Academic Programs

Considering Grad School? We have good news for you - there are many graduate programs and scholarship opportunities specifically for volunteer alumni. The following resources are included in this section:

  • Graduate Program Information
  • Virtual Grad Fair for Theology and Ministry Programs
  • Scholarship and Fellowship Opportunities
  • AmeriCorps Education Award Information
  • Idealist Grad Fairs

Graduate Programs:

Aquinas Institute - Aquinas Institute of Theology is a graduate school of theology and ministry located in St. Louis, MO, and operated by the Dominican Friars. Many of our master’s degrees and graduate certificate programs can be completed online “synchronously” with our on-campus courses. Aquinas Institute waives the application fee for Catholic Volunteer Network alumni. To apply, or for more information, contact the admissions office at 1.800.977.3869, or visit: www.ai.edu

Boston College - Boston College offers graduate degrees in the School of Theology and Ministry.  The program incorporates the theology learned in classrooms intertwined with the students’ personal faith journey. Scholarships are available. www.bc.edu/stm

Canisus College - At Canisius, we value your commitment to serving others.  We want to help you achieve the education you need to further your career and continue to make a difference.  We offer every accepted graduate student, who completed a year of service, a 20% tuition discount.The Jesuit Mission Grant is available to any student who: has completed a full year of full time service, in an established volunteer service organization; approval of length of service and organization will be determined by Canisius College; students must be accepted into a graduate program of study at Canisius. If you would like to request more information or the application materials, you can contact Canisius College Graduate Admissions at: gradadm@canisius.edu.

Catholic Theological Union - Catholic Theological Union (www.ctu.edu) offers graduate level degrees and certificates in theology and ministry.  If you or someone you know has contemplated work in the church, social justice ministry, campus ministry, chaplaincy, or perhaps teaching, please check out the opportunities to study on a full-tuition scholarship: Bernardin Scholarship: http://www.ctu.edu/bernardincenter. Leadership in Ministry Scholarships http://www.ctu.edu/leadershipinministry. Apply to CTU: http://www.ctu.edu/admissions. Build the community of people who work for peace and strive for justice by bringing Christ's "good news" of justice, love, and peace to all.

Claremont Lincoln University - At CLU, we offer 3 innovative Master’s degrees in Ethical Leadership, Interfaith Action, and Social Impact. Our students develop capacities for compassionate leadership across social sectors. In an interconnected age, these individuals will engage in dialogue and collaboration across cultural, ideological, religious and economic perspectives. Significant scholarship opportunities are available for each of the programs for the upcoming October 2016 start term. Application fee waivers are also available through the Office of Admission. Please contact admission@claremontlincoln.org or 909-667-4485 for more information.

College of William and Mary - Masters of Accounting - You’ve spent the last few years helping others. This year, let us help you launch a meaningful career - Help worthy organizations thrive: identify problem areas and offer solutions; Act as financial steward: help hardworking boards invest wisely; Ensure that every charitable donation is used well - How? Understand the financial picture. At the W&M Master of Accounting program, we bring students from all over the world and from all walks of life together to achieve a common goal: become financial services professionals who make a difference. Non-accounting majors complete the program in ONE YEAR. MAcc program scholarships for Catholic Volunteer Network alumni and application fee waivers are available. For more information, contact Martha Howard, Sr. Associate Director, Master of Accounting program, 757-221-2875, martha.howard@mason.wm.edu.

Creighton University - The Center for Service and Justice (CCSJ) is now accepting applications for the Graduate Assistantship program. The CCSJ graduate assistant is a position designed to give graduate students (particularly those individuals pursuing Master’s degrees in Ministry, Theology, or Christian Spirituality, but also with opportunities in Negotiation and Dispute Resolution a chance to develop leadership and proficiency in faith/justice ministry as an integral member of the CCSJ team.  Past Graduate Assistants have primarily worked with the Service & Justice Trips program, but have also worked with the Weekly Service program, office Communications Team, office Fundraising Team, and Project Homeless Connect Omaha.  Compensation includes either partial or full tuition depending on the graduate program, stipend, and numerous opportunities for professional development.  Check out the full position description for more information.CCSJ Graduate Assistantship Position Description. If you have any questions about the CCSJ Graduate Assistant position, please contact Ken Reed-Bouley, director of the CCSJ.

