Funding Your Education
Did you know there are a variety of military spouse scholarship opportunities available to help offset the cost of tuition and other expenses? In this article we look at five options for military spouse scholarships.
General Military Spouse Scholarships
My Career Advancement Account Scholarship
The My Career Advancement Account (My CAA) Scholarship is a workforce development program that provides up to $4,000 in tuition assistance to eligible military spouses pursuing degree programs, licenses or credentials in high-growth and high-demand fields.
To be eligible, applicants must be spouses of service members on active duty within specific pay grades, have successfully graduated from high school, and have the capability to request tuition assistance while their military sponsor is on Title 10 military orders. Spouses who are married to members of the National Guard and reserves in these same specific pay grades are also eligible.
Applicants can apply online through the My CAA website.
Pat Tillman Foundation
The Pat Tillman Foundation offers scholarships for military spouses, veterans, and active duty service members. This organization provides funding to current spouses of veteran or active service members, including surviving spouses.
The applicant must be a full-time student pursuing an undergraduate, graduate or professional degree at a public or private US-based, accredited institution. Those who are enrolled in on-line and distance learning also meet eligibility criteria.
This military spouse scholarship provides a qualified applicant an average of $10,000 per academic year, and applications are available online through the foundation’s website.
Military Family Scholarships
One organization that focuses on offering military family scholarships is the National Military Family Association. They offer a range of scholarship opportunities to military spouses, including the Joanne Holbrook Patton Military Spouse Scholarship which provides up to $1,000 in tuition assistance to those pursuing education or career goals.
Program eligibility includes the spouses of all eight uniformed services of the U.S. Military, and requires that the applicant must be a spouse of a post 9/11 service member that is an active duty member, a retiree, a 100% disabled veteran, a guardsman or a reservist service member. Spouses who are 20/20/20 are also permitted to apply.
Scholarship amounts average between $500 to $2,500, with the average being about $1,000. Applications are available online through the National Military Family Association’s website.
Air Force Scholarships
The Air Force Aid Society offers several scholarships for military spouses, including the General H. Arnold Education Grant. These military spouse grants are given to spouses who are legally married to active duty Air Force and U.S. Space Force members and Title 10 members on extended active duty, and surviving spouses of members who died while on active duty or retired status.
The member’s active duty must extend through December 1 of the academic year in order to be eligible. The spouse must also have graduated from high school, and be enrolled or accepted as full-time undergraduate student either in-person or online.
Successful applicants can receive up to $2,000 each academic year and are granted based on financial need. Applications are accessible on the Air Force Aid Society’s website.
Navy Wives Scholarships
The Navy Wives Clubs of America (NWCA) offers scholarships to dependent spouses of active duty, retired and widowed members of the Navy, Marine Corps or Coast Guard who are pursuing a degree or certification program.
This navy wives scholarship is awarded based on financial need and number of qualified applicants in a year, and provides between $1,000 to $1,500. Applications can be downloaded from the NWCA website and mailed into the foundation’s office.
Spouses of Veterans Scholarships
There are also scholarships available for spouses of military veterans. The Veterans United Foundation Scholarship provides funding for those spouses pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree. The applicant must be a surviving spouse of a deceased service member, currently or planning to be enrolled in an accredited college or university, and pursuing an associate, bachelor, graduate, post-graduate or doctoral degree.
The spouse must also be comfortable sharing their stories with the foundation, and are able to provide proper documentation and receipts. Scholarships of up to $20,000 are awarded based on costs of tuition and scholarly expenses and number of qualified candidates. Applications are available online through the foundation’s website.
All of the above military spouse scholarships are a great way to assist in offsetting the cost of education. They provide valuable opportunities for education and career advancement, helping those who support military service members to achieve their goals despite the unique challenges they may face as military families.