The Michelle Jackson scholarship was named after a second career student who graduated in 2003 from Vanderbilt Divinity School at the age of 38, but died after a brief, unexpected illness, less than a month after receiving her M.Div. degree. She was the mother of four and sought ordination later that year. Jackson was still seeking the Holy Spirit’s guidance in finding a place to serve. As a student, Jackson chaired the Council of Black Seminarians serving in the Student Government Association, and was known as a gifted preacher.
The Michelle Jackson Scholarship is to provide a legacy for her stillborn ministry. It will serve African-American Disciples women in M. Div. degree programs at accredited seminaries whose lives offer the same deeply spiritual charisma and gifts for leadership in the church that were evident in Ms. Jackson’s too-short life and ministry.