PROGRAM DESCRIPTION:

1.     The Stateside Spouse Education Assistance Program (SSEAP) is a need-based education assistance program designed to provide spouses of active duty and retired Soldiers, and widows(ers) of Soldiers who died either on active duty or in a retired status, and residing in the United States, with financial assistance in pursuing educational goals. The purpose of the program is to assist spouses/widows(ers) in gaining the education required to allow them to qualify for increased occupational opportunities.  Individuals who receive free tuition as a result of their employment will not receive tuition assistance from AER. However, they may apply for assistance for fees, supplies or books (no duplicates) for classes in which they are enrolled.  “Active Duty” military personnel are not eligible.

2.     Spouses/widow(ers) must reside at a stateside residence, and be enrolled, accepted, or pending acceptance as full time students in post-secondary or vocational institutions and approved by the U.S. Department of Education.

3.     SSEAP is NOT an entitlement or automatically approved. SSEAP does not apply to second undergraduate or graduate level courses.

4.     Stateside financial assistance is awarded based on financial need, as evidenced by income, assets, family size, special financial obligations and circumstances.

5.     The scholarships are awarded annually for up to four (4) academic years to attend post secondary school FULL TIME for the entire academic year as first undergraduate level students. Funds are to assist with academic expenses at the attending University/School and will be disbursed equally between the Fall and Spring semesters or quarters to assist with tuition, books, fees and supplies.

6.     The Stateside Spouse Education Assistance Program scholarships are awarded annually for up to four academic years to attend post secondary school full time as undergraduate level students. All students must complete an application and mail all supporting documentation each year.

ELIGIBILITY:

To be eligible for SSEAP, applicants must be residing in the United States and be the spouse of an Soldier on active duty, widow(er) of an Soldier who died while on active duty, spouse of retired Soldier or widow(er) of Soldier who died while in a retired status.

APPLICATION AND SUPPORTING DOCUMENTATION:

1.     Spouses/widows(ers) who wish to participate in SSEAP may submit an online application (AER Form 6) on our Web Site: www.aerhq.org. All applicants must complete a new application for each academic year. Read instructions and application carefully before completing. All requested documents are required with the submitted online application and must be mailed to this headquarters. All the necessary documents must be postmarked no later than AER’s postmark deadline date for each academic year.

2.     The online application and supporting documentation listed below must be submitted postmarked no later than March 1, 2010. The applicant is responsible for meeting the deadline date. Incomplete and/or late applications/documents WILL NO longer be considered. The supporting documentation is as follows:

a.     PRIVACY STATEMENT (IF APLICABLE) – The privacy statement (Part 7 of the AER Form 6) must be signed and dated by both the spouse and the Soldier (as applicable). If special circumstances preclude the Soldier’s signature, inform us in detail so those circumstances can be considered. If the spouse is signing for the Soldier (they must sign Soldier’s name, by POA) and include a copy of the General Power of Attorney. Without the signatures, the application is not complete.

b.     ORDERS – Send copies of the documents, not originals.

1.    ARNG AND USAR SOLDIERS – Most recent Assignment Orders. Active Duty Orders must include ETS and period of active duty through entire academic year and assignment to eligible command.

2.    If Soldier is deceased while on Active duty, copy of Army Casualty Report.

3.    A copy of spouse Discharge Orders/DD214 is needed (along with Soldier’s PCS Orders) if previously in the USA, USN, USAF, USMC, RES OR GRD.

c.     2010-2011 STUDENT AID REPORT (SAR) Financial Aid Analysis: postmark deadline not later than May 1, 2010. The SAR is the resulting analysis of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application or renewal.

STEP # 1: COMPLETING THE FAFSA APPLICATION

1.  The hardcopy FAFSA can be obtained from your school Financial Aid Office or education advisor. Submit the FAFSA application, not later than March 1, 2010, to the processing organization, NOT AER.  It may take as long as six weeks for processing.

2.   The FAFSA is also available online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. If you apply on the web, you can print the SAR from the site after the data is confirmed. It must include the Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) and all family financial information provided on the FAFSA to be acceptable. You may request a SAR be mailed to you to forward to AER. If you requested hard copy of the SAR, it is usually eight pages in length. The applicant must mail a photocopy of the entire SAR to HQ, AER.

3.   2010-2011 Institutional Student Information Record (ISIR): Alternate documentation – The 2010-2011 ISIR has the same information as the SAR. The postmark deadline is May 1, 2010. This is not the institution financial aid offering. The applicant must mail a copy of the entire ISIR to AER.

4.   Do NOT mail AER a copy of your FAFSA application, the FAFSA renewal forms, the computer-generated printout of data on the application, the family tax forms, or the institutional financial aid offering. The 2010-2011 analysis from the Department of Education is the required document to be mailed.

5.   To be acceptable, the SAR or ISIR analysis must include complete family financial information and the EFC.

STEP # 2: PRINTING THE STUDENT AID REPORT (SAR), RESULTS FROM THE FAFSA APPLICATION

The 2010-2011 Student Aid Report can be downloaded and printed from the FAFSA website at www.fafsa.ed.gov.

