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Winter 2016 - Volume: 22 Issue: 4   Print Article

Tips for Scholarship Season

By Ashlynne Haycock, Surviving daughter of Army Sgt. 1st Class Jeffrey Haycock and Air Force Senior Airman Nichole Haycock and Education Services Coordinator

  •   McClimans, Emily HS Graduation Photos courtesy of McClimans family

    Emily McClimans first came to TAPS through Good Grief Camp after her father, Army Capt. Joshua McClimans, was killed in action in Afghanistan in 2011. While she dreamed of attending Texas Christian University, Emily wasn't sure how to realize her hopes of attending an expensive private school. 

    Then, at the 2015 National Military Survivor Seminar and Good Grief Camp, she attended a TAPS Education Support Services session for teens and learned about a variety of benefits that are available to her as a surviving daughter of a military service member. With the information from that session, Emily realized that she could afford an education at TCU thanks to both private and federal scholarships and grants available to most TAPS children and surviving spouses. 

    Emily connected with TAPS over the summer and we helped walk her through the process of applying for the necessary financial aid to allow her to attend TCU.  The first step involved ensuring that she gathered all the necessary paperwork very early on to apply for scholarships. There can be some specific forms and requirements that may take time and starting early is vital. Emily also wanted to get an overview at this point of how much scholarship money she would need for the schools on her wish list. In the fall, she focused on college applications, specifically to her dream school of TCU. 

    McClimans, Emily with Dad at christmasWinter is the busiest time of all for our TAPS families as application deadlines for most scholarships occur in the first months of the year. Emily applied for VA Education Benefits and filled out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) during this time, but she also applied for private scholarships. One year at TCU costs nearly $56,000 and VA benefits only cover a portion of that. TAPS Education Support Services was able to advise her on additional scholarships she should prioritize and how to make the $35,000 gap disappear. 

    The scholarship letters and acceptance letters started rolling in during the spring. Thanks to the generosity of Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation, Folds of Honor Foundation, Fisher House Foundation, the Folded Flag Foundation and many others, Emily is now a freshman at TCU and will graduate completely debt free. 

    "TAPS equipped me with the knowledge and resources to come out of college and conquer life's challenges, since a financial burden is no longer a worry for me," Emily said. "TAPS gave me so much hope in such a stressful time, and each day, I am able to proudly attend the university of my dreams without worry that I won't have proper finances to cover it. I am eternally grateful for the dedication of TAPS to my education and my future." 

    McClimans, Emily with DadTAPS Education Support Services has helped more than 1,000 surviving family members and plans to continue offering support to thousands more. Since scholarship season is kicking off this month, we want to share important deadlines for private scholarship organizations. Remember that TAPS Education Support Services is available to help you throughout the college and scholarship application process. You can reach us by calling 800-959-8277 or emailing education@taps.org.

    Scholarship Highlights for Spring 2017

    • Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation
      • Children of those who died in the line of duty or a service-connected disability
      • Up to $6,250 per year
      • Rolling applications
    • Fisher House Foundation
      • Children of those who died on active duty post-9/11
      • Up to $5,000 per year
      • Applications available Jan. 1, 2017- March 17, 2017
    • Folded Flag Foundation
      • Children and spouses of those who died from service in Iraq or Afghanistan
      • Up to $6,000 per year
      • Applications available March 1, 2017- May 15, 2017
      • Can be used for K-12 private schooling
    • Folds of Honor Foundation
      • Children and spouses of those who died in the line of duty or from a service-connected disability
      • Up to $5,000 per year
      • Can be used for K-12 private schooling
      • Applications available Feb. 1, 2017- March 31, 2017
    • Matthew Freeman Project
      • Siblings of those killed in action or who died by suicide
      • $1,000 per year
      • Applications available Jan. 19, 2017
    • Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation
      • Children of Marines or Navy Corpsman
      • Up to $7,500 per year
      • Applications available Jan. 1, 2017- March 1, 2017
    • National Military Family Association
      • Spouses of those who died in the line of duty or from a service-connected injury post-9/11
      • Up to $1,000 per year
      • Applications available Oct. 1, 2016- Jan. 15, 2017 and May 1, 2017- June 30, 2017
    • Pat Tillman Foundation
      • Surviving spouses
      • No maximum amount
      • Applications available Feb. 1, 2017- March 1, 2017
Tags: Child, Education Support, Haycock Ashlynne
About the Author: Haycock, Ashlynne - Education Assistance CoordinatorAshlynne is the Education Services Coordinator for TAPS where she works with hundreds of survivors of military loss to connect them to education benefits and resources to further their goals. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the American University in 2013.
Cover Winter 2016
TAPS Magazine is dedicated to the brave men and women who died while serving with the Armed Forces, and to their survivors.
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This article is copyrighted by the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS). This article may not be reproduced in whole or in part by any means, electronic or otherwise, without prior written approval. It is permissible for an individual reader to view, reproduce or store a copy of this article, provided it is used only for their own personal and non-commercial use. Uses beyond that allowed by the “Fair Use” limitations (sections 107 and 108) of the U.S. Copyright law require permission from TAPS. Please contact editor@taps.org to request permission. All other rights reserved. 

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