FORT LEE, Va. --
There’s still time to submit an application to the Scholarships for Military Children program. The deadline for the $1,500 scholarships is Feb. 16 and all applications must be delivered to the commissary by the close of business that day. At least one scholarship will be awarded at every commissary location with qualified applicants.
The application can be downloaded through a link on the front page of http://www.commissaries.com
or downloaded directly from http://www.militaryscholar.org
and filled out by hand or on the computer. Copies of the application are also available at commissaries worldwide.
DeCA program liaison Edna Hoogewind stresses that students should put emphasis on writing the essay portion of the application. “In past years the essay has been a key factor in deciding among the many outstanding applicants,” said Hoogewind. This year’s topic is “How has the heightened awareness of terrorism impacted your life?”
Students who are not hand-delivering applications are advised to use a delivery method that supplies a return receipt. Applicants may visit http://www.militaryscholar.org
and click on the “Verification of Receipt” section. Scholarship managers will respond to “Verification of Receipt” e-mails until June 15.
Applicants should check all materials carefully for simple things, like making sure the application is signed or that it’s the 2005 application, not one from previous years.
The scholarship program is open to unmarried children under the age of 21 (23 if enrolled in school) of active duty personnel, including Coast Guard, Guard and Reserve, and retired military. Eligibility will be determined using the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS) database. Applicants should ensure that they, as well as their sponsor, are currently enrolled in the DEERS database and have a current ID card.
The applicant must be planning to attend, or already attending, an accredited college or university full-time in the fall term of 2005, or be enrolled in a program of study designed to transfer directly into a four-year program. Additional instructions can be found on the application or at http://www.militaryscholar.org
Fisher House Foundation, a nonprofit organization best known for building comfort homes near military medical facilities, administers the Scholarships for Military Children program. Scholarship Managers, a professional firm that has handled more than 400 programs, screens applicants and awards scholarships. Neither Fisher House nor DeCA is involved in the decision process.
The Scholarships for Military Children program is in its fifth year and has awarded nearly 3,000 scholarships and more $3 million since the first scholarship was awarded. Scholarships are primarily funded through the voluntary donations of the various manufacturers, brokers and suppliers that sell products in commissaries. The general public can also contribute through a link at http://www.militaryscholar.org
The Defense Commissary Agency operates a worldwide chain of nearly 275 commissaries providing groceries to military personnel, retirees and their families in a safe and secure shopping environment. Authorized patrons purchase items at cost plus a 5-percent surcharge, which covers the costs of building new commissaries and modernizing existing ones. Shoppers save an average of 30 percent or more on their purchases compared to commercial prices – savings worth about $2,700 annually for a family of four. A core military family support element, and a valued part of military pay and benefits, commissaries contribute to family readiness, enhance the quality of life for America’s military and their families, and help recruit and retain the best and brightest men and women to serve their country.