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Seminary and Graduate Level Scholarships

Seminary and Graduate Level Scholarships

The South Carolina Conference Seminary Students Scholarship was established in 1991 by the South Carolina Conference to assist students from South Carolina in pursuing a program of study leading to a first professional degree. Applicants must be enrolled as full-time students at a seminary or theological school of the United Methodist Church. Applicants must be Certified Candidates for Ordained Ministry in the South Carolina Conference and an applicant for assistance through the Ministerial Education Fund. Personal financial need and understanding of one’s role in the Church’s Ministry will be considered.  A current official academic transcript and a copy of the applicant’s MEF application are required as a part of the application. Recipients are selected by the Scholarship Committee of the Conference Board of Ordained Ministry. The number of scholarships and the amount of scholarship awards are limited and depend upon the availability of income from the South Carolina Conference Seminary Students Scholarship Fund, an endowed scholarship fund of the South Carolina United Methodist Foundation. Recipients of scholarship awards are expected to be present at the session of the Annual Conference when the scholarship award is announced. Applications must be postmarked by April 1st of each year.

The Bessie Bellamy Parker Memorial Scholarship was established by the South Carolina Conference in 1986 to honor the memory of the Reverend Bessie Bellamy Parker(1912-1986), the first woman to be ordained in the former 1785 South Carolina Conference. The purpose of the scholarship is to provide assistance to women students at United Methodist seminaries or theological schools who are preparing for ordained pastoral ministry in South Carolina and who demonstrate promise for the kind of ministerial excellence which was embodied and pioneered by Bessie B. Parker. Applicants must be Certified Candidates for Ordained Ministry in the South Carolina Conference and committed to ministry in the local church in South Carolina. Applicants must have completed one year full time(minimum twenty four hours or its equivalent) in a United Methodist seminary or theological school and be currently enrolled for the second or third year of seminary. Applicants must be maintaining a grade average no less than “C”. Applications will be reviewed by the Scholarship Committee of the Conference Board of Ordained Ministry. Applicants will be evaluated on self understanding of one’s ministry, future direction, promise for ministry, financial need, and academic performance. A current official academic transcript and a copy of a completed MEF application form are required as a part of the application process. Also required is a copy of the applicant’s original “Mentor’s Report” addressing the applicant’s promise for ministry or a subsequent statement prepared by the applicant’s Mentor. The applicant may submit a second statement from another person in a supervisory capacity assessing the applicant’s  promise for ministry.  A brief additional statement will be required from each applicant in response to questions. The number of scholarships and the amount of scholarship awards are limited and depend upon the availability of income from the Bessie Bellamy Parker Memorial Scholarship Fund, an endowed scholarship fund of the South Carolina United Methodist Foundation. Recipients of scholarship awards are expected to be present at the session of the Annual Conference when the scholarship award is announced. Applications must be postmarked by April 1st of each year.

The T. Dennie Smith Scholarship was created to effectively carry forward the wishes of the late Mr. T. Dennie Smith of Greer, South Carolina, who died in 1973 and whose last will and testament included provisions creating a testamentary trust to assist “any young man or woman . .  who intend(ed) to devote their lives to the ministry in the Methodist Church.” Applicants must be Certified Candidates for Ordained Ministry in the South Carolina Conference and an applicant for assistance through the Ministerial Education Fund. Applicants must be enrolled as full-time students in a program of study leading to a first professional degree at a seminary or theological school approved by the University Senate of the United Methodist Church or enrolled in the Conference Course of Study.  Applicants must be maintaining a grade average no less than “C”. A current official academic transcript and a copy of a completed MEF application form are required as a part of the application process. Three references are also required, one from the applicant’s Mentor.  Recipients are selected by the Scholarship Committee of the Conference Board of Ordained Ministry. The number of scholarships awards are limited and depend upon the availability of income generated by the T. Dennie Smith Fund which is held in trust by the South Carolina Conference. Recipients of scholarship awards are expected to be present at the session of the Annual Conference when the scholarship award is announced. Applications must be postmarked by April 1st of each year.

The Cook Scholarship Endowment Fund was established in 1989 to honor members of the Cook Family who have served in United Methodist Ministry across several generations. Awards are made to persons preparing for full-time Christian Service who are members of a United Methodist Church in South Carolina or who are affiliated with the South Carolina Conference. Recipients are limited to persons pursuing undergraduate or graduate/professional degrees in a college, university, or theological school accredited by the regional accrediting association and/or the University Senate of the United Methodist Church. Applicants are evaluated on their self-understanding of his or her ministry and its future direction, promise for Ministry in the Church, and personal financial need. The number of scholarships are limited and depend upon the availability of income from the Cook Scholarship Endowment Fund, an endowed scholarship fund of the South Carolina United Methodist Foundation. Minimum awards are $500.00. Recipients are selected by Foundation’s Scholarship Committee.  Applications must be postmarked by April 1st of each year.

