To qualify for a Bronze Star, an individual must have distinguished himself from his comrades through an act of bravery, praiseworthy achievement or distinguished service. Any person granted the Bronze Star must have been part of the U.S. military after Dec. 6, 1941.
To qualify for a Bronze Star, the act or service being considered must not include participation in aerial flight. The act must also have been performed while engaging an enemy of the United States or any conflict involving a foreign or opposing force. Soldiers who served as part of friendly or allied combat forces are also eligible for the award, provided that the U.S. military was not the belligerent party.
The criteria to be considered for a Bronze Star are considered of a lesser heroic degree than acts that qualify for a Silver Star. The award can also be given for both a single act of heroism or continuous service.
As of 2015, the Bronze Star is decorated with a five-pointed star with a smaller star at its center. The star was originally designed by the firm of Bailey, Banks and Biddle. It is typically attached to a red ribbon that is accentuated with a narrow blue and white stripe at the center.