Financial Aid for Master's Degree Students - Princeton Theological Seminary

Financial Aid for Master's Degree Students

Master’s-level Scholarship and Grant Programs

Princeton Seminary is determined to make theological education affordable. We put a significant amount of care and effort into keeping tuition and other education expenses as cost-effective as possible, including substantially subsidizing our beautiful campus housing, which is about half the cost of local non-Seminary housing. We also invest significant resources to fund our aid programs, including generous scholarships and need-based grants. We are committed to ensuring that our students are able to afford Seminary and are financially prepared to take the next steps of their calling.

Merit Scholarships

Merit scholarships are awarded after the admissions process on the basis of high academic achievement, demonstrated leadership, and commitment to the life and mission of the church. These awards are renewable based on the candidate maintaining full-time enrollment and satisfactory academic progress. All master’s applicants are eligible for merit awards, excluding domestic ThM applicants and MAT applicants. *No additional application is required to be considered for merit scholarships.

  • Awarded after admissions to outstanding students who have demonstrated exceptional academic achievement and leadership
  • Covers the full cost of tuition plus $6,500 per academic year
  • Interview required before January 15 priority deadline
  • Programs eligible: MDiv, MACEF, Dual MDiv/MACEF, MTE, MTS

  • Awarded after admissions to outstanding candidates who are active members of a PC(USA) church and show significant promise for ministry
  • Covers the full cost of tuition plus $8,000 per academic year
  • Interview required before January 15 priority deadline
  • Programs eligible: MDiv, MACEF, Dual MDiv/MACEF, MTE, MTS

  • Awarded after admissions to outstanding students who are descendants of enslaved people or from underrepresented groups, including but not limited to African, Latino/a, Asian-Pacific Islander or First Nations descent. (Note: Current federal nondiscrimination guidelines and case law permit educational institutions to focus but not limit scholarships to particular racial/ethnic groups. Within the context of the Seminary’s complete financial aid program, the Grimke scholarship will focus on African American students to the extent permitted by these guidelines.) Learn More
  • Covers the full cost of tuition plus $15,000 per academic year, which typically covers the majority of Seminary expenses
  • Interview required before January 15 priority deadline

  • Selected from the top admitted students already offered a merit scholarship and provides additional financial support
  • The Presidential Scholarships are normally awarded after the January 15 priority scholarship deadline

  • Covers the full cost of tuition plus a stipend, including the comprehensive fee, single student health insurance premium, and additional money for living expenses (rent is not covered under this scholarship)
  • Normally awarded after March 1
  • Interview not required, but may be requested by the Committee as part of the application review process

*The International Trustees and Presidential Scholarships are typically awarded to admitted students who do not currently reside in or have previously studied in the United States. If the student’s spouse or family is invited, the scholarship only covers the student’s expenses. 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 pastoral endorsement presented with the admissions materials).

  • Covers the full cost of tuition plus a stipend, which typically covers the majority of Seminary expenses, including the comprehensive fee, single student health insurance premium, single room or 1-bedroom apartment, and additional money for living expenses
  • Normally awarded after March 1
  • Interview not required, but may be requested by the Committee as part of the application review process

*The International Trustees and Presidential Scholarships are typically awarded to admitted students who do not currently reside in or have previously studied in the United States. If the student’s spouse or family is invited, the scholarship only covers the student’s expenses. 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 pastoral endorsement presented with the admissions materials).

Need-based Grants

  • Up to 100% tuition for eligible degree candidates who are currently members of a PC(USA) church
  • Up to 80% of tuition for eligible degree candidates of all other denominations
  • Awarded after admissions, upon completion of the requirements listed below

*Questions about aid programs and application procedures should be directed to the Office of Student Administrative Services.

This grant program is designed to help our students reduce their dependency on educational loans. Awardees must work a minimum of 10 hours per week and attempt to raise money from outside sources in order to be considered for this need-based PTS aid program. The award maximum for single students and married students without children is $2,000 per year. Single and married students with children may qualify for up to $4,000 per year.

Grant recipients must:

  • Qualify for the maximum PTS Grant
  • Demonstrate need beyond the maximum PTS Grant offer
  • Have outstanding student loan debt in their name of $20,000 or more at the time of application
  • Complete the Gillespie Grant application and supply the required documentation by the November 1 deadline

Eligible PC(USA) MDiv and MDiv/MACEF candidates who demonstrate financial need beyond the maximum PTS Grant may qualify for a low-interest loan which has the potential to be forgiven if the recipient serves the PC(USA) in ordained ministry after graduating. Applicants for this forgivable loan must complete the application each year and provide documentation of Inquirer status to qualify for year one and two of their program and Candidacy for year three and in the case of a Dual degree candidate, year four. The maximum award for this forgivable loan is $4,000 per academic year.

*Please note that a merit-based aid recipient who can document need beyond their scholarship offer, may be eligible to apply for the Gillespie grant or PTS Presbyterian Loan program as well.

Princeton Seminary also participates in and offers federal loans and work study programs: Federal Direct Loan, Federal Grad PLUS Loan, and Federal Work Study.

Requirements for Need-based Aid

To qualify for a need-based grant from Princeton Seminary, an applicant must:

  • Be enrolled full-time as a first professional degree candidate (this includes the MDiv, MACEF, MDiv/MACEF, MTS, and MTE programs)
  • Complete the FAFSA form
  • Complete the PTS need-based financial aid application (upon admission, information about how to access the need-based aid application will be available on the applicant portal).
  • Some grant programs require an additional, separate application (see details below)
  • Submit a copy of your most recent federal income tax return
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress
  • Apply each academic year
See More Financial Aid Resources

Master of Arts in Theology (Justice and Public Life) Financial Assistance

Princeton Theological Seminary offers the Master of Arts in Theology (Justice and Public Life) degree at a reduced tuition rate.

Tuition is billed at $595/credit vs. $780/credit. This $595 rate is applicable through the 2024-2025 academic year. A one-time fee of $495 will be billed in the first semester of the program.

Per Credit HourTuition for 3-Credit Course
PTS – Regular Tuition$780$2,340
MAT – Reduced Tuition$595$1,785

Students enrolled in the Master of Arts in Theology (Justice and Public Life) degree program who are taking 4.5 or more credits in a semester (Fall, Spring, or Summer) are eligible for Federal Direct Loans or Federal Work Study to assist in defraying the cost of their tuition. Completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is required to begin the process of applying for these programs. Contact Student Financial Services at [email protected] for more information.

Learn more ways to fund your educations