The Fred E. and Janet Smith Plyler Scholarship  was established July 1, 2002, to honor Mr. and Mrs. Fred E. Plyler of Lancaster, South Carolina, and to benefit persons preparing for Ordained Ministry in the United Methodist Church. Applicants must be enrolled as a full-time student in a seminary, theological, or graduate school approved by the University Senate of the United Methodist Church. Financial need and promise for ministry may be considered in reviewing applicants. The number of scholarships are limited and depend upon the availability of income from the Fred E. and Janet Smith Plyler Scholarship Fund, an endowed scholarship fund of the South Carolina United Methodist Foundation. Recipients are selected by the Foundation’s Scholarship Committee which has total discretion.

The Gene Roger and Mildred Wimberly Kizer Scholarship was established December 2, 1998, by Mr. and Mrs. Gene R. Kizer of Orangeburg, South Carolina, to benefit  persons preparing for full-time Christian Service in the United Methodist Church(meaning those ministries of the Church for which ordination, consecration, or certification is required). Applicants must be enrolled in a college, seminary, theological, or graduate school approved by the University Senate of the United Methodist Church. Financial need will be considered a significant factor in the selection of recipients. Preference will be given to applicants who are members of Indian Field, St. George, North, or Saint Andrews(Orangeburg) United Methodist Churches. Recipients are selected by Foundation’s Scholarship Committee which has total discretion including determining the amounts of awards and the frequency of awards. The number of scholarships are limited and depend upon the availability of income from the Gene Roger and Mildred Wimberly Kizer Scholarship Fund, an endowed scholarship fund of the South Carolina United Methodist Foundation.

The J. Lawrence and Margaret F. McCleskey Scholarship was established December 29, 1997, through the efforts of Bishop and Mrs. J. Lawrence McCleskey to benefit “certified candidates for ordained ministry” in the South Carolina Conference attending United Methodist seminaries or schools of theology. Applicants will be considered who exhibit promise for ministry and financial need. Awards, when made, will be made in amounts no less than $1,000.00(for each award an equal amount is distributed to the School of Theology at Africa University to benefit students in the School of Theology who exhibit promise for ministry and financial need). Recipients from the South Carolina Conference are selected at the discretion of the Foundation’s Scholarship Committe or its delegated representative. The number of scholarships are limited and depend upon the availability of income from the J. Lawrence and Margaret F. McCleskey Scholarship Fund, an endowed scholarship fund of the South Carolina United Methodist Foundation.

The Melvin Kelly and Mayme DuBose Medlock Ministerial Scholarship was established November 8, 2001, through the efforts of Trenholm Road United Methodist Church, Columbia, South Carolina, to benefit ministerial education for persons from the Columbia District of the South Carolina Conference. Applicants must be certified candidates for ordained ministry enrolled as full-time students in either undergraduate programs at accredited colleges and universities or in seminary or graduate programs at schools listed by the University Senate of the United Methodist Church. Awards will be made to persons in the process of preparing for the pastoral ministry of the United Methodist Church and ordination. Financial need may be considered as a factor. Recipients are selected by the Foundation’s Scholarship Committee in its sole discretion. The number of scholarships are limited and depend upon the availability of income from the Melvin Kelly and Mayme DuBose Medlock Ministerial Scholarship Fund, an endowed scholarship fund of the South Carolina United Methodist Foundation.

The William Fletcher and Agnes Dawsey Rogers Scholarship was established July 30, 1995, through the efforts of members of Bethel United Methodist Church, Winnsboro, South Carolina, to honor the lifelong Christian Ministry of the Reverend and Mrs. William F. Rogers, Jr., on the mission field and in South Carolina. The fund benefits persons from South Carolina preparing for service as missionaries under the General Board of Global Ministries of the UMC, by assisting with graduate and postgraduate study at a college, university, or School of theology approved by the University Senate of the United Methodist Church. Preference will be given to persons preparing for missionary service in Brazil. Recipients selected by the Foundation’s Scholarship Committee. The amount of scholarship awards depends upon the availability of income from the William Fletcher and Agnes Dawsey Rogers Endowed Scholarship Fund, an endowed scholarship fund of the South Carolina United Methodist Foundation.

To make inquiries or request application materials for any of the above listed scholarships, write or e-mail:

The South Carolina United Methodist Foundation, Inc.
P. O. Box 5087
Columbia, South Carolina  29250-5087
scumf@bellsouth.net

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