Scholarships for Missionary Kids

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Christian postsecondary institutions often offer scholarships specifically for missionary kids.
Christian postsecondary institutions often offer scholarships specifically for missionary kids. (Image: Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Religious organizations, missionary foundations, family funds and postsecondary institutions administer scholarship programs specifically for the sons and daughters of missionaries. Each missionary dependent program has its own guidelines, which may limit applicants based on school attended, religious affiliation or academic achievements. The majority of scholarships for missionary kids extend eligibility only to the children of missionaries serving internationally, but a limited number also provide aid for students whose parents work within the United States.

Missionary Foundations

Certain nonprofit organizations help support the needs of missionary families, including scholarships for their children. The Christian Missionary Scholarship Foundation, CMSF, for instance, sponsors scholarships for the sons and daughters of missionaries working in foreign countries. The foundation offers scholarships only for students attending one of six private Christian, Midwest colleges. The CMSF program offers funding for up to four years of undergraduate study and could provide addition assistance for students enrolled in medical school. The Woman’s Missionary Union Foundation offers multiple scholarships for missionaries' children. Its Elizabeth Lowndes Scholarship provides funding for the offspring of missionaries working internationally and in North America. The foundation also administers the Mary B. Rhodes Medical Scholarship, which offers funding to missionary children pursuing medical degrees.

The Mary B. Rhodes scholarship offers funding to missionary children working toward medical degrees.
The Mary B. Rhodes scholarship offers funding to missionary children working toward medical degrees. (Image: Creatas/Creatas/Getty Images)

School-funded Scholarships

Christian colleges and universities often fund scholarships or offer tuition reduction programs specifically for missionaries' children. Golden State Baptist College's Missionary Scholarship program, for instance, offers a 25 percent tuition discount for sons of foreign missionaries and a 50 percent discount for daughters. Abilene Christian University offers a program for the children of Church of Christ missionaries, which guarantees a 75 percent reduction in tuition costs when combined with government and institutional student aid. The Abilene program offers funding for up to eight regular undergraduate semesters but does not provide awards for summer semesters. Abilene students must have a minimum grade point average of 2.5 and live in college housing to qualify for the award.

Endowed College Scholarships

Many Christian colleges and universities have endowed scholarship programs specifically for the children of missionaries. Individuals or families typically fund endowed scholarships, which may base awards on financial need, or they offer scholarships only to students who meet specific program criteria. For instance, Central Baptist College, CBC, offers the Beatrice and M.E. Childers Endowed Scholarship, which awards student aid to children of missionaries working domestically or internationally. CBC's Haven Mission Endowed Scholarship program provides funding to members of the Haven Baptist Church in Arkansas and the children of missionaries serving the Baptist Missionary Association of America.

Denominational Organizations

Organizations affiliated with specific religious denominations often award scholarships to the sons and daughters of missionaries of the same religious denomination. The national headquarters of The Episcopal Church, for example, offers multiple scholarships, including the John Lloyd Fellowship for the children of missionaries who have served in China. The Georgia Baptist Convention administers the Georgia WMU Burney Christmas Gifts program, which awards funding to the kids of international and North American Southern Baptist missionaries. To qualify for the Burney program, students must attend a postsecondary institution in Georgia.

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