Doctoral Fellowship

The Doctoral Fellowship (DOC) program encourages current Ph.D./Th.D. students to consider theological education as their vocation. The Institute awards two-year Doctoral Fellowships of $3,000 per year. In addition, Fellows constitute a peer learning cohort that meets six times over a two year period.

Application Deadline: March 1, 2022

Fellowship Amount: $3,000 per year, two years

Apply for a Doctoral Fellowship now.

The Doctoral Fellowship (DOC) program offers fellowships of $3,000 a year for two years to Ph.D. or Th.D. students to consider theological education as their vocation. In addition, the cohort of Doctoral Fellows meets three times during each fellowship year.

Previous DOC Fellowships


Applicants must be Ph.D. or Th.D. students, currently in their first or second year of doctoral study in an accredited graduate program in the United States or Canada. Eligible proposals should describe the applicant’s commitment to the Christian church and theological education and suggest how his or her doctoral work would be an appropriate preparation of a career in theological school teaching. Applicants may represent a variety of academic disciplines, including, but not limited to, history, ethics, the social sciences, biblical studies, and historical, systematic, and practical theology.

In all its grantmaking, including the Doctoral Fellowship program, LI is interested in funding persons and projects with the potential to strengthen the religious life of North American Christians and their institutions while simultaneously advancing American religious and theological scholarship.

Applicants may not submit applications to more than one Louisville Institute grant or fellowship program within the same grant year (June 1-May 31).  Members of the Louisville Presbyterian Seminary Board, staff, or student body — including immediate family members (parents, spouse, or children) – are not eligible to apply.

Questions about eligibility may be sent to

DOC Application Requirements

All documents must be submitted by 11:59pm on March 1st. Upload each application requirement in *.pdf format (preferred). Transcripts must also be received on or before March 1st. Recommenders must submit their letters by March 8th. If you encounter problems, contact

Applications must include:

    • Applicant Information: Using the online form, provide details about your proposed dissertation research, institutions you attended, relevant coursework, academic honors, pertinent teaching/employment experience and titles/citations of publications.
    • Curriculum Vitae or résumé (no more than 4 pages)
    • Application Essay: In 1,500 words (double-spaced and typed in a 12-point font) describe your interest in theological teaching and scholarship.
    • Transcripts: One official copy of each of your graduate & professional school transcripts sent by the institutions or dossier service directly to the Louisville Institute via hard copy or transcript service to OR
    • Two Letters of Recommendation: When uploading your application requirements, please provide the names, email addresses and phone numbers for your recommenders. After submitting your application, LI will immediately email recommenders with a link to submit letters online. LI will notify you via email as each person successfully submits a letter. Applicants should contact their recommenders in advance to explain procedures and guidelines (below). Letters of Recommendation must be submitted by March 8th.
      • Doctoral Mentor’s Letter of Recommendation: Your faculty mentor/advisor will be asked to provide a letter of support that will assess your (1) commitment to exploring a vocation in theological education; (2) commitment to the church in shaping your teaching vocation; and (3) promise as a teacher and researcher in theological education.
      • Doctoral Second Letter of Recommendation: Your second letter of recommendation should be from an academic or pastoral mentor who will be asked to provide a letter that assesses your personal qualities and commitments, including your spiritual formation, service to the church, and scholarly promise.

All application must be uploaded through our website in *.pdf format by 11:59pm on March 1. Transcripts must be mailed or emailed by March 1.  If you encounter problems, please email

Review and Selection Process

Every year the Louisville Institute Board appoints a selection committee to review proposals and award Doctoral Fellowships. Committee membership and deliberations remain confidential.

Applicants whose projects are not funded will be notified by mail as soon as possible following the adjudication process. Due to the large number of applications the Institute receives, LI Board and staff members do not provide additional feedback on declined proposals.

Awards will be announced on or before May 15, 2022.

Duration of Award and Stipend

Doctoral Fellowships will provide a stipend of $3,000 per year for two years. All tuition, medical insurance, and required fees are the responsibility of the student.


In both years of their award, Doctoral Fellows are expected to participate in the colloquium which will meet three times (September/October, February/March and May/June) during each fellowship year. Travel and lodging expenses for the colloquium will be covered by the Louisville Institute.

Louisville Fellows

Doctoral Fellows become Louisville Fellows who are dedicated to the vocation of theological education, either by engaging in the lifelong development of their own imagination as theological educators or by supporting others doing the same.


For further information on all Fellowships, contact