Worldwide electronics leader Samsung endowed a scholarship fund of $5 million to be administered by The American Legion in 1996. Meant to show appreciation for U.S. veterans who came to Korea’s aid during its struggle against communist forces in the Korean War, the Samsung American Legion Scholarship Program established a series of scholarships derived from interest and other income from the principal amount. In 2016, 10 $20,000 scholarships and 89 $1,000 scholarships were awarded. To date, the Samsung American Legion Scholarship has awarded more than $5.3 million to approximately 1,970 applicants.
Scholarship applications are restricted to high school juniors who attend the current session of either The American Legion Boys State or American Legion Auxiliary Girls State program and are a direct descendant – i.e. child, grandchild, great-grandchild, etc. – or a legally adopted child of a wartime veteran who served on active duty during at least one of the periods of war officially designated as eligibility dates for American Legion membership.
- World War I – Apr. 6, 1917 – Nov. 11, 1918
- World War II – Dec. 7, 1941 – Dec. 31, 1946
- Korean War – June 25, 1950 – Jan. 31, 1955
- Vietnam War – Feb. 28, 1961 – May 7, 1975
- Lebanon/Grenada – Aug. 24, 1982 – Jul. 31, 1984
- Panama – Dec. 20, 1989 – Jan. 31, 1990
- Persian Gulf War – Aug. 2, 1990 – Until cessation of hostilities
Includes Operations Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, & War on Terrorism
Samsung scholarships may be used for undergraduate or graduate and applied toward tuition, books, fees, and room and board. Winners are selected according to academic record, involvement in school and community activities, community service and financial need. Applicants who are direct descendants of Korean War veterans will receive a modest points advantage.
Proof of Service Documentation
- Form DD214 (Official discharge certificate)
- Official “Honorable Discharge” certificate
- Form DD1300 (Official military death certificate)
- Official record of burial in a military cemetery issued by the National Cemetery Administration of the Department of Veterans Affairs
- Current or former military ID card
- Current or former LES (Leave and Earnings Statement)
- Official logbook entries from a military unit
- ANY OTHER DOCUMENT LISTED ON THE “Military Service Verification Documents List” (Linked below)
- Any otherwise “acceptable” document that is illegible
- Pictures of military headstones
- Pictures of servicemembers in uniform
- Entries in non-military and/or non-official records or books
- Membership cards from veterans organizations
- VA Healthcare Cards
Documentation may include, but is not limited to copies of, Department of Defense documents, Department of the Army documents, Department of the Navy documents, Department of the Air Force documents, Department of Veterans Affairs documents (federal or state), and American Legion documents.
The following locations may be of assistance.
- Many certificates of discharge prior to 1979 do not appear to be “official” documents as many were typed onto a sheet of paper. If you are unsure if it is an official document, please ask your American Legion service officer. Department Service Officers are listed by state at http://www.legion.org/serviceofficeror download The American Legion Claims Coach Mobile App through Google Play or ITunes App Store.
- The National Archives and Records Administration: http://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/index.html
- The County Clerk and Recorders Office where the veteran resided.
- The funeral home may have kept a copy if military honors were provided.
- Monument company if VA headstone or marker was ordered.
- If the veteran had utilized a VA Home Loan there may be a copy of the DD214 with the title documentation.
- Veterans who have signed up for EBENEFITS through the Veterans Administration may be able to obtain a printable copy from https://www.ebenefits.va.gov/ebenefits-portal/ebenefits.portal
- The State Director of Veterans Affairs may have received a copy of the veterans DD214 at the time of discharge from military service. This will be specific to the state in which the veterans home of record.
Scholarships are due no later than the first day of a participant’s American Legion Boys State or American Legion Auxiliary Girls State program. All applications must be submitted using the online application system by 11:59PM on this day. Participants should check their individual program coordinator as to whether or not the coordinator desires them to bring a hard copy of their submitted application materials. If a hard copy is required, participants will need to complete their application PRIOR to arrival at their respective program.
Note, should you have questions during the application process, we ask that you first contact your state’s Boys State or Girls State point of contact. You may find a listing for your point of contact in your delegate packet or by visiting www.boysandgirlsstate.org and following the links for your program.