The cost of a law degree can be overwhelming. However, the financial aid available to you may make your dream of becoming a lawyer possible. Says Wade Kricken you’re thinking about going to law school, it’s important to know that there are scholarships, grants and loans available which can help make your education less expensive.
Consider Your Options
- Scholarships, grants and loans are your ticket to a law school education. Scholarships are based on merit or achievement; you apply for them. They can be awarded by the law school or other entities like national chapters of the American Bar Association (ABA).
- Grants are need-based awards that do not have to be repaid. The same organizations that award scholarships also award grants—the ABA, for example—but unlike scholarships, grants don’t require an application process.
- Loans are borrowed money that must be repaid with interest after graduation from law school. They’re often offered through banks and credit unions but may also come from professional organizations such as bar associations and lawyers’ groups
- Apply early.
- Start applying to scholarships as soon as you can, and get your paperwork in on time.
- Apply for loans when you have all of your documents together and are ready to complete the process.
Ask your school for help
Ask your school for help. You can request a financial aid award letter, which should include information about your eligibility for loans and scholarships. If you attend an in-state school, ask about student employment opportunities as well.
Talk to the financial aid office of the school you want to attend
- Talk to the financial aid office of the school you want to attend.
- Ask about grants, scholarships and loans.
- Find out how much you will need to pay.
- Ask about other ways to save money.
- Find out if there are any special policies for students who come from families that can’t afford law school tuition.
The bottom line is that there are financial aid programs available to help law students pay for school. You can get loans and grants, but if you want to avoid debt, then scholarships are the way to go. This is especially true if you’re a woman or member of an underrepresented group in law school because these scholarships will give you an advantage over your peers when it comes time for job placement after graduation!