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Clarence B. Thompson Memorial Scholarship Fund - Juris Doctor (JD)
USC Gould School of Law

In 2019, the Clarence B. Thompson Memorial Scholarship Fund was created to support the school’s recruitment efforts to enroll more African-American students in the 1L class.

The Fund is named after Gould’s first African-American alumnus, Mr. Clarence Thompson who graduated from the law school in 1900 at the age of 18. He practiced law for a short period of time, but found himself yearning to continue his passion for learning and to pursue higher education. In 1904 he enrolled at Harvard University and later went on to join the faculty ranks at the Harvard Business School and then decades later at UC Berkeley. He was a life-long learner and a pioneering trailblazer in the management field, consulting to multi-national corporations worldwide. Since Mr. Thompson’s graduation in 1900, USC Gould has graduated over 600 African-American students. Many have gone on to pursue meaningful careers in private practice, business, education, public service and the judiciary.

Selection Criteria:

Scholarship funds will provide support to students committed to serving the African-American community and for whom affordability may be an obstacle, and who might otherwise be unable to attend the law school. A positive consideration shall be given to students with financial need who self-identify as “African-American/Black” in the admissions process, and who have a GPA of 3.0 or higher upon entering USC Gould. Assessment of a student’s commitment to serving the African-American community shall be by review of the following criteria: demonstrated commitment by prior employment, community service or other activities; commitment as discussed in personal statement submitted with law school application or in letters of reference; prior college coursework or attendance at a Historically Black College or University.