Financial Wellness

Columbia Law School is proud to support the financial and emotional wellness of our students beyond the classroom.

The Financial Wellness portal empowers students with tools and resources to develop sustained financial well-being and manage unexpected needs. It also connects them to special discounts available.

Educate Explore Access

Improve your financial literacy with these education tools

  • AccessLex, iGrad
  • Financing a Public Interest Career
Familiarize yourself with financial aid options
  • Budget Adjustments
  • Bar Bridge Loans
Connect with other resources
  • Career Resources
  • Emergency Resources
  • Discounts and Savings

MAX by AccessLex: Financial Education for Law Students
All Law School students have access to a comprehensive, on-demand financial education program provided by AccessLex. This free resource provides online primers on topics like setting financial goals, budgeting, and retirement planning. Students can follow curated learning paths laid out by class year (1L, 2L, and 3L/LL.M.) or learn at their own pace and according to their individual interests. Online student loan calculators for current students, prospective students, and graduates also are provided, and students have the option to speak directly with a financial adviser. Though this service is free, registration is required. AccessLex is not currently a lender, and they do not originate loans.

iGrad: Financial Education for All Students
All students at Columbia University have access to iGrad, an award-winning financial literacy app, for life. Students are encouraged to take advantage of the broad range of resources that iGrad offers. Please visit the launch website for iGrad for additional information and resources, including Student FAQs.

Financing a Public Interest/Public Service Career
Social Justice Initiatives (SJI) has created a number of online resources for students and graduates considering a career in public interest, government, or human rights. Learn more at SJI’s Financing Your Public Interest/Public Service Career page. 

Budget Adjustments
During the academic year, Financial Aid may adjust a student’s budget to accommodate educational expenses (e.g. repair/replace a broken laptop, travel to externship work, disability accommodation testing) or medical expenses. To request a budget adjustment, please review the detailed instructions on the Office of Financial Aid website.

Public Service Bridge Loan
J.D. graduates who are eligible for the Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP) may apply for an LRAP-eligible Public Service Bridge Loan of up to $10,000 to assist with the financial costs of state bar registration, bar preparation courses, and living expenses. For more information or to apply for a Public Service Bridge Loan, visit the Social Justice Initiatives website.

Travel to Career Conferences
Limited funding is available to assist students traveling to certain career-related conferences. To apply for funding, complete the funding request form. Applicants will receive a reply within two business days and may be asked to provide additional information before a determination can be made regarding the request. All submissions are kept confidential to the essential offices handling the request.

Travel to Job Interviews

  • Public Interest Employers
    Public interest employers typically do not pay for travel to interviews for full-time postgraduate positions. In cases where students are not in a position to cover unanticipated travel costs to interview, limited funding may be available. To apply for funding, complete the funding request form. Applicants will receive a reply within two business days and may be asked to provide additional information before a determination can be made regarding the request. All submissions are kept confidential to the essential offices handling the request.
  • Private Sector Employers
    Law firms will reimburse students for interview travel expenses; please refer to the National Association for Law Placement travel expense reimbursement form for more details. Students may also request that the firm be billed directly for travel by contacting the travel agency. If you need any additional guidance, please contact your Office of Career Services counselor.
  • Judicial Clerkships
    Current students or alumni who require urgent financial assistance to attend requisite in-person interviews for federal or state post-graduate judicial clerkships that are more than 50 miles outside of their principal area of residence, practice or study (as applicable) as of the date of their anticipated interview may apply for funding. Please complete the funding request form. Applicants will receive a reply within two business days and may be asked to provide additional information before a determination can be made regarding the request. All submissions are kept confidential to the essential administrative staff and relevant offices handling the request.

2L Public Interest Summer Supplemental Funding
Social Justice Initiatives offers some assistance with housing and relocation for 2L students who are working their second summer in public interest or public service. To apply for funding for summer 2020, complete the funding request form. Applicants will receive a reply within two business days and may be asked to provide additional information before a determination can be made regarding the request. All submissions are kept confidential to the essential offices handling the request. 

Other Career Resources
The career service offices offer additional resources for students who are interviewing or meeting with employers.

Students experiencing unexpected financial need, including food and housing insecurity, may be eligible for additional assistance. To apply for emergency assistance, complete the funding request form. Applicants will receive a reply within two business days and may be asked to provide additional information before a determination can be made regarding the request. All submissions are kept confidential to the essential offices handling the request. The university also offers additional resources for students experiencing financial need.