Skip to main content

College of Law

Florida State University


2005 Press Releases

Law partners establish Knowles & Randolph Diversity Enhancement Endowed Scholarship

Jan 01, 2005

TALLAHASSEE— With a $50,000 gift to the Florida State University College of Law, law partners Harold Knowles and Roosevelt Randolph have established the Knowles & Randolph Diversity Enhancement Endowed Scholarship.

Income from the scholarship will go each year to an outstanding graduate of the College of Law’s Summer for Undergraduates Program who ultimately enrolls in law school at Florida State. The recipient will be known as the Knowles & Randolph Scholar.

“I was profoundly impressed with Dean Weidner and his staff’s commitment to enhance diversity at the Florida State University College of Law,” says Knowles, who became acquainted with the Summer for Undergraduates program when his son, Clayton, participated.

“While Clayton found the program exceptionally challenging, it really stimulated his interest in the study of law,” Knowles says. “It occurred to me that there would likely be a number of students who might successfully complete the Summer for Undergraduates Program but have no financial means of attending law school. By establishing a scholarship of this type, my law partner and I felt we could facilitate greater diversity in the student body at the College of Law, while at the same time ensuring that academically deserving, but financially challenged, students would have the opportunity to undertake the study of law.”

The Summer for Undergraduates Program is designed to familiarize students from groups historically underrepresented in the legal profession with the study of law. Freshmen, sophomores and juniors enrolled in all majors at two- and four-year institutions across the country are eligible. The program helps participants direct their remaining time in college to best prepare for law school.

“This signature program to enhance the pipeline of talented minorities to law school is now being studied and copied by other law schools across the nation,” says Dean Don Weidner. “We are thrilled that Harold Knowles and Roosevelt Randolph are giving so generously to it.”

Each year, 60 students are selected to participate. More than 400 students have completed the program since it was established in 1992.

“During the past 14 years, we have seen so many promising students come through the summer program and it’s fantastic that the Knowles & Randolph scholarship will make law school a reality for an outstanding student who wants to become a lawyer,” says Nancy Benavides, associate dean for student affairs and the program’s director.

Knowles & Randolph, established in 1979, is the oldest African-American law firm in the Big Bend and North Florida. The firm also has an office in Quincy, Florida. Practice areas include personal injury, general civil litigation, real property law, bond finance, state and local government law, administrative law, lobbying, and probate. 

January 2005