The high price of tuition doesn't have to stand in the way of a great education. The Army National Guard provides financial assistance to students who wish to attend college and enlist in the Guard with two major scholarships: the Dedicated Army National Guard scholarship (DEDNG) and the Guaranteed Reserve Forces Duty contract (GRFD).
GRFD and DEDNG scholarships are for full-time students. These scholarships pay full tuition and mandatory fees, or can pay room and board (not to exceed $10,000 per year). In addition, cadets will be paid a monthly stipend. Following graduation, cadets begin a new Military Service Obligation (MSO) contract and serve eight years in the Guard, which includes training.
DEDNG scholarships cover full tuition. There is no limit to the number of scholarships given out each year in every state and U.S. territory. Recipients also receive up to $1,200 for books and are paid a monthly allowance in the following amounts: $350 during sophomore year, $450 during junior year and $500 during senior year. Grad students can also apply if they have only two years remaining until they graduate.
In addition to a monthly allowance, you can also receive the drill pay of a sergeant, approximately $225 per month, when you participate in the Simultaneous Membership Program (SMP).
The GRFD scholarship is similar to the DEDNG scholarship, but is mainly for students entering their junior year of college with a GPA of 2.5 or higher. They also must join the SMP of a Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) unit on their campus. GRFD recipients are funded each year at full tuition and receive $1,200 for books. They are given an ROTC allowance for 10 months of the year at $450 per month during their junior year and $500 per month during their senior year. As a member of the Guard, they will also receive drill pay.
If you receive one of these scholarships, you must be involved in the SMP with a National Guard unit while in school, and have a letter of acceptance from a local Guard unit stating that they will accept the you in an SMP status.
In order to qualify for these scholarships, you must:
- Be a U.S. citizen
- Have a minimum high school GPA of 2.5
- Have a minimum score of 920 on the SAT or 19 on the ACT
- Complete the ROTC Basic Course requirements or Basic Training
- Be medically and morally qualified