Alumna Creates a Way Forward for Aspiring Legal Professionals

Alumna Creates a Way Forward for Aspiring Legal Professionals

Ask any former law student what it took to earn their J.D., and you are likely to hear the same answer over and over: hard work. At a minimum, pursuing a law degree took years of dedication to academic rigor. For many, however, it also took the additional effort of holding down outside employment to cover the costs of tuition and other educational expenses. Such was the case for Beatriz “Bibi” Azcuy, J.D. ’94, who attended night courses in her first year at Miami Law while working full-time. Her perseverance at that time paid off. In her subsequent years, Azcuy received various scholarships that improved her path.

“After a very successful first year, I was awarded the Ford Foundation Scholarship,” she said. “This scholarship allowed me to transfer to the day program and participate in extracurricular activities such as the University of Miami Moot Court Board. Those moot court board competitions made me feel a part of the school community, and through them, I met amazing people—many of whom are outstanding and notable members of our Miami legal community.”

Today, as co-managing partner of the Miami office of Sidley Austin LLP, as well as head of the firm’s Miami real estate group, and the local chair for the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee, Azcuy hopes to give the next generation of promising legal minds the same kind of support she so appreciated during her studies through the Beatriz Azcuy Endowed Law Scholarship.

“Having been a recipient of several scholarships at the University of Miami, this scholarship represents a full-circle moment. Now, after gaining 30 years of law experience, it is exciting for me to be able to give back and support future generations of legal leaders. This scholarship is not just a financial contribution; it’s an investment in education and in the potential of young legal minds who will shape the future of the legal profession and our community,” she said.

Azcuy goes on to say that the scholarships she received were pivotal in shaping her professional trajectory, equipping her with more than legal knowledge but also the critical thinking, communication, and leadership skills that would ultimately help her navigate the complexities of the legal world. “The University of Miami’s commitment to excellence and inclusivity instilled in me a sense of purpose and confidence, allowing me to overcome challenges and take opportunities that may not have been possible otherwise,” she said. “It’s a testament to the power of quality legal education and the impact the University of Miami School of Law has on its graduates.”

As for the endowed scholarship established in her name, Azcuy hopes to foster the development and success of all aspiring law students, especially first-generation college students like her. She shares her vision by saying, “[For those] who demonstrate dedication, passion, and potential in the field of law, [I would like this scholarship] to alleviate some financial burdens... and allow talented and deserving individuals to focus on their studies, participate in extracurricular activities, and engage in internships and externships.”

Further, Azcuy feels that establishing scholarships elevates the University of Miami and the students it serves.

“By offering scholarships,” she said, “the Miami Law program sets itself apart from other top-tier law schools by actively investing in the future of aspiring legal professionals who may face financial constraints. This commitment attracts a more diverse pool of talented students and creates a richer academic experience. Scholarships help cultivate a student body that reflects a broad range of perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences, enhancing the overall learning environment and preparing graduates to excel in a diverse legal landscape. This is perfect for the University of Miami School of Law, where the commitment to inclusivity is ingrained in its ethos.”

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