Proud to Serve scholarship available for incoming freshmen and transfer students


Military families have been recognized at Webster University in the past, but now they can receive financial benefit for their services.
Webster, which has more than 40 military campuses in the US, announced Jan. 29 that it will offer a new scholarship for military dependents of active duty personnel or veterans.  The Proud to Serve scholarship will be available for incoming freshmen and new transfer students starting fall 2012.
Brittany Larimore, sophomore film production major, has two parents who are Air Force veterans.  After giving birth to Larimore, her mother left by honorable means, afraid she would be sent overseas during the Gulf War.  She didn’t want to have someone else look after her daughter, so she retired.
Larimore’s father was in the Air Force for 20 years, but retired when she was 13 in order to prevent the family from moving around too much during her high school years — years he felt were some of his daughter’s most important.  Now, her father works for the Department of Defense and is stationed in East Africa.
Larimore said she believes the scholarship will be very helpful for future students with military parents. Filling out Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) documents as well as financial aid can be difficult when military parents are overseas because they have to wait to file their taxes.
“It’s not like most families where, if I needed to borrow money, I can go up to my dad and ask; I have to wait until he calls my family in order to get permission,” Larimore said. “Having a scholarship will most definitely ease the student’s and the parents’ mind.”
Students born into military families often have a unique way of living, Larimore said.  Families get stationed in new places and must move around as a unit. Larimore is thankful neither of her parents was sent into a war zone, but she has dealt with her father being gone for extended periods of time.  This separation can make it difficult for personnel to support their family from overseas, Larimore said.
The new scholarship can offer financial support by giving students up to $3,000 for an academic year.  Even if a student received over $3,000 in merit aid, they can still get $1,000 extra with Proud to Serve.  The only requirements are that the receiving student is a full-time undergraduate freshman or a new transfer student, and maintains good academic standing with a GPA of at least 2.5 for the school year. The scholarship is applicable only at the Webster Groves campus.
Anne Edmunds, associate vice president for enrollment management, said that conversation about adding a new form of funding for military students has been going around for a while.  Since Webster has been providing services for the military for over 40 years, bringing about a scholarship of this nature was needed.
“The goal is to be a first choice institute for military members,” Edmunds said. “And to increase Webster enrollment by assisting incoming freshmen.”

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