2020 Scholarships

SABAW Scholarships Announcement: Solidarity & Service

The South Asian Bar Association of Washington is pleased to announce we are offering a variety of scholarships to law students and recent graduates.  Ordinarily our scholarships are open only to those with ties to the South Asian community.  However, this year in response to this critical moment in our nation’s history, SABAW has enlarged our criteria to address systematic racism in our justice system, and also committed that at least one scholarship will be awarded as a Solidarity Scholarship, to a recipient who has demonstrated ties to the Black community, leadership within the Black community, and/or is working in service to the Black community.  In addition, in response to the economic impact of COVID-19, SABAW has increased our budget allocation to our scholarships program in general, in order to provide additional updated scholarship opportunities to those affected by the crisis.

General Criteria: All applicants must be current law students (inclusive of entering 1Ls) or recent graduates (class of 2020); must demonstrate ties to and ideally leadership within the South Asian and/or Black community; and must not be a current recipient of another SABAW Scholarship (including the SABAW-funded API-Chaya stipend).  This year, SABAW’s priority will be to make awards based on criteria and work that will address systematic racism in our justice system.  


Application Instructions: Applications are due by July 20, 2020.  Please email your résumé and a cover letter (one page or less) to SABAW Scholarship Committee Co-Chair E. Rania Rampersad at both of the following email addresses: info@sabaw.org and rania.rampersad@gmail.com.  In your cover letter, please (1) designate for which scholarship you are applying, and also address (2) your connection with and/or leadership within the South Asian and/or Black community, (3) how the funds will personally benefit you, (4) your future plans to continue to engage with and serve the South Asian and/or Black community, and (5) whether/how your application addresses SABAW’s priority to address systematic racism.  Applicants are also required to (6) disclose any other scholarships, awards, or other financial support they are currently receiving from SABAW or other organizations.  As an example, last year’s public interest scholarship recipient was a South Asian law student, active member of her school’s law student minority affinity group, participant in the Joint Mentorship Program, had arranged to volunteer with a domestic violence legal services organization benefiting the South Asian community, and planned to continue this work either through pro bono service or through a public service career. 

Scholarship Categories & Award-Specific Criteria:

  • $1000 Law Student Scholarship: This scholarship is intended for a currently enrolled law student, including entering 1Ls who have demonstrated leadership in service to the South Asian and/or Black community.

  • $4000 Public Service Scholarship:  This scholarship is intended for either a currently enrolled law student or recent graduate (class of 2020) who this summer or next fall, plans to engage in public interest work in service to the South Asian and/or Black community.

  • $4000 New Attorney Scholarship:  This scholarship is intended for a recent graduate (class of 2020) who has had an offer of employment (including permanent or summer employment) rescinded or delayed, and who has ties to and demonstrated leadership in service to the South Asian and/or Black community.  Priority will be given to an attorney using this time to engage in unfunded pro bono, public service, or other volunteer work. *Note, if your employment has been delayed rather than rescinded, please clarify the circumstances of the delay: for how long, dependent upon what criteria, if you’ve been given a deadline for when a final decision will be made … etc.  Applicants must also immediately update their application with any new information relevant to those circumstances.

Please email info@sabaw.org and rania.rampersad@gmail.com if you have any questions.

*SABAW may award more than one scholarship in each category, or may reallocate funds from one category to another, depending upon the applications received.