If you’re an active servicemember or veteran, you may qualify for a variety of financial scholarships and military grants that will help you pay for your tuition and related college expenses. Your spouse and/or children may also be eligible for assistance, or you may be eligible if your parent or spouse is a servicemember or veteran, depending on the grant or scholarship’s criteria.
Various organizations make these types of military grants and scholarships available. For example, you may qualify for financial aid from federal government programs, like the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, or through nonprofit veterans’ service organizations, such as the Pat Tillman Foundation. Financial aid may also be directly available through educational institutions, like the Opportunity Scholarship offered here at National University.
This guide to military grants and scholarships will help you find sources of financial aid for you and your family members, including federal aid programs, veterans’ organizations, and more. Continue reading to learn about grants for military spouses, VA education benefits, ROTC scholarships, military scholarships for women, aid for military families and children, and other scholarship foundations and resources.
Financial Aid the Government Offers for Military Service and Family Members
The federal government administers a variety of programs and grants that provide financial aid to eligible military students. For example, you may be eligible for a Federal Pell Grant or the Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant.
These are just two examples of federal financial aid resources that are available for qualified students. Additional examples, which we’ll cover in more detail below, include Army, Air Force, Marine, and Navy ROTC scholarships; the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, or FSEOG; and various education benefits that are provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Education Benefits
Education benefits are available for qualified veterans through the Department of Veterans Affairs, or VA. For example, you can apply for Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits through the VA’s online system. You may be eligible to be covered under the Post-9/11 GI Bill if you meet the criteria listed here, such as having an Honorable Discharge and earning, at minimum, a high school diploma or its equivalent. National University is a Yellow Ribbon school, which means assistance may be available to help pay for your tuition and fees beyond what’s covered by your Post-9/11 GI Bill.
Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant
You may qualify for federal assistance if you are the child of a former servicemember who was killed while serving in the U.S. military in Iraq or Afghanistan following 9/11, provided you meet several additional criteria, such as being age 23 or younger at the time of the death. Below are two examples of federal grants that are available to qualified family members of veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, including Pell Grants and other service grants.
- Federal Pell Grants — If the above description applies to you, you may be eligible for an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) of zero, which has the effect of enhancing your eligibility not only for federal Pell Grants, but also other forms of federal financial aid for students. Ask our admissions counselors about Pell Grants and how you qualify, or learn more about how Pell Grants work and who is eligible.
- Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants — If the above description applies to you, but you do not qualify for a Pell Grant due to your Expected Family Contribution, Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants may offer an alternative source of federal assistance in the amount of up to $6,895 (for 2022 to 2023). Learn more about who qualifies for Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants, or find out how to apply.
Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) Scholarships
- Army ROTC Scholarship Program — According to the official Army ROTC website, “High school students who apply for ROTC are eligible for scholarships covering up to the full cost of tuition, plus money for personal expenses and books.” That means you could be eligible to save up to $1,200 annually on books, $420 monthly on personal expenses, and 100% coverage for tuition and fees. Learn more about how you qualify here.
- Navy ROTC Scholarship Program — Partial and four-year scholarships are available through the Navy ROTC (NROTC). Learn more about the NROTC scholarship application process.
- Air Force ROTC Scholarship Program — The Air Force ROTC (AFROTC) program offers a variety of scholarships, including scholarships for high school students, current college students, and enlisted airmen. Explore AFROTC scholarships to review eligibility and application requirements in detail.
- Marine ROTC Scholarship Program — Technically called the Navy ROTC Marine Option Scholarship, this rigorous program requires students to “spend six weeks attending Officer Candidates School in Quantico, VA,” along with completing classes on Naval Science and other military coursework. Learn more about the NROTC Marine Option Scholarship or explore additional scholarships for Marines, which include the:
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, or FSEOG, assists students who demonstrate “exceptional financial need.” It’s important to note that the FSEOG is only available to undergraduate students, who must complete a FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, so that their level of financial need (and in turn, eligibility for the grant) can be assessed. The FSEOG provides anywhere between $100 and $4,000 to eligible students annually.
Learn more about various government benefits for military veterans and service members, from caregiver programs and services to dental care, healthcare, home loans, and mental health services.
