LEAP is honored to be featured in a Law section cover story by Marisa Manzi and Nina Totenberg on NPR.org. The article discussed the deep need for law school diversity pipelines, with law being one of the least racially diverse professions in the country.
Authors interviewed LEAP Founder Cindy Lopez about the wider needs that LEAP fills—mentorship, LSAT prep, application preparation, and critical insights into how to be a competitive applicant. They also interviewed 2020 LEAP Fellows Ingrid Lopez Martinez and Andaiye McAndrew who talked about what the program has meant to them personally. LSAT prep has been profoundly impactful, but beyond that attorney and law school student mentorship, coupled with inside information about the application process has been game-changing. Pictured above, see three of our 2020 Fellows hard at work at a LEAP workshop.
“When Ingrid Lopez Martinez received DACA status during her senior year of high school, it transformed her perception of the law. Instead of seeing it as a system used to limit her immigrant family’s potential, she for the first time saw the law “as a transformative tool for justice.”
This first-generation college graduate, who moved to the United States from El Salvador at age 4, now aspires to become a lawyer so that she can “pay it forward” and advocate for the undocumented community.
She soon learned, though, that getting into law school can be particularly complicated for many minority applicants — from the expense of test prep courses to the cost of actually applying to schools. There are other knowledge gaps, too. Many first generation college grads applying to law school don’t know the ins and outs of the application process. They have no personal connections to people who can help guide them through the process and may not know, for instance, the disadvantage of applying to law school late in the application cycle.