First Responders Children’s Foundation is inviting children of first responders to apply for a scholarship for the 2021/2022 academic year. The program is funded by CSX, an industry leader in freight transportation, through its Pride in Service community investment initiative.
Pride in Service aims to connect first responders, service members and their families to the resources and support they need, when and where they need it. This new application season marks the third annual scholarship program made possible through an ongoing partnership between First Responders Children’s Foundation and CSX and helps commemorate the foundation’s 20th year providing much-needed support to first responder families, since its founding on 9/11. In the 2020/2021 academic year, First Responders Children’s Foundation awarded 96 CSX Pride in Service scholarships, based on key criteria including both financial need and academic merit. Recipients’ areas of study have ranged from nursing, biology and criminal justice to economics, musical theater and cybersecurity.
All children of first responders who meet the requirements are encouraged to apply. Special consideration will be given to children whose parent lost his or her life or became disabled in the line of duty, as these families often face significant financial hurdles. First Responders Children’s Foundation and CSX also understand that the pandemic may have exacerbated financial burdens facing first responder families in the last year.
Thomas Caputo, a 2020 scholarship recipient in pre-med at Villanova University, comes from a multi-generational family of first responders. In his letter of application, he shares his deep connection to first responders and the pride he has for his family:
“First responders make up the majority of my family. My grandpa and uncle, who perished on 9/11, were Battalion Chiefs in the New York City Fire Department. My father is a retired detective of the New York City Police Department. My cousin is a paramedic working overtime to help those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The list goes on. I take pride in coming from a family of first responders and being the child of one. I strive to have the bravery, courage, and selflessness that these members of my family had each day going to work, knowing that their own lives were being put to task to save the lives of others.”
In addition to funding scholarships, CSX supports First Responders Children’s Foundation grant program, providing individual financial help to first responder families, COVID-related assistance and agency/community support for educational programs directly benefitting children.
Commenting on the CSX Pride in Service Scholarships awarded, First Responders Children’s Foundation President Jillian Crane stated: “First Responders Children’s Foundation is proud to be working closely with CSX to honor and assist first responder heroes and their families in these profoundly challenging times. Through this partnership, we have increased our reach to provide support to students in the 23 states in which CSX operates, and beyond. We thank CSX for making it possible for the Foundation to help our heroes of tomorrow pursue their dreams of post-secondary education.”
“As a special agent at CSX, I can personally attest to our unwavering commitment to service and safety. Throughout the last year, we’ve been inspired by the sacrifices of our first responder friends and neighbors across our communities and am so honored to be a part of this much-deserved recognition and support for their families, in partnership with the First Responders Children’s Foundation,” said Sean Douris, Chief of Police at CSX.
Children of first responders who are attending or plan to attend a post-secondary institution for the 2021/2022 academic year can learn more and apply at www.1strcf.org.
For 20 years, First Responders Children's Foundation has been providing college scholarships to the children of first responder parents who have been injured or lost in the line of duty. The Foundation also awards grants to families enduring significant financial hardship and supports educational activities and programs created by first responder organizations to benefit children or the communities in which they live. The First Responders Children's Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund was established in March, 2020 to provide financial hardship grants, PPE, and hotel accommodations to first responders on the front lines of the pandemic. The Foundation also pays for funerals of first responders who have made the ultimate sacrifice. More information about First Responders Children’s Foundation is available at www.1stRCF.org. Follow First Responders Children's Foundation on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @1stRCF.
CSX, based in Jacksonville, Fla., is a premier transportation company. It provides rail, intermodal and rail-to-truck transload services and solutions to customers across a broad array of markets, including energy, industrial, construction, agricultural and consumer products. For nearly 200 years, CSX has played a critical role in the nation’s economic expansion and industrial development. Its network connects every major metropolitan area in the eastern United States, where nearly two-thirds of the nation’s population resides. It also links more than 230 short-line railroads and more than 70 ocean, river and lake ports with major population centers and farming towns alike. More information about CSX Corporation and its subsidiaries is available at www.csx.com. Like us on Facebook (http://facebook.com/OfficialCSX) and follow us on Twitter (http://twitter.com/CSX).