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Law Student Wins $40,000 Award

Risa Kuroda ’21 to receive Morgan Lewis diversity scholarship.


The Morgan Lewis Foundation announced July 24 that Boston College Law student Risa Kuroda ’21 is a Diversity Scholarship award winner for 2019. The scholarship, intended to promote diversity and inclusion in the legal profession, is awarded to promising law students from underrepresented groups.

Kuroda is among eight law students from schools such as the University of Pennsylvania, University of Virginia, and University of Michigan, who will receive grants—typically $40,000 per student—that are provided in four installments at the beginning of each semester of their second and third years of law school.

Having been active as the cultural diversity chair at Boston College while an undergraduate, conducting research on her home state Hawaii and its local customs, Kuroda has long been focused on multicultural understanding. She views the Morgan Lewis award as an opportunity to press forward in promoting success and acceptance for minority communities worldwide.

“In becoming a Morgan Lewis Diversity Scholar, I am continuously supported by Morgan Lewis to empower other first-generation college students from low-income and immigrant communities to form their own cross-cultural collaborations within the legal industry,” Kuroda said. “As a Hawaii local and a dual degree candidate for a Masters of Science in Sustainability, this scholarship supports me as I act on my responsibility, or ‘kuleana,’ to share sustainability practices beyond environmental law and into innovative business.”

“The next generation of leaders in the legal profession will implicitly understand the value diversity and inclusion brings to law firms, clients, and our communities,” said Amanda Smith, chief engagement officer and chair of the Morgan Lewis Foundation. “By awarding these scholarships, we are supporting that next generation, no matter where they decide to practice.”

The independent nonprofit foundation was established in 2014 using a fee award granted to the global law firm Morgan Lewis in a historic settlement of a pro bono matter on behalf of African American families working to combat nearly a century of government-sponsored racial segregation in public housing in Baltimore.