Pre-Law Center receives grant from Texas Bar Foundation

Funding will support internships, mock trials and moot court tournaments at UTA

Tuesday, May 19, 2020 • Jenny Gumbert : Contact

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The University of Texas at Arlington’s Pre-Law Center received a $15,000 grant from the Texas Bar Foundation to support experiential learning activities that engage young minds and encourage underrepresented scholars to consider law as a career.  

Plans for the funds include professional development events and internship opportunities, as well as mock trial and moot court tournaments.

“The grant is meant to fund special pipeline programs that introduce high school students to careers in law,” said Amber White, director of UTA’s Pre-Law Center. “Last year, our Pre-Law Day brought local attorneys, judges, congressional candidates, sheriffs, U.S. attorneys and law school admissions reps together to talk to college and high school students about their future aspirations and how to turn those into reality.”

Programs such as the Pre-Law Day are central to the Center’s mission of provide learning opportunities for college and high school students interested in studying law, many of whom may not otherwise have access to information about legal studies or law school. White hopes to expand the Pre-Law Day event so more students can benefit. 

“The goal is to do something even bigger with the generous funds we’ve been given,” White said. 

Officially established in 2012, UTA’s Pre-Law Program provides invaluable services to students, including advising; mentorship programs with legal professionals at AT&T, Haynes & Boone LLP, and other firms; service-learning experiences with Legal Aid of Northwest Texas; moot court and mock trial competition training; and more. 

The Pre-Law Center recently opened the Adelfa B. Callejo Courtroom, an advanced learning space that serves as a practice area for mock trial and moot court participants, as well as a classroom and gathering spot for students interested in studying law.

Since its inception in 1965, the Texas Bar Foundation has awarded more than $21 million in grants to law-related programs. Supported by members of the State Bar of Texas, the Texas Bar Foundation is the nation's largest charitably-funded bar foundation.

-Written by Jenny Gumbert, University Advancement