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Each year the assumptions on which payout are based—the age of estimated students, their likelihood of attending school in New York (tuition free), the estimated amount of need, and the anticipated returns from investments, etc.—are reviewed and updated by the Gallagher Group, an independent actuarial firm. Based on the most recent actuarial calculations, the Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund is currently able to cover 53% of student need.
Despite the considerable assets of the Fund, and to the surprise of many who look at the eye-popping number, the assets are still insufficient to cover 100% of anticipated financial need.
Many people have asked us why, with a $100+ million fund, are we unable to give full scholarships. The reason is that we hold these funds in trust for the children who are not yet of college age.
The table below highlights the financial aid "bubble" of dependents of 9/11 victims anticipated over the next 10 years, peaking between 2011 and 2016. These are the kids who may have been babies or toddlers when their mother or father was killed or disabled during the 9/11 attacks. Between 2010 and 2019, we anticipate scholarship needs to reach over $100 million for these students. Keeping our eye toward the future, it now appears that the Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund will be able to support the educational aspirations of these students through 2030.
Based on the current ages of those estimated eligible students it is anticipated that the following number of students will be receiving financial aid in each of the coming years.
"The Families of Freedom Scholarship sustains the memories of all those lost or suffering due to 9/11. It is so humbling that donors, who are seemingly strangers, can show such kindness and compassion. Scholarship America gives me strength and hope for a better future."
The Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund benefits financially needy dependent children, spouses, and domestic partners of 9/11 victims. If you are eligible to receive assistance, you'll need to complete a one-time registration; after that, you will need to submit an application each year.
Use the "Planning Ahead" Estimated Award Calculator to stimate what the family is expected to contribute to the student's college expenses, and the amount that may be awarded to you for the upcoming academic year.