Scholarships provide college students with free money to pay for school. Unlike student loans, they don’t have to be paid back, which makes them a good first choice if you need help affording college. There are scholarships designed for many types of students. Children and grandchildren of veterans can find college funding reserved for them.

7 best scholarships for children of veterans

There are many scholarships for children and grandchildren of veterans. While the scholarships listed below are a good place to start, don’t limit yourself. Scholarship search engines can help you find more scholarships based on your military affiliation, ethnicity, gender, economic background and school.

1. AMVETS National Scholarship

To get an AMVETS National Scholarship, you’ll need to carry at least a 3.0 GPA and show academic and financial need. You’ll also need to prove that you’re a child or a grandchild of a U.S. veteran and be a high school senior entering college the upcoming fall. Applicants will need to submit an essay of 250 to 500 words with a topic that rotates year by year.

Amount: $4,000
Deadline: April 30, 2023 (applications open in January)
Apply here:

2. Paralyzed Veterans of America Educational Scholarship Program

If you’re unmarried and a dependent of a Paralyzed Veterans of America member, you can apply for this scholarship. If you’ve won this scholarship in the past, you can apply again, but you’re capped at two scholarships in a lifetime. Both full- and part-time college students can apply.

Amount: $1,000 or $2,500
Deadline: Applications open March 1, 2023
Apply here:

3. Dolphin Scholarship Foundation

You might be eligible for the Dolphin Scholarship Foundation award if you’re currently a high school senior or or college student and are the child of a current or former member of the submarine force. Accredited technical and vocational schools are accepted, although Military Service Academy students are not eligible.

Amount: $2,100 or $3,500
Deadline: March 15, 2023 (applications open in October)
Apply here:

4. Military Scholarship Competition

Students wanting to pursue a career in logistics and supply chain management can apply for the Military Scholarship Competition. Applicants must be a dependent of a current or former active-duty military member and have a minimum GPA of 2.5. To apply, students must write a 400- to 800-word essay explaining why they’ve chosen a college major in logistics or supply chain management.

Amount: $1,000
Deadline: December 15, 2023
Apply here:

5. Wings Over America Scholarship

Children of current or former U.S. Navy personnel may apply for one of the many scholarships Wings Over America offers. In addition to a traditional four-year college, Wings Over America covers community college and trade and technical school. The scholarships consider six factors: academic achievement, extracurriculars, work experience, community service, recommendations and essays.

Amount: Varies, but typically $5,000
Deadline: March 1, 2023 (applications open in October)
Apply here:

6. Children of the Wounded Scholarship

Each year, the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation awards scholarships between $2,500 and $10,000. To apply, you must have a GPA of 2.0 or above and an adjusted gross household income of $112,000 or less. You must also be the child or step-child of:

  • A current or former U.S. Marine
  • A current or former U.S. Navy Corpsman, Navy Chaplain or Religious Program Specialist attached or formerly attached to a U.S. Marine Corps unit

Amount: Up to $40,000 across four years
Deadline: March 1, 2023 (applications open in January)
Apply here:

7. The Army Scholarship Foundation’s Undergraduate Scholarship

The ASF’s Undergraduate Scholarship is open to high school seniors, high school graduates and undergraduate students. The application is also open to students enrolled in vocational or technical schools. To apply, you must have a minimum GPA of 2.0, be under the age of 24 and submit a 300-word essay answering one of the questions provided. You must also be the child or spouse of a current or former National Guard or U.S. Army member.

Amount: Up to $2,000
Deadline: April 15, 2023 (applications open in January)
Apply here:

Where to find scholarships for children of veterans

If you’re the child or grandchild of someone who served in the U.S. military, there are plenty of scholarships out there just for you. You can find these by doing a quick internet search or by using a scholarship search engine, such as the following:

You can also search for related scholarships at the institution you plan on attending by contacting their financial aid office or by contacting different military- or veteran-affiliated organizations.

It’s worth noting you may be eligible for scholarships based on other factors, too.

When doing your search, try looking for other categories you might fit into. For instance, if you’re a woman, try searching for “scholarships for women.” If you’re a computer science major, try searching for scholarships related to your field of study. Broadening your search is key to securing as much free money as possible.

Tips for applying for scholarships

If you want to limit how much money you borrow through student loans, it’s a good idea to maximize your free money. Here are some tips to help you do just that.

  1. Get organized. Create a spreadsheet that details each scholarship, the award amount, deadlines, application status and anything major you need for the application, like letters of recommendation or essays. It might help to keep a separate tab on all awarded money so you know how much more scholarship money you need for a free ride to school.
  2. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Many scholarships require a completed FAFSA when you apply. To save time, complete the FAFSA as early as possible. This helps your scholarship applications and also gives you an idea of your expected family contribution. It can also help you qualify for federal grants and loans.
  3. Complete requirements. Even after you’ve won awards, stay up to date with ongoing requirements. Many scholarships for children of veterans are multi-year awards requiring annual reapplications. If any scholarships aren’t renewed, you’ll need to cover those costs and apply for new scholarships, grants, work-study or loans.