ThanksUSA Is Accepting Scholarship Applications for up to a Full Ride!


Jessica Wilkins is a proud Marine Corps spouse and mother of two who is determined to complete her undergraduate studies. Through five military relocations, Jessica has taken college courses at three different institutions. “I have been attending universities part-time for the last eight years and I want to earn my bachelor’s degree by the end of 2017.”

With the assistance of a $3,000 John (NMN) Coffey/ThanksUSA scholarship, Jessica is pursuing a Letters, Arts, and Sciences major at Penn State University World Campus.

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Completing her degree through Penn State’s online program allows Jessica to remain involved with her local community at Camp Lejeune. She has volunteered with her children’s schools, local church, and the Officer Spouses Club. She serves on the OSC Charitable Distributions board and enjoys service on various committees.

“I would like to thank everyone who helps make the ThanksUSA scholarship possible. The John (NMN) Coffey/ThanksUSA scholarship has allowed me to continue college while having a family of four. As a Marine wife and a mother of two, I am determined to finish my degree without student loans. I work hard to pay for each semester as I go and only take as many classes as I can afford. This scholarship has helped allow me to continue to do this and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

After witnessing her son struggle with ADHD and Dyslexia, Army spouse Lorena Garcia decided to pursue a degree that would allow her to support the unique educational needs of her son and students like him.

With the assistance of a $3,000 Rudy’s BBQ/ThanksUSA scholarship, Lorena is continuing a Human Development and Family Studies major at American Military University.

Lorena plans to pursue a career as a counselor in the public-school system. She plans to draw from her own experience as a military spouse and mother of a child with learning disabilities.

Besides her studies, Lorena enjoys supporting fellow military families as leader of her

Family Readiness Group at Fort Bliss and is involved with the local PTA.

“My son gave me the courage to continue school. With this degree, I plan to be a school counselor as well as a role model to my son. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to continue with my education. As a mother of two and a wife to a soldier, it becomes hard sometimes. This scholarship has given me the opportunity to continue with my dreams and I am deeply grateful for this.”


Frances Karnuth is a Coast Guard spouse, mother of six, and full-time student at Maryville University in St. Louis. ThanksUSA has awarded Frances $9,000 in scholarships to pursue a double major in Nursing and Psychology.

Frances began her secondary education over 20 years ago with the goal of becoming a nurse. Unfortunately, unforeseen medical issues, family commitments, and her husband’s Coast Guard career led Frances to put her educational pursuits on hold.

She would spend the next two decades home-schooling her children and providing their large military family with nurturing stability. When her husband retired after 22 years of service, Frances knew it was time to return to school. Currently in her junior year, she maintains a perfect GPA and looks forward to becoming a Licensed Nurse Practitioner.

“I’d like to express my appreciation for this gracious scholarship. In my return to school, I have been challenged academically and financially. Having people rally around me encouraging me to realize my dream is humbling and a great honor. Thank you.”

Local Army spouse, Andrea Barreiro, was awarded a full-tuition Kaplan/ThanksUSA scholarship to study Psychology in Applied Behavioral Analysis. She has just completed her first term with Kaplan, holding an impressive 4.0 GPA.

“I wish to open a business with my husband and secure the position of operational manager and office manager/accountant. Our business will have many facets, including local outreach and new employment growth within the community.”

Andrea’s commitment to community is evident in every aspect of her life. This busy mother of three, who also raises her niece, attends school full-time and is an Army Arlington Lady. She provides respite care for special needs families, interns at a law firm, volunteers with various organizations, and is involved with the Family Readiness Group. Andrea was named the 2016 Armed Forces Insurance Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall Military Spouse of the Year.

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