Here are some frequently asked questions about the Harvey Fellows application.

Contact Information

Q: Where is my applicant ID?
A: Your applicant ID was assigned to you by the Harvey Fellows and can be found in the initial email you received. It has your last name followed by a number; include both. 

Previous Degrees

Q: What degrees do I list?
A: Please list the degrees you have completed prior to the degree program for which you are applying to the Harvey Fellows Program. This will include your undergraduate degree and any completed graduate degree program (such as a Masters degree if you are pursuing a PhD).

Intended Degree

Q: What is my intended degree?
A: Your intended degree is the program is the program for which you are applying for the Harvey Fellowship. If you have not yet been accepted to a program, please list the programs where you have applied as well as indicate anywhere you have been accepted.

Vocational Goal

Q: What is my vocational goal?
A: Your vocational goal is a short statement describing what you will desire to accomplish with the degree you are pursuing.

Lausanne Covenant

Q: Why the Lausanne Covenant?
A: The Mustard Seed Foundation affirms the Lausanne Covenant as our missional commitment to the world.

Q: How do I make qualifications to the Lausanne Covenant?
A: Check the box stating, “I wish to make qualifications to the Lausanne Covenant” and write a statement explaining your qualifications and why.

Recommendation Letters

Q: Who should I choose to be my recommenders?
A: In general, you should look to someone who knows you well, yet can speak with objectivity. In some cases your choices are limited (e.g. academic advisor). In other cases you have some latitude with whom you choose. We suggest you select your recommenders with care. For example, do NOT ask a family member to serve as a recommender. Following is guidance for specific recommendation letters:

1. Current Local Church – A letter from a person in leadership at the local church you currently attend is required. Though it need not be from the pastor, the letter must come from someone recognized by the congregation as a leader in the church (e.g. elder, member of the vestry, session, etc.). We do not consider a letter from the leader of a campus ministry or parachurch organization (such as IVCF, Navigators, or Campus Crusade) a letter from a local church. Students who are in their first semester of graduate studies and have relocated to a new city may substitute a letter from their previous local church. We are looking for the recommender’s assessment of your spiritual maturity, commitment to the local church, ability to lead others, and his/her awareness of your attempts to study and work from a Christ-centered worldview.

2. Academic Advisor – For current students, a letter from your main (current) advisor is required, with his/her assessment of your achievement and employment potential in your chosen field. Non-students should submit a letter from a past professor, preferably in your intended field.

3. Academic or Professional Field – Another required letter regarding your academic or vocational potential should be from a professor, employer, or mentor. Recommendations from those engaged in your intended vocation are to your advantage.

4. Other Spiritual – A recommendation from someone who can speak to topics addressed in the first recommendation letter (Current Local Church). Letters from parachurch organizations are appropriate for this other spiritual recommendation but may not be substituted for the church recommendation.

Q: What if a recommender I invited cannot write the letter in time?
A: You may send an invitation to a new recommender at the recommender invitation page.

Q: I just joined a new church. Who can write my current church letter?
A: Students who are in their first semester of graduate studies and have relocated to a new city may substitute a letter from their previous church.

Q: I don’t have an Academic Advisor because I am not yet in my program. Who can write this letter?
A: Non-students should submit a letter from a past professor, preferably in your intended field.

Q: Who should I choose for my other spiritual recommender?
A: This recommender should be able to assess your spiritual maturity, commitment to the local church, ability to lead others, and his/her awareness of your attempts to study and work from a Christ-centered worldview. Letters from parachurch organizations are appropriate for this letter.

Q: How will I know if my recommender has submitted their letter?
A: You will receive a confirmation email when each recommender submits their letter online. Once you have received 4 confirmation emails, all four letters have been submitted to us. You don’t receive notification of when we receive mailed versions. We must receive the mailed versions for your application to ultimately be complete, but they should be put in the mail by the deadline, not necessrily received in our office by the deadline.


Q: How long should my essays be?
A: Your essays should not exceed 400 words each. Essays that exceed the word limit may not be considered.

Q: Should I write the optional essay?
A: The essay is optional, but strongly encouraged. It gives you another chance to tell the selection committee something about yourself that the previous essays have not covered.


Q: What information should be included in my resume?
A: Your resume can be in any format as long as it includes the basic information on a resume and can be merged into the PDF file. A CV is an appropriate format.

Test Scores

Q: Do I need test scores?
A: You need test scores if you have not yet been admitted to your program.

Q: Why do you require test scores only for those not yet admitted into their program?
A: We require test scores (GRE, LSAT, GMAT, etc.) from candidates who have not yet been admitted to their intended degree program because scores provide additional confirmation of the candidate’s overall fitness for graduate study.

Q: Do I need to scan official test scores, or are copies acceptable?
A: Copies of official score reports are acceptable only if official score reports are unavailable. Official GRE reports may be sent directly to the Harvey Fellows Program by using code 5288. Official GMAT scores may be sent directly to the Harvey Fellows Program using code 9FQ-WL-78.