Financial Aid Offered by Veterans Service Organizations
Federal aid is a useful, but not the only, source of financial support for veterans and servicemembers or their family members to help pay for college. In addition to government student aid programs, you may qualify for financial aid offered through various non-profit veterans’ organizations, such as Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), American Veterans (AMVETS), the Spouse Tuition Assistance Program (STAP), or the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation.
Continue reading to learn more about the grants and scholarships that are available through these and other veterans’ service organizations, including the Army Scholarship Foundation, Hope for the Warriors, the National Guard Educational Foundation (NGEF), and more.
Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW)
The VFW, or Veterans of Foreign Wars, describes itself as a “nonprofit veterans service organization comprised of eligible veterans and military service members from the active, guard, and reserve forces.” Along with a wide range of other programs and services that help to support veterans, including assistance with VA claims and separation benefits, the VFW also offers both financial grants and student veteran support.
For example, the Unmet Needs Program is a VFW grant that “provides… up to $1,500 to assist with basic life needs,” while the Help A Hero Scholarship awards up to $5,000 for eligible students. Learn more about eligibility requirements for the Help a Hero Scholarship, along with other VFW programs like the Student Veteran Support (SVS) Grant.
American Veterans (AMVETS)
Established in 1944, American Veterans or AMVETS is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that operates nationwide to “best serve each new generation of veterans and their families” through a broad collection of services and programs, including a variety of scholarships. Examples of military grants and scholarships offered by AMVETS include, but are not limited to, the Lowe’s + AMVETS Generation T Scholarship, the Lowe’s + AMVETS Veteranpreneur Business Grant, the Dr. Aurelio M. Caccomo Family Foundation Memorial Scholarship, and various scholarships for children, grandchildren, and spouses. Explore AMVETS scholarships to find out whether you qualify and begin your application process today.
Army Scholarship Foundation
The Army Scholarship Foundation is available for qualified undergraduate students who are “sons or daughters of regular active duty, active duty Reserve, or active duty National Guard U.S. Army members in good standing,” along with spouses, as well as the children of “former U.S. Army members who received an honorable discharge or medical discharge, or who were killed while serving in the U.S. Army.” Get tips on applying for the ASF scholarship, or start your application online.
Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation
According to the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation website, this organization’s mission is to “provide college scholarships and educational counseling to military children who have lost a parent in the line of duty.” The scholarship covers expenses like “tuition, room and board, books, fees, living expenses, [and] a one-time $1,000 computer stipend,” without any caps on funding for students who qualify (as of September 2022). Take the first steps toward applying by enrolling a student.
Army Women’s Foundation
The Army Women’s Foundation—whose stated mission is to “recognize and honor the service of all U.S. Army women”—is a Fort Lee, VA-based nonprofit organization that offers various scholarship programs for eligible students. Examples of AWF scholarship programs that are available as of September 2022 include the Six Triple Eight Legacy Scholarship and scholarships for international students.
AWF scholarships are available for both undergraduate and graduate students who qualify and provide recipients with an annual award of up to $2,500. Read more about these scholarships and whether you could be eligible by exploring the links above.
Hope for the Warriors
Hope for the Warriors is a nonprofit organization that, to quote its website, “provides comprehensive support programs for servicemembers, veterans, and military families,” including but not limited to scholarships for military spouses and caregivers. There are five different scholarships offered through the organization, such as the Restoring Family Scholarship and Restoring Self Scholarship, depending on your unique life situation and educational goals — for instance, what type of degree you’re seeking and whether you’ve lost a spouse or family member.
To read about eligibility requirements for these and other scholarships, visit the Hope for the Warriors website link above, and be sure to explore their full scope of resources for veterans and service members.
Ladies Auxiliary of the Fleet Reserve Association (LA FRA)
First established in 1930, today, the Ladies Auxiliary of the Fleet Reserve Association (LA FRA) offers a variety of scholarships for both male and female students, including the LA FRA Scholarship, the Allie Mae Oden Memorial Scholarship, the NP Scholarship, and the Sam Rose Memorial Scholarship Fund. Learn more about applying to LA FRA scholarships and how you qualify.
