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Ways to Fund Law School

More than 90% of students at California Western School of Law receive financial aid in order to help pay the costs of their law school attendance.

Institutional Scholarships

California Western School of Law offers scholarships to newly admitted students based on:

  • Academic criteria, such as undergraduate GPA and LSAT scores.
  • Certain scholarships also include diversity criteria.
  • The law school also awards scholarships at the end of the first year of study to students who perform at the top of their class.
  • Additional scholarships are awarded for academic merit and to promote diversity.

Students who have received a scholarship upon admission are eligible for these additional scholarships awarded at the end of the first year of study.

Learn more about these scholarships

External Scholarships

California Western’s Financial Aid and Student Affairs offices notify current students of scholarship opportunities offered by external groups.

Students should also visit scholarship search websites like and, which can help students locate potential scholarship options.

Federal and state grants are virtually non-existent at the graduate level, and the number of outside scholarships at the graduate level is much smaller than it is at the undergraduate level. Nevertheless, it is always better to use free money rather than borrowed money whenever possible.

Seek out scholarships that are aimed at your specific interests and background; this will help to maximize your chance at a successful application.

Explore external scholarships

Federal Work-Study

The Federal Work-Study program at California Western School of Law helps students obtain jobs both at the school and at certain non-profit and government agencies.

While outside work is discouraged for first year law students, Federal Work-Study provides second and third year students with excellent opportunities for experience, networking, and earning money that does not have to be repaid.

Explore federal work-study options

Student Loans

Most students at California Western School of Law rely on federal student loans to assist with tuition costs and living expenses.

  • Students should carefully evaluate their individual financial situations, construct their own living expense budgets, and only borrow what they need.
  • Students should also be mindful of the potential financial consequences of part-time attendance, delayed graduation, and other choices which can result in increased total debt.
  • Keep your debt to a minimum by making frugal choices: share rent with a roommate, avoid unnecessary luxuries, and create and stick to a financial plan.

Borrowing to finance a law degree can be a valuable investment in your future, but it is always wisest to keep the cost of that investment to a minimum.

The primary federal student loan programs available at California Western School of Law are the Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan and the Federal Direct PLUS Loan for Graduate Students.

  • Unsubsidized Loans have a fixed interest rate and are limited to $20,500 per academic year.
  • PLUS Loans for graduate students have a fixed interest rate that is 1% higher than the Unsubsidized Loan rate. PLUS loans have no annual limit, but are subject to the rule that the total amount of aid for a student (including scholarships, federal and private student loans, and Federal Work-Study) may not exceed the student’s Cost of Attendance.
  • PLUS loans are subject to a credit check.
  • Current interest rates and loan fees for federal student loans can be found at

Private student loans are subject to the same Cost of Attendance limits as PLUS loans and other student aid. While the variable interest rates on private loans are frequently lower than the fixed rates of federal loans, students should remember that federal loans have much more flexible repayment plans, including income-based repayment, deferment and forbearance options, and forgiveness plans such as Public Service Loan Forgiveness.

Explore student loans

Financial Aid Office

For assistance with your financial aid questions, please feel free to contact the California Western School of Law Financial Aid Office.

Contact Us
225 Cedar St., 1st floor
San Diego, CA 92101