Diversity and Explorations Program

A group of students stands on a set of stairs. They look at a camera out of the shot. One student looks at the camera taking the photo.

October 27-29, 2020

Three days exploring everything HDS has to offer.


DivEx Online is a three-day introduction to Harvard Divinity School and our graduate programs. HDS is a vibrant, pluralistic community that uniquely enriches students’ opportunities to engage in study, praxis, and conversation across diverse experiences and with special attention to issues of diversity and social change.To get periodic information about HDS and our programs, please complete our Online Inquiry Form. Due to COVID-19 pandemic, we have made the decision to move this program online for 2020.


The 2020 DivEx application deadline has passed. Please check back at our website beginning in Summer 2021 for the 2021 DivEx application.


Who participates?

Are you a college undergraduate? Are you passionate about social justice? Considering a career grounded in a commitment to diversity and social change?  Explore HDS at DivEx Online and learn more about how the study of religion, theology, and ethics will help you make an impact on the world.  

Students at a luncheon sit at a table in discussion. A female student in the middle of the table leads conversation.

The primary goal of DivEx is to increase participation by members of groups that have been historically underrepresented or marginalized in the study of religion. We strongly encourage applications from current undergraduates who are students of color, first-generation students, and/or LGBTQ+ students, among other underrepresented groups. We define recent graduates as those whose undergraduate degree was conferred within a year of the application deadline.  

Please note that attendance in the Diversity and Explorations Program does not guarantee admission to Harvard Divinity School. Participants who are seriously considering applying to a degree program at HDS should contact the Office of Admissions to discuss the admissions process and the suitability of the program to the student’s future career and educational goals. 

Not being selected for the Diversity and Explorations Program will not adversely affect future application for admission to any HDS program. In fact, the program is not designed for students who may already have extensive preparation and robust understanding of the study of religion. Therefore, some students who may be well-qualified for an HDS degree program may not be ideal for participation in DivEx, which is exploratory by design. 

Eligibility Note: As the focus of this program is to increase the number of students that are underrepresented in the study of religion, we will only accept applications from domestic students residing in the United States. International students—while an important part of the HDS community—are not eligible for this program.

How much does it cost?

DivEx Online is completely free. We ask that applicants are able to be in a quiet, well-lit space with a stable internet connection during the three day workshop.   

How do I apply?

Applicants will be asked to provide:

  • Completed DivEx online application form 
  • Personal statement describing your interest in the program 
  • Résumé 
  • Letter of recommendation from a professor, career mentor, or faith-based leader
  • Academic transcripts 

Two students sit at a table talking with a group of people

"With the evolving religious landscape, constant social movements, and changing political climate in the world, the Harvard Divinity School community recognizes that an interdisciplinary approach to world issues is necessary.

I was unsure if I was capable of thriving at a place like Harvard as a first-generation college student coming from the Pacific Islands and growing up in a low-socioeconomic community.  My DivEx experience helped me realize I was more than capable of flourishing there, but that I also have a huge contribution to make to the HDS community through my lived experiences."

 — Nathan Samayo, DivEx ’19, MDiv ’23.

What can I expect?

  • Network with Harvard Divinity School faculty and current students 
  • Engage in webinar discussions related to diversity and social justice, graduate study in religion, and the admissions process and financial aid 
  • Connect with others around the country who are passionate about diversity and social justice and how the study of religion can impact their work to change the world 
  • Most importantly, chat with current students to see if HDS is a good fit for you! 

Have more questions?

Check out our DivEx Frequently Asked Questions page for more specifics on the DivEx program and the application process.

Contact us

Email admissions@hds.harvard.edu at any time, whether you know you want to apply or still have questions. If you’d like to be connected with current HDS students, send an email to ask_students@hds.harvard.edu. We love to talk about DivEx!