Frequently Asked Questions

 

Eligibility | Application | Application Documents | Post-Application

 

Eligibility

    • Who is eligible to apply?

      Application eligibility information can be found here.

    • I am pursuing my master's degree. Am I eligible for a scholarship?

      No. Scholarships are only available to students pursuing their first bachelor's degree or technical certificate.

    • My family's income is higher than your limit. Can I still apply?

      Yes. Be sure to provide an explanation of your family's circumstances in the indicated section of the application.

    • Can siblings apply at the same time?

      Yes! We encourage your siblings to apply.

    • Can eligible step children apply?

      Yes! Step children are welcome and eligible to apply.  Applicants who are step-children will need to provide proof of relationship to the qualifying Marine using either tax documents or a marriage certificate showing the relationship.

    • I am a part-time student. Am I still eligible to receive a scholarship from the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation?

      Yes! Awards are available for part-time students.

    • I would like to attend a community college or trade school. Am I eligible for a scholarship?

      Yes! Scholarships are available to any eligible student attending an accredited school. You can verify accreditation by visiting www.nces.ed.gov and using the college navigator tool to search your school by name.

    • Can I apply for one of the honorary or memorial scholarship listed on your website?

      All awardees are automatically considered for our honorary and memorial scholarships; applicants are unable to apply for any of the honorary or memorial scholarships.

    • How many scholarships do you award each year?

      The number of awarded scholarships varies every year depending on the amount of eligible applications we receive and our fundraising efforts. In the 2012-2013 academic year, we awarded over 1,900 scholarships. In the 2013-2014 academic year, we awarded over 2,000 scholarships. In the 2013-2014 academic year, we awarded over 2,000 scholarships.


Application

    • How do I apply?

      Application steps can be found here.
      Application steps for renewal applicants can be found here.

    • How do I know if I am a renewal applicant or a new applicant?

      You are a renewal applicant if you were awarded in the 2013-2014 academic year. If you applied in 2013-2014, but were not awarded, you need to complete the application process as a new applicant. If you are unsure of your status, e-mail students@mcsf.org so we can help identify which application you should complete.

    • When is the application deadline?

      The deadline is March 1 at 11:59 p.m. CST for all applicants.

    • While creating an account I was told the User ID has already been used or that the account already exists. I have never tried to log in before, so how can that be?

      For the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation MyMCSF Account:
      When creating an account, you must create a unique User ID – something that no one else in the system has ever used before. If you received a message that the User ID has already been used, then you will need to register for a different User ID. Be sure to keep track of your User ID, as you will need this throughout the entire academic year and in the coming years. Once you have registered successfully, a confirmation e-mail will be sent to you..

      For the application provider:
      To start an application you must create a unique User ID with our application provider – something that no one else in the system has ever used before. If you receive a message that the account cannot be created because it already exists, then you have tried to create a User ID that is already being used – you will need to try a different User ID. Be sure to keep track of your User ID until after the scholarship deadline has passed. Once you have registered successfully, a confirmation e-mail will be sent to you to help you remember your User ID.

    • How do I change my User ID or Password for my account?

      For the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation MyMCSF Account:
      User ID: Your User ID cannot be changed. If you forget your User ID, go to the login page and click the Forgotten Password/Forgotten User ID button. Follow the online instructions and your information will be e-mailed to you. DO NOT CREATE A NEW ACCOUNT.
      Password: If you forget your password, go to the login page and click the Forgotten Password/Forgotten User ID button. Enter your User ID or e-mail and your information will be e-mailed to you. DO NOT CREATE A NEW ACCOUNT.

      For the application provider:
      User ID: Your User ID cannot be changed. If you forget your User ID, go to the login page and click the Forgot User ID or Password button and follow the online instructions.
      Password: If you forget your password, go to the login page and click the Forgot User ID or Password button. Follow the online instructions, which will include answering the security question you selected when you first registered. To change your password, log into your account and click the Change Password tab in the navigation menu on the left side of the page.

    • When and how do you notify students of their awards?

      If you submit a completed application, you will receive our award decision by e-mail in May. If you have not received an e-mail by May 31, and are confident you submitted an application, check your SPAM box in your e-mail.

    • I am a new applicant. Are any documents required for the application?

