Yale Law School’s New Initiative to Boost Diversity in the Legal Profession

Yale Law School has announced the establishment of its Launchpad Scholars Program. The new program aims to help members of underrepresented or underserved communities navigate the law school application and admission process from start to finish. The program aims to ensure that excellent applicants from all backgrounds can maximize their potential as law students and legal professionals.

The Launchpad Scholars Program is open to all current college students and graduates planning to apply to law school in the fall of 2024, with the goal of matriculating to law school in the fall of 2025. Scholars will be selected based on their potential for academic excellence, leadership promise, engagement with their communities, and demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with individuals from diverse backgrounds and with diverse perspectives. The program will provide participants with application and career readiness support, including substantial LSAT preparation, attorney and law student mentorship, and other resources that will prepare participants to apply to the law schools of their choosing. The Launchpad Scholars Program is open to all applicants, but especially welcomes applications from members of groups historically underrepresented in the legal profession.

The program will kick off in August 2023 with a Welcome Summit at the New York office of Latham & Watkins, featuring community-building, career exploration, and leadership development sessions. Each scholar will be paired with a student mentor from Yale Law School and a lawyer mentor from Latham & Watkins, both of whom will provide support throughout the program.

There is no cost to apply to or participate in the Launchpad Scholars Program. All travel, food, and lodging expenses for in-person programming will be covered, as will all expenses of the LSAT program, including registration fees for two test administrations. All scholars will also receive reimbursement for six law school applications.

“The Launchpad Scholars Program will meet prospective students where they are, providing the knowledge and skills they need to enroll in law school, thrive while there, and go on to become leaders in their chosen fields,” said Yale Law School Dean Heather K. Gerken. “This program is a critical part of our ongoing commitment to further diversifying the legal profession and making the benefits of a rigorous legal education available to everyone.”

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