Beauty for Ashes Scholarship Fund

Our work in anti-human trafficking has grown from a student-led awareness project on campus to a position of leadership in the global movement to end modern-day slavery. The CJR works with direct service providers, law enforcement, and other movement leaders — and when we talk to survivors, we keep hearing the same message: they dream of a college education!

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Hear this personal story about the impact of our Beauty for Ashes Scholarship Fund by watching this interview with the Center for Justice & Reconciliation staff and a scholarship recipient.

We asked ourselves, what if we could offer scholarships? What if we could stand with survivors and support their journey, from victim to survivor to thriver?

This launched the Beauty for Ashes Scholarship Fund in 2014, founded with the belief that an education at a Christian university is a critical long-term investment in the empowerment of survivors of human trafficking.

Aside from a deep faith in Christ and a supportive community to surround them, there may be no more important long-term intervention for the rehabilitation of survivors of human trafficking than the loving, academically challenging, and carefully mentored environment of a Christian university education. The Beauty for Ashes Fund positions PLNU as an educational leader in the global movement to end modern-day slavery, and a place of higher learning that stands behind its mission statement, not just for the privileged youth of our culture, but also for the most vulnerable.

The Beauty for Ashes Fund has been established to support the education of survivors of human trafficking who are pursuing their first bachelor's degree​. The scholarship is designed for those who have experienced the exploitation of human trafficking through the commercial sex industry or through labor trafficking, as defined by the U.S. Federal government*.

Our first two scholars graduated in December 2018, and we have supported students under the Beauty for Ashes Scholarship since January 2016. We work with students throughout the process, from the early exploration of meeting admission requirements, to admission and throughout their time pursuing their degree at PLNU. We are here to support the journey.

I've come to realize how much bigger the scholarship is than any one person. All the hard work, dedication and faith that comes from everyone at CJR, BFA supporters, as well as the student, makes the success feel even greater. I feel above honored and grateful for my new life as an educated PLNU grad-- pursuing opportunities that I thought were only in dreams.

– Beauty for Ashes recipient and PLNU 2018 graduate

To make the Beauty for Ashes Scholarship Fund viable for the long term — to support the many survivors who long to attend PLNU — we need your help. Your gift (one-time or recurring) is tax deductible.

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In the spring of 2014, a dream began to grow that we could offer scholarships for survivors of human trafficking.
Learn more about how the Beauty for Ashes Scholarship Fund began and hear from one of our students.

Beauty for Ashes Scholarship for Human Trafficking Survivors


Applying for the Beauty for Ashes Scholarship Fund

If you are a survivor of human trafficking and are interested in applying for the Beauty for Ashes Scholarship Fund, your first step is to contact our Admissions Office. Follow our Step-By-Step Guide to apply below.

Step-By-Step Guide

Upon acceptance to the university, you can apply for the scholarship. At this time, the Beauty for Ashes Scholarship is only available for people who are pursuing their first bachelor's degree. The scholarship can not be used for graduate degrees.

We respect the privacy of your situation but do require a written referral from an approved social service agency, advocate, or law enforcement or government official; a T-visa; or other official documentation. We have a dedicated admissions counselor who will work with you through the process of admissions and answer your questions about the university and the scholarship. You own your story. You will never be asked or required to share your story as a condition of the scholarship.

Working with other financial aid, the goal of the Beauty for Ashes Scholarship Fund is to provide full tuition assistance for our accepted students. Scholarship amounts are ultimately determined by the amount of resources available in the fund and awards are made on an annual basis. For more information about applying to PLNU and the process of obtaining the Beauty for Ashes Scholarship, please contact us at

*Human trafficking survivors are defined by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 and its subsequent reauthorizations as:

  1. sex trafficking in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such act has not attained 18 years of age; or
  2. the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery (22 U.S.C. § 7102(9)).