Unlocking Opportunities: A Guide to Military Law School Scholarships


In the modern world, military recruitment and training are still crucial because of the frequent international conflicts we encounter. There is an increased need than ever for people with military experience.

At the same time, it is critical to provide young people who have served or are currently serving in the armed forces with equal access to academic opportunities. This enables them to contribute intellectually to the development of their country while also being prepared to defend it if necessary.

For many military service members and veterans, attending law school is a cherished educational aspiration. However, the cost of legal education often presents a significant hurdle. According to U.S. News & World Report, law school graduates can carry a substantial debt burden ranging from $90,217 to $130,349.

Military scholarships step in to address this financial barrier, facilitating a smooth transition for ex-military personnel into academic environments. These scholarships are designed to support individuals eager to expand their knowledge and become integral parts of intellectually vibrant communities where their talents and interests are recognized and nurtured.

The unwavering dedication and commitment of military-connected service members and veterans make them exceptionally well-suited for acceptance into law school. Nevertheless, many require financial assistance to fulfill their dreams of earning a law degree.

In the following sections, we will delve into the world of military scholarships for law school and outline the eligibility criteria for each. Our goal is to shed light on various military scholarship awards that not only reduce the financial burden but also significantly mitigate the costs associated with pursuing a legal education.

Types of Military Law Scholarships

Post 9/11 GI Bill®

If you’ve served at least 90 days of aggregate active duty service after September 10, 2001, and are still on active duty or have an honorable discharge or a discharge with a service-connected disability after 30 days of service, you may qualify for the Post-9/11 GI Bill®. This VA-administered program offers educational benefits to eligible veterans and active-duty service members.

Yellow Ribbon Program

The Yellow Ribbon Program is an additional support program designed to bridge the gap between the annual maximum of the Post-9/11 GI Bill® and the total tuition and fees incurred by eligible veterans. To be eligible for this program, veterans must qualify for the maximum GI Bill® rate (100%) as determined by the VA. The Yellow Ribbon Program contributions are evenly divided between the Department of Veterans Affairs and the particular law school, ensuring that eligible students receive additional financial assistance.

Financial Aid for Veterans

Many veterans mistakenly believe that they are ineligible for financial aid when using their GI Bill® benefits. However, the truth is that a substantial number of veterans can still qualify for financial assistance. In particular, the Federal Direct Student Loan program remains an option for most veterans, offering additional financial support to ease the cost of education. It’s crucial for veterans to explore the available financial aid options to make their educational journey more affordable and attainable.

Available Financial Scholarships for Veterans

Colonel Archer B. Battista Veterans Scholarship

Amount: Over $1,000

Requirements:

  • Current or honorably discharged U.S. military service member
  • Accepted to a law school in New England (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, Rhode Island, or Massachusetts).
  • Submit a 1-2 page personal statement covering military service, career goals, interest in law, scholarship use, and its impact on law school expenses.
  • Optional one-page statement from a supporter
  • Application deadline: Contact the Hampden County Bar Association for specific deadline details.

Deadline: N/A

The Behan Law Group Military Veteran Scholarship

This scholarship was established in honor of veterans’ service by U.S. Navy veteran Michelle Behan and is open to veterans and their children pursuing higher education. Tuition and other 

Educational expenses at any college or university may be covered by the scholarship funds.

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: December 6, 2023, at 11:59 p.m.

Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD Law School Scholarship for Veterans

Amount: $1,500

Requirement details:

  • Open to veterans from all branches of the military.
  • Proof of veteran status is required.
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 in the applicant’s most recent school transcript.
  • Applicants must submit a 1000-word essay along with their application. They can choose to answer one of the following questions:
  • How did your military experience inspire your career and education goals?
  • How did your experience in the military prepare you for law school and a law career?

Deadline: N/A

State Farm Scholarship for Veterans

Amount: N/A

Requirement details:

  • Open to veterans enrolled at Georgia State University in good academic standing.
  • Proof of military service is required.
  • A record of community involvement is necessary.
  • The university’s Office of Financial Aid determines financial need.
  • Preference is given to students enrolled in the J. Mack Robinson College of Business.

