Named Scholarship Program

Let the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation help you launch a legacy

Starting your own law school scholarship is a great way to give back to the legal community. It will be exciting and rewarding for you and your recipient, and our Named Scholarship Fund Program will make it happen without the large and long term financial commitment your alma mater wants.

The Pennsylvania Bar Foundation wants to partner with organizations and individuals who are interested in creating scholarship opportunities for deserving law student of all ages based upon area of interest, geographic origin, leadership potential, merit, financial need, academic achievement or any other mutually agreeable criteria. You will determine the requirements that applicants must meet to receive the funds, and the Foundation will help you plan, promote, administer and award your scholarship and provide a final report detailing participation rates and outcomes.

And, if you are a member of the PBA, a Bar committee or section, or a Pennsylvania Bar Foundation Life Fellow, Commonwealth Club or Keystone Society contributor, we’ll even make an annual cash contribution towards the success of your fund! (1)

Program Details

  1. Any person, law firm, county bar association or foundation, committee or section of the Pennsylvania Bar Association, or law-related entity with its primary place of business in the state of Pennsylvania may establish a Named Scholarship Fund within the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation.
  2. The donor of a Named Scholarship Funds established by:
    1. a PBA member, a PBF member, a PBA committee or section, or
    2. by any person who names the scholarship after a deceased PBF Keystone or Commonwealth Club member
      must contribute a minimum of $2,500 each year for 5 years.
  3. Named Scholarship Funds established under paragraph 2 are eligible to receive an annual contribution from the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation, to the extent funds are available, scaled as follows:

    Donor Annual Contribution PBF Annual Contribution (2)
    $2,500 $500
    $3,000 $750
    $3,500 or more $1,000 maximum

  4. The donor of Named Scholarship Funds established by any other person or entity, other than donors identified in paragraph 2, must contribute a minimum of $3,000 each year for 5 years, and will not be eligible for an annual contribution from the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation.
  5. The Donor Annual Contribution and the PBF Annual Contribution, if applicable, of a Named Scholarship Fund will be distributed annually.
  6. The Pennsylvania Bar Foundation Board of Directors reserves the right to approve the scholarship fund and the name of the Named Scholarship Fund. The title will include the name provided by the donor and a designation of “Pennsylvania Bar Foundation.” For example, “Jane Doe Scholarship Fund of the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation.”
  7. Donor’s annual Named Scholarship Fund contribution must be received annually by August 1.
  8. Donor may:
    1. determine the scholarship type (general, minority, other);
    2. designate a specific Pennsylvania law school; and
    3. impose any specific eligibility requirements in addition to those required by the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation (i.e., Pennsylvania residency; attendance at one of the eight accredited law schools presently serving Pennsylvania; and law student membership in the Pennsylvania Bar Association).
  9. Selection of a named scholarship recipient shall be made by PBF’s Scholarship Committee. A donor is welcome to participate in the selection process if he/she so desires. The committee shall give deference to the donor’s preference for a recipient provided the recipient meets all criteria.
  10. The named scholarship must be awarded on an objective and nondiscriminatory basis. The group of applicants from which the recipients are selected must be sufficiently broad as to be considered a charitable class. The donor of a scholarship cannot take a charitable deduction for a scholarship that is earmarked for the benefit of a specific individual, not even if that individual is unrelated to the donor. Moreover, donors may not circumvent this restriction by tightly delineating the selection criteria. No scholarships may be awarded to an officer, director or employee of the organization or his/her family members, nor to a member of the selection committee or his/her family.
  11. The number of named scholarships to be awarded each year will be determined no later than July 1 by the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation Board of Directors after review of the recommendation of the Scholarship Committee which shall take into consideration the net proceeds of the most recent silent auction or other scholarship-dedicated sources of funds


Program Application

(1) To the extent our funding allows. On an annual, fiscal year basis, PBF’s aggregate financial contribution among all Named Scholarships Funds, and PBF’s own general and minority scholarships will not exceed $12,000.
(2) Priority for the annual contribution from the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation will be given to named scholarship funds established by Pennsylvania Bar Foundation Life Fellows, Commonwealth Club and Keystone Society contributors.