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Pride Foundation Scholar Luke Laughlin, pictured in center

I am acutely aware of how my emotional and physical safety are under threat. It’s what motivates me to attend law school—to make my community better for everyone, particularly queer and transgender people.

Since I began pursuing a career in public interest law, my educational dream has often felt impossible—especially when thinking about my student loan debt. My identity as a queer and transgender person has posed unique challenges in my path to higher education, including hiring discrimination, on-the-job harassment, housing insecurity, and increased anxiety and risk of experiencing violence.

Yet, receiving a Pride Foundation scholarship has helped me feel much closer to achieving my dreams. While the financial support is important, being a Pride Foundation scholar has reaffirmed to me the solidarity that makes our community strong. I know that I have the backing of generations of LGBTQ people that support me in achieving my goals.

As a lawyer, I will work toward a world in which all queer and transgender youth feel safe in their homes, schools, and communities. Our younger generation needs to know they have a strong community behind them, defending their right to be who they are in this world.

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