Full-Tuition Scholarships


Opening doors to the legal profession, UCLA Law offers full-tuition scholarships based on merit, need and achievement in overcoming adversity.

UCLA Law is excited to offer three full-scholarship programs to students pursing a J.D. degree. The UCLA Law Distinguished Scholars Program is a binding early-decision program providing full tuition for three years to exceptionally qualified students ready to commit to UCLA Law. The UCLA Law Achievement Fellowship is non-binding and provides full tuition for three years to high-achieving students who have overcome significant personal, educational or socio-economic hardships. The Graton Scholarship is also non-binding and provides full tuition for three years to students who are interested in pursuing legal careers in Native American law.

Distinguished Scholars Program

The UCLA Law Distinguished Scholars Program is a binding merit-based full tuition scholarship program for a small number of the most exceptionally qualified applicants who have determined that UCLA Law is their first choice. The designation as a UCLA Law Distinguished Scholar will be the highest honor bestowed upon members of the incoming J.D. class.

Students selected as Distinguished Scholars must immediately withdraw applications from all other law schools, refrain from initiating applications to other law schools, and submit their Statement of Intent to Register and seat deposit (which will be refunded upon enrollment in the fall) by the date stated in their admission letter. Students applying to this program may not apply to early decision programs at any other law schools unless they are waitlisted or denied admission to the Distinguished Scholars Program.

While waiting for a decision from the UCLA Law Distinguished Scholars Program, applicants may apply to other law schools regular decision with the commitment that if they are admitted to the Distinguished Scholars Program, they will immediately withdraw applications from all other law schools and will enroll at UCLA Law, regardless of whether they were admitted to other law schools or have outstanding applications to other law schools.

Recipients of the award who are California residents will be awarded full resident tuition and fees for three academic years, beginning in fall 2022, provided they remain students in good standing. Recipients who are not California residents will be awarded full non-resident tuition and fees for their first year of law school, and full California resident tuition and fees for their second and third years of law school. * Most UCLA Law students are able to qualify for resident tuition status in their second and third years. The UCLA Health Insurance Fee, which can be waived with evidence of similar coverage, is not included and remains the responsibility of the student. No showing of financial need is required for these awards. Note that applicants to the Distinguished Scholars Program may not apply to the Early Decision Program. They may apply for the Achievement Fellowship.

For fall 2022 admission, the application deadline is November 15. Applicants must also take the LSAT or the GRE no later than October 31, 2021. To apply to this program, applicants must complete the UCLA School of Law application, and must electronically sign and submit the Distinguished Scholars Program Agreement included in the application. UCLA School of Law reserves the right to revoke an admissions offer in the event that an admitted applicant fails to comply with the UCLA Law Distinguished Scholars Program Agreement. In such an instance, UCLA also reserves the right to inform other law schools of the candidate's actions.

Finalists will be interviewed, and decisions will be announced by the end of December 2021. Please note that if an applicant is not offered a place in the UCLA Law Distinguished Scholars Program, the applicant will still be considered for admission and for scholarship assistance on a non-binding basis. If you have questions regarding this program, you may email us at: admissions@law.ucla.edu.

UCLA has a specialized admissions program for the Epstein Program in Public Interest Law and Policy (EPILP) for students with significant public interest backgrounds and ambitions. If you are a highly qualified candidate with a particular interest in EPILP and are selected as a finalist for the Distinguished Scholars award, you may indicate during the selection process that you only want to be considered for the UCLA Law Distinguished Scholars binding admissions program contingent on being admitted to EPILP as well.

Please note:

* Most UCLA Law students are able to qualify for resident tuition status in their second and third years. The UCLA Health Insurance Fee, which can be waived with evidence of similar coverage, is not included and remains the responsibility of the student.

Achievement Fellowship Program

The UCLA Law Achievement Fellowship Program is a full tuition scholarship program designed specifically for a small number of academically talented, high-achieving applicants who have also overcome significant obstacles in life, such as socio-economic disadvantage, disability, being the first in their family to attend college, attending under-resourced schools, or other major hardships or challenges. Hardships such as homelessness, working multiple jobs or long hours in high school or college, being undocumented, living in foster care, receiving government assistance, and subsisting at or near the federal poverty line are just a few examples of the types of disadvantages that have been considered in the past when awarding the Achievement Fellowship.

