African-American Scholarship Fund

About the fund

The Executive Committee of the United Christian Missionary Society (UCMS) established the Negro Student Scholarship Fund in June 1939 with funds raised for Central Christian Institute in Kentucky. The funds constituted a special scholarship fund for a period of six years from June 1939. The income is to aid worthy African-American young men or women desiring to participate in Christian service and obtain a college education. Other monies were added to this fund, such as:

  • In 1957, the alumni group of the Southern Christian Institute collected money for the purpose of building a gym for alumni on the properties of the Southern Christian Institute. As this need no longer exists, it was resolved that the total amount of these funds be invested in the Negro Student Scholarship Fund.
  • In 1958, the proceeds from the sale of the Taylor Memorial Fellowship House, located at 4133 Rookwood Avenue, Indianapolis, were also added to the Negro Scholarship fund with the understanding that the earning of the funds will administered by the Joint committee on Scholarships.

On December 9, 2009, the Joint Scholarship Committee of Disciples Home Missions changed the name of the Negro Student Scholarship Fund to the African-American Scholarship Fund. This was done to reflect the language of the early 21st century in the United States of America.


African American Scholarship Guidelines

Directions to apply

This scholarship is for African American students who intend to eventually go into the ministry and are going for their undergraduate degrees.  As such, these students have some different guidelines than most of the other DHM Scholarships.

These students most likely will not be under the care of a Region preparing for ordination and do not need a regional reference.  The three references needed are:

  1. Pastor (of the church in which they are a member)
  2. The board chair or a congregational leader of their church
  3. A teacher or counselor of their current school (high school or other school)

These students do not need to be taking any specific undergraduate courses, such as ministerial or preparing for ministry; they must only convey a desire to eventually enter the ministry.

Application form deadline: March 15
Reference and transcript deadline: April 15

Applications received after the March 15 deadline will be declared ineligible.
No exceptions to deadlines.

By completing an application, you will be considered by the scholarship team of DHM. The maximum award for any recipient is only one scholarship award per academic year. It is each applicant’s responsibility to make sure all required documentation is received in DHM’s scholarship office before the deadline, including application, references, and verification from the institution registrar that you are currently enrolled as a student (high school-first year/college for every other year).


To be eligible for the African American scholarships you must meet the following five criteria:

  • be a member of a congregation in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada;
  • be preparing for ministry or be planning to enter ministry in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada;
  • know that GPA may be a determining factor in consideration of scholarships awarded;
  • be enrolled or plan to enroll as a student in a two or four year academic institution of higher learning.
  • planning to continue your ministry goals by achieving a M.Div., or equivalent degree program at an ATS credited institution after completing your undergraduate degree.

For your information: Applicants must apply or reapply each year to receive scholarships. There are no automatic renewals.

Submit an application.