Post secondary scholarships for students in college and graduate school.

The first known scholarship was awarded by the Smalley family in honor of John Smalley who died in 1983.  Since then, the Scholarship Committee, founded in 1986 to distribute a bequest honoring Viola Peterson, a longtime member of UMCG and former high school teacher, has awarded more than 240 scholarships to deserving students active in our church.  These scholarships represent a total of more than $275,000 awarded to students planning to attend a post high school educational institution.

Scholarships remain possible through the ongoing support of families honoring loved ones, various organizations and members choosing to generously donate and the support of the community through fundraising.  The Scholarship Committee, consisting of 7 lay members, coordinates the distribution of these scholarships. 

Some of the scholarships awarded for 2022 were:  the John A. Andersen Educational Scholarship, William K and Ruth Bullock Memorial Scholarships, Lucinda Dittmer Memorial Scholarship, WP McElroy and Yvonne W McElroy Scholarships, and the UMCG Scholarships.  Check back in January 2023 for the application for 2023 scholarships.

Applications can be saved to finish editing later.

The application deadline this year was May 6, 2022.


William K. and Ruth A. Bullock Memorial Scholarship

One $5000 Scholarship
Two $2500 Scholarships

Donated from the estate of Mary Bullock in memory of her parents, William K. and Ruth A. Bullock, who both emphasized the importance of education. Mary loved being a kindergarten teacher in the Villa Park school district for 40 years. She was beloved by all who met her, especially her students and co-workers. She loved life; singing, dancing, and playing the piano were her passions.

Scholarship Criteria:

  • Awarded to a deserving student who is an active member of the United Methodist Church of Geneva.
  • Acceptance/enrollment at a two-year or four-year college, university, technical or vocational school as an undergraduate student.
  • Preference given to a student planning on attending a community college or technical/vocational school.
  • Preference given to an applicant planning to pursue a career in elementary education.
  • Active in extra-curricular activities at their school as well as their local community.
  • Preference given to a candidate with a 3.0 or higher GPA.

Lucinda & Gary Dittmer (2010)

Lucinda J. Dittmer Memorial Scholarship

One $2000 Scholarship

Donated by Gary Dittmer in memory of his wife Lucinda. Lucinda was a member of Hugs and served on the Staff Parish Relations Committee. She was a faithful member of UMCG for 15 years. Lucinda was a teacher for academically gifted students in district 304. She joined the Illinois Math and Science Academy to develop its math curriculum and earned her PhD in problem-based learning while at IMSA.

Scholarship Criteria:

  • Female or male student planning to study elementary education (K – 8th grade).
  • Student must have a 3.0 or higher cumulative grade point average by the end of the student’s junior year.
  • The Scholarship Committee shall give preference to students with financial need (all other scholarships should be included to determine need).
  • Student must have been active in at least 2 extra-curricular activities, sports, or UMCG outreach programs.
  • Student must have been confirmed by a Christian church.

Yvonne & W.P. McElroy (2007)

McElroy Memorial Scholarships

W.P. McElroy Memorial Scholarship – One $1,000 scholarship
Yvonne W. McElroy Memorial Scholarship – One $1,000 scholarship

W.P. “Mac” and Yvonne McElroy were members of the UMCG from 1962 until their deaths, respectively, in 2009 and 2012. They retired in 1985 from the Geneva Community Unit School District 304, after 23 years of service. Mac was a high school principal and guidance counselor at Gecohi (Geneva Community High School), and Yvonne taught fifth grade at Fourth Street School. Prior to their years of working with youth and families in Geneva, they served schools in Homer, Mahomet, Monticello, and Kankakee. Both grew up during the Depression and greatly appreciated scholarship and community support they received to continue their education during those difficult years. Their family has established these memorial scholarships to honor their public service and commitment to education.

Scholarship Criteria:

  • Membership in the United Methodist Church of Geneva.
  • Evidence of church and community service.
  • Preference consideration given to graduates of Geneva, St. Charles, Batavia, and Kaneland public schools.
  • Acceptance/enrollment at a two-year or four-year college, university, technical or vocational school.
  • Priority consideration will be given to those planning to attend Illinois public institutions of higher education and/or to those planning to enter fields of education, social service, math/science/technology, or agriculture.

John Andersen (2015)

John A. Andersen Educational Scholarship

Two $1500 scholarships available for 2022
Scholarships to carry over to the next year if the Scholarship Committee deems there are no applicants who meet the criteria. 

John Andersen loved people of all ages but was especially drawn to the children and youth. He served on the Geneva Park District Board, coached boy’s baseball, and served on the Education and Youth Council at UMCG for many years. John believed every child should have the opportunity to receive an education and that it was the “window to the world.” Indeed, he devoted 33 years of his life educating children either as a 6th grade teacher or as an elementary school principal.

John was a member of UMCG for 61 years. It was his hope to establish an educational scholarship at UMCG in his name. Because of the generosity of John’s family and friends, the John A. Andersen Educational Scholarships are being offered to two deserving students this year.

Scholarship Criteria:

  • Student pursuing an undergraduate degree in education (K – 12th grades).
  • Student must have at least a cumulative 2.0 GPA at the end of their junior year of high school.
  • The Scholarship Committee shall give preference to students with strong financial need, especially those students planning to attend a community or junior college.
  • Student must have been active in extra- curricular school activities, sports, UMCG outreach programs, community service, or work.
  • Student must be a member of UMCG or regularly attend and participate in UMCG activities.

Click here for UMC General Board of Higher Education and Ministry scholarship information.

Click Here for List of Each Year’s Scholarship Recipients