Let’s say a person squeaks through college with the minimum GPA needed to graduate (2.00, i.e. a "C" average) and then completely bombs a standardized test designed to measure reading comprehension and analytical and logical ability, scoring in the bottom 13 percent of test-takers. A euphemism for such a person, suitable for this touchy age, might be "intellectually disinclined" or, certainly, "academically challenged." But at Thomas Jefferson School of Law, that person is referred to as a “recipient of an academic merit scholarship.”
Consider the “matrix” of UGPA/LSATs used by Thomas Jefferson School of Law, beginning this fall, to award guaranteed renewable academic merit scholarships. A kid with a 2.0 GPA /140 LSAT (i.e., a "C" average in college and a 13th percentile score on the LSAT) gets a merit scholarship of $1,000 a year. And $7,000/ yr. if that kid can boost his or her LSAT performance to 145-- the 26th percentile.
What is even more striking than the small merit awards provided to the, uh, intellectually disinclined, are the quite substantial ones provided to the utterly mediocre and sub-mediocre. Thomas Jefferson will provide a $44,000/ yr. renewable scholarship for an incoming law student with a 3.0 undergraduate GPA and a 153 on the LSAT (i.e., a "B" average in college and a 55th percentile score on the LSAT)—essentially a full-ride, since the school’s annual tuition is $44,900. A half-tuition scholarship is available to students with a 2.5 undergraduate GPA and a 148 on the LSAT (i.e. a "C+" average in college and a 38th percentile score on the LSAT).