“Project Hero” catches on at four universities

Children of fallen soldiers will get four years free tuition at participating schools

According to The Belleville Intelligencer, an Ontario-based military reserve officer is trying to persuade all Canadian universities to offer free tuition to the children of soldiers who have died in the line of duty in Afghanistan.

Kevin Reed, a 42-year-old honorary lieutenant-colonel of an army reserve unit in southwestern Ontario, says he was inspired by the work of Rick Hillier, Canada’s retired general. Hillier is now the chancellor at Memorial University of Newfoundland, which was the first to institute the policy.

So far, Reed says the University of Ottawa, his alma mater, and the Universities of Windsor and Calgary are all on board. He says OttawaU’s president, Allan Rock, was quick to support the idea.

The details vary, but Reed says the schools have all agreed to offer four years of paid tuition, plus two years of room and board (provided the student lives on campus) to all children of Canadian Forces staff who are killed in an operational mission since the start of Canada’s war in Afghanistan. As of now, Reed says there are about 30 Canadian children who have lost a parent in the conflict.

And how does he intend to spread the word to other schools?

“I’ve just been going to one university at a time, and we’ll continue to do so until we get ’em all.”