Ritika Kapadia ’15 recently won the Diverse Scholarship, sponsored by Blank Rome LLP and its Diverse Scholars Program. Kapadia is the first BLS student to win this award.
The $7,500 scholarship is intended to cover tuition, books, and other law school-related expenses. Kapadia will also join the Blank Rome summer associate program this summer. Following successful completion, she may be invited to join the firm for a second summer, as well as receive an additional $7,500 scholarship.
Prior to this year, the Diverse Scholars Program was offered only to students at Fordham University School of Law, University of Maryland School of Law, and Howard University School of Law. Championing BLS’s inclusion was Michelle Gitlitz Courtney ’04, a Blank Rome partner. As a member of the firm’s recruiting committee and former co-chair of its summer associate program, Gitlitz Courtney pushed for the program to be opened to BLS students and worked with the BLS Career Center to promote to the community. After several rounds of interviews with students from various schools, Blank Rome selected Kapadia, a 2012 Emory University graduate, as the winner.
“Blank Rome is committed to diversity and this is a great program to attract highly-qualified minority students,” Gitlitz Courtney said. “And the fact that Ritika is joining us from BLS is a big plus for us as well. In my experience, BLS lawyers are well-prepared to work in this type of environment and they tend to be successful at the firm.”
In addition to her successful academic record and interviews, Kapadia submitted a well-received essay on the subject of tolerance and representation for minorities in the legal profession. Kapadia said she is “very grateful and thankful for the honor.”
Created in 2006, the Blank Rome Diverse Scholars Program was designed to attract outstanding diverse law students from partner law schools. Blank Rome Diverse Scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic achievement, demonstrated leadership, community service, work experience, and commitment to the practice of law.