Warner Norcross Awards 2013 Minority Scholarships

For the 13th consecutive year, the law firm of Warner Norcross & Judd LLP has awarded academic scholarships to assist minority students from Michigan complete their legal studies.

The Warner Norcross scholarship program provides monetary assistance to students to help cover the educational costs associated with a law degree or paralegal studies. The 2013 recipients are:

  • Bernadette Walli of Pierson, Law School Scholarship
  • Brenda P. Garcia of Grand Rapids, Paralegal/Legal Assistant Scholarship
Since it began its scholarship programs, Warner Norcross has awarded more than $133,000 to support programs that encourage minority students to pursue a career in the law.

The 2013 winners were chosen by a selection committee at the Grand Rapids Community Foundation based on essays that outlined personal goals and challenges that have drawn them into the field of law. The funds for the scholarships come from the Warner Norcross Corporate Advised Fund at Grand Rapids Community Foundation.

Walli, who received the law firm’s $5,000 Law School Scholarship, earned her bachelor’s degree from Grand Valley State University. During school, Walli travelled abroad to study in Peru where she volunteered for an embassy organization that provided legal advocacy services for domestic workers. There she recognized how knowledge of the law could give her a unique opportunity to prevent exploitation of minority populations back in the United States. Walli attends Columbia Law School.

Garcia received the law firm’s $2,000 Paralegal/Legal Assistant Scholarship. With parents who both experienced discrimination and prejudice as first-generation immigrants to the United States, Garcia cultivated ambition and determination as a result of witnessing her parents’ struggles and sacrifice. She plans to complete her degree at Grand Valley State University before attending law school to become an immigration attorney.

In order to be considered for a scholarship, applicants must:

  • Have a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher;
  • Be a Michigan resident accepted to or currently attending an accredited law school within the United States, or a non-Michigan resident attending a Michigan law school (for the Law School Scholarship);
  • Be a Michigan resident enrolled in an accredited college or university in Michigan (for the Paralegal Scholarship);
  • Demonstrate financial need;
  • Submit a statement of goals and aspirations related to their legal studies; and
  • Be a member of an ethnic or racial minority.

In addition to its longstanding tuition scholarship program, Warner Norcross also annually awards scholarships to minority students in their junior or senior year of college to pay the costs of a study course for the Law School Admission Test. Information about these scholarship programs is available on the firm’s website at http://www.wnj.com/Careers/Diversity/Minority-Scholarships-and-Applications.