ORLANDO, Fla. – Two Orlando-based attorneys are providing some financial relief for rising lawyers.
For the second year, attorneys Orlando Sheppard and Benjamin Garcia -- both recent graduates of FAMU Law School -- are funding the “FAMUly First Generation Law Student Scholarship.” The fund provides two $1,500 scholarships to first-generation law students at FAMU who plan to enroll as first-year students this fall.
The $1,500 scholarships could help first-year law students make ends meet by covering textbooks or other supplies.
“The scholarship is important to us because we are both first-generation law students – so we didn’t have anyone who could guide us. As a first-generation law student, you don’t always know how to navigate the law school experience,” Sheppard said. “We wanted to make the process a little easier by alleviating some of the financial stress law students face.”
They said the scholarship was created initially last year to provide some much-needed relief to students during the pandemic, but they plan to continue their efforts for years to come. The lawyers also plan to create a nonprofit to assist law students with mentorship, advisement, finding jobs after graduation and more.
Their goal is to expand their scholarships to include students in their second, third, and fourth year of law school, as well as students in FAMU’s night program.
“For me, giving back is one of life’s most important missions. Remembering my journey as a first-generation law student, I remember the challenges and battles that I faced,” Garcia said. “It is further my sincere hope that upon graduating law school that he/she would return the favor to those who will follow.”
For those interested in applying here’s what you need to know:
The scholarship is open to first-year, full-time law students in the day program at FAMU Law. To apply, the law students must be first-generation law students. Students must
1. Submit verification of enrollment from FAMU Law.
2. Submit an unofficial undergraduate transcript.
3. Submit a 1000-word-minimum essay on why they want to be an attorney (maximum of 5 pages).
Law students can submit their documents to FAMULYFIrstScholarship@gmail.com. The deadline is by Aug. 7 at 11:59 p.m.