To access the SAR on the FAFSA website please follow the following steps:

1.     Go to the FAFSA homepage: www.fafsa.ed.gov

2.     Under the orange box #3: FAFSA Follow-up click on the link: “View and print your Student Aid Report”

3.     You then see a Student Access page that says “Confirming your Identity.” Fill in your information and click on the link “Submit”

4.     You will then see another Student Access page that says “Transactions.” There will be table that lists your transactions. Under the heading “Transaction Number” there will be a number. Click on that number. (The number is usually 01)

5.     On this Student Access page you will see a column on the left. Click on the link on the bottom of the column called, “Print Summary”

6.     You will now be at the “Print Summary” page.

7.     Now click on the link next to the number 2. “SAR (PDF version)”

8.     This link will download your SAR as an Adobe Acrobat File. This is the correct SAR.

Please print the pdf version, which is 3 pages and mail it to AER by postmark May 1, 2010. The SAR that is printed off the FAFSA website should be 3 pages. The first page is a big table and on the top left corner it says SAR 2010-2011.

There is also a yellow hardcopy version that FAFSA can mail that you that is 4 pages which are all front and back. Both of these versions are acceptable. To be sure we receive all the information we need, please provide a copy of the entire SAR.

d. OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPTS:

1.  If you will be a freshman and have never attended college – a transcript is not required.

2.  If you are currently in a post secondary school or have taken undergraduate courses previously,

send an official transcript of ALL post secondary grades to include the most recent semester or

quarter completed to HQ, AER, verifying cumulative GPA.

e. ID CARD: A legible copy of student’s Dependent Military ID Card, FRONT AND BACK.

f. SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES: If a spouse has special circumstances that she/he wishes HQ, AER to consider,

include an explanation in “Remarks” of the AER Form 6 or send an additional letter with their application.  Should

special circumstances occur after the application is forwarded, provide a subsequent letter to HQ, AER.

TIMETABLE: MARK YOUR CALENDAR

MARCH 1, 2010: Supporting documentation must be mailed to HQ, AER postmarked not later than March 1, 2010.  Online applications must be submitted not later than March 1, 2010.  Official transcripts may be mailed with the application or separately but must meet the March 1 postmark deadline. ARNG and USAR orders and Army Casualty Report, only if applicable, are due by March 1, 2010.

MAY 1, 2010: SAR or ISIR financial aid analysis, 2010-2011 report, may be mailed with your supporting documents or separately but must be postmarked no later than May 1, 2010.

MAY 2010: Award letters mailed to scholarship recipients during the last week of May.

JULY 1, 2010: Scholarship recipients complete and return the AER Scholarship Agreement and provide a copy of report of final spring grades (photo copy acceptable) for the 2009-2010 academic year.

JULY 26-30, 2010: HQ, AER disburses scholarship funds to schools.

DECEMBER 2010: Applications for the 2011-2012 Academic Year (AY) will be available on our (AER) web page, www.aerhq.org; after December 1st.

WHAT TO SEND?

A COMPLETE APPLICATION INCLUDES:

  1. AER Stateside Spouse Education Assistance Program Application for AY 2010-2011, SUBMITTED ONLINE.
  2. Signed Privacy Statement by applicant and Soldier (if applicable).
  3. A General Power of Attorney, (if applicable).
  4. ARNG and USAR Soldiers: Active Duty Orders, serving under Title 10, US Code, (if applicable).
  5. Deceased Active Soldiers: Army Casualty Report, (if applicable).
  6. A copy of student’s Discharge Orders/DD214 if previously in the USA, USN, USAF, USMC, RES or GRD, (if applicable).
  7. Official transcript(s) of all grades verifying CUM GPA of 2.0 on a 4.0 grading scale.
  8. 2010-2011 Student Aid Report (SAR), Financial Aid Analysis.
  9. A legible photocopy of student’s Dependent Military ID Card, FRONT AND BACK.

Mail completed Stateside Spouse Education Assistance Application with required documentation to HQ, AER. For

Acknowledgment that AER has received your Application or subsequent correspondence, enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard. We will date and return it. This is the only way we can acknowledge receipt. Note, return receipt to the student of the stamped dated postcard does not necessarily mean that your Application was complete.

Headquarters, Army Emergency Relief

Stateside Spouse Education Assistance Program

200 Stovall Street

Alexandria, VA 22332-0600

PLEASE NOTE: HQ, AER assumes no responsibility for applications or supporting documentation not received by this office OR not received in a timely manner.  We do not assume responsibility for items mailed to this address with insufficient postage and subsequently returned to the applicant by the postal service.  All correspondence to the student will be sent to the address listed on the application until a change is received in writing to the contrary.  We assume no responsibility for letters from HQ, AER not delivered to the applicant.  All changes to information furnished to HQ, AER must be submitted in writing.

NO EXCEPTIONS TO ANYTHING POSTMARKED AFTER THE DEADLINE DATE

Source: http://www.aerhq.org/Education_Spouse_Stateside_ProgramDescription.asp