Family Benefits

Other Educational Assistance Programs

In addition to the Foundation’s scholarship programs, survivors of fallen firefighters may be eligible for educational assistance from other programs. Please contact these agencies and organizations directly for information.

Public Safety Officers’ Educational Assistance Program

Department of Justice

» Who is eligible for PSOEA?

Provides support for higher education expenses through an established monthly allowance for eligible survivors. It may be used to defray expenses such as tuition and fees, room and board, books, supplies, and other education-related costs.

For classes taken after October 1, 2009, the program offers up to $925 per month for full-time students and lesser amounts for part-time students.

This educational assistance program is limited to survivors who qualified for Public Safety Officers’ Benefits. It covers eligible survivors of Federal, state, and local fire and emergency services personnel killed in the line of duty since January 1, 1978.

Spouses are eligible for benefits at any time. Children are only eligible for expenses that occur prior to their 27th birthday.

All awards are reduced by the amount of other governmental assistance that a student is eligible to receive.

Children of Fallen Heroes Scholarship Act

Federal Student Aid Office of the US Department of Education

More: » Children of Fallen Heroes Scholarship Act

On March 23, 2018, the President signed Public Law 115-141, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018, which included an amendment to Section 473(b) of the Higher Education Act. Under this scholarship, beginning with the 2018-2019 award year, a Pell-eligible student whose parent or guardian died in the line of duty while performing as a public safety officer is eligible to receive a maximum Pell Grant for the award year for which the determination of eligibility is made. The scholarship requires the institution’s financial aid administrator to determine and document, in collaboration with the student, that the student was less than 24 years of age or enrolled at an institution of higher education at the time of his or parent’s or guardian’s death.

W. H. “Howie” McClennan Scholarship

International Association of Fire Fighters

More: » About the W. H. “Howie” McClennan Scholarship

Makes annual scholarship awards available to children of firefighters who died in the line of duty. The applicant’s parent must have been a member in good standing of the International Association of Fire Fighters at the time of death.

The 9/11 Promise Scholarships

The 9/11 Promise Run

More: » About The 9/11 Promise Run Scholarship

The 9/11 Promise organization raises scholarship funds for the children of fallen and/or injured First Responders and Military Service Members who can no longer hold employment due to their injuries, including PTSD. The scholarship application period runs annually from November 1 through midnight, March 15 with scholarship decisions announced no later than May 1.

Folds of Honor First Responder Scholarships

The Folds of Honor Foundation

More: » About Folds of Honor First Responder Scholarships

The Folds of Honor Foundation ensures that families who’ve sacrificed so much for our country and communities receive the education and opportunities they deserve. Whether it’s K-12th grade or higher education, they believe the cost of pursing their academic dreams should not be an additional burden. They’re humbled by the eagerness of spouses and children to honor their first responder by working hard toward educational goals. The Folds of Honor Foundation pledges to stand in the gap financially as you take the next step in your education.

» Scholarships Eligibility Requirements

Rebuilding Their Future Foundation (RTFF)

More: » About the Rebuilding Their Future Foundation

Rebuilding Their Future Foundation (RTFF) was founded on the belief that an educational scholarship could change the future of an individual recovering from the devasting loss or disabling injury of a loved one that occurred while the loved one was attempting to save or protect the lives of others. The mission of the RTFF is to provide scholarships to surviving family members of mine rescue team members, firefighters, police, or other emergency responders who perished or were severely injured and disabled during the execution of their job duties. They currently have an open application period for 2022.

First Responders Children’s Foundation Scholarships

General Scholarships

First Responders Children’s Foundation awards scholarships to children of first responders annually. These scholarships recognize financial need, academic merit and outstanding achievement in sports or the arts and helps students by providing financial support for their education at qualified institutions. The deadline for scholarship application is July 1.

CSX Pride in Service Scholarship

CSX Scholarships provide an average award of $5,000 for a single academic year. Awards are based on financial need as well as academic merit and other achievements, such as demonstrated leadership, outstanding performance in the arts or sports and volunteer activities benefitting the community. Open to children within one of the 23 states where CSX operates.

Christopher Lawton Memorial Scholarship

The Christopher Lawton Memorial Scholarship is awarded annually to a student who is the child of a law enforcement officer or firefighter killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. The scholarship is based on financial need, academic merit and other achievements including demonstrated leadership and a strong commitment to service in the community.

Vincent Bennett, Jr. Memorial Scholarship

The Vincent Bennett, Jr. Memorial Scholarship is awarded annually to an incoming freshman who is the child of a law enforcement officer or firefighter killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. The scholarship recognizes financial need, academic achievement and the candidate must show a strong commitment to service in the community. Preference is given to eligible candidates who are majoring in the engineering fields.

Information on Affordable Online Colleges and Universities

Affordable Online Colleges

More: » Find Affordable Online Colleges Today

Distance learning has a wide appeal to a diverse population of Americans. It offers students a number of advantages, many of which dovetail with other social or lifestyle needs. Online courses and degree programs suit working professionals who are looking to move up to management roles, often with their employers paying part or all of their tuition. It’s a powerful option for stay-at-home parents who are preparing for a new or re-entry career when they head back to work.

Information on the Best Online Colleges

Planning Your Online Education

More: » Find the Best Online College for Your Future

The number of students pursuing their college education online continues to grow. Advances in technology offer greater collaboration, and busy schedules demand increased flexibility. In addition to increased flexibility, online college offers potential cost savings. For example, some schools do not charge additional tuition for out-of-state residents. Students can also save on on-campus fees like room and board.