A substantial gift to the Lipscomb University College of Bible & Ministry will provide new, endowed scholarships for students in the university’s Doctor of Ministry degree program. The D.Min. program is housed in the college’s Hazelip School of Theology.
Jan Swan, Amarillo, Texas, donated $100,000 to the Hugh, Jane and Charles Swan Doctor of Ministry Scholarship, which will provide need- and merit-based aid to Doctor of Ministry students at Lipscomb.
Swan said she made the gift in memory of her parents, Hugh and Jane Swan, who met while students at Lipscomb in the late 1940s and for whom the scholarship is named. The scholarship is also named for Hugh Swan’s brother, Charles.
“Hugh and Jane Swan were Lipscomb lovers in more ways than one,” said Jan Swan. “Throughout their 57-year marriage, they moved from state to state, making friends and having children. They worked hard and played hard, but most of all they loved hard. They loved each other very much, but they also loved Lipscomb and the people in it.
“Though Hugh and Jane studied business while [at Lipscomb], their main business in life was spreading the love of Jesus Christ. The Swan Scholarship honors this lifelong passion by creating space for Doctor of Ministry students to do the same.”
The gift pushes the Swan endowment beyond the halfway point toward a fundraising goal of $250,000, said Leonard Allen, dean of the College of Bible & Ministry.
“We are grateful for the generosity of the Swan family and their desire to support those who have chosen the very important work of ministry,” Allen said. “It is a wonderful tribute to Hugh and Jane Swan and to the impact Lipscomb had on their lives. This gift will make a difference in the lives of students for years to come who will, in turn, impact countless others through their ministry.”
The Doctor of Ministry degree is distinguished from other academic doctorates in that it primarily focuses on the practice of ministry. The program builds on three years of master’s-level study and at least three years of ministry experience. The degree is designed to lead students to greater capacities to shape the spirituality and mission of those under their care, said John York, associate dean and director of the D.Min. program.
“The D.Min. is a ‘we’ degree, not a ‘me’ degree,” York said. “Research in the D.Min. is conducted in the context of the student’s ministry setting and benefits the community as much as the individual. Because the program is cohort based, classes are also ‘we’ experiences in which peer learning replaces the individual competitiveness often found in the education process.”
A Swan Scholarship fund was established in 1984 by Hugh Swan’s sisters, Ann Phay of Nashville and Ruth Yankee of Mount Juliet, Tenn., in honor of their brother Charles, who died in 1983. Hugh Swan died in 2006, followed by Jane, a decade later.
Earlier this year, Phay and Yankee redefined the original Swan scholarship to benefit the Doctor of Ministry program.
“Charlie H. Swan, the father of Hugh, Charles, Ruth and Ann, did not have the opportunity to attend Lipscomb but his life’s goal was to make Christian education a possibility for all of his children,” said Jan Swan. “He would be pleased that his children and grandchildren have funded this endowment so that others will have an opportunity for Christian education.”
Lipscomb’s College of Bible & Ministry offers undergraduate degrees in theology and ministry, children’s ministry, language, missions, preaching, youth ministry, worship ministry and vocational ministry. Established in 2005, the college’s Hazelip School of Theology offers a Master of Divinity degree, a Master of Theological Studies, the Master of Arts in Christian Ministry and the Doctor of Ministry program. The Hazelip School is accredited by the Association of Theological Schools. For more information visit bible.lipscomb.edu.
To donate to the Swan Scholarship, visit give.lipscomb.edu and enter “Swan Scholarship” as the direction for your donation.