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Need-Based Grants

PTS Grant - This need-based grant can be awarded to full-time students in our M.Div, MACEF, M.A.(TS), and M.Div/MACEF programs. Our award levels  for entering students are listed below. All currently enrolled PTS students will be funded at the levels stated at the time they began their PTS program.

Eligible students who are Presbyterian Church(USA) members may receive PTS grant aid to cover 100% of their evaluated need up to the cost of full tuition.

Eligible students who are not members of a PC(USA) church may receive a maximum award of 80% of the cost of tuition based on their calculated need.

To qualify for a need-based PTS Grant you must:

  • Be a first-time professional theological degree candidate
  • Demonstrate financial need (as defined in the Student Financial Aid Handbook)
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress toward your degree
  • Apply each academic year

A first professional degree student may be eligible for PTS grant assistance for a maximum of three years for the M.Div., two years for the MACEFand M.A.(TS), and four years for the M.Div/MA.

To apply for need-based aid you must:

  • Complete the online Student Financial Aid Application,
  • Complete the applicable version of the FAFSA (Free Application For Federal Student Aid Form) at,
  • Provide a copy of your prior year Federal Income Tax Return (when available) For 2021-22 applicants, we need your 2020 federal income tax return.
  • You may also be asked to provide documentation of the information you supply on these forms.

The Student Financial Aid Application is ordinarily completed with the application for admission.  You may access the financial aid form online

How need-based PTS financial aid is determined

The Thomas W. Gillespie Grant Program   This need-based Princeton Seminary aid program helps our M.Div, Ma and Dual degree candidates by providing eligible candidates who currently owe over  $20,000 in federal student loans with additional grant aid to assist them in meeting their educational costs. This program was designed by our 5th President Dr. Thomas W. Gillespie to help students who tried to help themselves, and requires recipients to work and raise funding from outside sources in order to reduce their dependency on student loans. The Thomas W. Gillespe Grant is currently available to M.Div., MACEF, M.A.(TS), and M.Div./MACEF students. For 2020-21, award maxima are $2,000 for students who are single or married without dependents and $4,000 for students with dependents.

PTS Presbyterian Loan Program - The Seminary offers eligible PC(USA) students a low interest loan that has the potential to be forgiven if the recipient serves as an ordained minister in the PC(USA). Only full-time M.Div. and M.Div./MACEF students who demonstrate need in excess of our maximum PTS grant may qualify for this loan program. Award maxima for this forgivable loan program are currently $4,000. For more information, please consult a member of the PTS Student Financial Aid staff.

Merit-Based Awards

Presbyterian Leadership Award -  Each year, up to 12 entering students are selected by the Admissions committee to receive the Presbyterian Leadership Award. The PLA  covers the student’s full tuition plus $8,000. This scholarship will be offered to a limited number of entering M.Div and M.Div/MA students who have demonstrated a high level of academic achievement and are outstanding candidates for pastoral ministry in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

Seminary Fellowship - Each year, up to 14 entering students are selected by the Admissions committee to receive the Seminary Fellowship. The Seminary Fellowship covers the student’s full tuition plus $4,000 for the academic year. Seminary Fellowships will be awarded to entering M.Div, M.A.(TS) and M.Div/MA students on the basis of outstanding academic achievement and demonstrated commitment to the life and mission of the church.

Presidential Scholarship- Subject to budgetary availability, up to five entering students per year from our M.Div, M.A.(TS)and M.Div/MA candidates may be awarded the PTS Leadership Award. The value of this merit-based scholarship is up to $5,000 for the academic year. Students selected for this award will have demonstrated the highest level of academic achievement and outstanding leadership in and commitment to the life and mission of the church. 

An interview and separate scholarship application is required for an applicant to be considered for our merit-based awards. Candidates for these three renewable merit-based awards are selected through the admissions process.  Awards will be renewed for those recipients who continue to maintain a high level of academic achievement and community involvement while at PTS.

International Scholars Program

Each year, a limited number of scholarships are given to Th.M., M.A.(T.S.) and MACEF students with advanced standing (M.Div. candidates are not considered for the international scholars program) coming to study at Princeton Seminary from outside the United States. There are two tiers of international scholarships.

The first is the Princeton Presidential Scholarship. This scholarship covers full tuition, comprehensive fee, single student health insurance premium, single room and board, and a small amount of money for incidental expenses.

The second is the Trustee Scholarship. This scholarship covers full tuition, comprehensive fee, single student health insurance premium, and a small amount of money for incidental expenses.

As a rule, these awards are offered by the Admissions Committee to prospective students who do not currently reside in or have not previously studied in the United States. The committee also considers the applicant's academic qualifications and the leadership positions to which they will return in their home country (as outlined in the ecclesiastical endorsement presented with the admissions materials).

There is no application for these scholarship programs. The admissions committee selects recipients from those admitted and notifies them of the award at the time they are admitted.

As mentioned above, M.Div and M.Div/MACEF candidates are not eligible for the International Scholars Program.

International applicants who are applying for admissions to the M.Div or M.Div/MACEF program may apply for our need-based PTS grant program, which could cover a maximum of 90% of the cost of a student’s annual tuition charge. For more information on application requirements, please contact the Office of Financial Aid at or by calling us at 609-497-7805.

Other Forms of Aid

Church Support - We suggest you inquire about financial aid that may be available from local churches and judicatories. In many cases, it is advisable to request this assistance well in advance of applying to Princeton. PTS students have received substantial support in this manner.

Outside Scholarships - The Office of Admissions and Financial Aid publishes a "Guide to Outside Scholarship Sources," which may help you search for outside scholarship assistance for your seminary program.  All students are encouraged to obtain this publication, as well as checking with their home church for assistance.  

Student Employment - There are many on- and off-campus opportunities available for PTS students. Applicants are encouraged to apply for Federal Work Study funding as a way to pay for their living expenses during the school year. The Office of Admissions and Financial Aid also maintains a bulletin board of job postings for Seminary students and their families. This board is located directly outside the office on the third floor of Templeton Hall.

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