Dependent students encouraged to apply for AFAS grants, scholarships

  • Published
  • By 66th Air Base Group Public Affairs
HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – The Air Force Aid Society is now accepting applications for education grants and scholarships, and Airman and Family Readiness Center officials here encourage all eligible to apply.

The General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant, Merit Scholarships and Supplemental Education Loan Program are available to Air Force dependent children and spouses.

“All eligible dependents at Hanscom, regardless of rank, are encouraged to apply,” said Kathleen Vaillancourt, AFRC community readiness consultant. “Rank or income does not disqualify anyone from receiving these grants and scholarships.”

AFAS awarded 2,228 grants and scholarships last year. At Hanscom, three dependent students received $10,200.

A single online application opens the door to the AFAS education programs.

The centerpiece and gateway to these programs is the General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant. It offers need-based grants that range from $500 to $4,000 to dependent children of active, retired and deceased Air Force members. Active duty includes Title 10 Reserve on extended active duty and Title 32 Guard performing full-time active duty. Spouses of active-duty members and surviving spouses of deceased active or retired members are also eligible.

All program applicants must be a high school graduate enrolled or accepted as a full-time undergraduate student at an accredited college or university during the 2017-2018 academic year, and are required to maintain a minimum 2.0 grade-point average.

Ten $5,000 Merit Scholarships are available to incoming college freshmen who have completed both parts of the Arnold Education Grant application. Cumulative grade point average, transcripts and an essay on a specified topic determine selection.

The Supplemental Education Loan Program is available to those students who do not have sufficient financial need to receive the Arnold Grant; however, completing the grant application determines eligibility to secure an interest-free loan. Sponsoring members may request up to $1,000 per eligible student to help reimburse out-of-pocket education expenses.

This loan is open to dependents of active duty or Air National Guard and Reserve members on Title 10 extended active duty. It is also open to dependents of Title 32 members performing full time active duty, regular retired and retired Reserve with more than 20 years of creditable service.

The program has an average selection rate of more than 70 percent of those eligible. For those with a validated financial need, the supplemental loan program has an average selection rate of 100 percent.

“Grants cover tuition, books, fees, supplies and curriculum-required materials for students,” said Vaillancourt.

The deadline for applications is April 30, 2018. Selections are made in early June, with funds disbursed directly to respective schools in early August 2018.

For more information on these programs, or to access the application, visit the AFAS website at  

(Information courtesy of the Air Force Aid Society)