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Louis Stokes Scholars Program

Interested In Exploring Careers In The Law? 

Have we got the program for you! The Louis Stokes Scholars Program is a workforce development program that offers an amazing opportunity for college students who are interested in learning more about the law and legal careers. This summer program is hands-on and interactive, providing participants with stipend paid internships, group learning experiences and seminars for personal development and professional skill building, mentors, tips and resources for how to be successful in college, and an introduction to law school from the LSAT (Law School Admissions Test) to admissions to financial aid and curriculum.  

This program is named after Louis Stokes (1925-2015), distinguished Congressman, attorney and CMBA member. A graduate of the Cleveland public schools and Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, he was the recipient of numerous awards and tributes for his outstanding public and community service as well as for the practice of law.  

What to Expect

This summer program involves a commitment of 20 hours per week, typically during traditional business hours (8:30 - 5:00), Monday through Friday for 8 weeks starting in June and ending in late July. Successful applicants - who will be known as Stokes Scholars - will be matched with an internship host site and mentors from among law firms, courts, law offices and legal nonprofits. The Stokes Scholars will also take part in a range of group activities and programs that will introduce them to Cleveland area lawyers, judges, law school faculty and Stokes Scholars Alumni.  Stokes Scholars are also provided the opportunity to have a mentor or mentors connected to the program throughout their college experience and beyond, to law school or other post-secondary education opportunities. We have a motto, Once a Stokes Scholar, Always a Stokes Scholar - our Stokes Scholars Alumni are an actively engaged cohort with a number who are now Cleveland lawyers involved on the Stokes Scholars Committee.  

Who Can Participate?

The program is accessed through a competitive application process and students eligible to apply include: Currently enrolled college and university students (or graduating high school seniors with at least a 3.0 GPA who will be entering college or university in Fall 2023) who are:
  • Graduates of high schools in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD)
  • Graduates of CMSD Partner Charter High Schools
  • Graduates of East Cleveland's Shaw High School
  • Graduates of the Stephanie Tubbs Jones Summer Legal Academy 

How and When Do I Apply?

Applications for the 2023 summer program are now available! Applications are currently being accepted on a rolling basis.



The Stokes Scholars Program is administered under the umbrella of the CMBA's Inclusion & Diversity Committee. The Stokes Scholars Advisory Committee is chaired by Stokes Scholar Alumnus Brandon Brown of Calfee Halter & Griswold LLP and Alumna Jzinae Jackson of Zashin & Rich. There are 5 other Stokes Scholar Alumni serving on the Committee, along with CMBA members including judges, lawyers and law school faculty.  

Need More Information?

Contact DEI & Workforce Development Specialist Trenton Butler