UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

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transparency
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UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby transparency » Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:55 pm

As of now, my three top choices are those three (actually, there's also boston university, but the lack of financial aid coupled with the high cost of living there make it a difficult option for me).

I'm going to visit Hastings and Davis toward the end of this week, but I wanted to know what some of you guys (and girls) felt about these three schools.

Irvine is very close to home for me, so that makes it a huge convenience, along with the half scholarship.
Davis just gave me a "Estimated" offer of what turns out to be a half scholarship
and Hastings is offering me 10k in scholarship money.

I am interesting in civil rights/constitutional law. Yet, at the same time, I am open to trying new things as I realize that I can't really know what I want to do until I begin studying law.

So how do the three compare with each other? Feel free to use any appropriate criteria, and thanks for the input!

lakerfanimal
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby lakerfanimal » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:14 pm

I'd say Irvine because of your interest in a subject that I don't think goes hand in hand with biglaw, nor does it seem like you're all that interested in that. I'm not sure if Irvine is accredited yet, but if it is I think you should go there because of the scholarship, distance for you, and Leiter says the faculty is ridiculously talented (I'm just a 0L so that's basically what I go by haha). The small class sizes are also an advantage.

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phoenix323
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby phoenix323 » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:16 pm

The clinical programs at Davis might also be well suited towards your interests.

Good luck this fall! :mrgreen:

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Great Satchmo
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby Great Satchmo » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:23 pm

I'd take note of the money, and then I'd look at geographic preference.

UC Irvine is not really "proven" yet, but with the estimated ranking (in an environment that fights tooth and nail to keep the top schools "unshaken") and the faculty rankings, I think UCI is likely going to be exactly what we all think it is - a really strong school.

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Borhas
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby Borhas » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:26 pm

transparency wrote:As of now, my three top choices are those three (actually, there's also boston university, but the lack of financial aid coupled with the high cost of living there make it a difficult option for me).

I'm going to visit Hastings and Davis toward the end of this week, but I wanted to know what some of you guys (and girls) felt about these three schools.

Irvine is very close to home for me, so that makes it a huge convenience, along with the half scholarship.
Davis just gave me a "Estimated" offer of what turns out to be a half scholarship
and Hastings is offering me 10k in scholarship money.

I am interesting in civil rights/constitutional law. Yet, at the same time, I am open to trying new things as I realize that I can't really know what I want to do until I begin studying law.

So how do the three compare with each other? Feel free to use any appropriate criteria, and thanks for the input!


If your parents aren't wealthy and if you don't have savings you could also get some decent fin aid grants from Hastings, making the price comparable to Davis. How I would decide would be Nor Cal or So Cal if So Cal then Irvine. If Nor Cal then ask whether you want urban or rural, small class size, or large class size. The half scholarship is probably the tie breaker... so unless you have something against the OC UCI is probably the smart move.

conventional wisdom says that Davis and Hastings are pretty much equal in employment prospects... Irvine is more risky

also, I would be wary about any supposed "estimate"
Last edited by Borhas on Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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r2b2ct
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby r2b2ct » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:28 pm

I have thought about this a bit because I plan to apply to all three next cycle.

For employment prospects, Davis and Hastings are nearly identical. They both do well throughout CA. It is hard to compare Irvine, but I doubt they will do poorly. They have a great faculty, and they are probably working hard to ensure that their first classes do very well.

Considering scholarships, I would choose Irvine or Davis unless you really want to live in SF. If you really like Hastings, maybe you should try to leverage an equal or greater scholarship from them based on your other offers.

You should also consider that cost of living will probably be higher for Hastings than Davis and Irvine.

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pany1985
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby pany1985 » Mon Mar 15, 2010 5:33 pm

The UCI scholarship is guaranteed, so that should definitely be something to think about if the money from Davis and Hastings is conditioned on a certain ranking/GPA/etc. Also, Irvine's 10 minutes from the beach, so there's that.

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lt0826
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby lt0826 » Mon Mar 15, 2010 8:55 pm

If Constitutional law is your primary interest I don't see how you can pass up the chance to go to UCI. Dean Chemerinsky is THE expert in constitutional law. What an opportunity to take 1L Constitutional law with him!

