Our Scholarships

Fund for Leaders has been offering scholarships for students at ELCA seminaries who are pursuing rostered ministry in the ELCA since 2000. In the 2023-2024 academic year alone, the fund will provide nearly $3.1 million in scholarships to 345 ELCA seminary students.

Eligibility and selection criteria vary across the different types of scholarships available. Read on for more details.*

  • The ELCA Fund for Leaders Direct Full-Tuition Scholarship is for students who are beginning a degree program at an ELCA seminary and have begun the ELCA candidacy process in order to become a rostered pastor or deacon in the ELCA. Fund for Leaders Direct Full-Tuition scholarships are awarded to students in their first year of seminary and, as long as students remain eligible, funding is guaranteed for the duration of required seminary coursework.

  • The ELCA Fund for Leaders Federal Chaplaincy Ministries Scholarship is for students who are attending an ELCA seminary and are preparing for ministry as a military, Veterans Administration or federal prison chaplain. These scholarships are awarded through ELCA Federal Chaplaincy Ministries.

  • The ELCA Fund for Leaders Mission Developer Scholarship is for students who are rising middlers or seniors or TEEM (Theological Education for Emerging Ministries) candidates at an ELCA seminary, who are identified and nominated by their seminary and by ELCA Christian Community and Leadership (CCL) as mission developer candidates.

  • The ELCA Fund for Leaders Synod or Congregation Scholarships are offered to ELCA seminary students by synods and congregations that have established a scholarship fund through Fund for Leaders.

  • The TEEM Scholarship is for all current TEEM ELCA seminary students and those who will begin the TEEM program this current fall semester, who are taking coursework. Eligible TEEM students are identified by the ELCA seminary TEEM program directors.

Application periods for Fund for Leaders scholarships vary depending on the type of scholarship but generally take place in winter or early spring.

Interested in applying? Learn more here.

*To see exceptions in eligibility and to learn more, read the Frequently Asked Questions.

Questions? Email FundforLeaders@elca.org or call 773-380-2936.

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Select a set of guidelines to learn more about the Fund for Leaders scholarship requirements.