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Using the Family Empowerment Scholarship for Music Therapy in Florida

Therapy can be a costly expense, but the state of Florida has programs in place that make paying for music therapy easier than you might expect.

A common concern for those seeking therapy is the cost. The majority of us know and understand the benefits that can come from therapy, but it doesn’t always feel attainable. There are several different ways to fund therapy expenses, including music therapy, that you might not expect.

In this article, we are going to explain how recipients of the Family Empowerment Scholarship for Students with Unique Abilities (FES-UA, formerly known as the Gardiner scholarship) can fund their music therapy and start improving their lives at no cost to them.

Scholarships, Therapy, and Individual Programs

Most of the time, we think of scholarships in relation to academic studies or specific programs, but did you know that scholarships can also cover therapy expenses? Most people don’t realize that there is an overlap in these spaces, particularly in programs like music therapy.

How Do Scholarship Programs Work?

Scholarship programs work the same way for paying for academic expenses as they do for anything else, but you might not realize the extent of what they can cover. Recipients of scholarships often focus on the first few options presented, but a little research can go a long way in this area. Understanding the full extent of what your scholarship covers will allow you to make a completely informed decision so you can decide what is best for your care in particular.

With FES-UA, students receive thousands of dollars in scholarship funds every single year. These funds are distributed based on eligibility and need and can apply to a long list of services including tutoring, private school, special school programs, online courses, therapy, and more.

Scholarship Programs and Eligibility

When seeking or maintaining a scholarship, it is important to continuously stay up to

date regarding eligibility requirements. These requirements can change year over year, and the majority of scholarships must be renewed on an annual basis, making the eligibility requirements that much more important.

If you are a current recipient of the Family Empowerment Scholarship for Students with Unique Abilities, you should qualify for support from the ages of 3 years old through your 12th-grade education—but that isn’t all. Eligible students can actually receive additional support through this scholarship up through the age of 22. Most students will find that this scholarship should be utilized and pursued for as long as possible to receive the highest number of benefits.

This compelling scholarship has helped over 22,000 students to receive funding for various programs and educational opportunities. The scholarship amount can vary depending on the student’s grade and account of residence. Already, more than $200 million dollars in scholarships have been handed out, with the average scholarship amounting to roughly $10,000—and this money can be applied to a long list of expenses.

How Does this Scholarship Apply to Music Therapy?

FES-UA can be used for a variety of eligible expenses, including therapy. Within this category, music therapy is considered to be a valid use for these funds. Students can use some or all of the scholarship to fund individualized music therapy classes to help improve skills, build confidence, and work through everyday challenges that can arise from time to time.

Students will find that this particular scholarship can offer an extra benefit when it comes to music therapy because it gives you the ability to roll over your funds from year to year. While some scholarships require that you use them in full, students can maintain these funds in order to continue to support their music therapy sessions for years to come.

Why Music Therapy is a Wonderful Option for this Scholarship

Music therapy is an empowering practice that makes therapy fun, engaging, and relaxing. Using music, instruments, and vocal techniques, students can explore their own needs and learn valuable skills all while practicing music.

One reason that this is such a wonderful option for this scholarship is that music therapy has the ability to bring a lengthy list of benefits to those who embrace it. It is just as beneficial for overcoming trauma as it is for lessening anxiety, gaining new social skills, or creating a stronger sense of individual confidence.

The FES-UA scholarship was designed to help children and young adults gain the skills that they will need to overcome life’s challenges, and music therapy is a preferred option because it does all of this and more. Music therapy is a form of therapy that can grow with the person, allowing them to explore it in new ways over time. Someone can start with one kind of practice in elementary school and find entirely new benefits as they get older.

Investing in an healthcare is always a good decision, but music therapy takes a traditional wellness plan and supercharges it. FES-UA can be used to offset or completely cover the expenses associated with musical therapy, allowing more children and young adults to benefit from these practices. Beneficial for students from a variety of backgrounds, music therapy is a worthy investment that can have lifelong benefits for the people who engage in it. Whether you allocate a portion of the funds or the entire scholarship, music therapy is a great investment to make.


Students with FES-UA receive additional benefits and support from Step Up for Students, and there are countless ways to apply these funds for the betterment of your student’s life. Before you limit yourself to one or two uses for these funds, it is important to consider the full scope of what this scholarship can actually cover and make a plan that works for you.

This surprisingly versatile scholarship can help your student to learn, grow, and find happiness one course or session at a time. To learn more about how we partner with students to create a broader sense of well-being, don’t hesitate to reach out to us directly or the Florida Department of Education for more information.

The House of Music Therapy

Florida Department of Education

A.A.A. Scholarship Foundation- FL, LLC P.O. Box 15719, Tampa, FL 33684 Phone/Fax: 888-707-2465

Step Up For Students P.O. Box 54367 Jacksonville, FL 32245-4367 877-735-7837

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