ViP
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby ViP » Mon Mar 15, 2010 9:00 pm

lt0826 wrote:If Constitutional law is your primary interest I don't see how you can pass up the chance to go to UCI. Dean Chemerinsky is THE expert in constitutional law. What an opportunity to take 1L Constitutional law with him!


+2,342,904,630,498,572

ViP
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby ViP » Mon Mar 15, 2010 9:12 pm

Borhas wrote:
transparency wrote:As of now, my three top choices are those three (actually, there's also boston university, but the lack of financial aid coupled with the high cost of living there make it a difficult option for me).

I'm going to visit Hastings and Davis toward the end of this week, but I wanted to know what some of you guys (and girls) felt about these three schools.

Irvine is very close to home for me, so that makes it a huge convenience, along with the half scholarship.
Davis just gave me a "Estimated" offer of what turns out to be a half scholarship
and Hastings is offering me 10k in scholarship money.

I am interesting in civil rights/constitutional law. Yet, at the same time, I am open to trying new things as I realize that I can't really know what I want to do until I begin studying law.

So how do the three compare with each other? Feel free to use any appropriate criteria, and thanks for the input!


If your parents aren't wealthy and if you don't have savings you could also get some decent fin aid grants from Hastings, making the price comparable to Davis. How I would decide would be Nor Cal or So Cal if So Cal then Irvine. If Nor Cal then ask whether you want urban or rural, small class size, or large class size. The half scholarship is probably the tie breaker... so unless you have something against the OC UCI is probably the smart move.

conventional wisdom says that Davis and Hastings are pretty much equal in employment prospects... Irvine is more risky

also, I would be wary about any supposed "estimate"


I agree 100%.

I'm in a very, very, similar position as OP. BU, Davis, Hastings, and Irvine are all top options and I plan to work in Socal. If I wanted Norcal and money wasn't a major concern, I would have to choose Hastings/Davis.

I honestly think Irvine is an incredible option for anyone planning to work in Socal. I happen to think it's a fantastic option for applicants all over the country, too, due to the amazing package that the school offers (who knows if you'll receive a better legal education virtually anywhere in the country?). But it will naturally take some time for Irvine to really spread its reputation and influence throughout the state and across the country.

transparency
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby transparency » Tue Mar 23, 2010 12:56 am

I just came back from norcal and thought that maybe my experience would help others in their law school decision. Warning, this is a very long post.

UC Davis
It's off the 80 freeway (I think?) and I actually couldn't tell where the school was. It's sort of hidden because of all of the trees in and around the campus. Once I was there though, I absolutely loved the campus. The whole campus is flat and extremely bike friendly. In addition to this the atmosphere was very laid back--it's like being at a park. There is an extension of King Hall being built, it's supposed to be done in May 2010. So, even with a conservative estimate, the class of 2013 at this school will get to use a new building, which looks pretty nice (especially compared to the old one).

The old building is pretty homely--the best way I can describe it is that it feels like old gym shorts. But that is honestly the only negative part of the building. As for the law school, the admissions counselor told me that Davis boasts a higher bar exam pass percentage than Hastings, which I found impressive, considering that most people don't even know that Davis has a law school. I happen to be a very relaxed person who hates people who act privileged, which may explain why I enjoyed my short tour of Davis.

Unless you have a disability or are married, it is unlikely that one would get housing on campus. However, housing in the city is absolutely great. The pricing is ridiculous. For example, the apartment I live at is a 2 bedroom + loft and we pay 2000 in total. At Davis, there is are a plethora of 2 bedroom 2 baths for less than 1000. Granted, this is probably because Davis is not the most desirable location in the state to live in. But seriously, the affordability of the housing there is absolutely ridiculous.

Also, the following is a picture of their class GPA makeup. I thought that it might feed the curious:
Image

UC Hastings
First of all, the people that attended ASD and said that the tenderloin wasn't as bad as the stories portray it forget an important fact--ASD was earlier in the day. Try going there when there later in the evening and you'll understand why it's got such a poor reputation. With that, Hastings is actually has a great vibe to it. You can really tell that the students and faculty take pride in being a part of such an established law school. The classroom that I happened to go in was really nice and clean, it seriously seemed like it was new. This was not so at Davis, but that comparison isn't exactly fair since Davis is getting a new building soon.

