We have officially kicked off the 13th Annual UCLA Law Firm Challenge, after completing our 12th consecutive record-setting year, with more than 110 participating law firms and more than 1,450 UCLA Law alumni participating. We thank all of our participating alumni and firms for joining us. Thanks to your support, our Challenge is one of the stand-out alumni outreach and fundraising initiatives at UCLA Law and has gained recognition as one of the best in the nation.
As we have discussed at our recent Challenge kick-off lunches, this year we have our usual challenges, namely to improve our aggregate participation percentage (at 78% in 2014) and the number of firms achieving 100% participation (54 in 2014). In addition, we have a very special new challenge, namely encouraging our law firm colleagues and others to make contributions to the school’s One Million Dollar Scholarship Challenge, in which a consortium of anonymous donors has agreed to match one million dollars of scholarship and financial aid support for the school’s students, dollar for dollar. As we are all keenly aware, these funds are much needed by the school in order for it to continue to compete with its better financially endowed peers in an era of declining state support and brutal competition among the nation’s top law schools for the best and brightest students. If you would like to make a contribution to this fund to qualify for a matching gift, please do so at this link. You may also call Jennifer Gray at (310) 206-1781 if you would like to make a gift of appreciated securities or would like more information.
As always, we must not lose sight of the larger mission of the Challenge, namely to encourage our alumni to stay engaged with UCLA Law after graduation and support it not just with money, but also with their time, energy and talents. In these challenging times for law schools, it is more important than ever that our alumni spend time on campus, mentoring students and helping them prepare for their lives as lawyers. The more than 140 law firm representatives at our Challenge firms and their colleagues are doing this, and we encourage you to join us.
Just as importantly, those of us who are active in the Challenge are part of a team of colleagues and friends who enjoy working together for the good of UCLA Law and its students and enjoy seeing our efforts bear fruit as the school and its students achieve even greater excellence. The Challenge holds events throughout the year for our firm representatives and our friends at the school, which allows us to build on the collegiality and camaraderie that is a hallmark of UCLA Law’s culture. And our work together gives the law firms of which we are members an opportunity for greater involvement with UCLA Law and greater exposure in the Los Angeles legal community.
If you and your firm are not already in the Challenge, we encourage you to join us. You will find great satisfaction and personal opportunities in it, and you will join a special group of fun, motivated law school alumni. Please contact La Shawn Hardemion at (310) 206-2344 or firstname.lastname@example.org to enroll your firm in the UCLA Law Firm Challenge.
Thank you, as always, for your support. See you at the finish line!