Scholarship Program

The YLD Scholarship Program is designed to encourage the participation of minority, solo/small firm, government, private sector, and military service attorneys in the Young Lawyers Division. Priority will be given to those applicants who express a desire to become actively involved with the Division and require financial assistance.

2018 - 2019
 2017 - 2018
2016 - 2017

The program consists of:

  • Per the Division's financial policy, scholars will receive partial funding to attend the Fall Conference, and Spring Conference: round-trip airfare up to $350, $20 ground transportation and $100 per diem (for two days)
  • Appointment to and active participation in one of the YLD boards or teams
  • Mentoring
  • All scholars are required to: Attend the YLD Fall Conference, the YLD Spring Conference and participate in scheduled programming on Friday and Saturday of each meeting
  • Produce a written piece (i.e. 101/201 article, resolution for consideration at the YLD Assembly)
  • Assist on projects as assigned

Scholarship Categories

  • General Practice, Solo & Small Firm Practitioners
  • Government, Military and Public Sector Lawyers
  • Minorities in the Profession

Program Length

One Bar Year (September 1 - August 31)


To be eligible, a scholar must be a "young lawyer," which is defined as any licensed attorney who is under the age of thirty-six or who has been licensed for no more than five years at the start of the scholarship year (September 1). Applicants for this scholarship program should be ABA YLD-eligible lawyers who fall within at least one of the scholarship areas. There is no requirement that applicants be presently involved with a local ABA YLD affiliate. Although applications will be accepted from non-ABA members, any person chosen as a scholarship recipient must be an ABA member before receiving assistance. In addition, anyone receiving a scholarship must be present at all three funded conferences.

Application Process

An online application must be submitted; preview a PDF of online application. The application includes:

  • A completed application form
  • An letter outlining why you would like to become involved in the YLD
  • A biography
  • A resume
  • Two to four letters of recommendation. Examples include letters from current or former employers and fellow practitioners.
  • Deadline, April 1

Selection Process

The Review Committee is made up of ABA Young Lawyers Division members. Scholarships will be awarded to applicants who demonstrate financial need and clearly express a strong desire to remain actively involved. Successful applicants will demonstrate a history of bar involvement, public service, and professional excellence.
The Review Committee will also consider the following based on the applicant’s letter of intent:

  • Initiative – Has the applicant displayed initiative in the past or currently in community and professional activities? Does the applicant possess leadership potential?
  • Financial Need – Does the applicant demonstrate a need for financial assistance in order to attend ABA YLD Conferences?
  • Attendance – Does the applicant affirmatively state he/she will attend the three YLD Conferences?
  • Communication – Are the ideas expressed in the letter of intent communicated clearly?
  • Special Circumstances – Has the applicant overcome any unusual challenges or obstacles?

*Special consideration may be given to applicants with multiple years of eligibility left in the YLD.