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Financial Aid & Scholarships

Because of our partnership with Trinity School for Ministry, the North American Lutheran Seminary is able to offer scholarships to those who demonstrate financial need. And, because of our affiliation with the North American Lutheran Church, for those students who are in Candidacy (that is, beginning the process of ordination) in the NALC, we are able to offer full-tuition scholarships, thanks to the generosity of our donors.

In order to qualify for scholarship consideration, students must demonstrate need and apply each year in a timely manner. Applicants must be full-time residential students working toward a Master’s degree. Applications will be evaluated in the order in which they are received until funds have been exhausted. Awards will be made to qualified applicants as determined by the Trinity Scholarship Committee. Recipients will receive an official award letter. Each year a new Trinity Scholarship Application must be completed. If you are an NALC Candidate who is attending the NALS as a full-time residential student, you must fill out the Trinity Scholarship Application in order to receive funding from our designated fund.

Checklist for a complete application for need-based financial assistance:

Award Levels
Trinity uses the information provided from the applicant’s FAFSA as well as the Trinity Scholarship Application in determining the student’s level of need. Those applicants deemed to have a high need level may be awarded a full-tuition scholarship. Applicants with a medium need level may be awarded a scholarship that covers two-thirds of their tuition. Those with a relatively low need level may be awarded a scholarship that covers one-third of their tuition. An applicant deemed not to have demonstrated need, may be awarded a single token scholarship of one course (three credits) tuition scholarship. Trinity will award tuition-based scholarship funds for the exact number of credits required to complete the master’s degree program in which the student has matriculated. For example, the MDiv degree is 90 credits; therefore only up to 90 credits may be covered by a Trinity scholarship. Tuition-based scholarships can only be applied to a student’s account after the student has enrolled in his or her courses for the term. Audits will not be covered by the Trinity Scholarship.

Maintaining Eligibility
In order for the scholarship recipient to maintain eligibility to receive these funds, he or she must meet the following criteria:

  1. Remain enrolled as a full-time residential student for the award semester(s). Residential classes are those that consist of regularly scheduled, on-campus classroom sessions. Distance learning consists of interaction between the student and the instructor (who is physically separated from the student) through the use of communications technology. Distance learning credits will not be eligible for scholarship funding.
  2. Remain in good academic standing as defined in the Academic Catalog.
  3. Attend all Wednesday chapel services.
  4. Fulfill community service obligations.
  5. Attend all Leadership Formation Group meetings.

Failure to adhere to the above could result in the revocation of an award, and the student may be required to repay awarded scholarship funds.

Summer Scholarship Eligibility
The Summer Term (June Term 2020) is a stand-alone term, which is the last term of the Academic Year. There is no ‘full-time requirement’ during the Summer Term as such. Trinity scholarship recipients (who were full-time in the Fall 2019 and Spring 2020 Semesters) will be eligible to receive tuition-based scholarship assistance for summer classes based on their same level of need for the academic year.

Consequences for Dropping Classes
If the student drops a course during the specified add/drop period (see Refund Schedule in the Academic Catalog), the tuition scholarship will be returned to the scholarship fund. The scholarship recipient will be charged the portion of the tuition that was not refundable, as would a student paying full tuition (See Refund Schedule in the Academic Catalog). During the add/drop period, the dropped credits will not count against the total number of credits for the student’s program. After the add/drop period has ended, the student who drops a course forfeits the tuition covered by scholarship; and the credits for the dropped course will count toward the student’s total number of credits for which Trinity is providing scholarship funds. Similarly, if a student takes an Incomplete for a class, but then fails to complete the class, those credits attempted will count toward the student’s total number of credits covered in the tuition-based scholarship plan. The tuition costs incurred for a repeat course or for a substitute course for any of the following reasons will not be covered by a Trinity Scholarship: a failed course, a dropped course after the add/drop period, or a course changed from credit to audit.

Scholarship at the End of the Student’s Academic Program
A full-time student (and Trinity Scholarship recipient) who will have completed all but three or six credits toward his or her degree program (no repeated coursework and the student must not have exhausted his or her scholarship credit limit) and plans to take three or six credits in their last semester to finish, the student will be eligible for tuition-based scholarship, based on his or her previously determined need-level (high, medium, or low).