A young African lawyer named Matthew Graham has made history after passing the United States bar examinations at first attempt with an outstanding score of 309/409 points.
Matthew Graham, an African American man from Maryland, United States scored an impressive 309 out of 400 in his bar exam. He shared a video of his reactions on his Facebook and it went viral.
Matthew attended the University of Baltimore School of Law, where he said he faced challenges throughout his journey to becoming a lawyer. He had to balance his full-time job, being a new husband and father, and at the same time his studies.
But he took that as a motivation to push through. Matthew recently graduated from law school a semester early in December 2022 and he ranked 7th in his class with an outstanding 3.6 GPA and Magna Cum Laude(Distinction) honors.
Matthew’s hard work, studying, and reviewing paid off as he scored a 309 on the state’s bar exam, landing him in the 94th percentile after his first trial. According to Essence, the average score to pass in the United States is 266, which is mostly after taking it at least three times.
He disclosed that he memorized outlines and completed 50 multiple-practice questions daily while preparing for the exam, and also invested 55-60 hours a week for nine weeks in his studies.
Matthew described his achievement as a significant one, adding that he felt proud when he walked around the courthouse and saw other Black people who had equally passed the bar exam because historically, Black Americans tend to score the lowest on the exam.
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“I understand how significant this is. Even ever since I passed the bar exam when I would walk around, for example, today, walking around in the courthouse and you see Black staff or Black parents of other successful people who pass the bar, it’s just pride. They just smile,” he said.
He further stated that it was not because they didn’t work hard enough or weren’t smart enough, but because there is a racial system that makes the journey of Black people passing the bar exam more difficult.
“So, it’s just a lot of pride knowing that regardless of what was put in my way, I was going to get this done,” he said.
Matthew has been officially sworn in as a licensed attorney to the State of Maryland Bar. ”Matthew Kobby Graham, Esquire. Attorney at Law. On the 25th of May 2023, I have officially been sworn in as a licensed attorney to the State of Maryland Bar. This long chapter has finally ended,” Matthew wrote on Facebook.