The location of Hastings in San Francisco is superb for jobs though. It's next to "every level of court except the United States Supreme Court" (This is in quotes because everyone at admit day said it at least twenty times). I can't even imagine how great of an opportunity that is for students wanting to find clerkships upon graduating or an internship during their law school years. Hastings is also lowering their class size to around the 400s, as the status quo for their class sizes hover around 500 apparently. I did find it ironic, however, that they said this shortly before they mentioned that they were proud to be the second largest public law school in the nation.

I did get the opportunity to speak with a current 1L at Hastings, who really gave me a great impression of the school. I asked her many questions and she was completely open and honest with me. The most telling question that I asked was probably, "Do you find the class size something that you have learned to deal with or something that you've become comfortable with?" Understand that she was a volunteering her time for admit day, which means that she is more likely than not an above average student. She answered quickly, "Something that I've learned to deal with. It's difficult, especially during office hours closer to finals, when you want to contact the professor. In the beginning of the semester, there's hardly anyone there. But as finals come, you have huge lines that force professors to give 1 minute to each of the students."

One thing that absolutely turned me off about Hastings. I was offered a 10k renewable scholarship. However, the catch to this scholarship is that I would have to accept their offer by April 1st in order to get this scholarship. Call me selfish, but I have not finished looking at my other law school options, and for them to push the issue through this arbitrary deadline is rather unfair and rude (in the sense that law school is a serious investment, one that shouldn't be rushed). I even called their financial aid office to ask about a potential week extension, then a day extension. Each time, before I finished my question I was told off with a quick and short, "No."

UC Irvine
I actually haven't been to UCI's law school yet. I'm planning to visit in a couple days and will be attending their ASD. But I thought that some TLS forum readers would be interested in knowing what I had learned on my norcal trip about the school. Along with my knowledge of Davis and Hastings, I wanted to get a better sense of what those outside of the immediate community thought about UCI.

The Davis admissions counselor said, "He [Dean Chemerinsky] definitely knows what he's doing. You know what, UCI actually poached one of our best professors. They made her an offer that she couldn't refuse" (I actually chuckled when the admissions counselor said this).

At Hastings, speaking with the 1L, I asked if she knew about UCI. She said that she had only heard about it. Once I spoke of Dean Chemerinsky, she said that she knows who she is because many of her law books are filled with quotes from him. As someone who isn't a law student yet, this meant a lot to me, as I didn't really grasp his scholarly popularity (not sure if this is the right term).

Conclusion
I hope that what I've said has helped you with your law school decision. I've learned so much about Davis and Hastings in the past half-week, but it's only made my decision that much more difficult. Hastings has its location and history, Davis has its quality of life and solid public service program, and UCI is a wildcard with its great faculty and ridiculous student:faculty ratio.

I do ask myself the merits of a huge alumni base like Hastings. It is great for connections, there is no doubt about this. But I find myself wondering if I want to rely on others in the future in finding a job or a internship. I wish to develop on my own and reach goals on my own. Granted, learning from faculty means that I will merely be borrowing their knowledge, but I do find it disturbing that I'd be able to land a job over someone else simply because I am from their law school.

If you have any wisdom to share, please do. In the meantime I will be pulling my hair out.

Sorry for the long post, but I truly hope that it helps.

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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby ViP » Tue Mar 23, 2010 2:07 am

Wow, thanks so much for the insight!

Irvine is probably my #1 right now, and it doesn't look like I'll be pursuing my original plan to head north to visit Davis and Hastings, so this post was extremely helpful. I'll definitely be at Irvine's ASD.

Can you comment a bit more on the Davis counselor's reaction to Irvine? I'm actually very curious to speak to other law schools about Irvine.

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lt0826
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby lt0826 » Tue Mar 23, 2010 2:19 am

ViP wrote:Can you comment a bit more on the Davis counselor's reaction to Irvine? I'm actually very curious to speak to other law schools about Irvine.


