Madeline Jensen can start a new career because of a program from AFAS When Madeline Jensen married her husband, Captain Kyle Jensen, she was in the middle of studying for an undergraduate degree. When they moved soon after, she learned that many of her college credits wouldn’t transfer to another school. After learning about the Air Force Aid Society’s (AFAS) Spouse Employment Program (SEP), Madeline decided it sounded interesting, so “why not give it a shot?” she recalls. The AFAS SEP provides free, no-cost entry-level job training to active duty military spouses with a goal to help them secure immediate, viable employment and possibly long-term careers. Upon learning that she qualified for the program, Madeline was very excited to pursue a certificate to be a pharmacy technician, which was something of interest to her already. “I don’t usually count myself as a lucky person, so I was pretty excited…and I am looking forward to the opportunity to further my education and get myself in the workforce,” she says. Madeline is now attending Dover Technical College, and unlike her lost college credits, the certificate she receives in Delaware will transfer to other states. “This is something I can take with me, no matter where we move,” Madeline states happily. And, as a pharmacy technician, Madeline will have flexibility in her employment,
An Air Force spouse gains a new career that can move with her As a military spouse, Heather Cameron wanted a career that would be easily transferable for when her family inevitably is relocated. Or, in Heather’s words one that she can put “in go-mode.” Through the Air Force Aid Society’s (AFAS) Spouse Employment Program (SEP), Heather enrolled in the certification course as a pharmacy technician at Dover Technical College. The program provides free, no-cost entry-level job training to active duty military spouses with a goal to help them secure immediate, viable employment and possibly long-term careers. Upon completing the SEP course and passing the national certification, Heather will be a certified pharmacy technician. It will open new opportunities in a field of interest to her, and she won’t have to start over again with each permanent change of station (PCS) move. Heather and her spouse, Master Sergeant Theodore Cameron, are grateful for the support from AFAS and the opportunity their family has received. She also recognizes the opportunities that the program provides to many families who cannot otherwise afford additional schooling. “There are so many families that wouldn’t be able to attain this, or even think of going for this course because of the financial strain that it would incur on their family,” she explains. “It’s a wonderful opportunity
An Airman’s son works toward a career in communication CJ May is a freshman at Delaware State University, graduating in 2023 with a degree in mass communication. When he was planning to apply for college, CJ was concerned with how expensive pursuing his higher educational goals would be. Wanting a good education, and having limited financial resources, CJ’s mom told him to apply for the General Henry “Hap” Arnold Education Grant. The Hap Arnold Education Grant is a centerpiece of Air Force Aid Society (AFAS) education programs. A competitive grant with needs-based criteria, the grant weighs family income and education costs. CJ’s dad, Col Christopher May, has been an Airman since before CJ was born. “That’s just how I grew up. I’m really proud of it,” he says of his dad’s service. “I cherish the fact that he’s doing something for us and our country.” Because of his dad’s many years of service in the Air Force, CJ’s experience within the Air Force community has always been one of support and giving back to others. “Ecstatic” upon learning that he was a recipient of the education grant, CJ sees it as another way the Air Force supports its own. The Hap Arnold Education Grant has helped to make CJ’s future one without student loan debt. For that, he thanks those
A grant from AFAS allows one college student to stay focused Freshman Brianna Arthur wanted to receive a good college education while not accumulating debt that could hinder her after graduation. Fortunately, she received numerous scholarships to help her achieve this goal, including a grant from the Air Force Aid Society (AFAS). The General Henry “Hap” Arnold Education Grant, also known as the centerpiece of educational support offered by AFAS, is a free grant offered to the dependents and spouses of Airmen. “The money that I received from this amazing grant has allowed me to not stress over funds,” Brianna says. The Hap Arnold Education Grant allows her to avoid having to find additional part-time jobs to pay for school and instead dedicate more time to her studies and obtaining a degree. Brianna knows what it means to be a part of the Air Force family because of her father, MSgt Willard Arthur, who retired in 2004 after 20 years of service. “The Air Force really, really helped our family out, with all the benefits that we can receive from them,” she says, including the education grant from AFAS. For those who contribute to AFAS, Brianna is grateful for their generosity. “They are affecting us a ton. Our families are not stressed anymore…we’re not going to be in debt to
A recipient of the Hap Arnold Grant can pursue her dream job Erin Velott knew she would have to pay for college herself. She also knew that she didn’t want to take on huge student loan debt. So, Erin’s dad retired MSgt Harvey Velott, sent her an application for the General Henry “Hap” Arnold Grant, a centerpiece of the Air Force Aid Society’s (AFAS) education program. A competitive grant with needs-based criteria, the Hap Arnold Education Grant weighs family income and education costs. Upon selection as a recipient, Erin felt excited to be able to attend college loan-free, and she felt special for being chosen. She also saw the grant as another way that the Air Force supports not just its Airmen, but their families as well. Currently a sophomore at Delaware State University, Erin is studying natural resources and wildlife management. The grant from AFAS allows her to focus on her studies while maintaining one job, not two or three, as she feared. “Because of receiving this grant, I’m able to attend school for four years and get my dream job, and I’m not stressing as much,” says Erin. Erin further adds that the education grants allow the recipients to focus on school, instead of worrying about how to pay for it. With a degree in natural resources and
When the Van Den Bergs welcomed their baby, David “D3” Randall, Liz left her special education teaching job to be a stay-at-home mom to D3. However, after learning about the LEAN program sponsored by AFAS, Liz learned the skills needed to start her own consulting business.