      Yes. You are required to upload the following documents as part of your application:

      1. TRANSCRIPT: Your current year school transcript that shows a cumulative, unweighted GPA of 2.0 or above on a 4.0 scale.
      2. 2013 FEDERAL INCOME TAX RETURN: The first two pages of the 2013 Federal Income Tax Return (or 2012 if 2013 has not been filed) you are claimed on or the Statement of Non-filing of a Federal Tax Return AY 2014-15 form.
      3. MILITARY DOCUMENTS: One of the following three documents for your qualifying Marine/Navy Corpsman parent as proof of their honorable service:
        • Prior Marines/Navy Corpsmen: DD214 (Member-4 version)
        • Active Duty or Current Reservists: Statement of Service dated within the last 3 months
        • Marines/Navy Corpsmen that were killed in action, service, or training: Report of Casualty DD Form 1300
      4. PHOTO: A photo of yourself that is suitable for reproduction in Scholarship Foundation publications and donor relations, and is at least 500KB

      Additional questions about these documents can be found in the "Application Documents" section of the FAQ.

      If applicable, you may also be required to upload one or more of the following documents into your application:

      • Grandparent Association Document (roster list, membership card, or copy of newsletter with name and address)  – if applicable
      • The letter assigning the qualifying military parent to the Permanent Disability Retired List (PDRL) from the Commandant of the Marine Corps. DO NOT provide a letter from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)  – if applicable
      • Applicant's DD214 (Member-4 version) or Statement of Service – if applicable
    • I am a renewal applicant that was awarded in the 2013-2014 academic year. Are any documents required for my application?

      Yes. You will be required to upload the following documents as part of your application:

      1. TRANSCRIPT: Your current year school transcript that shows a cumulative, unweighted GPA of 2.0 or above on a 4.0 scale.
      2. 2013 FEDERAL INCOME TAX RETURN: The first two pages of the 2013 Federal Income Tax Return (or 2011 if 2012 has not been filed) you are claimed on or the Statement of Non-filing of a Federal Tax Return AY 2014-15 form.

      Additional questions about these documents can be found in the "Application Documents" section of the FAQ.

    • What do I do if I don't have a scanner?

      Visit your local copy center, your school library, or consider asking a teacher, friend, or family member if they can help you. Some suggestions of copy centers include, but are not limited to:

      • FedEx Kinko's
      • UPS Store
      • Mailboxes, Etc.
      • Office Max
      • Staples


      Any documents sent by postal mail or fax will not be accepted and will be destroyed.

    • What do I do if my document is too large to upload?

      Consult with your school's computer lab technicians or search online for tips on re-sizing PDF documents.

    • Can I e-mail, postal mail, or fax my documents?

      No. All documents must be scanned and uploaded electronically into the application. Any supporting documents sent to us by e-mail, postal mail, or fax will not be accepted and will be destroyed.

    • I have previously been awarded a scholarship. Do I need to apply again?

      Yes!  Recipients are eligible for four paid awards, but are required to re-apply each year.  The renewal application is simple and gives you the opportunity to update your information.

      Recipients are not required to be awarded in consecutive years, but if you were not awarded in the previous academic year, you need to complete the application process as a first time student.

    • What is the dollar amount of your scholarship awards?

      Scholarship awards range between $1,500 to $10,000 per academic year.

    • Can I save my application and come back later?

      Yes. To save your updates, click the Save button within the application, then log out. The next time you log in, you will be able to continue where you left off.


Application Documents

    • TAX DOCUMENT – What tax forms are accepted?

      The first two pages of the 2013 federal income tax return (or 2012 if 2013 has not been filed) you are claimed on. Being considered an independent student is not merely a matter of being responsible for your own educational expenses. The parent whose tax document you are claimed on does not have to be your qualifying military parent.

      Acceptable federal income tax return forms are:

      • Federal (US) 1040 – submit first two pages
      • Federal (US) 1040A – submit first two pages
      • Federal (US) 1040EZ – acceptable only if you are an independent student – submit first page

      Unacceptable forms include:

      • Summary pages
      • Form 1040-ES
      • Form 1040-X


      The general IRS site for all forms is: http://www.irs.gov

    • TAX DOCUMENT – How do I know if I submit my parent’s tax return, or my tax return?

      First determine if you are a dependent or independent student using the dependency status calculator here, or by visiting this website: https://studentaid.ed.gov/sites/default/files/fafsa-dependency.pdf.

      • Dependent applicants must provide their parent’s tax return of which they are claimed on (this means your name will appear on the tax form!).
      • Independent applicants must provide their own tax return.

