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March 26, 2024

Legal Opportunity Scholarship Fund FAQs

Requirements for Eligibility 

To be eligible to receive an ABA Legal Opportunity Scholarship, an applicant must meet all of the following requirements: 

  1. The applicant must be an entering, first-year law student in academic year 2024.
  2. The applicant must be a member of an underrepresented racial and/or ethnic minority (e.g. Black/African-American, Native American, Hispanic American, Asian/Pacific Islander). Please note: International students are not eligible.
  3. Only students beginning law school in this academic year will be eligible for a scholarship.  Law students who have completed one or more semesters or years of law school are not eligible.
  4. Applicants who are part-time law students also must be starting law school in this academic year to be eligible.
  5. At the time of submission of the application, the applicant must have achieved a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.5 (on a 4.0 grading scale) at their undergraduate institution.  If the applicant has not completed their undergraduate degree at the time the application is submitted, the applicant must have a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.5 (on a 4.0 grading scale) as of the most recent completed semester.
  6. Before receiving scholarship funds, recipients will be required to demonstrate admission to and plans to enroll at an ABA-accredited law school.  Because of the deadline for submitting applications the applicant will have applied to law schools, but may not yet have been admitted to law school.  If the applicant is selected to receive an ABA Legal Opportunity Scholarship, the applicant will be required to demonstrate admission to and plans to enroll at an ABA-accredited law school before receiving scholarship funds.  Students who do not enroll or who leave law school after being admitted will be required to return all or a proportional amount of scholarship funds.

Eligibility

I am not a U.S. citizen, am I eligible to apply?
Undocumented students, DACA students, and U.S resident students are encouraged to apply. Unfortunately, international students outside or inside the U.S. are ineligible to apply.  

Are students applying to LLM or Master programs eligible? 
No, only those seeking a J.D. should apply for LOSF.

Is the scholarship open to 2L and 3L students?
No, the scholarship is open to applicants entering their first year of law school in Fall 2024.

Do I need an LSAT score?
We do not request LSAT, GRE or other allowable law school entrance exam scores for the application. You would not be excluded assuming the law school you attend has received one of those variances

Transcript

Are unoffical transcripts accepted?
Yes, the Selection Committee accepts either offical or unoffical transcripts.

Personal Statement

What is the word limit for the personal statement?
Please limit your personal statement to 1,000 words.

What should I include in my personal statement?
Your personal statement is your opportunity to include information that the application form does not convey and that you feel will assist us in reaching a thoughtful decision on your application. Examples of such information include a description of your personal strengths, your contributions through community service, service to or on behalf of your family, growth through your past work, a description of any special or unusual circumstances that may have affected your academic performance, or your personal and family history of educational or socio-economic disadvantage. While this list is not all-inclusive, we offer it for you to consider the types of information that may be useful in evaluating your application.

Letters of Recommendation

How can I submit my letters of recommendation? 
There are 2 methods to submit the required letters of recommendation. Applicants can upload the letters with their application via suvery monkey. Or applicants can input their recommenders' email and the recommender will recieve the link to upload the letter. Please note, survey monkey will consider adding the recommenders' email as a completed task. It is the responsibility of the recommender to add the letter before the deadline.

How many letters of recommendations are required?
The minimum number of letters required is 2. The Selection Committee will read up to 4 letters. 

Who should I ask to write my letters of recommendation?
The Selection Committee recommends that a mix of recommendations letters are submitted. Letters can be written by academic professors, past/current employers, community leaders, etc. 

Who should the letters of recommendation be addressed to?
Letters of recommendation can be addressed to the ABA LOSF Selection Committee.

Financial Information

Do I need to submit my FASFA information or my parents' tax forms? 
No, we ask that you answer the financial questions within the application form. You will be asked to enter the infomation from the tax forms, but not asked to upload them. 

I only have financial information for one parent, can I still apply?
Yes. The application form will allow you to indicate that you only have information for one parent, with a space to provide an explanation. In order to proceed with the application, please provide 0 values for the parent for whom you do not have information.

Additional Materials

Am I required to submit additional materials? If so, what should I provide?
No. That section is a catch all for additional information that was not captured in the application. Please do not upload your resume. 

Timeline

When are applications accepted?
The application cycle typically opens in February and closes in April. Applications are not accepted outside of the application cycle. 

When will I hear news on my application?
The ABA LOSF Selection Committee consists of volunteer legal professionals. We make every effort to go through the review process as quickly as possible to inform applicants. Please do not email inquiring about the status of your application. We will contact applicants directly when the review process is complete. 

Questions can be sent to [email protected] or [email protected].

Share the ABA Legal Opportunity Scholarship

How to Apply

The 2024 ABA Legal Opportunity Scholarship Fund application for first-year students entering law school in the fall will open on Feburary 1st and close April 15th. You can access the 2024 LOSF application portal to submit your application at: https://losf.smapply.io/