DePaul University  - DePaul University is offering a Frederic Ozanana Scholarship for full-time graduate tuition for Vincentian and Amate House volunteers.  For more information contact Lilibeth Esparza at lesparza@depaul.edu

Eastern Mennonite UniversityThe Center for Justice Peacebuilding offers a Master of Arts in Conflict Transformation, as well as a Summer Peacebuilding Institute. For more information see: www.emu.edu/cjp/grad/

Fordham University - Fordham University Graduate School of Religion and Religious Education (GRE) is a school of ministry committed to cultivating academic competence, scholarly research and ministerial skills in religious education and pastoral studies. In accordance with its Catholic, Jesuit tradition, GRE encourages students to integrate academic knowledge with personal wisdom, and to serve the church and society as committed and compassionate leaders. GRE current students and graduates are actively serving the mission of healing the brokenhearted, of promoting justice, of lifting up those who have fallen, of calling out to the lost, and of handing on the faith in a variety of contexts from parishes, chaplain's offices, Catholic schools, Jesuit Universities, and Diocesan offices. In short, we strive to be a community of "doers of the Word" (James 1:22). All CVN alums who are admitted to one of GRE's programs receive a 40% tuition reduction. For more information about our programs and how to apply, visit fordham.edu/gre, email GREadmit@fordham.edu, or call 718-817-4800. 

Illinois State University - The Illinois State University’s Stevenson Center for Community and Economic Development is offering the Applied Community & Economic Development (ACED) Fellows Program, a master's program which includes full tuitions waivers, real world experience, and individual attention. For more information, please visit: www.stevensoncenter.org.

Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley - The Jesuit School of Theology (JST) in Berkeley is a professional theological school faithful to the intellectual tradition and apostolic priority of the Society of Jesus.  JST is committed to social justice, the culturally contextualized study of theology, academic excellence, and the formation of leaders for the church of the 21st Century.  Dedicated to inter-religious learning and dialogue, we are one of eight theological seminaries in the consortium of the Graduate Theological Union (GTU) in Berkeley, California. Alongside excellent Jesuit training at JST, students can also take courses throughout the GTU and at the University of California at Berkeley. Students are able to study for the Master of Divinity (MDIV), the Master of Theological Studies (MTS), and in conjunction with the GTU, the Master of Arts in Theology (MA).  Each year many former volunteers discern a call to go deeper into ministry, faith, theological study, and service through a degree program at JST.  Our alumni go on to serve as: teachers, campus ministers, non-profit administrators, pastoral associates, community organizers, chaplains and retreat center directors.  JST offers several full-tuition Presidential Scholarships for incoming Master of Divinity degree students.  Additionally, JST awards up to 90% tuition grants for all degree programs.Visit www.scu.edu/jst for more information or contact the Office of Admissions at admissions@jstb.edu or toll free at (800) 824-0122.

Loyola University New Orleans - Pursue graduate study and practical ministry experience at Loyola University New Orleans - a great Jesuit university located in a great Catholic city…for FREE!  Work with University Ministry on retreats and Christian Life Communities at Loyola in exchange for tuition for a Loyola Institute for Ministry master's degree in pastoral studies or religious education that is trans-formative and firmly rooted in Catholic theology and Ignatian spirituality.  Room and board may also be available if you wish to serve as a residence hall chaplain. For more information, please see http://mm.loyno.edu/jesuit-center/university-ministry-internship

Marquette University - Marquette University is offering a Trinity Fellows Program which offers Master’s degrees in 17 various areas ranging from Business Administration to International Affairs.  Tuition and salary are compensated.  www.marquette.edu/trinityfellows

Saint John’s School of Theology & Seminary - The Volunteer Corps Scholarship is available to those who have served in Catholic volunteer corps programs. This is a 50% tuition scholarship for full-time Master’s students. Saint John’s School of TheologyˑSeminary acknowledges that volunteer alumni have been leaders in fostering good values, serving the Church and transforming lives around the world. Saint John's School of Theology and Seminary offers several graduate assistantships to full time, degree seeking students. Graduate Assistantships include a tuition scholarship, a work award and sometimes a living stipend. Graduate Assistantships are offered in the following areas: Teaching Parish - Liturgy and Music; Pray-Tell Blog; Ministerial Formation and Outreach; The Saint John's Bible; Stewardship; Saint John's University Campus Ministry; College of Saint Benedict Campus Ministry; Youth in Theology and Ministry. For more information about scholarship options, please click here. Visit the Saint John’s School of TheologyˑSeminary website: www.csbsju.edu/sot. For more information, contact:  Jeannie Kenevan at  jkenevan@csbsju.edu or (320) 363 – 2964.

