This page outlines Aerie's accepted financial aid opportunities through the AmeriCorps and the GI Bill®, as well as the FAFSA. Other financial aid and scholarships may be available for an individual course or program. Please contact us if you have any questions.
The Jake Kelley Scholarship
Jake Kelley, WEMT graduate, loved the mountains and epitomized enthusiasm for outdoor pursuits. He spent his free time mountain biking, hiking, camping and his passion was skiing. He worked diligently to achieve his goals and lived his life to the fullest doing what he loved in the outdoors. He become a WEMT so that he could become a professional ski patroller. He enjoyed helping others and had a smile that would make others smile and keep their spirits light no matter the circumstance. This scholarship is to help others with similar passions to achieve their goals and dreams.
The Jake Kelley Scholarship is intended for those seeking enrollment in Wilderness EMT courses, specifically month-long intensive courses. This scholarship will be awarded to those who demonstrate a strong desire to use their skillsets towards a future with ski patrolling.
Applicants are asked to write a short description of themselves, their future ski patrolling goals, and any other pertinent details relating to their outdoor passions. Submissions should not exceed one-page, single-spaced. The amount of scholarship award will be based on the number of accepted applicants and demonstrated need.
Aerie Backcountry Medicine management, as well as those who knew Jake the most will review submissions. Submissions are accepted on a rolling basis (any time during the year). Please submit your document to firstname.lastname@example.org with the title of “Jake Kelley Scholarship Application.”
The Adrienne Corti Memorial Scholarship
The Adrienne Corti Memorial Scholarship will be awarded each year to a UM student with a connection to the outdoors – and a student who is looking to pursue certification as a wilderness emergency medical technician (WEMT). This scholarship embodies Adrienne’s love of wilderness medicine and the great outdoors. The University of Montana’s Department of Health and Human Performance and Aerie Backcountry Medicine are partnering to create this scholarship opportunity. The scholarship recipient will be able to register for a WEMT course offered through Aerie Backcountry Medicine. Applications will be due the first of April each year, and the successful applicant will be awarded in mid-May.
- Open to all UM students, with preference given to upper level and graduate HHP students
- Student can be either part time or full time
- Student must be in good academic standing
- Scholarship is non-renewable
Accepted forms of financial aid:
Americorps Segal Education Award
The Segal Education Award can be used for any of our courses that are eligible for college credit. These courses include WFA, WFR, EMT, W-EMT, and the Semester in Wilderness Medicine Programs. Though Aerie is not a Title IV school, our credits are offered through a partnership with the University of Montana. Our credits are processed through their School of Extended and Lifelong Learning (SELL).
In order to use your award:
- On our website, complete the course registration form for the specific course you want to take. In the payment section indicate that you will be paying via Americorps.
- We will then send you the appropriate UM credit forms. You will need to pay a $155 credit-recording fee directly to the University of Montana in order to process the credits. You can reimburse yourself for this fee later with your awards. .
- Once you receive notification that the credits have been processed, you can activate your awards from the Americorps website. Be sure to request enough of your award to cover the course tuition, the credit-recording fee, and lodging fees (if applicable).
- Americorps will send the first half of the payment to UM once the course starts, and the remaining balance half way through the course. The University will then forward these payments on to you, and you will in turn pay us.
- In order to make sure we are all in agreement about what needs to happen and when, we will write up a contract detailing the amount due and the due date for you to sign. For WFAs and WFRs, you will not receive your certification, and for EMTs, WEMTs, and Semester Programs you will not be able to take the practical exam until the tuition is paid in full.
GI Benefits can be used to pay the tuition for many of our courses and programs, including WFR, EMT, WEMT, and our Summer Semester in Wilderness Medicine.
In order to use your benefits:
- On our website, complete the course registration form for the specific course you want to take. In the payment section indicate that you will be paying via your GI Benefits. When you submit your registration, please include your social security number/VA file number and a copy of your GI Benefits Eligibility letter.
- Our Certifying Official will contact you to let you know that you have been successfully enrolled in the program. Enrollment in the VA system is digital so there are no longer any forms to fill out.
- Aerie will receive payment directly from the VA, so you don’t have to worry about getting reimbursed or forwarding any payments.
- Aerie will write up a contract indicating that you will be responsible for any costs not covered by the GI Bill®, which you will sign. For WFRs, you will not receive your certification, and for WEMTs and the Summer Semester Program, you will not be able to take the practical exam until the tuition is paid in full.
- GI Bill® benefits can not be applied to the Spring or Fall Semester in Wilderness Medicine programs.
A few things to consider:
- If you are not 100% covered by GI Benefits you will be personally responsible for paying the balance of the tuition.
- Since the GI Bill® pays a housing stipend, the benefits do not cover food and lodging. You will need to pay these fees out of pocket. These expenses vary per field course, so please contact us to discuss these costs before committing to any of the programs.
- Please let us know if you will be using your GI Benefits to pay another institution at the same time as our course. A good example of this is enrollment in a degree program or college classes while attending our program on the side. Often your benefits will cover both as long as a guest relationship is possible between Aerie and the other institution. Please contact us for more information.
- Veterans can take any eligible course for college credit. However, the University of Montana’s $155-per-credit recording fee is unfortunately not eligible for payment through the GI Bill®.
"GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill"
Federal Financial Aid
Many universities offer their students the ability to temporarily transfer financial aid to a different school, such as with traditional study abroad programs. This process of transferring financial aid is called a consortium agreement.
In order to use your financial aid:
- Ask the financial aid office at your university if they do consortium agreements; if so, request the paperwork. You may need to meet with your school's financial aid counselor to work out the details of the consortium before proceeding.
- You will need to verify that the course’s credits will be approved for transfer by your advisor. Request course syllabi from Aerie so that your advisor can read through the course requirements and make a determination for your degree program.
- If your advisor approves the credits, you will need 3 or 4 signatures to complete the consortium process: your advisor’s (agreeing to the transfer credits); Aerie’s or the University of Montana’s; your financial aid office’s (essentially agreeing to transfer the financial aid); and your own.
- Next, fill out the consortium agreement paperwork and list the University of Montana as the host institution if you are currently enrolled in a school other than the University of Montana. If you are currently a UM student, please list Aerie as the host institution.
- Let Aerie know you want to transfer financial aid. We will follow up with UM or your university.
- The UM Business Office will write a check to your school. Your school will pay you according to their financial aid process.
- We will write up a contract detailing the amount due and the due date, which you will sign. For WFAs and WFRs, you will not receive your certification, and for WEMTs and Semester Programs you will not be able to take the practical exam until the tuition is paid in full.
- Current UM students must complete the SELL Agreement with Financial Aid form at http://www.umt.edu/finaid/forms.php
A few things to consider:
- If your school does not do consortium agreements and you do receive federal financial aid, you may want to fill out an In School Deferment Request Form. You can use this form to show you were actually attending school, so that your loans are postponed at least for the duration of your course.
- Even if you have University of Montana financial aid, you will need to go through the consortium process to transfer funds to Aerie’s programs.