Caroline Williams, DeCA Marketing Specialist
LEE, Va. — November is a great time of year for many reasons —
cool, crisp weather, tailgating at football games, Thanksgiving and
fall colors to name just a few. If you’re a high school or college
student and the child of a military family, you might want to add free
college money to your list of favorite things because the 2009
Scholarships for Military Children Program opened Nov. 3.
applications are available in commissaries worldwide and online
through a link at http://www.commissaries.com
and directly at http://www.militaryscholar.org.
program kickoff each year in November coincides with National Military
Family Month. The scholarships are a great way for commissaries to get
involved with the community and demonstrate support for the
contributions of military families.
to Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) Director and Chief Executive
Officer Philip E. Sakowitz Jr., the program has awarded more than $6.4
million in scholarships to more than 4,000 of the best and brightest
children of military families since the program began in 2001.
know that education is the key to a better future," Sakowitz
explained, "and we’re thrilled to be a part of something that
makes it a little more affordable for military families."
are known for the savings they provide authorized customers who shop
regularly — savings averaging 30 percent or more. In fact,
commissaries have always sold groceries at cost, allowing them to pass
a substantial savings on to their customers. The scholarship program
is emblematic of DeCA’s commitment to improving the quality of life
of America’s servicemembers and their families by making military
paychecks go further in today’s uncertain economy. The program
awards $1,500 scholarships to well-rounded, accomplished children of
military families, meaning these families don’t have to dig as deep
into their pockets to pay for tuition.
dependent, unmarried children (under the age 23) of active-duty
personnel, Reserve/Guard and retired military members, survivors of
servicemembers who died while on active duty or survivors of
individuals who died while receiving retired pay from the military may
apply for a scholarship.
is determined using the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting
System (DEERS) database. Applicants should ensure that they, as well
as their sponsor, are enrolled in the DEERS database and have a
current ID card. The applicant must be planning to attend, or already
be attending, an accredited college or university full time in the
fall of 2009, or be enrolled in a program of studies designed to
transfer directly into a four-year program.
should prepare to submit an essay on the following topic: "What
would you place inside a time capsule to help people in the next
century understand military life today?" Applications must be
turned in to a commissary by close of business on Feb. 18, 2009. At
least one scholarship will be awarded at every commissary location
with qualified applicants.
dollar donated to the program by manufacturers, brokers and suppliers
that sell groceries in commissaries, and the public at large goes
directly to funding the scholarships. Fisher House Foundation
underwrites the cost of administering the program, which is handled by
Scholarship Managers, a national, nonprofit, scholarship management