For the 23rd straight year, Fisher House Foundation’s Scholarships for Military Children program has awarded deserving children of U.S. service members scholarship grants, providing an early leg up in funding their higher education dreams. (DeCA graphic)
Fisher House Foundation’s ‘Scholarships for Military Children’ awards 500 students
FORT GREGG-ADAMS, Va. – For the 23rd straight year, Fisher House Foundation’s Scholarships for Military Children program has awarded deserving children of U.S. service members scholarship grants, providing an early leg up in funding their higher education dreams.
This year 500 children were each awarded a $2,000 scholarship by the nonprofit foundation for the upcoming 2023-2024 academic year.
Fisher House created the program in 2001 in partnership with the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) to recognize the contributions of military families to the readiness of the fighting force and to celebrate the commissaries’ role in enhancing the military’s quality of life.
Fisher House has continually improved the application process to support the increasing number of students applying each year, according to Marshall Banks, Fisher House Foundation’s director of community relations.
“The application process for the 2023-2024 Scholarships for Military Children program went extremely well,” he said. “We received 4,443 applications from 224 commissaries. That’s a 21-percent increase in applicants from last year.” He added that, in total, Fisher House has provided $22,126,500 in scholarships over the last 23 years.
Scholarship applicants submit their official transcript indicating a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above on a 4.0 scale for high school applicants, or indicating a cumulative minimum GPA of 2.5 or above on a 4.0 scale for students already enrolled in college; and an essay of 500 words or less, no longer than two pages.
Eligibility is determined using the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System database. Applicants must ensure that they, as well as their sponsor, are enrolled in the DEERS database and have a current military dependent ID card. The applicant must also be planning to attend or already be attending an accredited college or university, full time, in the fall of 2023 or be enrolled in a program of studies designed to transfer directly into a four-year program.
Applicants who are awarded a full scholarship to attend a college or university or receive an appointment to one of the military academies or affiliated preparatory schools are not eligible to receive funds from this program. A full scholarship is usually defined as one that provides for payment of tuition, books, lab fees and other expenses.
All rules and requirements for the program, as well as links to frequently asked questions are available at the Scholarships for Military Children website, as is the full list of this year’s winners.
“The window to apply for the 2024-2025 Fisher House Scholarships should open in December and close sometime in February, but the exact dates have not been set yet,” said Todd Heasley, DeCA’s scholarships program liaison. “Be sure to check the scholarship page in December for the date of the opening, as well as the new essay question for the year.”
Fisher House Foundation also has a custom scholarship search engine on its scholarship website, tailored to military families, called “Scholarships for Service.” It’s free, easy to use, and available on mobile devices or computers at militaryscholar.org.
“Fisher House Foundation has a long history of direct, critical support to service members and their families,” said Marine Sgt. Maj. Michael Saucedo, senior enlisted advisor to the DeCA director. “It’s an honor for us at the Defense Commissary Agency to promote these scholarship grants again this year, offering the children of service members a timely head start to their journey in higher education.”
Fisher House Foundation is ranked a four-star charity by Charity Navigator. No government funds are used to support the Scholarships for Military Children Program. Commissary vendors, manufacturers, brokers, suppliers and the general public donate money to fund the program.
About DeCA: The Defense Commissary Agency operates a worldwide chain of commissaries providing groceries to military personnel, retirees and their families in a safe and secure shopping environment. Commissaries provide a military benefit, saving authorized patrons thousands of dollars annually on their purchases compared to similar products at commercial retailers. The discounted prices include a 5-percent surcharge, which covers the costs of building new commissaries and modernizing existing ones. 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.
By Mike Perron,
DeCA public affairs specialist