For some years past the World Alliance of Reformed Churches has linked prospective post-graduate students with a number of Reformed seminaries throughout the world which generously offer places to candidates whose applications have been endorsed by an official of a member church of WARC. Many students, mainly from Africa, Asia and Latin America who would not have the opportunity to pursue further theological studies have benefited from the WARC scheme.
I. Nature and purpose of this programme
The purpose of the programme is to offer students, mainly from African, Asian and Latin American countries, an opportunity to follow theological studies to Masters level. A few of the 23 participating seminaries/institutions from 11 countries also offer theological studies to PhD level. As little opportunity is available for these candidates to acquire theological education in their own countries WARC and its member churches feel it is vitally important for students to be given access to education abroad so they may return to their countries and provide the ministerial experience they have gained from the WARC scheme to their churches at home.
II. How the scheme works
The responsible officers of WARC member churches will receive every two years from the Theological Secretary a current list of the participating seminaries, together with full information. Candidates must be in, or training for, the ministry of member churches of the WARC.
The responsible officer of a WARC member church shall obtain from the Theological Secretary one application form for each named candidate whom the church is willing to nominate for a scholarship. The WARC scheme stipulates that each member church may sponsor one male and one female candidate per member church each year. The church furnishes WARC with the following information about the applicant: age, educational qualifications, ministerial experience, desired area of specialization for post-graduate studies and the name of the institution where the applicant would like to apply.
Preference will be given to candidates who are under 45 years of age and who have not benefited previously from a scholarship programme for theological studies overseas. A member church of WARC may request two application forms for named candidates each year, provided one of them is for a woman candidate.
Forms shall be requested between 1st June and 30th September each year. In order to ensure accurate record keeping this office will distribute application forms only for named individuals. Quantities of blank forms cannot be supplied, and the participating institutions will not act upon photocopied forms, or upon forms that have not been countersigned by this office. Completed application forms, together with specified supportive information shall be sent to the seminary of the churchs and candidates choice between 1st October and 31st December, with a view to possible commencement in the following academic year. This form is then completed by the candidate who subsequently returns this with his/her credentials to one of the seminaries participating in the WARC Scholarship Programme. The participating seminaries will conduct their selection procedures in their customary way and advise all candidates and the Theological Secretary of the outcome.
Since most scholarships are of one years duration and lead to a Masters degree, applicants should normally be graduates or be on the point of graduating. Further, since most of the participating institutions teach through the medium of English a high degree of competence in that language is required. TOEFL evidence should be provided in the case of those whose mother tongue is not English.
A candidates home church is involved in this procedure: (a) so that the Alliance and the participating institutions are assured of the candidates backing of his/her church; (b) so that the choice of seminary may be discussed with the candidate locally; and (c) so that the candidate may be given his/her travel expenses and any other necessary assistance.
III. Seminaries participating
IV. Contact person
Applicants, fitting into the above category, who require additional information concerning the WARC Scholarship Programme, should contact Ms Margaret Owen, Administrative Assistant, Department of Theology, World Alliance of Reformed Churches, P.O. Box 2100, route de Ferney 150, CH-1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland, Tel +4122 791 6242 , Email: firstname.lastname@example.org