Grants and Scholarships
At Dickinson Law, not only are we producing profession-ready lawyers, but we’re also rescaling the cost of legal education to make law school accessible to you. A variety of financial aid sources are available to help make a Dickinson Law education well within your reach.
Dickinson Law’s scholarships are made possible through the generosity of individuals who have established endowments, such as our Educational Equity Scholarship Fund, or have donated funds to the Law School. Upon matriculation, you may be asked to provide a thank you letter to donors matched to your scholarship.
Commonwealth Scholars Grant
Applicants are eligible to participate in Dickinson Law's Commonwealth Scholars Grant Program. Here’s how it works:
- All Pennsylvania residents admitted to Dickinson Law before April 15 will automatically receive a free $20,000 tuition grant renewed each year for a total tuition savings of $60,000. Eligible applicants admitted after April 15 will receive the Commonwealth Scholars Grant as funds remain available.
- The grant will be applied toward J.D. tuition at Dickinson Law only.
- Consistent with President Eric Barron’s commitment to making higher education more affordable and accessible, we have waived our application fee.
- All Pennsylvania residents who apply will be considered for additional scholarship aid based on other performance criteria as well as need.
Please review the Commonwealth Scholars Grant Frequently Asked Questions and Commonwealth Scholars Grant Residency Eligibility pages for additional information.
Public Interest Scholars Grant
Recognizing a long history of public interest service by Dickinson Law students and alumni, the Public Interest Scholars program identifies select students in each incoming class as Public Interest Scholars. The Scholars serve as leaders in public interest activities at Dickinson Law and in the community. Program benefits, expectations, and qualifications are listed below.
- A $1,000 scholarship each academic year (which may be received in addition to other scholarship and grant support offered by Admissions and Financial Aid)
- Recognition as Public Interest Scholar on Dickinson Law website and marketing materials
- Guaranteed offer for the Summer IOLTA Fellows Program, which places students at organizations throughout the state which provide direct legal services to vulnerable populations (stipend provided)
- Individualized public interest career coaching, including introductions to alumni working in public interest, fellowship coaching, résumé review, and mock interviews
- Special opportunities to meet speakers and experts on campus
- Financial support available to attend public interest-related conferences and events
- Preferential consideration for annually-awarded post-graduate IOLTA Fellowship
- Preferential consideration for post-graduate Bridge Fellowships
- Attend group gatherings once per semester for reflection, discussion, and peer mentoring
- Complete 10 hours per semester of public interest-related leadership activities, such as:
- mentoring incoming/first-year students interested in pursuing public interest law
- speaking on student panels for career events or admitted student open houses
- representing Dickinson Law at external events such as local pro bono receptions
- serving as pro bono project coordinator
- other activities per approval of Assistant Director of the Center for Public Interest Law and Advocacy
- High academic achievement
- Demonstrated record of commitment to a long-term career in public interest
- Past participation in activities contributing to the promotion of public interest at Dickinson Law (current students only)
To Be Considered
- Submit your Public Interest Scholars program application now.
- It is strongly recommended candidates submit the optional supplemental statement specifically highlighting the following:
- past leadership in community or public service
- sincerely-held long term career goals related to public interest
- current public interest programs or opportunities at Dickinson Law of interest to the candidate
- Public Interest Scholars will be notified of their selection in the spring, prior to the first seat deposit deadline.
Through the generosity of alumni and other donors, need-based grant funds are available to students who demonstrate significant financial need. Admitted students will receive instructions on how to apply once the application opens in late fall of each year. The priority deadline is March 1. For continuing students, the priority deadline for financial aid applications is April 15. While we will accept applications after the priority deadline, submitting your application by the priority deadline will yield you your best opportunity to be awarded a need-based grant.
Although the federal government considers all graduate and professional students to be independent, students who wish to be considered for need-based grants from Dickinson Law must report parent information on the FAFSA, despite the FAFSA instructions. A parent contribution is factored into all need-based grant aid evaluations if the analysis indicates that a student’s parents have the ability to contribute. This policy applies to applicants who are younger than thirty years of age who are not supporting a dependent other than a spouse.
Well-qualified applicants may be awarded significant merit scholarships. Merit awards may reduce tuition partially or entirely, and could be applied to other expenses included within a student's Cost of Attendance. Awards are based on the strength of the admissions application and do not require a separate application. Students are notified of any merit-based scholarships at the time of admission. These awards are renewable for the second and third years of study provided the student remains in good standing under the academic rules and does not violate the honor code. Full tuition scholarships will be renewed to cover the full cost of tuition in subsequent years—even if tuition increases.
