Application Period Open for NVFC Scholarship

June 1, 2020
Columbia Southern University is proud to support volunteer responders by offering two scholarships to members of the National Volunteer Fire Council in 2020.

Columbia Southern University (CSU), an innovator in online education, is proud to support volunteer responders by offering two scholarships to members of the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) in 2020. Each scholarship will cover up to 60 credit hours towards one online degree program. Scholarship recipients may pursue an associate, bachelor’s, or master’s degree.

CSU, the leader in fire education, offers a wide range of accredited degree programs, including fire science and emergency medical services administration. The university offers many online learning options designed to accommodate the busy life of a volunteer firefighter or EMS provider. This is the 12th year that CSU has offered the NVFC scholarships. To date, 22 NVFC members have been able to achieve their educational goals through the partnership. Click here to see how the scholarship has benefited other volunteer responders.

“Education in the fire and emergency services is paramount to ensure our responders can do their job safely and effectively,” said NVFC Chair Steve Hirsch. “We are grateful to CSU for providing our volunteer members with an opportunity to further their education through these annual scholarships.”

“As a university whose students and alumni are actively involved in their community fire departments, it is imperative that we stay connected to organizations like the NVFC,” said Chief Keith Padgett, CSU’s fire and emergency medical services academic program director. “Our partnership with the NVFC ensures that we continue to teach a relevant, indispensable curriculum to volunteer and career fire professionals.”

To be eligible for the scholarship, applicants must:

  • Be a member of the NVFC. If you are not currently an NVFC member, click here to learn about membership benefits and join the NVFC for just $18.
  • Be a volunteer responder.
  • Complete the CSU/NVFC Scholarship application.
  • Submit a 500-word essay on this subject: "Explain how the opportunity to continue your education through this scholarship will advance your participation in the fire and emergency services or enhance your ability to contribute back to the emergency services community."
  • Provide at least one letter of recommendation (from a teacher or someone at the fire department you reported to directly).
  • Must not have previously earned a scholarship through CSU or the NVFC.
  • Have a high school diploma or equivalent (GED), and be able to provide a transcript.
  • Be able to begin coursework within 90 days of the date of the award.
  • Maintain a 2.0 undergraduate GPA or 3.0 graduate GPA.
  • Remain in good standing with CSU and NVFC throughout the degree program.
  • Maintain continuous enrollment in the CSU degree program for the duration of the scholarship.

Current CSU students must already meet the requirements to be considered. The deadline to apply is August 31. An NVFC scholarship committee will select the winners; recipients will be announced in October 2020.

Learn more about this scholarship opportunity and apply on the CSU website. For questions, please email the scholarship liaison at [email protected] or call 888-785-3006.

About Columbia Southern University

In 2018, Columbia Southern University celebrated its 25th anniversary. As an innovator in online education, CSU was established in 1993 to provide an alternative to the traditional university experience. CSU offers online associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees such as business administration, criminal justice, fire administration, and occupational safety and health. Visit or call (877) 347-6050 to learn more.

About the NVFC

The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) is the leading nonprofit membership association representing the interests of the volunteer fire, EMS, and rescue services. The NVFC serves as the voice of the volunteer in the national arena and provides critical resources, programs, education, and advocacy for first responders across the nation. Learn more at

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