1L from UCLA Law receives $2,500 scholarship from Ben Crump Law PLLC

Earning a scholarship is always a thrill for law school students. But this one has special meaning.

Jaden Zwick won the 2020 Ben Crump Law School Scholarship. She is a first-year law student at UCLA School of Law’s David J. Epstein Program in Public Interest Law and Policy.

Zwick says the scholarship means a lot to her because it was awarded by Crump’s team. Crump is a social justice warrior whom she greatly admires.

He’s a nationally known advocate. He represents the families of high-profile cases, including those of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor. The National Jurist recently profiled Crump and other such attorneys. You can find the story here.

“To be recognized by someone like Ben Crump and his law firm, especially in a time like now, it’s so huge for me, it’s so encouraging,’’ Zwick said. “There are people who have gone before me who are looking back at me, saying, yes, you are on the right track.”

The $2,500 scholarship is open to students of need who have great academic potential and a dedication to mentorship. Zwick fits all three descriptions. 

Zwick grew up in Federal Way, Wash., In her essay, "Mentorship for Solidarity," she talks about the racial inequities she and her older brother had to face as biracial children in a low-income household dependent upon public assistance. Though she was identified as a smart student with potential, her brother was unjustly identified as a "delinquent", as early as elementary school. 

She wrote, "By high school he spent more of his adolescence incarcerated than in classes."

She also wrote about the ways she had been mentored to success and her resume shows how she is dedicated to mentoring others like herself.

"As I benefited from elders investing in me, I continually invested in youth through formal programs and organic relationships," she wrote.

Zwick received full-scholarship and tremendous counseling and support from the Degrees of Change’s Act Six program in Tacoma, which helps around 30 students a year attend partner colleges. She liked the program so much that she became an Act Six Program Coordinator after graduation.

“Being an alumna of the Act Six leadership and scholarship initiative, it has been an honor to come full circle in my educational journey by now providing leadership training and support to current students,” she wrote.

She has also served on the Human Rights Commission for the City of Seattle’s Office of Civil Rights.

Along the way, she was awarded the King County Bar Association LSAT Preparation Grant which pays for an LSAT prep course, the LSAT exam fee, and admission fee to law schools, all of which can run in the thousands of dollars. And she met Doug Smith of Equal Justice Works in Los Angeles who urged her to check out the UCLA program.

Zwick graduated from Gonzaga University in 2018.

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