans of America (SVA). The program’s objective is to help veterans prepare for professions in high-demand technical sectors in the civilian workforce.$10,000February 1, 2024
Junior Horizon AwardThe Junior Horizon Award was provided by the Women in Defense chapter in Michigan. The primary purpose of this scholarship, initially established in 2009, is to encourage female high school students to pursue careers in STEM fields that may also be relevant to U.S. interests in national security and defense. For applicants residing in Michigan, who have excellent grades and are interested in a STEM career, this scholarship could be suitable.$2,500June 30, 2024
Army Nurse Corps Association (ANCA) Education FundTo be eligible for funding from the ANCA Education Fund, candidates must be enrolled in an accredited baccalaureate or advanced degree program in nursing, nurse anesthesia, or a related healthcare field, be serving, or have previously been serving in any branch and at any rank of a U.S. Army component (Active Army, Army National Guard, or Army Reserve), and not currently be receiving funding from a U.S. Army component (e.g., ROTC students and other students receiving full G.I. Bill benefits are not eligible).$16,000March 31, 2024
Jack E. Barger, Sr. Memorial Nursing ScholarshipJack E. Barger, Sr. Memorial Nursing Scholarship is offered to active-duty service members, U.S. veterans, or children or spouses of veterans or active-duty service members. Recipients must be undergraduate students.VariesMarch 30 (opens January 1) every year
AMEDD Enlisted Commissioning Program (AECP)Regular Army, USAR, and ARNG soldiers can complete up to 24 months of nursing school while maintaining their rank, grade, and military perks under AECP (pay, medical, etc.). When soldiers earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and pass the NCLEX, they will be commissioned as regular army nursing officers. The soldier must serve four years on active duty (ADSO). Applying soldiers must enroll in a nationally accredited nursing school that meets specific criteria.Up to $15,000 per academic yearAugust 1

Scholarships for Military

Over 2 million women veterans are living in the United States today, according to studies. Women veterans make up 10% of the total number, and they can apply for scholarships specifically based on their time spent serving in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, National Guard, or Coast Guard. For these female veterans who have served our country, an education scholarship provides the promise of an education, especially to those starting post-life in the military afresh and struggling in a civilian lifestyle. Some of the scholarships that help these female soldiers give the life that they deserve are:

Scholarship Description Award/AmountApplication Deadline
The “Six Triple Eight” Legacy ScholarshipThe “Six Triple Eight” scholarship was created by the U.S. Army Women’s Foundation to commemorate and recognize the dedication of the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion. Based on merit, academic potential, a personal essay, community service, letters of reference, and financial need, this grant will be given out every year.$2,500December 31, 2024
Heroes at Home Scholarships for Women VeteransWith the help of the Royal Neighbors Foundation, this scholarship aims to transform women’s lives. The Heroes at Home Scholarship Program primarily targets female veterans. Applicants must be female veterans, appear on the list of personnel officers who have finished their duty, have leadership abilities, and engage in the community to be considered.VariesJune 1, 2024
Trident University International Scholarship ProgramThe U.S. Army Women’s Foundation recognizes the value of education and its role in achieving personal, professional, and financial goals in partnership with Trident University International. The organization offers full-ride scholarships to help current or former female soldiers complete their educational goals. Students must be enrolled in both undergraduate and graduate programs. Scholarships from Trident International are given solely for coursework and based on merit, academic potential, volunteer activities, letters of reference, and need. Candidates must be female and have rendered valiant service in the United States Army, United States Army Reserve, or Army National Guard. They should have completed their prior curriculum with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.$3,000TBA (open to apply now)
Women’s Overseas Service League ScholarshipsScholarships are available from the Women’s Overseas Service League to people who are dedicated to progressing in the military or other public service occupations and have shown this dedication through their experiences in life. The applicant must be accepted to a program leading to an academic degree at an institution of higher learning (associate degree or higher). The program could be of a technical or professional nature.$500 to $1,000March 1
Army Women’s Foundation Legacy Scholarship ProgramThe Army Women’s Foundation Legacy Scholarship Program provides awards to former and present female troops and their lineal descendants to help them achieve their educational aspirations. The program offers financial assistance for four academic pursuits: certificate programs, community college coursework, and undergraduate and graduate degrees. Scholarships are only given for education at accredited universities.$1,000 to $3,000January 31, 2024

Scholarships for Minority
Military Personnel

Though there are no specific scholarship programs for minority veterans, there are benefit programs run by the federal government or specifically by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for furthering education for our minority veterans. Some of the benefits offered are:

VA Yellow Ribbon Program: The Yellow Ribbon program can assist minority veterans in covering out-of-state, private, international, or graduate school tuition and fees that are more expensive than those covered by the post-9/11 G.I. Bill. Any of the following kinds of institutions allow applicants to receive funding to assist with tuition and fees:

  • a private school with perhaps greater costs, or
  • a foreign university, or
  • enrolling as a non-resident student at a public institution.

If eligible, the applicant’s school may provide a grant, scholarship, or other comparable programs that will pay a portion of their additional tuition and fees; the Yellow Ribbon program will give an equal amount.

How to Apply for Military

With tens of scholarships available, it can get very confusing to decipher information about them and get to know what scholarship would pay the most, what the eligibility criteria would be, what documents would be required for applying, and the deadline for applying. Hence, it is best to use scholarship counseling and online search providers like Scholarship America or Cappex.

But in case someone has already done their research and is aware of the scholarship to avail, then they can very easily visit the legitimate site and apply online, and if any further documentation is needed, they might mail them to the required address as advised on the site. For example, if someone is applying for the Military Order of the Purple Heart Scholarship, they might as well visit the site, which will guide them on how to go about the application process.

