Established within one week of the attacks on September 11, 2001, the Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund® is unprecedented in its scope. It exists to provide more than $100 million in postsecondary education assistance to an entire generation of financially needy dependents of those killed or permanently disabled in the 9/11 attacks and their aftermath. The program has already provided millions in support for students who were in high school and college when the tragedy struck, and will continue to provide for the families whose children complete their education anytime over the next 30 years.
Lumina Foundation for Education and Scholarship America® established the Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund with the foresight that the loss of providers to death or injury on 9/11 would put the educational futures of thousands of present and future students in jeopardy. The Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund was established so that, for those dependents in financial need, college education would remain within reach.
The Fund sparked incredible generosity nationwide. With President Bill Clinton and U.S. Senator Bob Dole serving as campaign co-chairs, donations arrived from more than 20,000 corporations, foundations, educational institutions, grassroots organizations and individuals, raising more than $108 million. More than 16,000 of those contributors are individuals.
The first Families of Freedom scholarships were awarded in January 2002. As of November 2007, the Fund had delivered needed scholarships to 899 individuals, totaling more than $23 million. In 2007 alone, scholarship grants totaled more than $4.7 million. There are currently nearly 5,000 students registered for Families of Freedom scholarships through 2030.