I came across a post about the Hamilton Fellowship recently and I have been thinking about it ever since. Is everyone eligible for Merit Scholarships like Hamilton?
well yes, everyone is “eligible”, but to be competitive, an applicant needs top quartile GPA + LSAT
Thanks for the info Do u know anyone who has gotten a merit scholarship?
According to a previous thread, you’re an international student who will be at Hamilton College this fall, is that correct? If you’re just starting your college career, please give yourself time to consider fields other than law. Although the market for new law school grads is improving (very slowly), it’s still not a great bet for students who won’t attend a T14 or top regional school, and perform very strongly there.
Unless you have merit aid or a fat bank account, law school means heavy debt that will affect the choices you make for your first 10-20 years out of law school. Merit scholarships are available at pretty much every US law school except Harvard, Stanford, and Yale, but merit at the top schools is reserved for students with especially high stats. For instance, Columbia is ranked 4th among law schools, with LSAT/GPA medians at 172/3.71. The Hamilton recipients score well above those medians. At lower-ranked law schools, merit aid renewal often is tied to a high GPA. At T14 schools, renewal usually requires only a 2.0 (though your employment chances are abysmal with a 2.0 LS GPA). Not all merit scholarships are as generous as the Hamilton - some offer 50 or 75 percent of tuition, some less.
Your international status will complicate future US employment somewhat. Hamilton has a career center, and you should make an appointment there sometime during your first semester to learn more. There is a pre-law advising program as well: http://www.hamilton.edu/careercenter/search/law/law-intro. A quick look at their law school planning guide shows that it’s dated; for instance, it refers to the practice of averaging multiple LSAT results taken within the past 5 years, which is no longer required. However, there are probably people the center can put you in touch with who can give you more current advice. But really, think about other careers!
Thanks, and I will
From frazzed1: "At lower-ranked law schools, merit aid renewal often is tied to a high GPA. "
^^This is critical. From what I’ve read, many law schools grade on a curve which means that in order to keep your GPA high enough to keep your scholarship, you are in direct competition with everyone else who is also trying to keep their scholarships. And many will not make the cut and will lose their funding after the first year. Beware and be wise.
Okay. Thank you