Effie McKerson Book Scholarship

     Effie McKerson was born in Henderson, Texas in 1924. She married Dr. Hayward McKerson and settled in Edina, Minnesota in 1968.  They were the proud parents of Hayward McKerson, Jr.


     Ms. McKerson was the first Black teacher in the Edina Public School system and a member of the Minnesota Board of Education. Prompted by her experiences as an educator in the states, she decided that she wanted to make a bigger impact in the education sector, teaching internationally in several countries abroad. She retired from the Edina Public School system and became an educator at Harvest Preparatory Charter School in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She traveled the world and sponsored numerous foreign students throughout her journeys.


     Not only was she the first black teacher in the Edina Public School system, but she was also the first black woman to become a member of the elite Women's Club of Minneapolis. Ms. McKerson was an active member of the Republican Political Party and was Minnesota’s alternate delegate to the 1972 Republican National Convention in Miami Beach, Florida.


     Ms. McKerson was a charter member of Iota Zeta Zeta Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated.  November 17, 1979 she along with seven other members of the sorority recognized the need to bring the sisterhood to Minnesota.  She was elected the first President of the chapter. Ms. McKerson continued her efforts to provide service and to empower those in need for over 35 years, until her passing on March 5, 2012.


     Recognizing Ms. McKerson’s dedication to education and the sisterhood, Iota Zeta Zeta Chapter developed a book scholarship in her honor.


     The chapter seeks to annually award one young woman for her efforts as a standout student. She must exude academic excellence and be active in her school and community, similar to our beloved Soror McKerson.  We proudly offer this book scholarship in hopes of assisting a determined young woman reach her academic and professional goals.


     The application deadline for the Effie McKerson scholarship is February 26, 2021 All applications and supporting material, include transcripts and references, must be mailed to the post office box on or before the deadline. Hand delivered applications to chapter members will not be accepted.


  1. Individuals applying for the scholarship must:

    1. Be in good academic standing and with a cumulative grade point average of “B” or better (3.0 on a 4.0 scale).

    2. Involved in in at least one of the following: civic, religious, community and/or extracurricular activities.

  2. Be a female, graduating seniors, attending school in the Minneapolis/St. Paul Metro or surrounding areas about to enter a 2-year or 4-year accredited institution of higher education. Women of color are strongly encouraged to apply.

  3. The completed application package must be mailed to the chapters post office box and postmarked Any missing, incomplete or late documents disqualifies the applicant.

  4. The award will be granted upon confirmation of registration in a college or university for summer or regular term of the fiscal year for which the scholarship is granted. A class schedule and a bursar’s letter or receipt must be submitted by the applicant to the chapter.

  5. The award is a one-time book scholarship.



All applications must be postmarked by February 26, 2021.  For the application, please click on the Microsoft Word Icon to download the application. Thank You!

Complete the application form below (keep a copy for your records) and mail it to: 

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.

Iota Zeta Zeta Chapter

Attn: Effie McKerson Scholarship Committee

P. O. Box 581303 Minneapolis, MN 55458-1303

By completing and signing the application, if selected as the scholarship recipient, you give Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., Iota Zeta Zeta Chapter, the right to use your name and likeness in promotional materials (i.e. website, press releases and such).