In January 2019, a group of like-minded individuals created the Law School Disability Advocacy Coalition in hopes of sharing tips on how to navigate the often-complex process of receiving accommodations while entering the legal profession. Disabled law students often face additional barriers to success in the legal profession, from shifting accommodation policies when trying to take their LSAT to uncertain to receive accommodations for the bar exam.
The support group hit on a hot-button issue as the number of students with disabilities pursuing legal careers increased. In just a year and a half, the group grew to over 650 members. Although the support group provided a way for students to share advice, active student leaders recognized a need for long-term advocacy, education, and formal support for new, local law student organizations for disability.
Thus, after much debate and a voting contest for a new name, the National Disabled Law Students Association was created and is now a 501(c)3 non-profit.
The National Disabled Law Students Association (“NDLSA”) supports the unique needs of disabled law students before, during, and after their legal education by creating a sense of community through advocacy, peer network facilitation, and disability diversity education.
NDLSA aims to eliminate the stigma of disability within the legal profession and foster an environment where law students and lawyers are easily able to obtain the accommodations necessary to achieve career success.