      We understand you may file your own taxes, or that your parent is not helping you financially with your education, but we still require you to submit the tax document you are claimed on. BEING CONSIDERED AN INDEPENDENT STUDENT IS NOT MERELY A MATTER OF BEING RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR OWN EDUCATIONAL EXPENSES.

      If your parents are divorced, submit the tax document you are claimed on and provide any additional information about your family’s circumstances in the appropriate box within the application. The parent whose tax document you are claimed on does not have to be your qualifying military parent.

    • TAX DOCUMENT – I’m not considered an independent student, but I am paying for my own education because my parents cannot/will not help me. Do I have to submit their tax return?

      Yes. If you are considered a dependent student, you must submit the tax document you are claimed on (this means your name will appear on the tax form). Being considered an independent student is not merely a matter of being responsible for your own educational expenses. We understand that your parent may not be helping you financially with your education, but we still require you to submit the tax document you are claimed on. Submitting and incorrect document will cause a delay in processing and may result in an incomplete application.

    • TAX DOCUMENT – My parents are divorced or separated. Whose tax document should I use?

      You must submit the tax document on which you are claimed as a dependent (this means your name will appear on the tax form!), and provide any additional information about your family’s circumstances in the appropriate box within the application. The parent whose tax document you are claimed on does not have to be your qualifying military parent.

    • TAX DOCUMENT – What if my parent’s federal taxes will not be finalized until after the deadline?

      If your parent’s tax document has not been finalized by the March 1 application deadline, then upload the previous year tax document.

    • TAX DOCUMENT – What if I, or my parents, do not file a tax return?

      You must submit the Statement of Non-filing of a Federal Tax Return form in lieu of a tax document. The form must be signed by you and your parents. You can find this document within the application.

      If awarded, you will be required to provide official confirmation of non-filing status by completing IRS Form 4506-T (Request for Transcript of Tax Return) and e-mail the confirmation to students@mcsf.org by 15 July. If you are considered a dependent student by the federal government, then you must provide the confirmation for your parents. If you are considered an independent student by the federal government, then you must provide the confirmation for yourself. Awardees that fail to provide the official confirmation, or provide false statements, risk forfeiting their scholarship award.

    • DD214/STATEMENT OF SERVICE – What is a DD214 (Member-4 version) form?

      The DD214 (Member-4 version) form is a Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty. This document is required to complete your application and serves as proof that your parent was a U.S. Marine or a Navy Corpsman who served with a Marine unit, and that he/she received an honorable discharge.

      The “Character of Service” on the DD214 must read: HONORABLE. No other character of service will be accepted.

      The following documents will NOT be accepted in lieu of the DD214: Certificate of Release or Discharge, DD214 documents that do not indicate the “Character of Service,” letters from Veterans’ Affairs, disability documents, duty orders, military I.D.

    • DD214/STATEMENT OF SERVICE – Where can I find the “Character of Service” on the DD214 (Member-4 version)?

      The bottom left corner of the DD214 document indicates a form “date.” Use the list below to determine where the “Character of Service” appears on your form:

      DD Form 214, Feb 2000:    Box 24
      DD Form 214, Nov 88:      Box 24
      DD Form 214, 1 Jul 79:      Box 24
      DD Form 214, 1 Nov 72:     Box 9e
      DD Form 214 MC (1900), 1 Jul 66:     Box 13a
      DD Form 214, 1 Nov 55:     Box 13a

    • DD214/STATEMENT OF SERVICE – What can I do if I don’t have my parent’s DD214 (Member-4 version), or proof of their honorable service?

      Military records can be obtained online at: www.archives.gov/veterans. It can take up to several months to obtain this information, so plan for ample time.

    • DD214/STATEMENT OF SERVICE – My parent is currently serving. What kind of service proof do you require?

      If your qualifying Marine/Navy Corpsman parent is still on active duty or is still in the reserves, you must provide a written Statement of Service dated within the last 3 months with your application. The Statement of Service must be submitted on official letterhead that is signed by the Adjutant, Personnel Officer, Executive Officer, or Commanding Officer of the unit.

      The following documents will NOT be accepted in lieu of the Statement of Service: Certificate of Release or Discharge, letters from Veterans’ Affairs, disability documents, duty orders, military I.D.

    • DD214/STATEMENT OF SERVICE – My parent is in the reserves. What kind of service proof do you require?

