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 Military and Family Readiness Center officials here encourage all eligible to apply.

Applications for the 2023-2024 academic year are now available through April 30.

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

The centerpiece and gateway to scholarships is the General Henry H. Arnold Education Grant. It offers need-based grants that range from $500 to $2,000 to dependent children of active duty, Title 10 Reservists on extended active duty, Title 32 Guard performing full-time active duty, retired, retired Reserve and deceased Air Force or Space Force members, as well as spouses of active duty and Title 10 Reservists, and widows/widowers.  

The Air Force Aid Society also awards a minimum of 10 Merit Scholarships to incoming college freshmen who have completed both parts of the Arnold Education Grant application. Receiving an Arnold Education Grant is not a pre-requisite to a Merit Scholarship. Cumulative grade point average, transcripts and an essay on a specified topic determine selection. These $5,000 scholarships are available to dependent children of active duty and retired Airmen or Guardians who demonstrate outstanding academic potential.

The Supplemental Education Loan Program is available to those who do not have sufficient financial need to receive the Arnold Grant. However, completing the grant application determines eligibility to secure this supplemental interest-free loan. Sponsoring members may request up to $1,000 per eligible student to help reimburse out-of-pocket education expenses. Funds for approved supplemental loans will be distributed digitally direct to the member. Repayment of loan will be scheduled for 12 months and will be automatically started by AFAS.

According to the AFAS website, this loan is not a government loan, or federal student loan, but an AFAS supplemental education loan to offer help for Air Force or Space Force families.

A single online application provides access to the three AFAS education programs.

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 2023-2024 academic year and are required to maintain a minimum 2.0 grade-point average.

New this year, Columbia Southern University in Orange Beach, Alabama, is partnering with the Air Force Aid Society to offer a 60-credit hour, approximately  $26,000, scholarship, to an Airman or Guardian spouse who is interested in attending CSU online. The application deadline is Feb. 15. Requirements and instructions can be found at

Since launching in 1988, nearly $167 million in Arnold Education Grants have been awarded to 109,499 hopeful scholars.

(Information courtesy of the Air Force Aid Society)