When it comes to unknown scholarships, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier scholarships fit the description perfectly. Students who are looking for funding for college may wish to consider applying, if they qualify. Eligible candidates must be members of The Society of the Honor Guard, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Dependents of members of The Society or dependents of deceased Tomb Guards may also be eligible as candidates for the unknown scholarship.
The goal of the scholarship program is to provide financial assistance to Society members or their dependents who are interested in pursuing an associate degree, undergraduate degree or vocational training.
The Society of the Honor Guard of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier is responsible for hand selecting the soldiers who guard the Tomb of the Unknowns. The Tomb is situated in Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia. The cemetery was initially started during the Civil War. The property where the cemetery rests was once owned by Confederate General Robert E. Lee. Since that time, the cemetery has been expanded to some 200 acres. More than 300,000 people are now interred in the cemetery. The gold veined marble sarcophagus contains the remains of an unknown World War I soldier. Three other marble slabs have been placed over the graves of unknown soldiers from World War I as well as the Korean War and the Vietnam War.
All soldiers considered as a guard are required to have strong military bearing as well as stamina and discipline. More than 80% of those who try out for to be a guard for the Tomb do not actually make the cut due to the strict requirements to serve as a guard.
Along with stamina, disciple and bearing, all soldiers considered as guard material must be able to perform flawlessly seven different types of honors, walks and ceremonies. They are also required to learn massive amounts of knowledge regarding Arlington National Cemetery, the Tomb and the U.S. Army. Guards typically only serve about one year of duty. During that time they work 24-hour team rotations and then are off duty for 96 hours.
Since 1937, the Tomb has been continuously guarded. Prior to that time the Tomb was not guarded and the public often picnicked around the Tomb area. Guards continue on duty even during severe weather. While the identities of the Unknown Soldiers have largely remained unknown, one of the soldiers was exhumed in 1988 and later identified as Air Force 1st Lt. Michael Joseph Blassie. Blassie had been shot down in 1972 in Vietnam. His remains were later returned to his family so they could be buried in his hometown in Missouri. The other tombs contain the remains of soldiers from World I and II as well as the Korean Conflict.
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Scholarships Criteria
Dependents of deceased Tomb Guards whose deaths occurred prior to the SHGTUS being established will be given preference. Preference is also given to dependents of members of the Society who were killed or incapacitated while serving on active duty. Members of the Society who have become separated from the Army and who later become incapacitated will also receive special consideration by the scholarship selection committee.
Recipients of the Unknown Soldier scholarships are required to enroll in an accredited university, college, business college, community college, vocational school or nursing school. The unknown scholarships are for one year. Students who receive the little known scholarship are allowed to re-apply on an annual basis as long as they are able to maintain a GPA of 2.5 for each term and they are enrolled on a full-time basis.
Along with submitting a completed application, candidates should also include a one to two page essay which states their goals and how the Unknown Soldier scholarship can help them to reach their goals. In addition, candidates should also submit a letter of recommendation regarding their volunteer and/or community efforts. Applications for the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier scholarships should be filed by April 15th.
Lots of unknown scholarships exist but this one could be classified as the original unknown scholarship program!