      If your qualifying Marine/Navy Corpsman parent is still in the reserves, you must provide a written Statement of Service within the application. The Statement of Service must be submitted on official letterhead that is signed by the Adjutant, Personnel Officer, Executive Officer, or Commanding Officer of the unit.

      The following documents will NOT be accepted in lieu of the Statement of Service: Certificate of Release or Discharge, letters from Veterans’ Affairs, disability documents, duty orders, military I.D.

    • DD214/STATEMENT OF SERVICE – My parent was killed in action, killed in service, or killed in training. What service document do you require?

      This is a tragic circumstance, and we invite you to call (703) 549-0060, Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. (Eastern time) to discuss your application.

      If your qualifying Marine/Navy Corpsman parent was killed in action, killed in service, or killed in training, provide a Report of Casualty (DD1300) within the application.

    • TRANSCRIPT – I won’t be able to get my official transcript by the application deadline. What can I do?

      Provide your unofficial transcript in lieu of your official transcript. The unofficial version must include your name, your school’s name, and a cumulative, unweighted GPA. Screenshots are considered valid. Microsoft Word, text, or editable documents are not acceptable.

    • TRANSCRIPT – My school will only postal mail my official transcript, but you won’t accept any documents by mail. What should I do?

      Request your transcript be mailed to you. When you receive your transcript, scan it, then upload electronic version into your application. We will accept your transcript as “official” even though sealed envelope has been opened.

      If your school mails your transcript to our office, we will not accept it and will destroy the document. No application documents are accepted by e-mail, postal mail, or fax.

    • PHOTOGRAPH OF APPLICANT – Why do I have to include a photograph of myself in the application?

      We use photos of our applicants and awardees for various publications and donor relations. Submitting your photo with the application means you will have one less step to complete during the post-award process!

    • PHOTOGRAPH OF APPLICANT – What are the requirements for the photograph I need to include in my application?

      All photos must meet the following requirements:

      • A recent, clear face shot.
      • Other people should not appear in the photograph.
      • Photograph must be high resolution and no smaller than 500KB. Do not send photos that are poor quality, grainy, or highly pixilated.
      • Suitable for various Scholarship Foundation publications and donor relations. To include our yearbook, newsletter, and donor communication.

      We will not accept photographs that are poor quality, grainy, highly pixilated, or inappropriate in nature.

      DO NOT SEND “SELF-PORTRAITS” PHOTOS—THESE PHOTOS ARE GREAT FOR FACEBOOK, INSTAGRAM, AND OTHER SOCIAL MEDIA, BUT ARE INAPPROPRIATE FOR A SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATION.


Post Application

      • GENERAL INQUIRY – Can you send me another copy of my award letter?

        No. Scholarship award notification e-mails are sent through an automated e-mail blast to the e-mail you entered in your application and cannot be recreated. We suggest you sort your e-mail account by date and look for our e-mail notification that was sent in May.

      • GENERAL INQUIRY – What is my award amount?

        Login to your account on www.mcsf.org or refer to your award notification e-mail that was sent in May for your award amount.

      • GENERAL INQUIRY – I’ve decided not to use my award this year. Do I lose the award?

        We understand if your plans change and you decided to not attend school this year. Just let us know that you will be declining your award for the year.

        Each scholarship recipient is eligible for four paid scholarship awards. If you decline an award, and it has not been paid for the academic year, then the scholarship award will not count as one of your awards. You will still be required to reapply for the scholarship in the following year.

      • POST-AWARD STEPS AND DOCUMENTS – I was awarded a scholarship. How do I get my award?

        You are required to complete your post-award steps before we can send your scholarship award to your school. The steps can be found by logging into your MyMCSF account at www.mcsf.org and clicking the link that says “Complete your post-award steps.”

        As part of the post-award steps, you will be required to provide the following three post-award documents:

        1. Conditions and Details Agreement form (signed electronically by YOU—not your parent!)
        2. Thank you letter
        3. Student Expenses and Aid form, with Section I completed by you, and Section II completed by your Financial Aid Office
      • POST-AWARD STEPS AND DOCUMENTS – Where can I find the post-award documents?

        All required forms and documents can be found by logging into your My MCSF page and clicking the “Complete your post-award steps” link.

      • POST-AWARD STEPS AND DOCUMENTS – Can I submit my student bill or a Verification of Enrollment instead of the “Student Expenses and Aid” form?

