As most of you know, my journey through Seton Hall Law School has been nothing short of a gauntlet test. It began like any other, but was tragically interrupted in the spring of 2012 when my mother was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. I left school immediately to care for her and help support my family. As you all know, we lost my beautiful mother in November of 2012. It was undoubtedly the darkest time of my life. My mother was my biggest supporter, and the reason I had chosen law school in the first place. She always wanted the best for me, and she believed I would find great success as a lawyer.
After her passing, I knew I had to go back to law school, but it was harder than ever to find the time or the energy. I was in a dark place, overcome with grief and trying to help my grieving father raise my 5 and 6 year old brother and sister. The medical bills were piling up, and there was so much I was unprepared for. But after several years, I knew what I had to do. It was not easy, but with the love and support of family and friends like you, I was able to find the strength to go back to school part time.
I’m happy to say that I graduated from Seton Hall Law School this past May; an accomplishment I know my mother smiles down upon. But my journey isn’t over just yet. I still have one more hurdle to pass, arguably the biggest, most grueling obstacle of all: the Bar Exam.
I come to you today not for pity, but to humbly ask for your help in a way I’ve never felt comfortable with before (and frankly still don’t). The Bar Exam course I need to take to have the best shot at passing the NY/NJ bar this February is $4,500, which doesn’t include the $800 it costs to register for the combined exam. This is a sizeable amount of money, and unfortunately the payment plan is not very forgiving at around $900 a month. This is where I must humbly ask for your help.
I am raising money to help support the cost of the Bar Exam prep course. Anything you can give will go directly towards paying for the 10-week course that begins in December and leads up to the exam in February. Making this request is extremely difficult for me to do, but I assure you, I would not be asking for your help if I didn’t truly need it.
This exam is the culmination of the hardest, most trying years of my life. During those years, I have been blessed to have so many incredible people around me supporting me at every turn. I know I can count on your support one more time, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for ANY amount that you are able to give, no matter how small.
Please consider donating and help me continue to make my mother proud as I make it through the home stretch of this journey.
With love and gratitude,
- Marissa Lugo
- Freddy Goepel
- Chaitany Desai
- Emily Kaufman
- Mary McCann-Stone
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