The Wurffel-Sills Scholarship & Interest-Free Student Loan Program is a combination of two memorial funds established to assist students with demonstrated financial need with their higher educational goals.


The Allie L. Sills Memorial Fund began in the early 1960’s with a bequest of $15,000 from Mrs. Flora M. Sills to honor her late husband. She bequest that the funds be used to offer student loans to students in financial “need.” The endowment restricted the maximum award amount to $800, per person, per year. With a limited amount of interest available each year, awards were made infrequently and with little formality.

In 1989, another bequest was received from the estate of Mr. Karl J. Wurffel. His bequest be that the Synod of the Northeast establish a fund to be known as The Karl, John, Elizabeth Wurffel Memorial Fund and be used to offer student loans to students in “need.”

When the Wurffel bequest was received, a process was set up to administer both funds, with provisions from each fund being honored. In 1991, a common set of policies and principles was approved.


Since the combining of the two funds, the Synod of the Northeast has assisted over 1,000 students with an interest-free student loan, scholarship, or both. Each year the application process begins in January with a deadline of April 1st. Applicants must be a member of any Presbyterian Church within the Synod of the Northeast. The application is open to full-time undergraduate students as well as those enrolled in seminary studies leading to a Master of Divinity (MDiv) or Master of Religious Education (MRE) degree. Part-time studies, non-credit courses, and graduate studies (other than MDiv or MRE) are not eligible to apply.

Review process & Awards

All completed applications are reviewed by a committee in the spring. The award amounts vary based on the amount of available funds and the number of applicants. The committee’s goal is to offer the most assistance to as many applicants as possible with either a scholarship, an interest-free student loan, or in some cases both. All applicants will be notified when their application is received complete and of any award offered after reviewed by the committee. Incomplete applications are not reviewable.

How to apply

  1. Download the appropriate application form,
    or contact Stacy Galloway in the Synod office (315-446-5990) for alternative form delivery

  2. Complete form(s)

  3. Mail application with sufficient time to be received by the deadline (April 1st) to the following address:

    • Synod of the Northeast
      Student Loan & Scholarship Committee
      5811 Heritage Land Drive, Floor 2
      East Syracuse, NY 13057-9360

  4. For New Applicants

    • Provide the “Certification of Church Membership & Pastor Endorsement” form to your pastor or clerk of session with sufficient time for him/her to complete it and return to the Synod by the deadline

    • For seminary students under care of a presbytery (in the formal ordination process), complete your portion of the “Ministry of Word & Sacrament Candidates” form and provide it to your Committee on Preparation for Ministry (CPM) chairperson with sufficient time for her/him to complete the CPM portion(s) and return to the Synod by the deadline

    • Deadline for supporting materials is April 15th

DEADLINE: April 1, 2019
CONTACT: Finance Clerk, Stacy Galloway

Applications for the 2019-2020 award season will be received between January 1, 2019 and April 1, 2019.

Wurffel-Sills Program Questions

For more information about the Wurffel-Sills program or how to apply,
please contact Stacy Galloway.