When a firefighter dies in the line of duty, the family often faces many challenges as they work to rebuild their lives. For example, children and spouses of these fallen heroes may not have the funds necessary to pursue their educational and career goals.
But through the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation’s (NFFF) scholarship programs, loved ones of the fallen can realize their educational dreams. The Foundation’s scholarship program began in 1997 and is named in honor of U. S. Senator Paul S. Sarbanes of Maryland, a strong supporter of education and America’s fire service family. Sarbanes authored the legislation creating the Foundation in 1992.
Online applications are being accepted January 1 through March 1 for the 2023-2024 NFFF Scholarships, which provide financial assistance to spouses, life partners, children, and stepchildren of firefighters honored at the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial.
Applicants only need to fill out one application to be considered for our partner programs:
- Sarbanes Scholarship Program
- Alan Patrick Sondej Memorial Scholarship Fund
- Kenneth M. Hedrick Memorial Scholarship Fund
- Motorola Solutions Foundation Enhanced Scholarship Initiative*
Scholarships are awarded for undergraduate and graduate studies, vocational-technical training, and certification and job training programs. They may be used for study at an officially accredited in-state or out-of-state public and private schools.
To be eligible, children must be under age 30 presently and have been under age 22 at the time of their firefighter’s death. All applicants must have a high school diploma or equivalency or must be in their final year of high school. Applicants must also be pursuing or planning to pursue undergraduate or graduate studies, a certification program or job skills training at an officially accredited institution and must be enrolled or planning to enroll as a full- or part-time student.
As part of the online application process, the form asks each applicant to upload their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) Report form. Applicants who choose to not upload their FAFSA Student Aid Report form are still eligible for a scholarship award, but the amount of their award will be influenced due to their composite score not including any credit for financial need.