External Scholarship Sources
In addition to federal and institutional financial aid, students are encouraged to pursue outside scholarship sources. As we learn of external aid opportunities, we consider the validity and relevance to our current and prospective students and provide the information below. Scholarship sources may change details without notifying schools, so be sure to check their linked websites for the most up-to-date and thorough information.
Arnold & Itkin LLP will award $5,000 to two current law students who share our passion for assisting the underprivileged and the victims of tragedy. Regardless of the area of law, the scholarship recipients should be focused on utilizing the legal system to support those less fortunate. All applicants should demonstrate both past and current dedication to victim advocacy and/or community service.
Deadline: June 1
Baumgartner Law Student Scholarship
The Baumgartner Law Firm offers a scholarship for current or incoming law students based on need and commitment to helping others. Applicants must be attending an accredited law school in the U.S. by the fall semester of the application year.
Deadline: August 31
The Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance Scholarship
This scholarship is available to students who have battled any type of cancer during their lives or have had an immediate family member or close friend that has battled or is currently fighting cancer. Requires an essay or video, academic transcript, proof of enrollment, and letters of recommendation.
Deadline: March 31 for Fall semester award, December 1 for Spring semester award.
Munley Law Scholarship
Munley Law is offering $5,000 to a United States citizen who is currently enrolled as an undergraduate or graduate student in good standing with their college, university, or law school. Students should answer the question: What amendment to the Constitution is the most meaningful to you, and why? You may submit your entry as a Microsoft® Word Document, OR a Microsoft® PowerPoint Presentation, OR an Mpeg or QuickTime Video Presentation.
Deadline: April 30, 2018
ABA Legal Opportunity Scholarship Fund
The purpose of the ABA Legal Opportunity Scholarship Fund is to encourage racial and ethnic minority students to apply and attend law school and to provide financial assistance to ensure that these students have the opportunity to attend law school for three years.
The fund grants 20 incoming diverse law students financial assistance over the course of their three years in law school.
Amount: $5,000 per year, renewable with satisfactory performance.
Deadline: March 1
American Indian Graduate Center Scholarships
The AIGC provides multiple fellowships to American Indian and Alaska Native graduate students throughout the United States.
The Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute
Eligible to full-time Latino students with financial need who have a history of performing public service-oriented activities in their communities and who demonstrate a desire to continue their civic engagement in the future.
Earl Warren Scholarship
The Earl Warren Scholarship open to rising first-year law students who are committed to racial justice and interested in civil rights or public interest law.
Deadline: May 1, 2018
Horace Mann Bond — Leslie Pinckney Hill Scholarship Program
The Horace Mann Bond - Leslie Pinckney Hill Scholarship Program (formerly the Equal Opportunity Professional Education Program) is designed to provide financial assistance to highly-qualified Pennsylvania students from Cheyney University of Pennsylvania and Lincoln University who pursue pre-professional programs in law, medicine, podiatry, and dentistry at Pennsylvania State University, University of Pittsburgh, and Temple University.
Amount: Tuition, fees, and books, renewable each year
Deadline: July 1
Korean American Scholarship Foundation
Korean American students with a 3.0 GPA or higher can apply for this scholarship that looks at financial need, merit, recommendations, and essays.
Deadline: Application opens in April each year and is due in Mid-July
The Leadership Institute for Women of Color Attorneys, Inc.'s ("LIWOCA") mission is to help women of color attorneys in law firmsand legal departments develop the critical skills necessary to become partners and leaders in the legal profession; assist law firms and legal departments to retain and promote women of color attorneys; and continue to fuel thepipeline by offering scholarships to women of color attorneys.
Amount: up to 10 scholarships worth $2,500 to $5,000 are awarded each year
Deadline: February 14
MALDEF Law School Scholarship Program
Open to current law school students with a record of advancing Latino civil rights and with plans to pursue careers to advance Latino civil rights.
Deadline: Late January
Pennsylvania Bar Foundation James W. Stoudt Memorial Scholarship Program
Named after one of the Foundation's most devoted supporters, the James Stoudt Memorial Scholarship Program provides three scholarships each year, two specifically designated for minority students of African American, Hispanic American, or Native American descent.
Amount: $3,000 each.
Deadline: December 1
The Point Foundation
The Point Foundation is the nation’s largest scholarship-granting organization for LGBTQ students of merit. This scholarship provides financial support, mentoring, and hope to meritorious students who are marginalized because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The Point Foundation attempts to identify students who are physically, intellectually, and morally capable of leadership to play an influential part in the betterment of society.
Amount: Varies. The average scholarship award per scholar is $13,600.
