Southwestern starts scholarship for students with interest in business

Southwestern Law School announced the single largest gift to establish a scholarship in the school’s history. The new scholarship will provide financial assistance for outstanding students with a demonstrated interest in business, finance and entrepreneurship. The Lauren B. Leichtman and Arthur E. Levine Family Foundation Scholarship Endowment Fund was started with a $1 million pledge. In addition to receiving financial support, the students selected for this award will be assigned a mentor at Levine Leichtman Capital Partners and may be offered an internship opportunity with the company.

 "By crafting this scholarship and mentorship program to recognize students who excel in business and finance, Lauren Leichtman and Arthur Levine are providing a wonderful incentive for our students to develop their knowledge and practical skills in these areas," Southwestern Dean Susan Westerberg Prager said. "Their vision will also encourage our corporate faculty and help strengthen our curriculum as well as our partnership with The Drucker School."

 Southwestern offers more than 30 business-related courses and numerous externship placements, as well as a concurrent JD/MBA degree with the Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management of Claremont Graduate University that was launched in 2009.

"Southwestern Law School gave me an opportunity to develop as a professional," Leichtman said. "My JD degree has contributed meaningfully to my career achievements. Arthur and I are pleased to be able to give back to the institution that has had such an important effect on my life."

A prominent philanthropist and highly respected member of the investment community, Leichtman has served as a trustee of Southwestern since 2006. She has remained close to Southwestern throughout a career that has taken her from the legal division of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission to a founding principal of a multi-billion dollar private equity firm.

After nearly a decade as a litigator, including three years with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Leichtman joined her husband in establishing Levine Leichtman Capital Partners in 1984. The company invests in and manages in excess of $7 billion in institutional investment capital through private equity partnerships on behalf of state and corporate pension funds, insurance companies, high net worth individuals, family foundations and endowments.

"The establishment of the Lauren B. Leichtman and Arthur E. Levine Family Foundation Scholarship Endowment Fund comes at such an important time for Southwestern and for our students who aspire to careers in the business world," Dean Prager said. "In addition to setting a precedent for scholarship funds of this magnitude, it will provide even more than much needed financial awards and precious advice to student recipients. A gift that comes from outstanding individuals who are so well regarded in their field and who know Southwestern intimately is truly invaluable.  As Southwestern’s new Dean, I look forward to the kind of thoughtful guidance and support that Lauren Leichtman and Arthur Levine have provided this very special law school for many years."