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Financial Assistance Funds

The School of Divinity offers two financial resources to help students: Stealey’s Purse for students in emergency financial situations and Student Academic Conference Grants to attend academic or denominational conferences. More information about these two resources, including how to apply, is below.

Stealey's Purse Student Emergency Fund

There is an emergency fund available to WFUSD students called Stealey’s Purse. The generous donor of this fund knew Sydnor L. Stealey, a church history professor, who underwrote students with unexpected needs.  In order to request emergency funds, you must make a formal request with the pertinent information included (see procedures below).  Request can be sent via email to Shonda Jones, Associate Dean of Admissions and Student Services, at jonessr@wfu.edu.  

Procedure for obtaining funds:

  1. Student submits Stealey’s Purse application, including:
    • Application Date
    • Name and Contact Information
    • Description of Emergency and Amount of Money Needed
    • Copy of invoice/bill/receipt for money needed
  2. Stealey’s Purse Committee reviews application within one week of its submission and decides what amount to grant the student
  3. Disbursement of funds
    • If the emergency is an education-related emergency (e.g. payments that need to be made before receiving a refund check), student must apply for a WFU Graduate Emergency Loan (short-term loan; $500 max).
    • If student is eligible for Stealey’s Purse funds, school must complete the FAS Student Disbursement Form turned into Student Financial Services.
    • Student picks up check from university cashier’s office when it is available.

What constitutes an emergency?

  • untimely death of loved one
  • healthcare emergencies (e.g. unexpected procedure, medications)
  • job loss (with impact on ability to pay rent and/or bills, buy food)
  • housing loss
  • theft/stolen items
  • other situations deemed an emergency at the discretion of the Stealey’s Purse committee

A student may receive a total of $500 over the course of his/her time at WFUSD.  A student may receive funds more than once but the total should not exceed $500.  The Stealey’s Purse Committee will have the discretion to determine whether or not to make exceptions to the frequency with which a student might receive funds. The committee may confer with the Office of the University Chaplain, depending on the situation that leads to the funding request. The funding source for Stealey’s Purse is individual donations.  Students are encouraged to treat the account as a “borrowing program” and give back a portion of the amount they borrowed as a donation to Stealey’s Purse.  

Student Academic Conference Grants

There is financial support available to students attending academic conferences during the academic year.  You may apply for a one-time grant for up to $100.00.  Typically, these funds will be to reimburse students for eligible expenses (conference registration, travel, lodging, food, etc) as a result of conference attendance.  Reimbursement will be provided after you attend the conference and provide original receipts.

Interested students can apply by sending an email to divinity@wfu.edu with the following information:

  • Student Name
  • Conference Name, Location, and Date
  • Website of Conference (if available)
  • Explanation of how grant funds will be used

Please note the request for funds must be made prior to attending the conference event.  Funds are limited and will be disbursed on a first come, first served basis.