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Jack Pope Fellows Program

“Public service, in all its many forms, is a noble calling.  It is so important that we must not leave it to chance.  We should, instead, actively search for and recruit young men and women who have good minds and character.  We must then provide them the training they can use to solve the complex problems of our times.  If we fail to do this, we will leave important civic matters to untrained, indifferent or unprincipled people.  We must begin now.” -Judge Jack Pope

The Jack Pope Fellows Program offers scholarships to outstanding Abilene Christian University students pursuing careers in public service.

In honor of Judge Jack Pope’s considerable contributions to his state and nation in his career as a public servant, the Board of Trustees of ACU established the Jack Pope Fellows Program. Jack Pope Fellows Program scholarships are awarded on the basis of merit to full-time ACU students who will be college juniors in the following academic year.

The Program gives students opportunities to learn about public service in the classroom, attend special lectures, gain practical experience in public service, and participate in service activities. The Jack Pope Fellows Program is interdisciplinary and applicants are drawn from all majors and fields of study offered at Abilene Christian University.

The Pope Fellows program is intended for those who will shape the culture and provide a Christian influence in an area of public service. Public service is broadly defined as careers at all levels and in all functions of government as well as related public service sectors.

Acceptance into the program requires students to complete an interdisciplinary 24 hour Minor in Public Service (PDF), which is administered by the Department of Political Science.

Application and Course Requirements


To apply for the Jack Pope Fellows Program, a student must receive an invitation during the spring semester of their sophomore year. The completed application packet must include application form, applicant essay, financial disclosure form and evaluations from three references. Application packets are due to the faculty advisor at the specified time during the spring semester.

Who is Eligible?
To be selected for the Jack Pope Fellows Program, a student must:

  1. Be a student at Abilene Christian University at the time of selection to the program.
  2. Be a sophomore pursuing a bachelor’s degree when applying or have two more years of study after applying.
  3. Currently have (and subsequently maintain) a grade point average of at least 3.25
  4. Submit an application portfolio demonstrating a genuine commitment toward pursuing a public service career.
  5. Interview with the Jack Pope Fellows Steering Committee.