Public Interest Law Center

Financial Assistance and Scholarships

NYU has been at the forefront of creating and funding programs to address the difficult economic reality facing prospective public interest lawyers, from its generous LRAP to its renowned Root-Tilden-Kern Scholarship to summer funding for all first- and second-year students. Through these programs, NYU School of Law strives to both encourage its students' dedication to public service and service to communities from Washington Square to the world over.

There are five major ways that NYU provides funding for public service; for each, you can find out more by going to the links at the left:

LRAP: Loan Repayment Assistance Program:

Graduates who choose work in public service or with nonprofit organizations following graduation will, provided their income is below a designated level, have their debt burden paid in full or in part by NYU. NYU spends more than any other law school in the nation on its LRAP, spending $3.4 million in 2004-05. The Melvyn and Barbara Weiss Loan Repayment Assistance Program was begun in 1984, one of the first in the nation.

PILC Summer Funding:

Since 2003 the Law School has provided support for all first-and second-year J.D. candidates who work in public interest and government positions; almost 300 students participate in this program each summer, working domestically and internationally in over 30 countries around the world.


NYU has long been a leader in providing scholarships to its students in public interest. NYU’s flagship public interest scholarship, the Root-Tilden-Kern Program, established more than 50 years ago, awards full tuition to 20 scholars, selected for commitment to working in public service, academic merit and leadership potential. NYU also offers other prestigious public interest scholarships, such as the Arthur Garfield Hays Civil Liberties Program, the Derrick Bell Public Service Scholarship, and the Reynolds Fellowship in Social Entrepreneurship.

Term-time Opportunities:

NYU’s location in the heart of New York City, home to countless public interest organizations and government agencies, makes it easy for NYU students to work during the academic year. There are several NYU programs that provide funding for term-time internships, some organizations pay students an hourly wage, and in other cases, students volunteer their time.