The American Legion Expands Legacy Scholarship Eligibility, Aid

INDIANAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The American Legion’s Legacy Scholarship Fund has helped children of
servicemembers killed on active duty since 9/11 pay for the rising cost
of higher education. Now, children of post-9/11 veterans with a VA
disability rating of 50 percent or higher are also eligible to apply to
the scholarship, which will award up to $20,000 in aid per applicant
each year.

Changes to the scholarship will go into effect starting with the 2017
application, which is due April 20, 2017.

“The American Legion will continue to ensure that the children of the
men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice during the war on
terrorism will receive the assistance they need in obtaining the best
education possible,” said American Legion National Commander Dale
Barnett. “The children of the fallen will remain a priority with the
Legacy Scholarship. However, we are expanding the qualification criteria
because it is critically important that we meet the needs of children of
veterans who live with the aftermath of war every day.”

Since the Legacy Scholarship’s inception following the Sept. 11 attacks,
more than $440,000 has been awarded to help children of the fallen with
the expense of graduate or post-graduate tuition, books, room and board,
meal plans, transportation and other supplies needed to achieve a higher
education.

“The American Legion Riders have worked hard to raise funds over the
years for the Legacy Scholarship,” Barnett said. “I want to personally
thank them for the work they have done to raise awareness and funds for
this important scholarship. And also thank them for their support as the
criteria for the scholarship has been updated to help more young men and
women. This program would not be nearly as successful without the
dedication of our American Legion Riders.”

With the increase in aid awarded, the Legacy Scholarship is now a
needs-based one. The grant amount each scholarship recipient will
receive will be based on his or her financial need after all federal and
state aid is exhausted. Recipients will have a year to use the grant and
may reapply to the scholarship up to six times. And the number of
scholarships awarded and the amount of financial aid granted to each
awardee (this includes returning applicants) will be determined on
donations to the scholarship fund and one’s financial needs.

New and returning Legacy Scholarship applicants can apply online at www.legion.org/scholarships/legacy;
completed applications must be submitted by April 20 each year.

For children of the fallen, this includes legally adopted children, the
parent did not have to die in combat or on foreign soil. And for
children of post-9/11 disabled veterans, it is important to note that
the veteran must have a 50 percent or higher disability rating from the
VA, not from the Social Security Administration.
Paperwork showing
the VA disability rating – and a military death certificate for the
fallen servicemember – will be required in the application process.

With a current membership of 2.2 million wartime veterans, The American
Legion was founded in 1919 on Four Pillars: Veterans Affairs, National
Security, Americanism and Children & Youth.

Contacts

The American Legion
Timothy Lankford, 317-630-1209
tlankford@legion.org