Scholarships

AFP San Diego's commitment to modeling and promoting philanthropy is demonstrated by awarding several scholarships that advance AFP's mission and vision.  

Applications for all scholarships are open July 6.


Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE)

The Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) credential demonstrates an individual’s mastery of the standards set for core knowledge and skills required of fundraising executives after three years of experience. This practice-based designation requires demonstration of having met these standards through both an application and a written examination. The Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) credential provides you with a recognizable demonstration of your personal and professional achievement and commitment. This scholarship awards $700 to help cover the cost of the application and exam. 

CFRE Scholarship Criteria:
Applicant must:

  • Be an AFP San Diego Chapter member in good standing for at least the past two years.
  • Be employed as a full-time fundraising professional (or, if candidate is an Executive Director, at least 50 percent of time must be devoted to fundraising.)
  • Cover any difference there may be between the scholarship and the cost of the CFRE Exam and application fees.
  • Agree to mentor an AFP member within two years of taking the exam
  • Agree to take the CFRE exam within one year of receiving the scholarship if selected
  • Meet all requirements to qualify for CFRE exam

Colette M. Murray Fellows Scholarship

The Colette M. Murray Fellows Scholarship is an outreach initiative of the AFP San Diego Chapter to encourage diversity within our profession.  The scholarship offers incentives, education, tools, and resources to San Diego County nonprofit employees who either work in or serve diverse communities.  The Chapter’s ultimate goal is to encourage greater numbers of persons from diverse communities and/or serving diverse communities to become active members of AFP San Diego, AFP International, and our profession.  Awardees of the Colette M. Murray fellowship receive the following benefits for two years:
  • Complimentary annual AFP International/San Diego Chapter membership for two years (currently valued at $385 per year)
  • Complimentary admittance to monthly chapter programs (10 scheduled each year; approximate value: $500)
  • Complimentary participation in the AFP San Diego Mentorship Program
  • Complimentary ticket to annual AFP National Philanthropy Day (approximate value: $100) 
Eligibility Criteria
Eligible applicants must:
  • Be employed a minimum of 20 hours a week for a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in San Diego County;
  • Spend at least 50% of their time on fundraising duties and responsibilities;
  • Have no more than three years’ experience in the fundraising profession;
  • Be a part of a diverse community or fundraising for an organization serving a diverse community;
  • Not be a current member of AFP
  • Have the full support of their supervisor and their organization’s leadership to participate in this two-year educational program;
  • Attend chapter luncheons, workshops, programs and events;
  • Participate as a volunteer for National Philanthropy Day

Emerging Nonprofit Scholarship


The Association of Fundraising Professionals San Diego (AFPSD) Board of Directors is excited to offer a scholarship opportunity for emerging nonprofit organizations, providing an AFP Nonprofit Organizational Membership (Small) to two local organizations. Our goal is to increase community access, participation and membership in AFPSD for organizations that might typically be unable to participate due to budget constraints.

Emerging Organizations Scholarship Criteria:
  • Must be a nonprofit organization – individuals, consultants and for-profit entities may apply for a different category
  • An operating budget of less than $1,000,000
  • A fundraising department with less than two (2) Full time equivalent (FTE) staff
  • Individually incorporated or otherwise organized as a separate entity in the laws of the specific country
  • Not affiliated with a larger institution supporting their operations.
  • Is not currently a member of AFPSD
  • Agrees to upload their organization’s most recent 990
The organization will designate one fundraising professional to receive the benefits offered in this membership category. The membership may be transferred to another individual if the original member leaves the organization. Must subscribe to the AFP Code of Ethical Standards and promote the Donor Bill of Rights. Limit one membership per organization. Nonprofit Organizational members in good standing may vote, serve on chapter or Association committees and task forces and hold Association or chapter office.

Chamberlain Scholarship


This scholarship is designed to help individuals develop their fundraising knowledge and skills through participation in the AFP International Conference (AFP ICON). The Chamberlain Scholarship covers the Conference registration fee (less $10) and provides $750 toward travel and lodging for one AFP San Diego Chapter member. The Candidate must be a fundraising professional who has never attended an AFP International Conference.

Chamberlain Scholarship Criteria:
  • Candidate must be a member of AFP San Diego Chapter.
  • Candidate is employed full-time as a fundraising professional, or, if the candidate is an executive director, at least 50% of his or her time must be devoted to fundraising.
  • Candidate has never attended an AFP or NSFRE International Conference on Fundraising as a registered participant (unless as a member of the Conference Host Committee).
  • Candidate is responsible for covering the $10 difference for the Conference registration fee.
  • Candidate is responsible for submitting receipts to AFP San Diego for travel and lodging reimbursement up to $750. Expenses incurred outside of travel and lodging or travel and lodging expenses incurred beyond $750 will be covered by the scholarship recipient.
  • Candidate must agree to complete an online evaluation form and write a short report on his or her experience following the Conference to share with the AFP San Diego membership.
  • Financial need will be considered when selecting the scholarship recipient. Those candidates whose personal and/or organizational financial position might prohibit their attendance will receive special consideration.

Leichtag Foundation Scholarship

The Association of Fundraising Professionals San Diego (AFPSD) Board of Directors is delighted and honored to offer five (5) Leichtag Foundation sponsored scholarships to help create diversity within our profession and positive change in San Diego.

Qualified applicants may be either Executive Directors or those responsible for fundraising. Priority will be given to professionals who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) and employed by North County-based nonprofits.

Leichtag Scholars receive the following benefits for one year:

  • Complimentary annual AFP International/San Diego Chapter membership (currently valued at $99 for Young Professionals and $385 for those over 30)
  • Complimentary admittance to monthly chapter programs (10 scheduled each year; approximate value: $500)
  • Complimentary participation in the AFP San Diego Mentorship Program
  • Complimentary ticket to annual AFP National Philanthropy Day (approximate value: $100) 


Eligibility Criteria

Eligible applicants must:

  • Be employed a minimum of 20 hours a week for a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization;
  • Spend at least 50% of their time on fundraising duties and responsibilities;
  • Be a part of a diverse community or fundraising for an organization serving a diverse community;
  • Not be a current member of AFP;
  • Attend chapter luncheons, workshops, programs and events;
  • Participate in National Philanthropy Day.

Questions? Please contact Katie Gomez, Chapter Manager, at katiegomez@afpsd.org or (760) 518-0776.