        No. The Student Expenses and Aid form is designed to collect information that our Foundation needs from your school’s Financial Aid Office. Other documents will not be accepted in lieu of our form.

      • POST-AWARD STEPS AND DOCUMENTS – Do you send the Student Expenses and Aid form to my school for completion?

        No. It is your responsibility to have Section II of the form completed by your Financial Aid Officer prior to returning the document to us.

      • POST-AWARD STEPS AND DOCUMENTS – Should the Student Expenses and Aid form be completed with my semester costs and aid or academic year costs and aid?

        Our scholarship is for an academic year, therefore we need the costs and aid associated for an academic year at your school.

      • SCHOLARSHIP AWARD PAYMENTS – Why hasn’t my school received my scholarship payment?

        There are several possible explanations for this:

        1. You haven’t completed or properly submitted your post-award documents. The Scholarship Foundation will not pay your scholarship award to your school until we have received the specific required post-award documents.
        2. The Scholarship Foundation sends award checks through the postal mail. It is possible that your scholarship has not made it to your school yet.
        3. It can take your school several days, and sometimes weeks, to process your scholarship payment. Allow your school some additional time to receive the check, and process it.

        If your school still has not received your scholarship payment after three weeks of completing your post-award steps, contact us at students@mcsf.org so we can address your particular situation.

      • SCHOLARSHIP AWARD PAYMENTS – When will my scholarship award payment be sent?

        To check the status of your post-award steps and see the date your check was mailed, login to your MyMCSF account at www.mcsf.org and click the “Post-award Steps Progress Page” link. Refer to the date that reads “Scholarship Check Mailing Date” to see when we mailed your scholarship. If no date appears, then you have not completed your post-award steps, or we are still processing your post-award documents.

      • SCHOLARSHIP AWARD PAYMENTS – What expenses can I use my scholarship award for?

        Your scholarship award can be used for the cost of attendance at an accredited two- or four-year college, university, or vocational-technical school in the upcoming academic year. Cost of attendance includes your tuition, room and board, books, and any other additional costs as defined by the financial aid administrator of your school.

      • SCHOLARSHIP AWARD PAYMENTS – Where do you send the scholarship award payment?

        Your scholarship award payment is sent directly to your college, university, or vocational-technical school in one payment for the entire year. The scholarship funds are then allocated by the school according to their regulations.

      • SCHOLARSHIP AWARD PAYMENTS – I am not attending the school I indicated on my application. What should I do?

        No need to update us on your change of plans—just be sure to indicate the correct school on your Student Expenses and Aid form using the IPEDS code. If you provide an incorrect IPEDS code, we will send your scholarship award to the incorrect school. Be sure to look up your school’s IPEDS code on the College Navigator website by going here (http://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator).

        Scholarship award amounts are not made based on your choice of school. If you change your school, it will not result in a decrease or increase in your scholarship award.

      • SCHOLARSHIP AWARD PAYMENTS – I am transferring schools in the fall semester. How can I make sure my scholarship goes to my new school?

        If you are transferring and will begin attending your new school in the fall semester, then there is no need to do anything beyond the post-award steps. Have your new school complete the Student Expenses and Aid form, and we will send your scholarship award to the school indicated.

      • SCHOLARSHIP AWARD PAYMENTS – I am transferring schools in the spring semester. How can I make sure the remaining balance of my award is sent to my new school?

        You will find a transfer student checklist when you login to your MyMCSF account at www.mcsf.org.

        If you did not attend school during the fall semester, and you will be attending a new school in the spring semester, then you will only need to provide the Student Expenses and Aid form for the school you will be attending.

      • SCHOLARSHIP AWARD PAYMENTS – If I attend summer classes, can my scholarship be applied to those expenses?

        Yes, but you need to inform your school of your intentions because most schools will equally distribute your scholarship award between the fall and spring semester. If you would like to attend school in the summer, communicate this with your school, so funds can be distributed to include the summer semester.

      • SCHOLARSHIP AWARD PAYMENTS – I have funds leftover from my scholarship. Can I use them for the next academic year?

        No. Your scholarship is only for use in the academic year for which it was awarded. If your scholarship is paid partially, or in full, it will count as one of the four paid scholarships allowed for each recipient. Any unused funds must be returned to the Scholarship Foundation at the end of the academic year.

 





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Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation
909 N. Washington Street, Suite 400
Alexandria, VA  22314
Tel: +1703.549.0060  Fax: +1703.549.9474

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