Additionally, we have been blessed with a million dollar grant from Lilly to offer eight tuition-funded fellowships for grad school at Saint John’s University in the School of Theology in Collegeville, MN.  These fellows will work on a project that will help parishes and faith-based groups in their efforts to build and sustain community.  We have to work quickly to get this project underway, so encourage anyone you can think of to apply (or at least make contact with us) by the April 15 priority deadline.  More info and the direct link to the application here. 

Saint Joseph's College Online - Saint Joseph's College of Maine was founded in 1912 by the Sisters of Mercy. At the heart of Saint Joseph's College is a Catholic liberal arts tradition and educational mission for men and women of all faiths and all ages. In 1976, Saint Joseph's introduced distance education to serve the needs of those who seek higher education through off-campus study. Graduate degrees currently being offered include: Master of Arts in Theology, Master of Business Administration, Master of Science in Education, Master of Health Administration, Master of Science in Nursing, and Master of Accountancy, as well as many graduate certificate options. CVN alumni are able to receive a waiver of the new enrollee applications fee (currently $50) and a tuition discount of 10-15%. Learn more about this program at: http://online.sjcme.edu/.

The Franciscan School of Theology (FST) offers two primary graduate degrees: The Master of Theological Studies and The Master of Divinity. Additionally, a Non-Degree program where you may take individual courses, do sabbatical study, or obtain certificates in Theological Studies or Priestly Formation. FST the ONLY graduate school of Franciscan theology and spirituality in North America. The curriculum offered at FST provides an interdisciplinary education with a theological foundation, preparing students for careers in education and professional ministry, as well as providing opportunities for enhanced knowledge of Christian faith, particularly in the Franciscan tradition.  That tradition is committed to embodying Franciscan theology in a religiously and culturally diverse world and to fostering concern for those on the margins of society. Moreover FST, is affiliated with the University of San Diego, which gives FST students access to a broad range of graduate courses at USD, including courses offered in the School of Leadership and Education Sciences (SOLES) and in the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies. Scholarships are available. www.fst.edu

University of DaytonGRADUATE ASSISTANTSHIPS at the University of Dayton –a Catholic and Marianist Institution – are available each year.  This two year program allows graduate students to gain campus ministry experience while pursuing a Master of Theology or Pastoral Ministry.  GAs engage in 20 hours/week. Four Campus Ministry positions are available for 2016-17 within Residence Life Ministry and Liturgy.  GAs build faith community and offer undergraduates the opportunity to grow personally and spiritually through planning engaging spiritual programs rooted in faith, directing retreats, planning worship services, coordinating faith formation, and providing pastoral support. Tuition, stipend, and housing are provided.  Download an application at https://www.udayton.edu/ministry/ga_program/index.php or direct inquiries to Kelly Adamson, 300 College Park, Dayton, OH  45469-0408. 937-229-2574.  Applications are due February 1.

University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public and International Affairs - The University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA) is one of the nation’s most comprehensive professional schools for public service. GSPIA offers master’s degrees and doctoral degrees specifically designed for students interested in public-interest careers, and prepares students to take on leadership roles in nonprofit organizations, charities, government agencies, and socially responsible private-sector organizations. The School offers highly respected programs in nonprofit management, urban affairs and planning, energy and environment, human security, and many other fields, from both a domestic and an international perspective. GSPIA seeks students who want to work to improve the human condition and show respect for human dignity across the globe. All CVN alumni qualify for an automatic application fee waiver. For more information, visit www.gspia.pitt.edu or email gspia@pitt.edu.

University of San Francisco - The University of San Francisco has openings for Resident Ministers. These live-in positions are part-time (up to 15 hours per week), ten month appointments, that begin in August and include work in the University Residence Halls and with the programs of the University Ministry Office. A Bachelor's degree is required. This is an excellent opportunity for those working toward a master's degree in theology, ministry, education, or a related field, and for those with ministerial/volunteer experience that would effectively transfer to the mission and work of a Jesuit University. Compensation includes University Housing, University Meal Plan, and a monthly $100 stipend.   For more information please visit http://www.usfca.edu/University_Ministry/Resident_Ministers/ or contact Don Crean (crean@usfca.edu  415-422-4463). To apply please visit http://www.usfjobs.com.

