As part of a $12 million grant from The Duke Endowment, Duke Divinity School announces the Thriving Communities Fellowship program, which will provide 52 new full-tuition scholarships over the next four years and equip students for innovative, pastoral leadership for the church and their communities. The fellowship is designed for those pursuing a master of divinity (M.Div.) degree who are exploring a vocation as an ordained pastor and who have a vision of the church as a catalyst for social healing, local economic development, and community revitalization.
In addition to full-tuition scholarships, Thriving Communities Fellows will receive mentoring, a travel experience hosted by Duke faculty, and cohort-based professional formation and events. Fellows will be eligible to receive stipends totaling up to $30,000 through participation in the Communities of Learning program offered by the Office of Field Education, in which small groups of students build relationships across denominational and institutional differences for the flourishing of the community.
“A hallmark of Duke Divinity School has always been our commitment to train gifted pastors,” said L. Gregory Jones, the dean and Ruth W. and A. Morris Williams Jr. Distinguished Professor of Theology and Christian Ministry at Duke Divinity School. “Through the extraordinary generosity of The Duke Endowment, this fellowship will create the capacity to strengthen and deepen our ability to equip leaders who embody wisdom with the tools and skills to reweave the social fabric.”
The Duke Endowment is a private foundation that strengthens communities in North Carolina and South Carolina by nurturing children, promoting health, educating minds, and enriching spirits. The Endowment shares a name with Duke University and Duke Energy, but all are separate organizations.
The new Thriving Communities scholarships will add to the more than $8 million in scholarship support Duke Divinity awarded to students in the 2019/2020 academic year including:
- 100% of admitted M.Div., M.T.S., M.A. in Christian Practice, D.Min. and Th.D. students receive scholarship support
- M.Div. students receive up to $30,000 in funding beyond their scholarship support through participation in Field Education
- More than 60 M.Div. merit scholarships and 20 M.T.S. merit scholarships covering up to 100% of tuition costs, with preference given to racial/ethnic and identity groups that have been traditionally under-represented in theological education
- 100% scholarship priority consideration for promising leaders in the Black Church and Hispanic/Latinx communities
- 100% scholarships for certified United Methodist students committed to rural church ministry in North Carolina
- An international Th.M. scholarship covering 100% of tuition costs
- Comprehensive scholarship and stipend support for all admitted Th.D. students
“I serve at Duke because I want to be part of equipping an entire generation of people to serve God’s work in the world,” said Todd Maberry, senior director of admissions, recruitment, and student finance. “One of my top priorities in this role is to support students financially as much as we are able so that they can leave Duke and be free to follow the call of God. I am thrilled that this Thriving Communities Fellowship creates new formation and financial support opportunities for our students.”