All students are encouraged to seek funding outside the Law School to finance their legal education.
Many law students apply for funding from sources such as private foundations, governmental agencies, local bar associations, civic associations, professional organizations, and/or parental/spousal employers. To assist you in locating such funding, the Financial Aid Office has compiled a document entitled "Sources of External Funding for Law Students" which is available upon request. Most scholarship deadlines are in the spring preceding the award year. Criteria such as place of residence, membership in an identifiable ethnic group, and area of legal interest are often the basis for these awards. Additional sources of funding are listed in publications available in local and university libraries, in college career service centers, and on the Internet.
Some useful sites are:
Students receiving awards from external sources must notify the Financial Aid Office of the source and amount of the award. The external award, plus any financial aid (loans and/or grant/scholarships), cannot exceed a student’s cost of attendance, and may affect eligibility for federal loans (Direct Unsubsidized, Direct Graduate PLUS) and private educational loans. External awards will reduce loans first (starting with the least favorable).
As an incentive for students to apply for external awards, Columbia Law School grant/scholarship aid is only reduced if the total of a student's external awards combined with the Columbia Law School grant/scholarship exceeds the student's cost of attendance. Again, regardless of the size of the external award, students must immediately notify the Financial Aid Office of the source and amount of the award.