About ESA's Youth Scholarship Program

Scholarships to Support the Futures of the Sons and Daughters of First Responders

The electronic security industry works intimately with the public safety sector. We appreciate the contribution that police, firefighters, paramedics, and EMTs offer to our communities. To show this appreciation, the program was developed to provide college scholarship awards to their deserving sons or daughters.

Since its launch in 1996, ESA's Youth Scholarship Program has contributed thousands of dollars to students attending higher education institutions across our country. In fact, more than $700,500 has been awarded by ESA and its participating Chapters.

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2018 Award Winners
Naomi Hess

Naomi Hess of Clarksville, MD

Congratulations to Naomi Hess, first-place winner of a $10,000 scholarship in the 2018 ESA Youth Scholarship Program.

Congratulations also go to second-place winner Noah Meyer of Las Vegas, NV who received a $3,500 scholarship.

View all state preliminary winners

Today, ESA and participating ESA Chapters from over 15 states are involved in the scholarship program. The first-place winner of each Chapter's program is automatically considered for the national ESA Youth Scholarship Program awards.

Students who reside in a participating state must enter their local ESA Chapter awards to become eligible for the overall national awards. Students who reside in a state without an ESA chapter or in a non-participating state should submit their applications directly to ESA. The student who wins the ESA award will receive $1,000. This ESA winner and the other Chapter winners, will be pulled together and considered for the overall national awards. First place will receive an additional $7,500 and Second place will receive an additional $2,500 award. 


Each state program awards scholarships at various levels, check your specific ESA Chapter for details.

ESA will award a $7,500 scholarship to the first-place national winner, and $2,500 to the second-place national winner.

Awards are based on a combination of academic achievement, national test scores, extracurricular participation and the essay. In addition to completing the application and submitting the appropriate documentation, each student must write an essay explaining “What it means to me to have my parent or guardian involved in securing our community.”

This year, 15 ESA Chapters will take part in the Youth Scholarship Program. Applicants who live in a participating state must apply directly to their ESA Chapter. If you do not see your state listed, you can apply directly to ESA.

Participating states include: CA, CT, FL, GA, IN, LA, NV (Clark County Residents Only), NJ, NY, NC, PA, TN, UT, VA, WA, WI.

The deadline for the 2019 ESA Scholarship is March 1, 2019. If you live in a state with a participating ESA Chapter, please check their individual application page for details. Deadlines do vary.

If you are an ESA member interested in starting the program in your state or chapter, contact:

Andria Morgan
(888) 447-1689 ext. 6813

1. Applicants must be at least 15 years of age and not older than 20. He or she must be a graduating high school senior who will receive a diploma from an accredited high school. Home schooled students and students attending military or boarding schools are also eligible to apply. Applicants must be accepted for admission to an accredited college or university, matriculating the following year.

2. Each eligible student must have a father, mother or natural guardian who meets the following qualifications: a. Parent must be a full-time paid member of the police or sheriff’s department or fire department. Parent/guardian may also be a volunteer member of a fire department. b. Parent or guardian must be an active duty police officer, firefighter, paramedic, or EMT (public sector). Children of administrative staff do not qualify. c. Children of DHS, FBI and other Federal employees do not qualify. d. Children of reserve officers, part-time sheriff’s deputies and retired, or deceased employees do not qualify.

3. Each student must submit a fully completed and signed application. The application may be submitted first, followed by other required documents. Application and all other required documents must be received on or before the deadline to be accepted. Failure to follow instructions can result in disqualification.

4. Students must submit the following: a. Completed and signed application b. Essay (typed) c. Transcripts from the school (or parent if home schooled) that lists the student’s grade point average. GPA must be in a standard 4.0 or 0-100 percent scale or conversion method must be provided. d. Proof of acceptance to a college or university (letter/certificate acceptable; does not have to be the student’s intended college or university). e. Proof of parent’s occupation (copy of ID or supervisory letter on station letterhead acceptable). f. Copies of official SAT and/or ACT test score results. (These may be included on and sent with official high school transcripts). g. Résumé listing community service, academic prizes, awards, hobbies, extracurricular activities and work history. h. Proof of verified community service. i. Letter of recommendation from a high school counselor, teacher or other outside agency which speaks to the student's character.

5. All materials become the property of the ESA Chartered Chapter (if applicable) and ESA. By submitting an application and essay, the student grants permission to publish any and all essays. Applicants also agree that if they win, they will cooperate in publicity efforts, including (but not limited to) participating in interviews with state and national ESA communications, local, trade and national press, and submitting photos for inclusion in state chapter and national publications, press materials and online. Applicants will make every effort to meet with the local ESA chapter for an award presentation ceremony. (Attendance at such an event is not a requirement but is encouraged.)

6. Awards are based on a combination of academic achievement, national test scores, community service, extracurricular participation and the essay. All decisions are final. The score is based on the following:

a. Grade Average: 20 POINTS

b. SAT Scores or ACT: 15 POINTS

c. Essay: 35 POINTS

d. Verified Community Service: 20 POINTS

e. Academic prizes, awards, hobbies, school and outside extracurricular activities: 10 POINTS

TOTAL 100 Points

Past Winners

Jessica Hill of Bristow, VA

Katherine Waugh of Easton, CT

Katherine Waugh of Easton, CT

Douglas Leonard

Douglas Leonard

Mackenzie McDonald

Mackenzie McDonald

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