Families of Freedom
$91.7 million to
Providing Funds Through 2030
The Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund was established to provide financial assistance for even the youngest children of 9/11 victims—the last of whom will be attending college in 2030. Through sound management and consistently updated actuarial information, Scholarship America anticipates that an exceptionally high level of need for all eligible Fund registrants will be covered by the Fund.
The initial fundraising goal of $100 million was intended to cover approximately 65% of the estimated financial need for all eligible Fund registrants through 2030. Due to economic circumstances over the last few years, the fund is able to cover 53% of need for current students. The percentage awarded may fluctuate over the years depending on the actual number of eligible individuals ultimately registered, the increased cost of higher education, and investment earnings on Fund assets, but our goal remains to cover as much need as possible and to award 100% of Fund assets by 2030. (1)
To ensure that this happens, Scholarship America has actuarial estimates re-assessed by the Gallagher Group, an independent actuarial firm, every year. By annually calculating and estimating family needs, student ages, educational costs, and potentially eligible recipients -- both registered and unregistered -- we can maximize aid at any given time while also ensuring that Fund assets are available for financially needy students through the end of 2030.
The Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund is available for victims' dependents, including children born after September 11, 2001, who enroll in college by age 24. As seen in the chart below, this means many Fund registrants will not reach college age for some time.
Because of this "bubble" — from 2009 to 2020, nearly 400 students per year will be receiving aid, and between 2018 and 2022, we anticipate need to reach nearly $80 million — it is crucial to make sound and accurate actuarial estimates so that the Fund may serve those students just now starting elementary school. By reviewing our actuarial information each year, we can be both reactive and proactive: reactive to the immediate past and current conditions; and proactive in assuring sufficient resources will remain for the educational needs of all eligible registrants over the life of the Fund.
For more details, visit the Actuarial Information page.
1. In February 2008 the Scholarship America Board of Trustees voluntarily determined that any assets remaining in the Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund after 2030 shall only be used to provide postsecondary scholarship assistance to the families of those killed or disabled on September 11, 2001 and their descendants. Please click here for the full text of the Board of Trustees Resolution.
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Keeping Dreams Alive
"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."
Register & Apply
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.