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LIFE Foundation Asks Public to Vote to Determine its $5,000 Life Lessons College Scholarship Winner

Scholarship Program Highlights Need for Parents to Include Life Insurance

in Their College-Funding Plans

ARLINGTON, Va., July 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Life can take unexpected -- and sometimes tragic -- turns. When a loved one dies, it can be particularly painful. Too often though, the emotional loss is compounded by the financial hardship that comes when the head of the household dies prematurely with little or no life insurance. Making sure immediate expenses are met is often the first concern for those left behind, and future plans are either postponed or never carried out. These circumstances can derail the plans young adults have of attending college.

Online Voting Now Under Way

To help young people who are finding it difficult to pay for college because of the death of a parent or guardian, the LIFE Foundation sponsors the LIFE Lessons College Scholarship Program. This year, LIFE will award 25 scholarships totaling $25,000, including two $5,000 scholarships. Through an online vote, the LIFE Foundation is seeking the public's assistance in deciding one of its two Grand Prize scholarships. LIFE has already awarded four $1,000 scholarships in its Video Entry category. For the next four weeks, LIFE is asking the public to visit its website at to cast their vote for the student they feel is most deserving of the top scholarship in the Video Entry category. Voting will conclude on Monday, August 4, 2008, and the Grand Prize scholarship winner will be announced in September.

"LIFE's own research suggests that more than three quarters of parents who don't have life insurance say their children's college plans would be seriously threatened by their untimely death," said Marvin H. Feldman, CLU, ChFC, RFC, president and CEO of the LIFE Foundation. "LIFE is proud to assist young people in fulfilling their dreams. We also hope that by telling their stories, parents everywhere will better understand the role life insurance plays in ensuring that their family's future plans remain on track."

The four finalists vying for the $5,000 scholarship in the Video Entry category are:

-- Jeremy Pittman, Indianapolis, IN -- Jeremy's father passed away from cancer in 2006. Motivated by his father's words to never give up, Jeremy recently graduated at the top of his class and completed a marathon that helped raise thousands of dollars to support people stricken with cancer. Jeremy's father had some life insurance coverage but not enough to fully fund Jeremy's college education.

-- Morgan Snyder, Horseheads, NY -- Morgan's father passed away in a truck fire, leaving behind his wife and two children. Life insurance covered his funeral expenses, helped pay off loans, and made it possible for Morgan to begin attending college.

-- Chelsea Stanley, Bellville, TX -- Chelsea's father died in an accident in 2004. Although her father had two life insurance policies, one of them named Chelsea's stepmother as the sole beneficiary. That money was never available to Chelsea and her sibling. The modest amount of money Chelsea did receive had to be spent on lawyer fees and funeral expenses, leaving little to cover college expenses.

-- Leah Thompson, Lebanon, OH -- In 2002, Leah's mother lost her battle with breast cancer. To make matters worse, she passed away without any life insurance, creating financial strain for the Thompson family and putting in doubt Leah's dreams of attending college.

LIFE Begins Accepting Individual Donations to College Fund

Seeking to award more scholarships in future years, LIFE recently began soliciting individual and corporate donations to the LIFE Lessons Scholarship Program via its website at Donations to the scholarship program are tax-deductible.

"We continue to be amazed by the number of young people who have shared their very personal stories of loss with us, a clear indication of how financially challenging life can become when a parent dies prematurely," said Feldman. "Now individuals, insurance companies and professionals alike have the opportunity to help these students fulfill their college dreams and, in the process, help LIFE educate others to get the insurance they need."

About the LIFE Lessons Scholarship Program

Established in 2005, the LIFE Lessons Scholarship Program is open to young people between 17 and 24 years of age, who have experienced the death of a parent or legal guardian, and are currently enrolled in, or have been accepted to, a college, university or trade school. The program is designed to help deserving young people realize their dream of achieving a college education, and to educate all Americans about the need to include life insurance in their college-funding plans. Applications are solicited during the March/April timeframe and scholarship recipients are notified in the summer. Learn more at

About LIFE

The Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education (LIFE) was founded in 1994 in response to the public's growing need for information and education on life, health, disability and long-term care insurance. LIFE also seeks to remind people of the important role insurance professionals perform in helping families, businesses and individuals find the insurance products that best fit their needs. To learn more about these topics, please visit

CONTACT: Tai Green


- or -

Katharine Carver


SOURCE Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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