Eligibility Criteria

The Arnold Education Grant is available to applicants who fit one of the 3 following established criteria at time of application and throughout the award year:

1) Dependent* sons and daughters of U.S. Air Force and Space Force members in one of the following categories:

  • Active Duty, Title 10 Reservists on extended active duty, and Title 32 Guard performing full-time active duty. All members must be on active duty through December 1 of the academic year to be awarded
  • Retired due to length of active duty service or disability, or retired AGR/Reserve with 20+ satisfactory service years creditable for retired pay and placed on the U.S. Air Force or U.S. Space Force Reserve Retired List (no other retired classifications are considered eligible)
  • Deceased while on active duty or in retired status

    *For financial aid purposes, a “dependent” student is one who will not reach age 24 during the award year; will not be a graduate or professional student; will not be a veteran; will not be in legal guardianship; will not be an orphan or ward of the court; will not be married or have legal dependents other than a spouse.

    *For a student applying as a stepchild of a sponsoring member to be considered a “dependent”, student must either reside with the sponsoring member, or sponsoring member must provide more than half of student’s financial support. Proof of support will be required.

2) Spouses of active duty U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force members and Title 10 AGR/Reserve on extended active duty. Member’s active duty must extend through December 1 of the academic year to be awarded. To be eligible, a spouse must be legally married to the member (not separated or pending divorce) at the time of application and disbursement of award.

3) Surviving spouses of U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force members who died while on active duty or in retired status

And who also meet the following requirements:

  • Will be a high school graduate enrolled or accepted as a full-time undergraduate student in the upcoming academic year
    *Students enrolled exclusively in distance education courses should check with their school official to verify their enrollment meets their school’s full-time status requirements
  • Will be enrolled or accepted in an accredited college, university or vocational/trade school approved by the U.S. Department of Education for participation in federal aid programs
  • Maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale


NOTE – Awards are not automatically renewed. Students must re-apply and re-compete each year. Eligibility in future years requires previous grant recipients to demonstrate satisfactory progress by promotion in school grade level. Any applicant not meeting this requirement must provide college transcripts (unofficial) and statement of explanation upon request.