Criteria

The child of a parent who died in the line of duty while performing as a public safety officer is eligible to receive the maximum amount of Pell Grant. To qualify, the student must be Pell Grant eligible (receiving less than the maximum Pell Grant amount) and, be less than 24 years of age or enrolled in college at the time of his or her parent’s death.

For purposes of the Children of Fallen Heroes Scholarship, a “public safety officer” is:

  • An individual serving a public agency in an official capacity, with or without compensation, as a law enforcement officer, firefighter, or chaplain;
  • An employee of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) who is performing official duties of the agency, if those official duties—
    • are related to a major disaster or emergency that has been, or is later declared to exist with respect to the area under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act; and
    • are determined by FEMA to be hazardous duties;
  • An employee of a state, local, or tribal emergency management or civil defense agency who is performing official duties in cooperation with FEMA, if those official duties—
    • are related to a major disaster or emergency that has been, or is later declared to exist with respect to the area under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act; and
    • are determined by the agency to be hazardous duties;
  • A member of a rescue squad or ambulance crew who, as authorized or licensed by law and by the applicable agency or entity, is engaging in rescue activity or in the provision of emergency medical services; or
  • A fire police officer, defined as an individual who is serving in accordance with state or local law as an officially recognized or designated member of a legally organized public safety agency and provides scene security or directs traffic in response to any fire drill, fire call, or other fire, rescue, or police emergency, or at a planned, special event.

The definition of “parent/guardian” for purposes of the Children of Fallen Heroes Scholarship is broader than that used for purposes of the FAFSA. For scholarship purposes, parent/guardian includes non-custodial parents, step-parents, and parents of independent students. In all cases, the parent/guardian status at the time of death is the qualifying eligibility criterion. This may be different from the current parent/guardian status.

Questions regarding the above eligibility requirements for this scholarship can be directed to the MLC Financial Aid Office via email (mlcaid@mlc-wels.edu), or phone (507-233-9154).


Documentation Needed

The Children of Fallen Heroes Scholarship requires the institution’s financial aid administrator (FAA) to determine and document, in collaboration with the student, that the student was less than 24 years of age or enrolled at an institution of higher education at the time of his or her parent’s or guardian’s death. A single, national data source of individuals who died in the line of duty while serving as a public safety officer does not exist. While the Department does not specify all of the acceptable documentation that may be used to determine eligibility for this scholarship, here are some documents that schools may consider:

  • A determination letter acknowledging eligibility for certain federal benefits under the Public Safety Officers Benefit (PSOB) program administered by the Department of Justice;
  • A written letter of attestation or determination made by a state or local government official with supervisory or other relevant oversight authority of an individual who died in the line of duty while serving as a public safety officer as defined above;
  • Documentation of the student qualifying for a state tuition or other state benefit accorded to the children or other family members of a public safety officer consistent with the definition in 42 U.S.C. 3796b, or as a fire police officer as noted above; or
  • Other documentation the school determines to be from a credible source that describes or reports the circumstances of the death and the occupation of the parent or guardian.

Please bring the above documentation to the Financial Aid Office as your official “application” for this scholarship.  MLC must maintain all evidentiary documentation related to the determination of the student’s eligibility for the Children of Fallen Heroes Scholarship.


Award

The student will be eligible for the maximum Pell Grant for his or her enrollment status and cost of attendance.