University of St. Thomas School of Law - The University of St. Thomas School of Law Dean’s Service Scholarship program is available to any admitted applicant to our law school who has completed or is scheduled to complete a service commitment (through a term of one year or more) with a CVN program, is guaranteed a 20% renewable three-year scholarship. Service scholars also are eligible for additional dean's scholarship awards ranging from 20% to 80%. No additional scholarship application is required for the Service Scholarship award, but applicants must include with his or her application a statement of service indicating his or her service period. Applicants may be asked for documentation verifying the completion of the service commitment. CVN volunteers and alumni can apply for admission and pay no application fee at www.lsac.org

Villanova - The Villanova Center for Pastoral Ministry Education and Internship is offering a pastoral internship to live and build Christian community in freshmen dorms while he or she studies at a Pastoral or Theology studies program at Villanova.  Intern receives room and board, graduate school tuition, and a stipend during the academic year. www.villanova/edu/campusministry/


Did you miss our Virtual Grad School Fair for Theology and Ministry Programs? We have recordings of the sessions available here:

St. Joseph's College of Maine:

Click here to view the presentation.

Boston College, School of Theology and Ministry:

Virtual Grad School Fair Boston College, School of Theology and Ministry from Catholic Volunteer Network on Vimeo.

Jesuit School of Theology:

Virtual Grad School Fair - Jesuit School of Theology from Catholic Volunteer Network on Vimeo.

St. John's School of Theology:

Virtual Grad School Fair Saint John s School of Theology from Catholic Volunteer Network on Vimeo.

More sessions of our Virtual Grad Fair coming soon!


Scholarship and Fellowship Opportunities:

Kathleen Marian Garrigan Leadership Award - Amount: $1,000 award to individuals between the ages of 18-25 who participated in a domestic community service project. The Kathleen Marian Garrigan Leadership award was established to commemorate the life of Kathleen Garrigan and inspire individuals to participate in domestic service programs. Kathleen, an alumnus of Oak Park and River Forest High School and St. Joseph College, Indiana was participating in a year-long service project in Alaska at the time of her death in 2007. Eligibility: Individuals between the ages of 18 and 25 with an uplifting attitude and a desire to serve others, one's community and one's nation. Applicants are required to complete a brief application and finalists will interview with the Kathleen Marian Garrigan Scholarship selection committee. Download application at: http://oprfcf.org/for-students/college-scholarships

Catholic Extension Society's Graduate Ministry Scholarships - Catholic Extension in partnership with Catholic Theological Union are offering Graduate Ministry Scholarships to these leaders in mission dioceses through CTU's distance-learning program. The program is designed to allow students to pursue a Master of Arts degree in pastoral studies without ever leaving the mission diocese they are currently serving. To learn more about this program, please click here.

Stephen J. Brady Stop Hunger Scholarships - The Stephen J. Brady Stop Hunger Scholarships are designed to recognize and reward the great steps students are taking to fight hunger in our communities across the United States. Applicants must be 25 years old or younger, have an on-going commitment to volunteer service in their community, and must be US citizens or permanent residents. Scholarship winners receive $5,000 for their education and $5,000 to award to a charity. For more information, please click here

Mickey Leland International Hunger Fellows Program - seeks to develop leaders committed to finding lasting solutions to hunger worldwide. It is a unique two-year fellowship that exposes fellows to food security programming and policy while deepening their understanding of global hunger and poverty. During the first year, fellows work directly to build food security in the field. In the second year, fellows apply their field experience to the design of sound development policy at the organizational, national, and international level.Click here for more information.


AmeriCorps Education Awards:

Congratulations! After successfully completing the Volunteer Program and AmeriCorps components of your program, you are now a CVN AmeriCorps alum! We offer a number of resources just for you on our AmeriCorps Alums page!

If you qualified for an Education Award, you will want to apply this funding to your current students loans or towards future educational expenses within seven years. To access and apply the Education Award and other financial benefits, visit the My AmeriCorps Portal at my.amercorps.gov. The award is not payable to the member, but is applied directly to the lender or educational institution through the My AmeriCorps Portal. Remember: the Education Award may only be applied toward federal/public loans and Title IV schools.

Want to make your Education Award stretch as much as possible? There are a number of institutions that will match your Ed Award to double it's value. Click here to view the list of matching institutions.


Idealist.org hosts graduate school fairs throughout the year at different cities across the U.S.  To see their events,  visit www.idealist.org/info/GradFairs.


If you wish to include information about additional academic opportunities for volunteer alumni, please contact Katie Mulembe.