Q: May I opt-out of submitting test scores?
A: For those applicants who have already been admitted to their chosen course of study, test scores are optional. If scores are not required for entrance to the intended degree program, applications may be submitted without scores.


Q: What transcripts are needed?
A: Undergraduate and graduate transcript(s) through your most recent semester are required. You may exclude schools at which you did not pursue a degree.

Q: Can I use a “scure pdf” of my transcript from my institution?
A: You may use any official transcript that can be made into a pdf file and merged into the application document. It is likely that the secure pdf from your institution will not merge into the application. In that instance, we suggest you request a paper copy of your transcript and scan it into a PDF file.

Q: What is “Other Degree Program School”?
A: This means a school where you have completed a degree. We only expect you to include schools where you have received or are pursing a degree.

Work Sample

Q: What kind of work sample do I need to submit?
A:Work samples vary by discipline. Please only submit one work sample, either pdf or disc.

Applicants in the BUSINESS, HUMANITIES, SCIENCES, PROFESSIONAL DEGREES, AND SOCIAL SCIENCES: Your work sample should represent a significant piece of academic work from your intended field (research paper or excerpt, conference presentation, published work, scientific research proposal, etc.). Merge a multiple page pdf file with the best representative sample of your written work. The document must not exceed 25 pages. When submitting a group project or paper, you must clarify your contribution.

Applicants in the ARTS: Your work sample must include examples of your artistic ability in your intended field (art, design, performing arts, music, film, etc). Visual artists should submit at least 20 images of work posted online. Actors and filmmakers/producers should submit at least three works (finished or works in process) posted online of their acting/plays/films, limited to a total of one hour of run time and excerpted if necessary. Writers should include a full screenplay (even if it exceeds 25 pages); poets/creative writers should submit at least ten pages of finished work. Please note that work samples should be relevant to the vocation you are pursuing.

Q: What if my best academic work exceeds 25 pages?
A: With the exception of screenplays (see above), we require applicants to limit their writing samples to 25 pages. If your work sample exceeds 25 pages, submit an excerpt of no more than 25 pages or revise the sample to abide by the 25-page limit.

Q: Can I submit a written work sample and upload a media work sample?
A: No, you may only submit one work sample.

Q: Where should I post my work sample online?
A: You may post it to your personal website, youtube, vimeo, or other website that hosts video or audio. You may give the readers of your application additional instructions if the site/page is password protected etc.

Technical Help

Q: I have my work sample, transcripts and test scores, but they are not in PDF form. Do they have to be?
A: Yes, your application must be a PDF file with all of the required documents included.

Q: How do I create PDF files for my work sample, transcripts, test scores, etc?
A: Adobe Acrobat is the industry standard program to create PDF files. This software is not free of charge, yet can be purchased with an educational discount. Depending on your computer’s operating system, however, you may create PDFs directly from word processing programs (see below about scanned documents). PDFs may also be generated directly from any Adobe product (e.g., Adobe Photoshop). While Adobe Acrobat Reader is free, it is only a PDF viewer.

Mac OS X
All modern Macintosh computers are print-PDF-enabled. You may generate a PDF by printing your document from your application, and selecting the “PDF” or “Save to PDF” button on the lower left of your print pop-up menu.

If using WordPerfect 9 or greater, you may generate a PDF under the File menu, by selecting “Publish to PDF”. Most Microsoft Word versions do not have this capability built-in, but if using Microsoft Office 2007, you may download a free plug-in from Microsoft to do it. You can use a PDF Printer ( Alternatively, we recommend you find one of the freely available applications for generating PDFs. One such popular program is PrimoPDF (

Scanning to PDF
To convert hardcopy/paper documents to PDF, you will need to scan them in; nearly all scanners can save files as PDFs, though most do not have software for editing PDFs (i.e., the scanned document is saved as an picture in PDF format, not text). If your scanner cannot save to PDF directly, please print-to-PDF using the suggested guidelines above. Files scanned as images can be quite large; please double-check your resolution settings and use the lowest resolution possible that leads to legible print-outs on screen (typically, 72 dpi is sufficient).

Q: How do I merge PDF files?
A: There are many programs that can merge PDFs. A search engine will provide many solutions if you don’t already have one. Adobe Acrobat for Mac OS or Windows is one solution, but it is not free. Below are some of the free programs and websites available:

• Preview [Mac OS, come native with the system; no need to download,]
• A website that will do it:
• PDFTK [Windows or Mac,]
• PDFill PDF [Windows,]
• PDFsam [Windows, Mac, Linux,]
• PDF-Shuffler [Linux,]

If these options do not work for you, we suggest you search Google for answers to your specific problem or find a system on which you can use one of the options above.

Q: How do I submit my application?
A: To submit your application, please upload one PDF file, which includes your application, resume, test scores, transcripts and work sample, at