Whether you are in the early stages of deciding to even apply to law school, or you have already been accepted and plan to enroll, it is never too soon to begin LGBTQ+ advocacy and getting acquainted with the LGBTQ+ legal community. The National LGBTQ+ Bar understands that as an LGBTQ+ law student, you may have particular questions and concerns as you work to identify the school that’s right for you – such as finding a safe, inclusive, and progressive environment. Our goal is for you to know that you are welcomed and supported by the broader LGBTQ+ legal community as you begin your legal education and move on to your post-graduation careers and networks. And as you consider what school you want to make your home for at least the next three years, we are happy to answer any questions you may have about the National LGBTQ+ Bar or about our diverse and inclusive legal community.
LGBTQ+ Bar Resources
Campus Climate Survey
As a prospective LGBTQ+ law student, we invite you to review our 2022-23 Law School Campus Climate Survey as you consider which law school may be the best fit for you. In November of 2022, the LGBTQ+ Bar invited all law schools in the United States to participate in our fourth annual Climate Survey, designed to identify policies and procedures that specifically impact the schools’ LGBTQ+ population. As a companion to this survey, we also created a Best Practices Guide (updated in April 2022) as a resource to assist law schools in their efforts to foster a safe, welcoming community free from discrimination. We have also compiled nondiscrimination policies for each law school in the United States and noted whether each school bars discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and/or gender identity. In future, we will be conducting this survey every other year in partnership with the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC.) If you have any questions about our survey, please contact Judi O’Kelley, Chief Program & Policy Officer, at email@example.com.
Law School Affiliate Program
While you research prospective law schools, you may also be wondering about whether a particular school has a robust LGBTQ+-specific law student group. The LGBTQ+ Bar’s Law School Affiliate Program provides LGBTQ+ law student groups within law schools around the country with a number of benefits for the groups themselves and their student members. Our Law School Affiliate Program’s benefits include, but are not limited to, access to our Law Student Resource Guide, access to educational opportunities specifically developed for LGBTQ+ law students and attorneys, and discounts on Bar membership, which also comes with free registration for our Annual Lavender Law® Conference & Career Fair.
Within our Law School Affiliate Program, we strive to create a welcoming and inclusive environment balanced for diversity in race, gender/gender identity, practice area, personal experience, and geography. The LGBTQ+ Bar is committed to ensuring LGBTQ+ law students with intersectional identities – such as also being students of color, and/or students with disabilities, and/or first-generation students – are welcomed and supported by the broader LGBTQ+ legal community. If you are interested in a particular law school’s LGBTQ+ law student group and want to know more before you apply or enroll, please feel free to contact them directly using the information from our directory. If you would like the Bar to make an introduction to a specific group, please contact Patrick O’Brien, Programs Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Law School Scholarships for LGBTQ+ and Ally Law Students
Once you are accepted into law school, you’ll want to begin researching scholarship opportunities to help offset the cost of your education. The LGBTQ+ Bar offers three scholarships of $2,500 each, annually, including one to an incoming 1L student. Entering first-year students who have not yet been accepted to law school or have not yet chosen a law school by April 1 may still apply; funding will be released upon proof of registration.
How to Apply: Applications will open on/around January 1 each year. Visit our scholarship page for updates and to learn more about our annual National LGBTQ+ Bar Law School Scholarship and access the application form when it opens.
If you have any questions or issues regarding your application or about any of our other law student scholarships or awards, please contact Patrick O’Brien, Programs Manager, at email@example.com.
Law Student Congress
The LGBTQ+ Bar’s Law Student Congress (LSC) works to promote regional and national interaction between LGBTQ+ law students and lawyers, and helps LGBTQ+ students build contacts within the profession. The LSC also engages in activism of concern to law students. As a 1L, you will be eligible to apply to sit on our LSC Board after your first semester of law school. The LSC Board values diversity and strives to create an environment balanced for diversity in race, gender/gender identity, law school, personal experience, and, where relevant, geography. Students with intersectional identities are highly encouraged to apply – so please be on the lookout for when applications open after your first semester if you would like to get more involved. For more information about the LSC, please contact LSC Chair Will Lanier at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Join Us! Membership and Volunteering
LGBTQ+ Bar membership is open to all legal professionals and law students without regard to age, race, religion, gender, color, national origin, ancestry, disability, political affiliation, sexual orientation or gender identity. The LGBTQ+ Bar actively seeks the involvement of individuals from every segment of our diverse community, and particularly welcomes the participation of trans and nonbinary people, people of color and persons with disabilities. If you are already admitted to law school, you may join as a “Law Student” member of the LGBTQ+ Bar for $40. If you are not yet admitted to law school, you may join as “Prospective Law Student” member also for $40. In addition, the LGBTQ+ Bar is always looking for passionate volunteers to help with all aspects of our work – from preparing for our annual Lavender Law® Conference to supporting our programmatic work, there is always something to do at the Bar. Please direct all law student membership and volunteer inquiries to Patrick O’Brien, Programs Manager, at email@example.com.
Our annual Lavender Law® Conference and Career Fair provides an opportunity for valuable networking with other LGBTQ+ and ally legal professionals. Lavender Law® offers a host of law student programming including our Career Fair, where typically more than 170+ recruiters register to participate on a given year. This is a great opportunity for you to speak directly with LGBTQ+ friendly recruiters from law firms, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and corporate legal departments. In addition to the Career Fair and the Student & Recruiter Networking Reception, we will also have Student & Judges Networking reception, Career Planning sessions, LGBTQ+ law-focused workshops and plenaries, and our Law Student Congress Annual Meeting.
If you are already admitted to law school and you become a law student member of the LGBTQ+ Bar, your registration for Lavender Law® is automatically free! If you are not already admitted and would like to volunteer at Lavender Law® in exchange for a comped registration, please contact Patrick O’Brien, Programs Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- 6 Tips to Find LGBTQ-Friendly Law Schools, U.S. News
- 10 Questions to Ask Before Applying to Law School, U.S. News
- Applicants with Disabilities, Law School Admission Council
- Considering Law School, New York State Bar Association
- LGBTQ+ & Law School, Law School Admission Council
- LGBTQ+ & Law School – When You Apply, Law School Admission Council
- LGBTQ+ Guide to Law Schools, Law School Admission Council
- Pre-Law, American Bar Association
- Prospective LGBTQ+ Law Students Resources, American Bar Association
- Racially/Ethnically Diverse Applicants, Law School Admission Council
- Advice for LGBTQ Law School Applicants, U.S. News