Oftentimes, the one area of applying for scholarships that students get stumped by is identifying the types of scholarships that are actually available to apply for. Students tend to assume that there are only academic or merit-based scholarships out there, when in reality, there are so many more categories for students to explore and take advantage of. In this post, I will highlight a few of the popular, along with a few of the less-known, categories of scholarships for law students and a few that are full ride scholarships.
COMMON: Scholarships within your major
The major or area of study is typically the first place where people look to find scholarships, making them extremely common. If you’re preparing to go to law school, all you have to do is do a quick search on “scholarships for law school students” or something similar and see what comes back!
LESS COMMON: Scholarships based on your hobbies
Lots of students get caught up in applying for major-specific scholarships, and forget that there are tons out there that support student’s outside interests and hobbies! For example, do you like to paint in your free time? How about play a sport, read books, or take photos? You can find scholarships that center around all of these things, which will likely be easy to write short essays on if you truly enjoy the activity.
COMMON: Full-ride scholarships
Full-ride scholarships are ones that cover most, if not all, of the costs of your tuition. These are clearly great because they can take a significant financial burden off of your shoulders. However, because they are for such high amounts, they do tend to be on the competitive side. While not all full-ride scholarships are commonly known, some of them are, so my advice would be to try to find ones that are as specific to you as possible because this will hopefully mean a smaller applicant pool.
LESS COMMON: Diversity-based scholarships
Another area that students sometimes overlook is searching for scholarships based on their ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender, race, or other category. It is super important for students to think about everything that they are and what they bring to the table when searching and applying for scholarships. For example, if you identify as LGBTQ+, there are tons of great scholarships out there that celebrate you, just for being you!
COMMON: No-Essay Scholarships
Of course, no-essay scholarships are extremely common among students because they generally require the least amount of effort on all fronts. Despite this fact, applying for no-essay scholarships is still important because it helps to round out your overall scholarship strategy.
LESS COMMON: Scholarships sponsored by specific firms
Finally, a lot of times specific law firms have scholarships of their own, but they may only feature them on their own website and in a few other places that can be difficult to find. I suggest making a list of law firms in your local county, state, or even area of the country and doing some searching on their websites to see if they offer scholarships. A bonus with this is that if different firms offer scholarships that have the same or similar essay questions, you can easily modify and reuse!