Funeral Service Foundation Now Accepting Applications for NFDA Virtual Convention & Expo Scholarships, Academic Scholarships and Career Development Awards

Brookfield, Wis.  – The Funeral Service Foundation is now accepting applications and submissions for NFDA Virtual International Convention & Expo scholarships, academic scholarships and Career Development Awards.

NFDA Virtual NFDA International Convention & Expo Scholarships
The Funeral Service Foundation is awarding up to 100 full registration scholarships to qualified applicants to attend the virtual convention. Valued at up to $249, the award is open to members and non-members of NFDA, licensed in the US or Canada.

According to Foundation Executive Director Lee Wiensch, CRFE, “Just as funeral service has evolved over the years, so have our educational platforms. The Foundation was established 75 years ago to ensure the profession could gather in community to learn from one another. We’re honored to help 100 funeral directors virtually connect, learn and network.”

Applicants will be asked to answer the question “Why is continuing education important to you?” and to write a 10-word personal epitaph. Those interested may apply online at

The application will remain open until October 1, or until all scholarships have been awarded. Those who have already registered for the convention may apply, and recipients will be notified by email.

Academic Scholarships
The Foundation will once again award academic scholarships this fall, ranging from $2,500-$5,000. Scholarships are open to full-time or part-time students in good standing who are enrolled in ABFSE- or Canadian-accredited institutions/programs. Candidates must be attending classes and actively pursuing a degree in funeral service at the time of application.

“A fulfilling career starts with a solid education,” said Wiensch. “Whether enrolled in an 18-month program, on a trimester schedule, or pursuing a four-year degree, our goal is to make education accessible for all students pursuing a degree in funeral service.”

Proceeds from this year’s Virtual Golf Classic directly support academic scholarships. “Even though we couldn’t gather on the links this year, when we come together ‘fore’ the students, we strengthen the entire profession,” said Foundation Chair Anthony Guerra of Guerra & Gutierrez Mortuaries in Los Angeles.

Available scholarships include the Foundation ’45, Steve Lang, and Memorial Classic Scholarships, and Shipley Rose Buckner, Joseph E. Hagan and Dennis Schoepp Memorial Scholarships. The Foundation also promotes the Brenda Renee Horn and Steve Mack Memorial Scholarships in partnership with the SCI National Scholarship Program.

Twelve academic scholarships were awarded earlier this year. “My scholarship is a huge help in allowing me to achieve my goals and demonstrate that hard work and determination pays off and is recognized, said Memorial Classic Scholarship recipient Jennifer Hardy, FINE Mortuary College, Norwood, Mass. “In the funeral service profession, we only have one opportunity to make things memorable for our families and I take that responsibility very seriously.”

Those interested may apply online at Each candidate is required to answer five questions in no more than 250 words per question, and submit a brief video, no longer than two minutes. The application deadline is November 1.

Career Development Awards
Career Development Awards are available to all licensed funeral directors looking to grow through professional development and continuing education. Valued at up to $500, the awards underwrite registration fees for a single NFDA Cremation Certification, Arranger Training or Certified Preplanning Consultant (CPC) session of the recipient’s choosing.

“Our goal is to help funeral service professionals throughout their careers,” said Wiensch. “The awards are ideal for funeral directors who’ve benefitted other Foundation, scholarships and programs.”

The Foundation accepts names for Career Development Awards throughout the year. Those interested may submit their names online at  Applicants will be asked to answer the question “Why is continuing education important to you?” and to write a 10-word personal epitaph. Information about each of these innovative training programs is available on the NFDA website,

Additional Opportunities
Information about additional opportunities including NFDA’s Meet the Mentors program and scholarships for the association’s 2021 Advocacy Summit and Professional Women’s Conference will be available later this year.

About the Funeral Service Foundation –

Since 1945, the Funeral Service Foundation has served as the philanthropic voice of the funeral profession and has identified as the charitable arm of the National Funeral Directors Association since 1997. Donors and volunteer leaders profession-wide support the Foundation in its mission of investing in people and programs to strengthen funeral service and lift up grieving communities.