Montana foster youth are eligible for Education Training Vouchers, up to $5,000 per year.
Stay on a college campus, connecting with foster youth and preparing for life after high school.
We help foster youth get a jump start on career exploration and workforce opportunities.
Check out our list of resources for foster youth to help support your goals.
How We Support Youth in Foster Care
Youth in foster care are amazing people and we love supporting them on their path to education after high school. Students need financial and emotional support when thinking about the next steps in life, and we offer guidance and funding to help these special students achieve their education dreams starting in high school and continuing until they reach their education and career goals.
Paying for School
Foster Care Education and Training Voucher Program
Montana foster care youth are eligible to apply for the Foster Care Educational Training Voucher (ETV) program, which provides eligible youth with up to $5,000 per year to pay for educational expenses.
- Currently in foster care and likely to age out of the foster care system; or
- Aged out of the foster care system; or
- Adopted or placed into guardianship from foster care after reaching age 16, or
- Have been under tribal court jurisdiction and meet the above eligibility criteria.
The ETV application is available online and easy to use.
- Click this button. ETV Application
- Create an account.
- Once your account is created, look for the 'Education and Training Voucher (ETV) Application' in the list of available applications.
- Click the apply button to begin.
The priority deadlines for the program are December 15 for students planning on attending spring and summer courses, and July 1 for fall courses or the full school year.
Educational Training Vouchers (ETV) Overview
Educational Training Voucher (ETV) Application Tutorial
Scholarships for Foster Youth
We have a list of scholarships for foster youth, we encourage you to take a look and apply.
College Check In
We continue to support youth with foster care experience as they pursue their education after high school. Reach Higher Montana Advisors connect with ETV recipients at colleges in their areas several times throughout the school year to see how they are doing and to help them navigate college.
Click here for Reach Higher Montana Advisor contact information.
For more information about our programs, contact Rhonda Safford at (406) 495-7354 or rsafford@ReachHigherMontana.org
Colleges will need proof of being in foster care. Get these early from your Chafee provider, social worker, CPS, Reach Higher Montana or DPHHS ahead of time.
Foster Youth Services
Checklists can help you keep on the path for your future after high school. Download our handy checklist for foster youth planning on going to college to stay on track.
Financial Aid Tips
Options After High School - 2 Year College
I think education is incredibly important. I don’t think it necessarily has to be a 4 year bachelor’s degree. The 2 year certificate type programs, the apprenticeship type programs that just give you that extra skill that give you an edge in the job market.
Reach Higher Montana Summit
Reach Higher Montana holds an annual Summit for Youth in Foster Care every year in June. The purpose of the summit is to help youth in foster care experience life on a college campus, learn about available resources to achieve education and career goals, and connect to peers from across Montana. Students apply for the opportunity to attend the Summit, and for applications visit with your Chafee provider about applying for this great opportunity. A list of Chafee providers will be available when the Summit application opens.
Curious and want to know what more? Check out this agenda.
Watch for next year’s application to open sometime in April and the location of the Summit for Youth in Foster Care.
For more information about the Summit, contact Rhonda Safford at (406) 495-7354 or rsafford@ReachHigherMontana.org.
Get your DPHHS medical form completed, signed, and turned in early for your Summit application.
Career Exploration Training
To help students get a jump start on career exploration, Reach Higher Montana Advisors will host regional training sessions across Montana to help foster youth explore available education or workforce opportunities after high school. These fun, interactive sessions guide students through the Montana Career Information System (MCIS) and provide students with access to information and connections to careers available in their area. Contact your local Reach Higher Montana Advisor about one of these sessions.
Going to the Summit? You can check out the Career Fair there.
Take a mental selfie
As you interact with people on a daily basis think about the question “Can you picture yourself doing that job someday?” If so, ask the person how they decided to go into that career.
Foster Care to Doctoral Student
A Foster Youth Success Story
From Foster Care to Foster Parent
Thinking about the Military?
Resources for Foster Youth
During High School
- Foster Club
Support for young people experiencing foster care.
- Foster Care to College: Online Resources
From national scholarships, state tuition waivers to housing assistance and on-campus programs, find help getting to and through college.
- All Star Internship
Each January the state of Montana selects two youth to represent Montana. Interns receive leadership training, educate peers and industry professionals, and attend national conferences and events.
Visit each of our service areas to learn more about how we support our community.
- Montana Chafee Foster Care Program
This program offers services for foster youth (ages 14-21), find your local provider to learn more.
Scholarships for Foster Youth
- All-Star College Scholarship
Opens in Feb., closes May 15. Up to $10,000. (based on need, have been adopted at or after 13 years old)
- Foster Care to Success Scholarships
Opens Jan 1, closes Mar 31. $2,000-$5,000 (based on need and merit) Renewable up top 5 years.
- Hopa Mountain's Scholars of Promise Vocational Scholarship
Closes Dec. 20. $2,000 (vocational program, priority to foster youth or homeless)
- Horatio Alger State Scholarship
Opens Dec. 1, closes Mar. 15. $10,000. (based on need)
- International Student Foundation Scholarships
Submit application by April 30. Amount varies.
- The Nsoro Foundation Scholarship Program
Opens Dec. 1, closes Mar. 15. Amount varies.
- NFPA Scholarships
Closes Apr. 7. $500. Multiple scholarships.
- BrandSource Trade Scholarship
Opens Feb. 28 and will remain open until spots are filled. Up to $11,000. Multiple scholarships for the following fields: Appliance Repair Technician, Plumbing, Electrician, Carpentry & Woodwork, Cabinet Making, Electronics Repair, Equipment Operator, and Industrial Mechanical Service