Recipients of the UCLA Law Achievement Fellowship who are California residents will be awarded full resident tuition and fees for three academic years, beginning in fall 2022, provided they remain students in good standing. Recipients who are not California residents will be awarded full non-resident tuition and fees for their first year of law school, and full resident tuition and fees for their second and third years of law school.* The application deadline for the UCLA Law Achievement Fellowship Program is December 15, 2021. Applicants must also take the LSAT or the GRE no later than November 30, 2021. Finalists will be interviewed, and recipients will be announced no later than mid-April 2022. Unlike the UCLA Law Distinguished Scholars Program, this is not a "binding" program. Successful applicants may still consider other law schools, but they must indicate their desire to accept the scholarship and make a seat deposit (which will be refunded upon enrollment in the fall) by the deadline stated in their Achievement Fellowship award letter. Awards not accepted by this date will be offered to other candidates. Applicants who are not awarded the UCLA Law Achievement Fellowship will still be considered for admission and scholarship assistance.

To apply to this program, applicants must complete the UCLA School of Law application, and are required to include an additional one page essay describing in the detail the obstacles they have overcome in life and why they are a strong candidate for the program. Note that applicants to the Achievement Fellowship may not apply Early Decision. They may apply to the Distinguished Scholars Program. If you have questions regarding this program, you may email us at: admissions@law.ucla.edu.

Please note:

* Most UCLA Law students are able to qualify for resident tuition status in their second and third years. The UCLA Health Insurance Fee, which can be waived with evidence of similar coverage, is not included and remains the responsibility of the student.

Graton Scholarship

The Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria has established the Graton Scholarship, which provides a three-year, full tuition scholarship to students interested in pursuing legal careers in Native American law. The Graton scholars will also receive $10,000 a year to defray living expenses in addition to tuition.

The selected Graton Scholars will become part of a thriving network of students, professors, alumni, and legal professionals working on the cutting edge of the fields of tribal law, federal Indian law, and international Indigenous rights. To apply, candidates should express their interest in the scholarship by including a maximum 1000-word addendum with their application for admission, setting forth their record of personal or academic commitment to advocating on behalf of Native Nations, as well as further explicating their career aspirations in the field. The UCLA Law Admissions office may also identify applicants through the Admissions process who would be ideal candidates for the Graton Scholarship and invite them to apply.

The Graton Scholarships will be merit-based and awarded annually to incoming students who have demonstrated an interest in and an aptitude for Native American law, as well as a record demonstrating a commitment to tribal communities, public service, and leadership in Indigenous rights.

In addition to receiving financial support, Graton Scholars will have access to UCLA School of Law's vast resources and expertise in this field. The Native Nations Law and Policy Center, founded by Professor Emerita Carole E. Goldberg, and directed by Professor Angela R. Riley, provides an intellectual hub for numerous programs and opportunities related to Indigenous rights. Graton Scholars will have the opportunity to work directly for Native Nations through the Tribal Legal Development Clinic, funded with a generous gift from the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, which is under the direction of Lauren Van Schilfgaarde. Recent clinic projects have included drafting tribal codes, working on cultural resource protection with the Native American Heritage Commission, and providing judicial clerkship support to the Ho-Chunk Nation Supreme Court, among many others.

The Native Nations Law and Policy Center also offers a joint degree program in Law and American Indian Studies and maintains a close relationship with a vast campus-wide community of scholars and students with academic and cultural commitments to Native communities, such as the American Indian Studies Center, American Indian Studies Inter-departmental Program, and Fowler Museum, among others. UCLA Law is home to a thriving Native American Law Students Association (NALSA), which is a national leader in student advocacy and support. NALSA membership provides access to participation in events such as the National NALSA Moot Court Competition and the National Native American Bar Association, among others.

In the spirit of the scholarship, Graton Scholars will be expected to take an active role in the school's Native American law activities and programs, and to help mentor and coach their successors, as second and third year students and thereafter, when they have graduated and embarked on their careers in the field.

The scholarship is named for the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, which established the Graton Scholarship in 2020 with a transformative $15 million gift, the largest of its kind ever given from a Native Nation to an American law school.

Please consider joining us as an inaugural member of this special community.

If you have any questions about this scholarship you may email us at admissions@law.ucla.edu.

News
See All
Sep 24, 2021

Eugene Volokh Is Quoted in USA Today on the First Amendment and Profanity About the President

Read More
Sep 23, 2021

Crenshaw Earns AALS Lifetime Service Award

Read More