On August 1, 2017 The Office of Loans and Scholarships at the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry announced that it awarded more than $1.66 million to 206 recipients of the Excellence in Clergy Leadership Scholarship to Master of Divinity students attending one of the thirteen United Methodist seminaries in the United States.
Seven Candidates for Ministry in The Western North Carolina Conference received between $7,500 – $12,500 each toward their educational expenses. These students are attending a wide variety of United Methodist seminaries: Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University, Candler School of Theology at Emory University, Duke Divinity School, The School of Theology at Boston University and Wesley Theological Seminary. These funds were made available through the GBHEM scholarship program and were the combined, matching gifts of the Western North Carolina Conference Ministerial Education Fund, the United Methodist Foundation of Western North Carolina, GBHEM, the United Methodist seminaries, and The Lilly Endowment.
Allyson Collinsworth, Executive Director of the Office of Loans and Scholarships at GBHEM, stated, “Our mission is to provide resources for the future leaders of The United Methodist Church. The Excellence in Clergy Leadership Scholarship is one way we are reaching our mission and providing assistance to our future clergy leaders. However, it would not have been possible without our many partners – Wespath, Ernst and Young, Annual Conferences, UM Foundations, and the UM seminaries and schools of theology – we have in this initiative. We thank each one of them for their continued collaboration.”