Deadlines: Multiple. Carefully read the website. Initial application opens November 1.
Sidney B. Williams Scholarship
This fund offers scholarships to underrepresented minorities who demonstrate a commitment to the pursuit of a career in intellectual property law and have financial need.
Amount: $10,000, renewable for each year of study
Pat Tillman Foundation
Open to Veteran and active-duty military service members and their spouses. All branches of the military, including the National Guard and Reserve are eligible to apply.
Amount: Full tuition, books, and living expenses
Deadline: Application opens February 2015 and will most likely be due early March. Details are forthcoming on foundation website.
Post-9/11 GI Bill®
Educational benefits are available to many veterans who served on or after September 11, 2001. Eligibility is based on your cumulative service and includes allocations for tuition, books, and living expenses.
Amount: Students who are 100% eligible for the Post 9/11 GI Bill® will receive full tuition and fees at Penn State’s Dickinson Law. The current living allowance is $1,416 a month and an additional $1,000 is granted for books and supplies. Those less than 100% eligible will receive a prorated amount based on their service percentage.
Deadline: No strict deadline, but as soon as possible to ensure you receive your living expense amount promptly at the beginning of the term. Please contact our office for full instructions.
GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.
Veterans United Foundation, formed and fully funded by Veterans United Home Loans and its employees, strives to enhance lives by recognizing the selfless contributions of service members and their families through support of such individuals in need. The program’s primary goal is to assist military service members and their families. Eligibility for this scholarship requires recipients to be surviving spouses or children of a deceased Veteran of the US military.
Deadline: Multiple. Fall: Late-October, Spring: TBD
Faerie L. Angle Memorial Scholarship Fund
The scholarship supports young persons from Franklin County, Pennsylvania, studying to be lawyers. Awards will be made to students entering the first, second, and third year of a J.D. Program in Pennsylvania. Multiple winners will be selected.
Deadline: Extended to July 1
Wayne R. Donahue Memorial Scholarship
The Wayne R. Donahue Memorial Scholarship, named for Westmoreland Bar Association member Wayne Donahue, will be given to a Westmoreland County, PA resident enrolled in a Pennsylvania law school. Applicant may be first, second or third year and must be enrolled for the following fall semester.
Deadline: Third Wednesday in June, annually
Samuel J. Goldstein, Esquire, Scholarship Fund
For Law students who are Pennsylvania residents of Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Washington, or Westmoreland counties. Recipients must demonstrate financial need, complete an application, submit an essay, and maintain a GPA of 2.0 to renew the scholarship. Preference is given to applicants of the Jewish faith.
Amount: Varies. Renewable
Donald Laird Hankey Memorial Scholarship
The Donald Laird Hankey Memorial Scholarship, named for Westmoreland Bar Association member Donald Hankey, will be given to a Westmoreland County, PA resident enrolled in any law school. Applicant may be first, second or third year and must be enrolled for the following fall semester.
Deadline: Third Wednesday in June, annually
Pennsylvania Bar Foundation Patty Rose Scheimer Bednarik Memorial Scholarship
Law students or lawyers who have been admitted to practice for less than 3 years may be eligible to apply. You must be a PA resident and actively volunteer service to an animal welfare organization or engage in scholarship in the field of animal welfare.
Amount: up to $5,400
Deadline: July 1
Pennsylvania Bar Foundation Joseph T. McDonald Memorial Scholarship Program
This scholarship is given to current, full-time, third year students at Penn State’s Dickinson Law who are involved in the trial advocacy program and are Pennsylvania residents.
Deadline: December 1
Seidel Family Scholarship
For current or former Berks County residents who are or will be attending Penn State Dickinson Law. Applicants must have lived in Berks County for at least two consecutive years during their secondary school years. Scholarships will be awarded based on all-around qualified candidates.
Amount: Varies, but past amounts have been approximately $8,000, renewable for each year of study.
Deadline: Application opens in mid-January, with a June deadline each year. Notifications go out in July.
Dr. W.R. Walter Trust Scholarship
The scholarship is intended to assist Harrisburg area students financially in their pursuit of a graduate degree in Dentistry, Medicine, Ministry, Law, or other scientific fields. Recipients will be selected on the basis of academic achievement, financial need and potential to succeed in the student's chosen educational field. Applicants must be high school graduates of one of the public high schools located in Dauphin County or Cumberland County, and must have obtained a Bachelor's degree and be enrolling in graduate school in the fall of the year the award is made.
Amount: Varies, but renewable up to 3 years.
In addition to the scholarships listed here, you may find it helpful to complete an additional search tailored to your specific background and career goals. Scholarship search engines include: