Law Students

Harvard Law Students Demand an End to Tuition
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Photo courtesy of Harvard Law.

Summary: A group of Harvard Law Students demand an end to tuition.

Will there be another big change at Harvard Law School? The Crimson reports that some students are now calling for an end to tuition, citing that high costs create economic barriers and force students to take on high-paying big firm jobs after graduation to minimize their debts.

  
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On Sunday, a group called Reclaim Harvard Law published an open letter to Harvard Dean Martha Minow and Harvard’s governing body asking to eliminate tuition. The call was a part of an initiative launched weeks ago called “Fees must fall.”

After the activists successfully campaigned for the change of the Harvard official seal, members of Reclaim Harvard Law sought to continue their fight for social justice. One group member Sarah B. Cohen told The Crimson she wants “concrete economic steps that are taken so that students of color and students from low income backgrounds are less marginalized.”

Reclaim Harvard Law did not provide concrete funding alternatives to charging tuition, but they suggested that the school use its endowment or cut costs such as faculty salaries. Cohen told The Crimson that there is “not complete transparency” in the school’s budget, and that the group believes it is not the burden of the students to come up with funding for their proposal.

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According to National Law Journal, the law school had a nearly $1.9 billion endowment as of June 30, 2015.

Harvard Law spokesperson Robb London stated that the school is committed to helping students gain access regardless of their backgrounds. According to him, eighty perfect of J.D. students receive financial assistance in the form of a grant or loan. Activists however said that these services are not enough.



According to The Crimson, Harvard Law’s tuition has risen from $57,200 a year to $59,200. London said the tuition covers costs, and that legally they cannot draw upon the endowment without difficulties. He also said cutting the budget is not a sustainable solution.

Currently, Harvard has an initiative in place called the Low Income Protection Plan to help students who enter a career in public service.

Source: The Crimson



 

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