Tips and Tricks for Applying for
Military Scholarships

As already mentioned, applying for military scholarships can be a very tricky affair. Listed below are a few points which might make the application process a bit less problematic and hassle-free:

1. Know the subject of study

Scholarships can be categorized by the subject for which they are offered. Hence, if students know which subject they want to pursue, the search narrows exponentially. This is the single most important tip to follow, which will save time and minimize headaches.

2. Start researching early

Browsing through all one’s required scholarships and not rushing through them is advisable. The more one researches, the less one goes wrong with the right scholarship.

3. Apply for both public and private scholarships

Find scholarships offered by preferred schools. Once found, move on to looking for private scholarships. These are often provided by businesses, organizations, service providers, and community leaders. Private scholarships may typically be in scholarship directories updated annually and may have unique requirements.

4. Community help

It’s always a good idea to look to one’s neighborhood for financial aid. Through tiny local groups, several national military organizations provide scholarships. Consult with veterans who have already applied and enrolled. Those consultations are pure wisdom.

5. Make sure to be organized

In addition to selecting the appropriate scholarships, it is critical to maintain organization and meet deadlines. One must organize one’s scholarship applications in folders, marking each one as “not complete,” “applied,” or “awaiting an answer.”

6. Avoid scholarship scammers

There are numerous genuine scholarship possibilities accessible, but because many of them may demand a fee for processing applications, it may be simple to confuse one for the other. To prevent falling for one of these scams, do extensive research on scholarships and attempt to get in touch with someone directly from the organization.

Grants and Fellowships for
Military Persons

A lot of student help is available for active-duty personnel, veterans, and their dependents. Grants or fellowships are one option for service members and their dependents to pay for education. These are unpaid financial help; they are typically given out based on financial necessity. Some schools and institutions also have their military student scholarships and aid programs. Most award programs for students in the armed forces are financed by the federal or state governments, with strict eligibility criteria.

Military grants or fellowships are frequently need-based awards that pay for tuition and fees, and recipients must fulfill several criteria to qualify. Depending on the amount of grant money available, the amount of financing might change from one year to the next. Here are two examples of military grants:

Air Force Aid Society General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant

Children of Air Force members on active duty, in the reserves, retired, or who have passed away have access to this stipend for more than 20 years. Each year, hundreds of $2,000 awards are given out.

The Illinois Veteran Grant/Fellowship Program

For veterans, who were on active duty for at least a year, the Illinois Veteran Grant Program covers qualified tuition and fees at two- and four-year universities.

The Imagine America Military Award Program (MAP)

This program was created to assist military service people in obtaining career education and transitioning from military to civilian life. For attendance at participating career institutions, the Imagine America Foundation gives a $1,000 career education award to any qualified active-duty, reserve, honorably discharged, or retired veteran of a U.S. military service branch.

Other Ways Military Personnel
Can Save

There are a few additional ways for military students to minimize the expense of higher education. While these may not lessen the tuition fees, they do help alleviate the financial burdens to some extent. Here are some more ways for military students to save money:

Veterans, potential military people, active-duty personnel, and individuals related to veterans or active duty troops are all eligible for college funding from the federal government and charitable organizations. Individuals should apply for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) every year in college. Filling out the FAFSA allows them to determine how much federal aid (grants, scholarships, and loans) they will be eligible for based on their income and family’s financial standing.

Discounts for Military Personnel

Many companies will give them discounts if students present a legitimate military ID. For instance, some vendors offer military students deals on their laptops and accessories. Some software companies also give substantial discounts to military personnel. Students should always keep an eye out for these special offers and use them whenever possible.

Sponsorships & Interest-Free Loans

Although it is always advisable to save money to supplement any potential budgetary deficit, it may be possible for military students to seek sponsorships or interest-free loans from their neighborhood unions, professional organizations, banks/credit unions, or advocacy groups.

FAQs on Military

How do military scholarships work?

Scholarships pay for the first two to three years of a degree. A fitness evaluation, college transcripts, and optional letters of recommendation are all required application documents. Recipients consent to serving in the military for four or five years in exchange for financial aid.

How long do you need to spend in the military to get a scholarship?

Is there an age range for ROTC scholarships?

How does one get a scholarship from the military?

Does the military pay for college?

Are there scholarships for military dependents?

What is the 20/20 rule for the military?

Additional Resources for
Military Personnel

Once military personnel retire and come back from the barracks to resume civilian life, it becomes a huge task for them to assimilate into the prevalent society, as one might assume they must have been gone for most of their adult life and have never been in this kind of environment. Hence, to resume an everyday civilian life that a soldier might not have seen in their adult life, military organizations help them get accustomed to the new ways of life. A few examples of these kinds of organizations or resources available to veterans are:

Military Programs and Benefits

This site is where veterans can learn more about military perks, including housing, education, health care, and the many services that can help with military life, including assistance with spouses’ career searches and handling deployments. Additionally, free family counseling and military-specific tax preparation assistance are also available.


This is a resource hub for veterans and military families to support those with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), depression, and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Resources include information on these and other emotional and behavioral issues, such as substance misuse, that veterans may have after serving in Iraq or Afghanistan.

Military Survivor Family Support

The Casualty Assistance Program of the Department of Defense ensures that military families receive support in their hour of need, helping them to comprehend all benefits available to them and understand other types of aid. Even though the word “casualty” is typically linked with death, casualty support to qualified family members also refers to assistance in the event of an injury, illness, or when a service member goes missing.

Today’s Military

The military provides numerous educational perks to service members both during and after their service. Service members have never had more methods to afford and advance their education, from financial aid and college funding to loan payback schemes. Today’s Military lists the many education benefits available and different forms of monetary aid one might want to consider.