Getting into law school is just the first step towards a successful
career in law. Prospective law school students usually need funding
and financial assistance to manage the high costs of
and there are many law school scholarships and law school grants
available. Many law school scholarship options are available through
online applications, while others require a formal written
application and interview. In most situations, finding the right
resources for funding may take the form of a law school grant, law
school scholarship, or by applying for law school financial aid.
How to Find Law
Securing financing for an educational career in law school will
require time, persistence, and research. The average costs of law
school including tuition, registration, course expenses, loan fees,
and room and board can reach up to $50,000 per year. Independently
funding a law school education can be challenging, and most students
turn to law school scholarships, grants, and federal loans to
complete their education.
Even though there are a few law school scholarships available
through universities and colleges, these are very competitive and
limited in scope. As a result, thousands of prospective law school
students search and apply using other resources.
A variety of law school scholarship options are available online,
and these generally have a simple application process that includes
an essay, a test, or even a written examination. Databases on law
school scholarships available in a specific city or state can also
be found by searching the local library. Many law school financial
aid offices also have libraries of law scholarship source books. The
average scholarship or grant amount varies depending on the
location, school, and student eligibility.
Calling the state bar's association is another option, as these
organizations offer many local law school grants and scholarships. A
valuable online search engine is the
http://www.edfed.com site, as well as
http://www.fastweb.com. The most common sources for law school
Law school scholarships by location
Law school scholarships for diversity
Law school grants available through a particular law school
Law school scholarships available through a sponsoring law firm
Scholarship: The Process
The first step in securing a law school scholarship is to collect as
many potential scholarships and grants as possible. This will
involve listing online resources, visiting the library, and
networking with professors and guidance counselors to create a list.
Law school loans are another option for students who do not qualify
for a law school scholarship or law school grant. A preliminary list
of resources can be found below.
It's important to apply as early as possible to increase the chances
of eligibility. Most law school scholarships have strict guidelines
and tight deadlines. If an essay or other sample of work is
required, applicants need to have plenty of time to create and
develop the presentation.
Scholarships vs. Law School Grants
Law school scholarships offer a valuable way for prospective
students to pay for all costs at law school, and most of these are
privately-funded and based on merit. Competition is fierce for most
for law school scholarship, but most first-year law school students
have at least half of their tuition paid for through these means.
The University of California, Berkeley offers 12 scholarships each
year, while Notre Dame grants 44 different scholarships and
fellowships. Columbia School of Law is one of the nation's top law
schools, and offers a variety of grants and scholarships for
Law school grants are generally sponsored by a law school or law
firm. These are generally available for undergraduate law students,
and can help with both partial and complete funding for a law school
education. These are usually offered over the course of a few years
so a student receiving the grant will have funding year after year.
Law School of
Financial Aid: What You Need to Know
Law school financial aid is the final option for students who are
not eligible for a law school grant, scholarship, or loan. The
Federal loan limit for graduate students is $18,500 per year, and
students who are eligible for the federal Perkins loan can receive
an additional $1,800 per year. The lifetime limit for Federal loans
is $135,800 in subsidized and unsubsidized Stafford loans, but no
more than $65,500 can come from a federal subsidized loan.
Scholarship and Funding Information
Returning students who are attending law school can also turn to a
401(k) account or tap into a home equity line of credit (HELOC) for
funding. Many banks will extend credit from a second mortgage that
can be used to fund a law school education, and this may be valuable
instead of taking out a high-interest loan.
Scholarship and Law School Grants Available
Applying for multiple law school scholarships and law school grants
offers the most opportunity for completing an education. The
following scholarships and financial aid resources are available for
http://www.accessgroup.org : a nonprofit organization that
provides private loans to the law school community
http://www.key.com/education : an organization that extends
LawAchiever private loans for students attending an ABA-approved
school at least part-time.
Professional Education Program (PEP)
http://www.teri.org/pep.htm : this organization provides loans
for both professional and graduate studies
Food and Drug
Law Institute Scholarships
http://www.fdli.org : The Food and Drug Law Institute (FDLI) is
focused on the study of public health law, and offers several
scholarships through a writing competition.
The American Bar
http://www.abanet.org offers a variety of law school grants and
sponsorships for those interested in advancing their legal
Nellie Mae LOAN
http://www.nelliemae.com : this nonprofit loan provider extends
the LawEXCEL Education Loan Program for law students
http://www.salliemae.com : this organization provides secondary
market loans in addition to private loan programs such as LAWLOANS