Berkeley Law Scholarships and Fellowships: A Guide to Funding Your Studies in the USA

Berkeley Law Scholarships and Fellowships: A Guide to Funding Your Studies in the USA


As an aspiring law student, financing your degree at a prestigious American university like UC Berkeley can seem daunting. However, through merit-based scholarships, need-based grants, diversity fellowships and work-study programs, Berkeley Law aims to make legal education accessible to students from all backgrounds. This guide provides an overview of the major funding opportunities for JD and LLM students, including eligibility criteria and application deadlines. While the competition for many awards is intense, with diligent preparation you have an excellent chance of obtaining partial or even full funding for your studies at one of the world’s leading law schools. The key is to start researching early, focus on opportunities that match your strengths and experiences, and craft a compelling application that conveys your passion for the law. With the right combination of scholarships, you can achieve your dream of obtaining a world-class legal education at Berkeley Law.

Berkeley Law Scholarships and Fellowships: A Guide to Funding Your Studies in the USA

Berkeley Law Merit-Based Scholarships for International Students

To fund your studies at the prestigious Berkeley Law School in the USA, several merit-based scholarships for international students are available.

Berkeley Law Merit Scholarships

The Berkeley Law Merit Scholarships are awarded based on your academic achievements and potential for success in law school. To be considered, you must have an outstanding academic record and LSAT scores. The scholarship amounts range from $5,000 to $30,000 per year and are renewable for up to three years of study.

The Berkeley Law Dean’s Scholarship is the law school’s most prestigious merit-based award, providing up to $30,000 per year for three years. To qualify, you must demonstrate exceptional academic ability, intellectual talent, and promise for a career in law.

Berkeley Law Opportunity Scholarships

The Berkeley Law Opportunity Scholarships aim to enhance the diversity of perspectives and life experiences within the student body. Up to $30,000 per year for three years is awarded based on your personal achievements, community service, and potential for contributing to the diversity of the Berkeley Law class. Strong applicants will demonstrate a commitment to diversity, inclusion and public service.

In summary, Berkeley Law offers generous merit-based and opportunity scholarships for international students. By excelling academically and showcasing your talents, experiences and commitment to diversity, you can fund a significant portion of your legal education at this top US law school. Apply for these prestigious scholarships and take the first step towards your career as an attorney.

Need-Based Grants and Fellowships at Berkeley Law

To fund your legal studies at Berkeley Law, there are need-based grants and fellowships available. These awards are determined based on your financial need and the strengths of your application.


Berkeley Law offers grants and fellowships for both Juris Doctor (JD) and Master of Laws (LLM) students demonstrating financial need. The amounts awarded range from $5,000 to $30,000 per year. To be considered, you must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form which determines your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). Awards are given until all available funds have been allocated.

Public Interest Fellowships

If you plan to pursue a career in public interest law, Berkeley Law’s Public Interest Fellowships offer funding for summer internships and post-graduate work. Fellows receive mentorship and attend professional development workshops to build skills for public interest legal careers. The Summer Public Interest Fellowships provide a $6,000 stipend for 10 weeks of full-time work. The Postgraduate Public Interest Fellowships offer $50,000 for postgraduate full-time work at a non-profit organization.

External Funding Sources

There are also external fellowships and scholarships for Berkeley Law students funded by private donors, non-profits, and professional organizations. These include the Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans which awards $90,000 over two years of study, and the Skadden Fellowship Foundation which provides two-year fellowships at public interest organizations with salaries of about $63,000. Check with Berkeley Law’s Financial Aid Office to explore all funding possibilities to finance your legal education.

External Funding Sources for International Berkeley Law Students

As an international student, funding your education at UC Berkeley School of Law will require exploring options beyond federal aid and loans available to US citizens. The good news is that Berkeley Law and external organizations offer scholarships, fellowships, and grants for which you may be eligible.

Private Foundations and Grants

Numerous nonprofit organizations provide funding for international graduate students. These include:

  • The Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans, which awards up to $90,000 over two years to immigrants and children of immigrants.
  • The Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program, which provides support for up to three years of study.
  • The Open Society Foundations offer scholarships and fellowships for international students, including the Civil Society Leadership Awards which provide up to $50,000 per year for two years.

Many more opportunities exist. Do thorough research on independent grant-making organizations’ websites to find programs aligned with your areas of interest. Pay close attention to eligibility criteria, deadlines, and application requirements, which often include personal statements, letters of recommendation, and financial need.

University-Administered Scholarships

Berkeley Law directly administers some scholarships for which international students may compete, including:

  • The Michael D. Ehrenstein Memorial Scholarship, a merit-based award of $5,000.
  • The Richard Buxbaum Memorial Scholarship, which provides a one-time award of $5,000.
  • The Dean’s Full-Tuition International Scholarship, a merit-based award that funds the full cost of tuition for one academic year.

Application deadlines vary, so check Berkeley Law’s website for the latest details and to begin the application process. With diligent work, external funding and university-administered scholarships can help make your dream of studying law at one of the world’s top universities a reality.



As you embark on this exciting journey pursuing a degree in law at one of the top institutions in the world, keep in mind the variety of funding opportunities available to help make your studies more affordable. With determination and persistence, you can find ways to overcome financial obstacles through merit-based aid, private scholarships, work-study programs, and student loans. Do not let the high costs deter you from achieving your goals. There are resources out there if you make the effort to search for them. A law degree from Berkeley will open up a world of possibilities for your career and life. Now is the time to take that next step toward your dream of becoming a lawyer. You have the chance to gain knowledge and skills that will serve you well for decades to come. Seize this opportunity and make the most of your time as a student at Berkeley Law. The future is yours to shape.

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