Training Lawyers Who Lead
Santa Clara Law created the Public Interest and Social Justice Endowment in 1989 in response to a growing need to support alumni and students committed to the practice of public interest and social justice law. In 2009, the fundraising efforts of the Center for Social Justice and Public Service and the Endowment Board merged to create the Public Interest and Social Justice Law Board (Law Board).
In 2006-07, the Jesuit Community at Santa Clara supported the Law Board with a two-year $25,000 grant, matched by Santa Clara Law faculty, that significantly helped achieve the goal of supporting all student need during that period. The community renewed this support in 2008-09, honoring Fr. Paul Goda by creating the Father Paul Goda Summer Grant. In 2011, the community again renewed its support to honor the memory of Associate Dean Mary Emery.
In 2017, Professor Emeritus Richard Berg and his wife Madé made a generous donation to the Law School to create the Richard P. and Madé S. Berg Social Justice Public Interest Endowment Fund. Beginning in summer 2018, many of our summer grants will be awarded in their names.
Historically, the Law School has funded 20 to 30 students per summer at a rate of $3,000 to $4,500, depending on available endowment income. In summer 2017, the Law School funded summer grants for a total of 27 law students. The Board’s goal is to raise the student stipend to $5,000 per summer and to support all students who seek nonprofit or government placements.
The Law School provides financial support to students for summer work through the following programs: the Richard P. and Madé S. Berg Social Justice Public Interest Endowment Fund; the Justice John Paul Stevens Fellowship; the Public Interest Social Justice Law Board Summer Grants; the Harry and Jean Gluck Social Justice Law Fellowship; the Supriya Bhat Public Defender Summer Grant; and the LGBT Legal Issues Summer Grant.
Financial support to incoming students with a demonstrated commitment to public interest and social justice work is available through Public Interest and Social Justice Scholarships.
There continues to be a high level of interest by students and graduates in pursuing careers in public interest and social justice law. The Law Board’s long-term goal is to have sufficient funds available to pay at least reasonable living expenses during the summer for all students who secure low-paying or volunteer positions with public interest and social justice organizations. Another goal is to fund scholarships at a level that would reduce student loan debt to amounts that are manageable for graduates pursuing public interest and social justice work. The receipt of major gifts to support public interest goals will pay dividends for years to come.
Your support makes a difference
To make donations for social justice summer grants, please visit law.scu.edu/giving, select “online giving,” and then select “law scholarships and fellowships.” You should then see a drop-down menu where you may designate your donation for Public Interest and Social Justice Summer Grants, the Justice John Paul Stevens Endowed Fellowship, or the Supriya Bhat Public Defender Summer Grant. Please complete the “special instructions” box if you want to direct your gift to a program that is not listed in the drop-down menu. Donations offer naming opportunities for endowed gifts. You also may send donations to the address below:
Santa Clara University School of Law
Alumni Relations & Development
500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053-0445
Vinita Bali JD ’96, LLM ’07
Laura Best JD ’80
Rosie Brady JD ’15
Aila Malik JD ’94
Nikki Pope JD ’94
Wynn Silberman JD ’94