The University of Texas at Austin   School of Law

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Campaign Funding Priorities and Naming Opportunities

South Texas Initiative

The University of Texas School of Law is proposes to strengthen the legal presence in South Texas and to raise the Law School’s profile in the area through an initiative that will generate a series of full tuition scholarships and post-graduate fellowships for students who will work in the legal profession in South Texas for upon graduation.

Students currently living in South Texas who are interested in attending law school must leave the area to do so and often do not return after they graduate. Currently, approximately 25% of UT Law alumni living in South Texas are nearing retirement age while fewer graduates are moving to the area to practice law. South Texas is enjoying steady economic growth, and the need to attract young practicing lawyers to this area increases each year.

The Law School currently awards four scholarships that benefit students from South Texas, but none of them require or encourage the students return to the area to practice law. This year, these scholarships are currently awarding an average of $4,500, which while welcome, has a small impact on a student’s law school budget. Full-ride and full-tuition scholarships will allow us to promote the UT Law School as the first choice for students from South Texas, with a preference for those who express their intention to return there to practice law.

For students who do not receive full scholarships, the average debt upon graduating from UT Law School is $60,000. The South Texas Fellowship Program would provide up to $60,000 of debt relief per Fellow in exchange for working as a legal professional and living in the region for up to three years. The program would pay back 1/3 of the Fellow’s debt up to $20,000 after one year of work, 2/3 after two years, and the remaining 1/3 after three years. As the attached diagram illustrates, an endowment of $1 million would generate enough income each year to pay off as much as $40,000 of debt for up to two participating fellows at a time at $20,000 in debt relief each. Over ten years, a $1 million endowment gift would pay off the debt of as many as six Fellows, each working in the area for the full three years after graduation.

Naming Opportunities

Endowed Full-Ride Scholarship$750,000
Endowed Full-Tuition Scholarship$500,000
Endowed Post Graduate Fellowship$500,000
Full-Ride Current Use Scholarship$100,000
Full Tuition Current Use Scholarship$75,000
One Current Use Fellowship$60,000

If you are interested in discussing this opportunity, please contact Tom Henninger, Director of Development, at (512) 232-0729, or thenninger@law.utexas.edu.