Military Family Scholarships
There are a wide variety of scholarships available for the family members of veterans, active duty service members, and fallen servicemembers who were killed in action. For instance, some of the examples we’ve covered so far on this list include ASF scholarships and the Restoring Family Scholarship available through the Hope for the Warriors organization. If you are the child or spouse of a current or former servicemember, here are five additional examples of military family scholarships you may wish to consider exploring:
- California Veterans Education Assistance Program
- Chief Petty Officer Scholarship Fund
- Fisher House Foundation Scholarship Program
- Marine Gunnery Sergeant John D. Fry Scholarship
- Survivor’s and Dependent’s Educational Assistance (DEA) Program
National Guard Educational Foundation (NGEF)
Established in 1975, the National Guard Educational Foundation (NGEF) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to “tell the Guard’s story” and promote “awareness of the rich heritage and continuing contributions of the National Guard of the United States.”
In support of this mission, the NGEF offers several scholarships to qualified students, such as the Van Hipp Heroes Scholarship and Leonardo DRS Guardian Scholarship. The former is awarded to “Guardsmen wounded in action in the War on Terror,” while the latter “provides college scholarships to the children of National Guardsmen who have been lost in service to our nation since 9/11.” Visit the links above to learn more about scholarship eligibility and how to apply.
Pat Tillman Foundation
The Pat Tillman Foundation was established in 2004 to provide servicemembers, veterans, and their spouses “with academic scholarships, lifelong leadership development opportunities and a diverse, global community of high-performing mentors and peers.” Pat Tillman Foundation scholarships help military students cover “academic expenses, including tuition, books and living expenses,” along with providing “access to $1,000 mini grants to further [students’] leadership development through training, certifications or events,” plus additional scholarship benefits.
Visit the Foundation’s website to read about eligibility requirements for the scholarship, which is available to both graduates and undergraduates, or learn more about what makes a Tillman Scholar from the Foundation’s perspective.
General George S. Brown Spouse Tuition Assistance Program (STAP)
The Spouse Tuition Assistance Program, or STAP, helps pay for the tuition of eligible students, meaning the spouses of active duty officers and airmen who accompany their spouses overseas. An annual award of up to $1,500 is available through the program, which you can learn more about here.
Troops To Teachers
Troops To Teachers (TTT) is a government program operated by the Department of Defense (DoD). The program’s goal, according to the DoD, is to work with veterans and servicemembers to help them “become certified and employed as teachers in K-12 schools” throughout the United States.
If you’re a current or former member of the U.S. military and are interested in becoming a teacher, the TTT program may be an excellent resource for you. Read about program benefits and eligibility requirements here to determine whether TTT is a good fit, or explore accredited teaching and education degree programs at National University.
National University Scholarships and Grants
Established in 1971, National University is proud to be a veteran-founded university and Yellow Ribbon school. Today, we remain committed to upholding our founder’s vision and giving back to our student servicemembers, who we work to support with comprehensive resources, benefits, and financial aid options.
In addition to accepting the post-9/11 GI Bill, offering college credit for military training, and providing support via our Veteran Center, we also offer two scholarships for military students: the NU Opportunity Scholarship and the Veterans, Spouses, and Dependents Scholarship. Continue reading to learn more about military scholarships at National University and whether you or a family member could be eligible.
Veterans, Spouses, and Dependents Scholarship
The Veterans, Spouses, and Dependents Scholarship at National University covers up to 25% of the cost of tuition for eligible spouses and dependents. All majors and degree programs are eligible, with the exception of nursing programs. However, nursing students in the RN-to-BSN program may be eligible for the scholarship. Learn more about eligibility requirements for the Veterans, Spouses, and Dependents Scholarship at NU, which you can request information about by completing our online form.
The Opportunity Scholarship
In addition to the Veterans, Spouses, and Dependents Scholarship, National University is also proud to offer the Opportunity Scholarship, which may be combined with other scholarships and sources of financial aid. The Opportunity Scholarship is available to students who meet certain eligibility criteria, such as being a Pell Grant recipient in good academic standing with the University.
To view the full list of criteria and find out whether you qualify, visit the link above. If you believe you meet the eligibility requirements, we encourage you to apply for the NU Opportunity Scholarship online. If you have any questions about the scholarship or how you qualify and apply, contact our admissions officers for one-on-one support. You can also learn more about military benefits and funding options at NU, or discover how military assistance can fund your education.
Find Out Whether You Qualify for Military Grants or Scholarships at National University
Want to know more about financial aid for veterans and military students at National University? Our admissions office is here to provide you with dedicated support.
Get in touch with our friendly enrollment counselors to learn more about the grants and scholarships that may be available to you and your loved ones. You can also request information about our graduate and undergraduate programs, or explore our program finder to find the right degree option for you.