Application Opens: December 14, 2018

Application Deadline: February 15, 2019

Contact: Dave Cohen, scholarships@gsu.edu

Barnett Howard & Williams Military Veteran Law Student Scholarship

Amount: $500 stipend

Requirement details:

  • Open to veterans attending a U.S. law school.
  • The scholarship funds can be applied to various law school expenses, including tuition, books, room, board, commuting, and bar review courses.
  • The application must include a cover letter providing the following information:
  • Description of the applicant’s military experience.
  • Post-law school legal career plans
  • Expected graduation date.
  • Most current GPA (minimum 2.5).
  • Student identification number.
  • University name and address.
  • List of military awards received

Additional documents may be submitted with the application.

Deadline: N/A. Applicants should contact Barnett Howard & Williams PLLC for specific deadline information

TonaLaw Veteran’s Scholarship

Amount: $1,000 (awarded each fall and spring semester)

Requirement details:

  • Open to military veterans.
  • Applicants must provide proof of U.S. military service.
  • Eligible veterans must be enrolled in or accepted for enrollment in an accredited school (within 6 months).

Application Deadlines:

  • For the fall semester: July 31st (Awarded on August 9th)
  • For the spring semester: November 30th (Awarded on December 6th)

Award Dispersion: Scholarships are directly given to the winners within the month when the results are announced.

Friedl Richardson Veterans’ Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Requirement details:

  • Open to veterans aspiring to pursue a career in law.
  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens.
  • Enrollment in an accredited law degree program is required.
  • Minimum GPA of 2.8 or higher.
  • Applicants are required to submit either a written essay or a recorded video. The submission should detail their strengths, their motivation for pursuing a legal career, and the reasons they should be selected as the scholarship recipient.

This scholarship can be a tremendous opportunity for veterans with legal career aspirations.

The Captain Shane Mahaffee Scholarship for Excellence

This scholarship honors the memory of Captain Shane Mahaffee and recognizes military students’ dedication to their studies and their duty. 

Amount: Not specified

Requirement details:

  • Awarded annually to a deserving active-duty student or student veteran.
  • Established in honor of U.S. Army Captain Shane Mahaffee, a Widener Law Commonwealth alumnus who lost his life in the line of duty in Iraq.
  • Recognizes the dedication and hard work of military students towards their country and academic pursuits.

Alumni Association Scholarship for U.S. Military Veterans

This scholarship provides support to U.S. military veterans pursuing their education at Georgia State University. Specific award amounts and additional criteria may be available by contacting Dave Cohen.

Amount: Not specified

Requirement details:

  • Open to U.S. military veterans.
  • Applicants must be enrolled at Georgia State University in good academic standing.
  • Demonstrated unmet financial needs are a requirement.
  • A minimum GPA of 2.75 or higher is necessary.

Application Deadline: February 15, 2019

Contact: Dave Cohen, dcohen@gsu.edu

Conclusion

Military scholarships help eliminate financial hurdles, paving the way for former military personnel to seamlessly transition into academic life. These scholarships are carefully crafted to bolster those hungry for knowledge, enabling them to integrate into dynamic academic communities and cultivate their distinct talents and passions.

The unwavering dedication and commitment of military-connected service members and veterans set them apart as extraordinary candidates for law school. However, many still require financial support to fulfill their dreams of attaining a law degree.

We have navigated the realm of military scholarships for law school, shedding light on the eligibility criteria for each. These opportunities not only alleviate financial burdens but also substantially offset the costs associated with pursuing legal education. They underscore the unwavering commitment to empowering veterans and active-duty military members in their academic pursuits, ensuring they have every opportunity to flourish.

As you embark on your path to a legal career, remember that support is readily available. Whether you’re a veteran or an active-duty service member aspiring to study law, these opportunities are your stepping stones toward a brighter future. Seize them, invest in your potential, and contribute to the intellectual vibrancy of your community and nation. Your legal education journey commences now, guided by scholarships tailored to ensure your success.

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