The National Military Family Association has changed eligibility requirements in order to allow same-sex spouses the ability to apply for the Joanne Holbrook Patton Military Spouse Scholarship!
In the past, the scholarship had been restricted to military spouses with military ID cards. In May of 2012, the American Military Partner Association asked them to drop this requirement which inadvertently excluded same-sex spouses thanks to out-dated Defense Department regulations which prohibit identification cards from being issued to same-sex spouses. The American Military Partner Association followed up with this request with an open letter in December asking for the change again. In response, requirements have been changed so that now instead of a military identification card, military spouses must show a copy of their marriage certificate along with other key documents.
We are pleased to see this inclusive change and applaud the National Military Family Association for their leadership and making sure all military spouses can now apply.
For more information on the scholarship and how you can apply, visit the National Military Family Association at http://www.militaryfamily.org/our-programs/military-spouse-scholarships/
The National Military Family Association provided the following statement:
If you are a military spouse working on your education, we encourage you to apply for the National Military Family Association’s Joanne Holbrook Patton Military Spouse Scholarship Program, which is open to ALL military spouses. Eligible spouses must submit their applications online by January 31. Spouses married to a member of one of the seven Uniformed Services (active duty, retiree, National Guard, Reserve, and/or survivor) are eligible to apply. If you are selected to receive a scholarship, you must provide a copy of your marriage license/certificate as well as a document showing your spouse’s military affiliation (a complete list of required documents can be found on the Association’s scholarship page under “What you need to know.”)
Joyce Wessel Raezer, Executive Director of the National Military Family Association, stated “We pride ourselves on meeting the needs of all military families and are proud to help military spouses afford their continued education. Our top priority for the program is to ensure that only military spouses receive aid and requiring an ID card for our scholarship in the past prevented ineligible spouses from taking financial support they were not qualified to receive. While our Association has been working on a remedy that would protect spouses in same-sex marriages in the same way, the solution has not come quick enough. As a result, we have made specific changes to our scholarship program’s verification process to stay true to our goal of helping military spouses contribute to their family’s financial security by getting meaningful employment.”