Stanford Law Makes Tuition Free for Low-Income Students

Stanford Law School students at graduation

Stanford Law Makes Tuition Free for Low-Income Students

Stanford Law will eliminate tuition for low-income students starting next year.

In an email to students last week, reported by Reuters, Stanford Law dean Jenny Martinez announced that the law school will offer full scholarships to current and incoming students whose family income is below 150% of the poverty line. That would mean $41,625 for a family of four, or $20,385 for an individual. Annual tuition at Stanford Law is currently $64,350.

Stanford Law is now the second law school in the U.S. to eliminate tuition for low-income students. Back in late February, Yale Law School was the first to announce tuition-free scholarships for its highest need students.


In addition to the full-tuition scholarships for low-income students, Stanford announced a $3,000 supplement for travel and relocation costs for first-year students on need-based scholarships, as well as funding for a minimum of 12 post-graduate public interest fellowships.

The law school even unveiled plans to cover all student loan payments for graduates in qualifying jobs making less than an annual $75,000 as part of its Loan Repayment Assistance Program. The new income threshold is an increase from the previous limit of $50,000.

Stanford Law’s financial aid developments are part of the law school’s efforts to increase financial equity and access, Martinez says. The law school even created an Ad Hoc Committee on Financial Access, responsible for gathering student input on an ongoing basis. The school plans to spend an additional $3.1 million annually on financial aid improvements through fundraising, the larger university, and resource allocation.

“Improving and enhancing financial aid support for our students has been one of my top priorities since becoming dean of the law school,” Martinez says in her message to students.

Sources: Reuters, The Stanford Daily, Yale Law School, Inside Higher Ed

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