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In November 1996, California voters passed Proposition 209, an initiative that ended affirmative action programs in California state-sponsored schools. The effect of Prop 209 has been devastating in its reduction of the number of students of color attending Boalt Hall, previously considered one of the most diverse law schools in the nation.

Established in 1997, the Phoenix Fellowship was created in response to Prop 209. It was designed first, to encourage students of color to choose Boalt, and second, to support public interest work among these students.

In furtherance of our commitment to both of these goals and in view of the tremendous success of the Annual Auction Extravaganza in recent years a restructuring of the Phoenix Fellowship was recently undertaken.

2005 - 2006 Phoenix Fellowship Application Materials

Please Note: Application Must Be Postmarked
No Later Than Monday April 18th

2005-2006 Phoenix Fellowship Letter

2005-2006 Phoenix Fellowship Application Cover Sheet


Each entering fellow will be awarded a $9,000 grant intended to assist with the fellow’s tuition and/or living expenses during his/her first year of law school at Boalt Hall.

  • However, if the total proceeds from grants (not loans), scholarships, and fellowships awarded to any one fellow exceed the annual student budget set for that year, as determined by financial aid, the Phoenix Fellowship amount will be reduced by the amount in excess of the budget. The amount deducted will be carried over to the following school year to be distributed to the fellow subject to the same conditions.
  • BLF will distribute the grant in installments during the course of the fellow’s first year in law school, providing half of the grant for the year at the beginning of the first semester and the remainder at the beginning of the second semester.
In addition, the fellow will be awarded a stipend during the summer following the fellow’s first year in law school in the amount equal to the grant amount awarded for other BLF summer grants, currently $3,000.
  • This stipend will be awarded for the fellow to carry out a ten-week project consistent with the criteria set out in Section II.
  • The maximum amount a fellow can earn during his/her first summer is the maximum amount other BLF summer grant recipients can earn. If the fellow’s total income for the summer (including wages, work study and other grants/fellowships) exceeds the maximum amount prescribed by BLF for its other summer grants, the Phoenix Fellowship summer grant amount will be reduced by the amount in excess of the maximum award.
The fellow will also be awarded a stipend to carry out a second ten-week project following the fellow’s second year in law school.
  • The project must be consistent with the criteria set out in Section II.
  • The amount of this stipend will exceed the amount awarded to other BLF summer grants by $1000. Participation in the second year of the Fellowship may be waived at the fellow’s option. If the fellow elects not to participate in the second year of the fellowship, no additional award will be provided by BLF.


The fellow’s summer work must further the BLF purpose of providing public interest legal work aiding disadvantaged or underrepresented groups. The funded projects must have some practical aim such as:
  • the writing of a handbook designed to promote the legal rights of disadvantaged minorities, victims of race, sex, physical handicap, age or other discrimination, or those denied human rights in criminal or civil matters;
  • assisting lay persons in effecting their legal rights

  • the drafting of model statutes;

  • litigation in the public interest or for the benefit of disadvantaged minorities, victims of race, sex, physical handicap, age, or other discrimination, or those denied human rights in civil and criminal matters;

  • rendering of legal services to some specific and underrepresented group.
While the Berkeley Law Foundation recognizes the value of the following types of work, the Phoenix Fellowship must not be used to fund projects with the following goals or subjects:

A ll applicants of color are encouraged to apply. The Fellow selection is primarily based on his or her demonstrated commitment to public interest work. The selection process begins in early April and concludes by the third week of April. A committee of diverse students and BLF Board members participate in the selection process.
Application Components:

Cover sheet: Simply fill in the basic information requested.

2. Resume: Make sure it highlights your experience in public interest and/or community service.

3. Personal Statement: Tell us about yourself. How are your goals consistent with BLF's mission statement? How has your background or experiences prepared or motivated you to work for social change?

4. Reference Letter: Have someone besides a relative who knows you well extol your virtues and your commitment to community work. Additional letters are welcome but are not necessary.

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