The Kern Scholars Initiative awards scholarships to evangelical men and women committed to lifelong service in pastoral ministry.
What's the Kern Scholarship?
Kern Scholars receive 90-100% tuition coverage for the duration of their time at seminary. Funding comes from 3 sources:
- Kern Family Foundation. The Kern Family Foundation grant will cover 40% of a Kern Scholar's tuition over the four years of your program.
- Bethel Seminary. Bethel Seminary will also provide 30% of annual tuition to all Kern Scholars.
- Sponsorship of a Local Congregation. Candidates will be required to secure funding from a church that will support their education by contributing 20-30% of tuition each year the candidate is a Kern Scholar.
Who should apply?
To receive a Kern Scholarship, you must meet these criteria:
- Age 27 or under at time of application
- U.S. citizen
- 3.25 GPA from an accredited undergraduate institution and maintenance of a minimum of 3.25 GPA in seminary
- Attend Bethel Seminary St. Paul as full-time residential MDiv students and plan to graduate in four years
- Commit to entering full-time, lifelong pastoral ministry in the U.S. after graduation with the intention of becoming a senior preaching and teaching pastor with pulpit responsibilities (most start out as youth or associate pastors or church planters; however, students who expect to remain youth pastors or to become pastoral counselors, chaplains, children's pastors, music ministers, or worship pastors do not qualify).
Why be a Kern Scholar?
Besides the financial benefits, you'll receive additional services and support to ensure your Bethel experience prepares you well for your pastoral call.
- Preaching training - church-based preaching practicum and annual preaching competition
- Academic support - annual check-in with an academic advisor or the seminary dean
- Emotional and relational support - annual check-in with the director of student development and support
- Professional and vocational guidance - annual check-in with the director of formation and supervised ministry
- Counseling - licensed counselors on staff as needed
- Marriage fortification - six sessions with a resident marriage and family therapist for Kern Scholars who are married to talk through the marital and family stresses they likely will encounter during their ministry
- Community building - regular events planned just for Kern Scholars
How to Apply
If you think you're an ideal candidate for the Kern Scholarship, then we encourage you to apply.
- Apply to the residential Master of Divinity program at Bethel Seminary St. Paul.
- Download the Kern Scholars booklet (pdf) to fill out and return these forms:
- Nominator Form
- Application and Essays
After you complete these steps, our committee will review your application. If you're a finalist, we'll invite you to campus for a final, in-person interview. Contact our admissions team if you have questions or if you're traveling from a distance for your interview.
Deadlines to Apply
- February 28: All application materials for Bethel Seminary St. Paul Master of Divinity Program
- March 21: Kern Nominator Form and Kern Application