Leadership for Change

The Jeanne Audrey Powers Leadership for Change Scholarship is an innovative program for United Methodist seminarians studying at any one of the thirteen United Methodist seminaries in the United States or at Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California.

It aims to bring about full inclusion of LGBT individuals in The United Methodist Church (UMC) by supporting the development of leaders committed to this goal.

The Leadership for Change Scholarship provides assistance of up to $3,000 per year to students who are preparing for ordination as elders in the UMC and who are committed to promoting justice for gay and lesbian persons in the life of the UMC. Scholarships may be renewed for a maximum award period of three years.

The scholarship program is administered by the Office for Institutional Advancement at Pacific School of Religion.

Share the Vision

Jeanne Audrey PowersThe Leadership for Change Scholarship was established by Rev. Jeanne Audrey Powers, retired member of the Minnesota Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.

“The Church, sadly, has been slow to welcome those rendered invisible by society, to rid itself of the remnants of slavery, to ordain and recognize the qualifications of women,” said Rev. Powers.

“When the UMC changes its attitude about sexual orientation, I want to see pastors who are prepared to teach about this and other social justice issues informed by theology, ethics and scripture itself.”

“I want to encourage those who are committed to the full inclusion of gay and lesbian persons in the life of The United Methodist Church, that they might advocate from positions of pastoral leadership.”

Rev. Powers, one of the first women ordained in the UMC (1958), was long engaged in national and international work in the Church. She was associate general secretary of the General Commission on Christian Unity and Interreligious Concerns from 1972 to 1996. Rev. Powers passed away in 2017.

Download an application:

Jeanne Audrey Powers Scholarship Application 2019

Contact Rev. Will Scott with questions:

Phone: 510.849.8260

Email: willscott@psr.edu


 Application Deadline

The application deadline for the Leadership for Change Scholarship is April 15th of each year. Scholarship recipients are named in June.

Award Criteria

To qualify for consideration, an applicant must:

  • be a member of The United Methodist Church;
  • be actively seeking elders orders within the UMC;
  • be enrolled in or admitted to one of the thirteen United Methodist Seminaries in the United States or Pacific School of Religion;
  • be committed to promoting justice for LGBT individuals in the UMC;
  • show promise for ministry;
  • demonstrate capacity for leadership;
  • have experience with activism.

Applications are specifically welcomed from persons who are:

  • members of, or supported by, a Reconciling Congregation of the UMC;
  • from the South Central or South Eastern jurisdictions of the UMC.

Applications are reviewed by a committee convened by the Executive Director of the Center for LGBTQ and Gender Studies in Religion.