Applications are no longer being accepted for the 2022 program.

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LSAC Prelaw Undergraduate Scholars (PLUS) Program at Heritage University

Are you a college student or recent graduate living in Central Washington who dreams of becoming a lawyer, but aren’t sure where to start? Are you searching for a rewarding way to help and serve the community you call home?

There is now a program designed specifically to help make your dream a reality.

The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) Prelaw Undergraduate Scholars (PLUS) Program at Heritage University is an innovative partnership among Washington’s three law schools – Seattle University School of Law, University of Washington School of Law, and Gonzaga University School of Law – and Heritage University in Central Washington. It aims to make a law degree more accessible to diverse students, especially Latino/Latina/Latinx and Indigenous students.

Our objective is to expand your horizons by helping you realize that gaining entrance to law school and launching a legal career are achievable goals. By the end of the program, you will have a much better understanding of what it takes to apply to and become accepted by a law school, thrive as a law student, and work as a lawyer. In the process, you will make valuable connections with diverse attorneys and judges in your community who are invested in your future success.

Eligibility

Created for diverse rising sophomore, junior, and senior college students or recent college graduates (no more than 3 years out) in the Central Washington region who have an interest in learning about and pursuing a career in law. First priority will be given to Heritage University students and graduates.

Application process

Program dates

  • The program consists of two sessions
  • Summer 2022 Session – June 14-30 (3 weeks)
  • Fall 2022 Session – (October 4-6)
  • Sessions will be held during late afternoons and evenings Tuesday through Thursday to enable students to work at jobs in the mornings.

Location

  • All program sessions will be held on the campus of Heritage University, located in Toppenish, Washington.
  • Exception includes optional field trips to Washington law schools.

Purpose

Funded by a grant from the Law School Admission Council (LSAC), the primary objective of the LSAC PLUS Program is to create a pipeline of diverse students from Central Washington who will enroll in law school and then return home to practice.

Historically, Central Washington does not have sufficient lawyers, particularly racially and ethnically diverse lawyers, to serve the legal needs of its people and the community. Providing this opportunity to area students will help address the critical shortage of diverse lawyers in the region, thus enhancing access to justice for the clients and communities they will serve.

Program description

  • The primary element will be an intensive, three-week summer program, held on the Heritage University campus.
  • Key aspects of the program are designed to help students envision themselves as lawyers, with a visit by several Washington Supreme Court justices, a mock law school class, roundtable discussions with leaders of minority bar associations, mentoring by community lawyers and judges, and modules that provide helpful information to demystify the application process and the law school experience.
  • Students can also choose to visit one of the Washington law schools.
  • A shorter, follow-up program will take place in October.
  • Students who successfully complete the program will receive a $1,000 stipend and a certificate of completion.

Schedule and Tentative Curriculum

(subject to change)

 

Partner organizations

In addition to Washington’s three law schools, Heritage University, and LSAC, the program was developed in partnership with several legal services organizations, which first identified the critical and longstanding need for more homegrown lawyers drawn from Central Washington:

  • Northwest Justice Project
  • Northwest Immigrant Rights Project
  • Columbia Legal Services
  • TeamChild
  • Benefits Law Center
  • Office of Civil Legal Aid (OCLA)

These organizations will be integrally involved in designing and implementing the pipeline program. They will also help provide the critically important connection to practicing lawyers and judges, as well as insights on the access to justice gap in rural communities and the urgent need for lawyers who are more representative of their clients and communities.


This program received funding from the Law School Admission Council, Inc. (LSAC) The opinions and conclusions contained in this document are the opinions and conclusions of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the position or policy of LSAC.

Contact

Diana Lopez Batista
Program Coordinator/Attorney
WA Law Schools Collaborative with Heritage University
Phone: 206-696-1348 (cell)
Email: Lopez_d1@heritage.edu

Contact Admission

Seattle University School of Law
901 12th Avenue, Sullivan Hall
Seattle, WA 98122-1090
Phone: 206-398-4200
Toll-free: 800-471-1767
Email: lawadmis@seattleu.edu

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