Why should I give?
Sites asking for donations to all sorts of causes typically begin by describing "Who we are" or "What we want to accomplish," but you won't find any of these sorts of introductions on here. We get you. We know that the primary thing on your mind, as you skeptically read these words, is "Why should I give?" You already pay a lot in tuition, so why would you want to give this school more money?
Tuition revenue, however, is far from the only source of cash flow for a large institution such as Northwestern, and Northwestern students do more in their three years here than simply invest in their future careers.
1. Students have benefited from the generosity of alumni donors. Student space, the atrium expansion, scholarships, and clinic experiences have all been funded with the aid of alumni support.
2. The school benefits the larger community through various clinic and student volunteering initiatives, as well as by training lawyers who will be advancing the cause of justice.
3. The Class of 2016 has the opportunity to pay it forward and contribute benefits to future generations of law school students and the community beyond.
When you look back at your experience at Northwestern, it is likely that there was some moment since you stepped through those doors that you paid it forward to the community. You may have advised a rising 2L about your firm ahead of OCI. Perhaps you helped fight for a prisoner's innocence at the Bluhm Legal Clinic. Or maybe you just told a bright-eyed 1L what electives she should bid on. Whatever that moment may be, if you really think about it, you care about this school, its student body, and the community it serves.
The Graduating Class Gift is a collective mission for our class to come together to pay it forward and show we care, together.
What do we want to do?
So this is the part that really matters, right? Believe us, we know that a major criticism of our school's fundraising initiatives is a lack of student input in where the money actually goes. This is your chance to personally direct where fundraising initiatives go and to show what matters to you, the student.
First, it is clear that the Class of 2016 is committed to furthering the cause of diversity in the legal profession. The SBA's Visibility Initiative was a great success, but we still have a long way to go before the walls of this school truly showcase the incredible diversity we have in our community. If we reach our goal--52% class participation and $10K--the Law School will purchase and display artwork depicting diversity in the School.
Second, anyone who donates to the Graduating Class Gift will have the opportunity to personally select an initiative they care about, which their donation will directly support. For example, if you want to help fund LRAP, you can direct your donation to the Graduating Class Gift towards LRAP. Have a great experience at the Bluhm Legal Clinic? You can direct your portion of the class gift to the Clinic. When you make your gift, just indicate which of the nine Law School Fund accounts you would like to direct your gift towards in the 'notes' section. Options include:
The Bluhm Legal Clinic
Law School Scholarships
LLM Program Support
LLM-Tax Program Support
LRAP (Loan Repayment and Assistance Program)
MSL Program Support
Pritzker Legal Research Center (Library)
For more information on these allocations, visit the Law School Fund website.
This class gift is about two things: the community and you. Pay it forward how you want! The Class of 2016, future classes, and members of the community are all incredibly thankful for your generous support.
*All Class of 2016 donors who give more than $50 to the Graduating Class Gift are considered part of the Young Wigmore Club. Members of the Wigmore Club enjoy many benefits, including: invitation to the exclusive Wigmore Cocktail Reception, annual stakeholders calls with the Dean, priority seating at special events and lectures, and recognition in the annual Honor Roll of Donors. Wigmores also receive priority invitations to local and regional VIP events, and special access to news and engagement opportunities on a preferred basis throughout the year. For more information, visit the Wigmore Club website.
Please note: Gift levels represent the costs associated with various Law School programs and experiences, and are delineated here to give donors a sense of the impact of their gifts. When you make a gift to the Graduating Class Gift, the amount of your gift may be used to fund the initiatives mentioned here, as well as other vital needs associated with the program you've indicated.
Cost of box lunch for one student at an alumni panel.
Cost of a student visit to a client at Cook County Jail or in the Juvenile Detention Center.
Cost of accommodations for students traveling to Malawi on IHR trip to reform the justice system and reduce overcrowding of prisons.
Average cost of attendance for one student at a Journal symposium.
Cost of round trip travel to the Pontiac Correctional Center, which allows faculty and staff to meet with incarcerated clients.
Cost of a month of background checks necessary for centers to perform during case investigation.
Average cost of one student’s travel to various trial competitions throughout the United States through the Bartlit Center for Trial Advocacy.