The Academy of Court-Appointed Neutrals is thrilled to announce the creation of the ACAN Scholarship to help people with financial need join and participate in ACAN.
ACAN is committed to broadening and diversifying the court-appointed neutral profession. ACAN actively encourages a wide array of professionals with superb backgrounds to become part of ACAN and provides its members with an array of benefits to help bring them into the profession. Among many other efforts, ACAN has developed the first-ever Incubator Training and Mentoring Program. ACAN posts its members’ profiles on ACAN’s website and seeks to make it a best practice for courts and litigants to broaden their search for neutrals beyond their own prior experience by consulting these professionals’ profiles. ACAN is also partnering with judges, court staff and their organizations; the American Bar Association, state bars, and affinity bars; the ADR community; other professionals and academics judicial to create new opportunities for members to introduce themselves and participate in programs to help courts make more effective use of neutrals to analysis and address their pressing needs.
As part of this effort, ACAN desires to the extent possible to make the benefits of ACAN membership and participation available without regard to financial need. Through the generosity of founding sponsors Huntington Bank and Milestone, ACAN has now created a fund that it hopes to grow to help offset costs of joining ACAN and participating in ACAN training and events. ACAN will continue to evaluate applicants on a need-blind basis, while permitting applicants to apply separately for scholarship help based on demonstrated financial need and an undertaking to pay the assistance forward in some way that could, but need not be, financial. The scholarship is, thus, an investment in the future of our organization, our profession and, most importantly, the ultimate goal of assisting the administration of justice that our profession serves.
The fund is a start. ACAN cannot promise that funds will be sufficient to offset all needs. There is no right to an ACAN Scholarship. But ACAN hopes the investment will promote benefits that pay all back many times.
ACAN’s Scholarship Policy is available here.
Thank you to ACAN Scholarship founding sponsors Huntington Bank and Milestone for their vision in helping us to establish this fund and look forward to working with our other sponsors to help sustain both the fund and ACAN.