Catholic Extension, in partnership with Boston College, Fordham University, and the University of Notre Dame, is offering scholarships that covers tuition, travel, and housing expenses for young adults from mission dioceses (which includes the Diocese of Helena) to earn a master’s degree in graduate theological education through the Young Adult Leadership Initiative. The Diocese of Helena is seeking qualified candidates for the program.

Parishes/Ministries are invited to nominate 1 individual. Nominees must be submitted by January 25.
Questions? Contact Kevin Molm at or 406.389.7055.

View the specific details of the program on Catholic Extension’s website here.

To nominate an individual, follow this process:

4 Step Process:

Step 1. Parishes/Ministries of the Diocese of Helena Nominate:

The first step is for parishes/ministries to nominate an individual – no more than 1 per parish/ministry. Deadline is January 25, 2021. (Click here to submit a nomination.)

Step 2. Bishop Vetter chooses his nominee(s) to Catholic Extension:
Ultimately, it is Bp. Vetter’s decision about whom he wants to nominate for this scholarship. An ad hoc committee of individuals will be appointed by Kevin Molm (OYYAM Manager) to help review applications and submit to Bp. Vetter the candidates for his review. The selected candidate(s) will be determined by February 1.

Step 3. Selected nominee(s) submits application to Catholic Extension:
Once Bp. Vetter has selected his nominee(s), the individual(s) will then need to complete the application process for the scholarship with Catholic Extension. This must be completed by February 19, 2021.

Step 4. Nominee(s) apply to specific graduate school program:
Once Catholic Extension approves the nominee(s) for the scholarship, then the individual(s) must apply for admission to the specific graduate school program s/he plans to pursue.

Criteria and Requirements:

Click here for a full description of requirements and expectations from Catholic Extension.

Briefly, the criteria and/or requirements that will be considered are the following:

  • Employment: Past, current, AND potential employment in ministry in the Diocese of Helena. The parish/ministry is responsible for submitting a plan for funding the individual’s position during and after their course of study.
  • Commitment: The individual’s commitment to continue to “put into practice” in the Diocese of Helena what is learned in the individual’s respective area of study.
  • Academic: Eligibility for admission to the university, maintain a GPA above minimum standards, and comply with other academic requirements of the respective university.
  • Availability: Candidates must be able and willing to live in community and study on-site for part of each summer (usually 3-5 weeks in total). Then, the individual must be able and willing to do on-line graduate coursework throughout the rest of the academic year while also working in his/her supervised pastoral ministry position.
  • Financial: Costs of this program are shared among the individual, the Diocese of Helena, the individual parish/ministry, Catholic Extension, and the respective university. The individual is responsible for covering costs of admission to the respective graduate school and other associated costs (e.g. application fees, GRE exam, books, supplies, etc.). The largest share of the program is covered by Catholic Extension and the university (e.g. tuition, travel, housing, etc.). The parish/ministry is responsible for costs associated for employment of the individual, although Catholic Extension will also provide some supplemental funding for employment.