The Gershon Kekst Graduate School works diligently to ensure that students have access to a wide array of financial aid options. We offer generous funding options for matriculated MA, DHL, and PhD students, and we work closely with individuals to help them apply for and receive independent fellowships.

Financial Aid for MA and DHL Students

MA and DHL students taking six or more credits per semester may apply for financial aid. All applicants are eligible for merit-based and need-informed partial tuition fellowships. In order for students to be considered for a Kekst Graduate School scholarship, applicants are asked to submit the FAFSA (JTS Code 002740).

The Kekst Graduate School admits students on a rolling basis and awards fellowships based on availability in the early spring.

The JTS Financial Aid Office will work with students wishing to be considered for US federal loans upon enrollment. Students that plan on applying for federal loans should submit the application by March 1. The loan application will become available in December of each year.

PhD Fellowships

PhD candidates are eligible only for merit-based fellowships determined by the Graduate School Fellowship Committee and administered by the Graduate School. PhD students who wish to supplement their fellowships, or obtain student loans in lieu of fellowships, may apply for loans through the Financial Aid Office by completing all of the regularly required financial aid application materials. Loan eligibility for fellowship recipients is not guaranteed.

PhD fellowships are awarded to outstanding students on a competitive basis:

  • Recipients are chosen at the time of admission and are selected based on academic strengths and other qualifications.
  • All new applicants to the PhD program are automatically considered, and no additional fellowship application is required.
  • In order to be eligible for these fellowships, candidates must submit complete applications by December 31, with preference given to students who apply by December 15.

Each fellow receives the following benefits annually during these five-year fellowships:

  • Full tuition
  • Health insurance
  • Summer stipends
  • Teaching opportunities
  • Annual stipend

Graduate School Doctoral Fellowships comprise the following fellowships and are funded by their foundations and grants:

  • Gerson D. Cohen Fellowship
  • Professor Saul Lieberman and Dr. Judith Berlin Lieberman Graduate Fellowship in Talmudic Studies
  • Rabbi Benjamin Plotkin Memorial Fellowship
  • Stroock Fellowship in Ancient Judaism
  • Betsy Z. and Edward E. Cohen Fellowship
  • Blanksteen Family Fellowship
  • Dr. Bernard Heller Fellowship
  • Jacob Shatzsky Memorial Fellowship
  • Stanley J. Friedman Graduate Fellowship
  • Rabbi Seymour Siegel Scholarship
  • Robert Rifkind Fellowship in Advanced Jewish Studies
  • Michael Klebanoff Fellowship
  • Louis and Alice Schimberg Scholarship
  • Gillman Fellowship in Theology

Specialized Fellowships

Students at the Gershon Kekst Graduate School can apply for a wide range of fellowships relevant to particular interests and career paths.

Nachshon Project Graduate Fellowship “LaunchPad” Track

  • What it is: $30,000 per year toward full-time graduate school and living expenses.
  • Who should apply: Applicants can be current professionals in Jewish careers or career-switchers who now seek to bring their skills from other professions into the Jewish professional world.

Please note: The Nachshon Project Graduate Fellowship Launchpad Track offers a second pipeline to the Nachshon Project Graduate Fellowship for those who did not participate in the Nachshon Project undergraduate fellowship.

Sharzer MA Fellowship in Jewish Ethics

  • Who should apply: Students with exceptional academic records interested in the intersection of the Jewish textual tradition and contemporary moral issues who wish to earn an MA in Jewish Ethics.
  • What it is: Two-year package of full tuition and generous stipend, with some funding for summer.

Learn more about the MA application

Wexner Fellowship

  • Who should apply: Students who plan to pursue a career in the North American Jewish Community
  • What it is: In addition to a full fellowship for graduate study, fellows receive a living stipend of $30,000 per year for up to three years.

Note: The Wexner Graduate Fellowship is not currently accepting applications for the 2023-2024 academic year.

UJA-Federation of New York Graduate Fellowship

  • Who should apply: Students who are interested in pursuing a career in the Jewish nonprofit sector. Students interested in working with UJA-Federation of New York are eligible for an additional scholarship. Applicants are evaluated on both merit and need.
  • What it is: Graduate students who are pursuing careers within the Jewish nonprofit world are eligible for a fellowship toward earning their degree. The program offers a range of fellowships to be applied to graduate tuition for up to two years. Fellows participate in the UJA Graduate Fellowship cohort where they engage in innovative seminars and build relationships with a cohort of future Jewish leaders.

JCC Association  Scholarship Program

  • Who should apply: Students planning to begin or continue working at settings within the Jewish Community Center Association movement
  • What it is: Full-time students receive up to $10,000 per year for a one- or two-year period. Each recipient must complete a field placement at a JCC during their graduate studies, as well as participate in a series of programs and career development seminars. Recipients commit to working at a JCC for two years post-graduation.