To get an outside the region perspective, Texas seemed very dismissive of them, which surprised me. Now in context it was trying to negotiate scholarship money, so it is in their best interest to present a not to impressed reaction to Irvine's half scholarship. But the are not regarding Irvine as a peer school, or so it seems.

transparency
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby transparency » Tue Mar 23, 2010 3:22 am

lt0826 wrote:
ViP wrote:Can you comment a bit more on the Davis counselor's reaction to Irvine? I'm actually very curious to speak to other law schools about Irvine.


To get an outside the region perspective, Texas seemed very dismissive of them, which surprised me. Now in context it was trying to negotiate scholarship money, so it is in their best interest to present a not to impressed reaction to Irvine's half scholarship. But the are not regarding Irvine as a peer school, or so it seems.


I'm not surprised that Texas was dismissive of them, even more so considering the context. UCI is going to be a regional school for a while as it builds up what it hopes to be a national reputation, so it probably sees the half scholarship as less of an opportunity for diploma mobility.

As for the Davis counselor's reaction to Irvine, I can tell you that I did not lead her into her comment about UCI "poaching" faculty members. She seemed to carry a degree of respect for Dean Chemerinsky, as she actually said that he knows what he's doing. I can't really say much beyond that, as that entail me reading into her tone of voice and body language. I think that what you may looking for is that she really did feel confident in UCI's ability to maintain its momentum through the Dean's leadership. I really sort of regret not asking her more questions about UCI though, now that you've asked me about that experience. But it definitely would've been strange as that would've meant that she was walking me through Davis's King Hall while telling me about UCI.
Last edited by transparency on Thu Mar 25, 2010 2:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

ctaylor21
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby ctaylor21 » Tue Mar 23, 2010 3:59 am

ViP wrote:Wow, thanks so much for the insight!

Irvine is probably my #1 right now, and it doesn't look like I'll be pursuing my original plan to head north to visit Davis and Hastings, so this post was extremely helpful. I'll definitely be at Irvine's ASD.

Can you comment a bit more on the Davis counselor's reaction to Irvine? I'm actually very curious to speak to other law schools about Irvine.


When I attended a Davis admitted student reception recently, some of the alumni practically suggested I attend Irvine. All of them seemed to think it would be a really interesting option. As much as they loved their Davis alumni community, they would quickly point out the amazing faculty and the strong chance that UCI will surpass Davis in rank in the near future.

After a WL at UCLA I am also making a decision between Davis/Hastings/Irvine. but the half scholarship and location are making me lean heavily towards Irvine. Not even sure if I will visit up north at this point, but we'll see.

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Veritas
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby Veritas » Tue Mar 23, 2010 11:00 am

Irvine is really great. I just visited, let me know if you have any questions!

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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby ozarkhack » Tue Mar 23, 2010 11:32 am

transparency wrote:Conclusion
I hope that what I've said has helped you with your law school decision. I've learned so much about Davis and Hastings in the past half-week, but it's only made my decision that much more difficult. Hastings has its location and history, Davis has its quality of life and solid public service program, and UCI is a wildcard with its great faculty and ridiculous student:faculty ratio.

I do ask myself the merits of a huge alumni base like Hastings. It is great for connections, there is no doubt about this. But I find myself wondering if I want to rely on others in the future in finding a job or a internship. I wish to develop on my own and reach goals on my own. Granted, learning from faculty means that I will merely be borrowing their knowledge, but I do find it disturbing that I'd be able to land a job over someone else simply because I am from their law school.

If you have any wisdom to share, please do. In the meantime I will be pulling my hair out.

Sorry for the long post, but I truly hope that it helps.


Thanks for this. In about 2 weeks, I'll be quick-visiting Hastings (as a WL'er) and going to Davis ASD, and this helps prep me for what I'll see/hear.

On thing, though: Can Hastings really be so big/crowded that they can't find a single seat for me to attend one of their 4-5 Friday "come-visit-us" classes? That's what they said to me yesterday. Maybe this says more about my chances of coming off WL than it does anything else?

transparency
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby transparency » Thu Mar 25, 2010 2:47 am

Just went to a tour of UCI's Law school today. It was really great, which only makes this decision tougher (although I am leaning toward UCI now). An interesting statistic--UCI's inaugural class has managed to obtain externships for all of its class. I found this to be very encouraging. I also spoke with Caroline Lee, the assistant director of student services at UCI's school of law, and she said that there is, in reality, a degree of risk in going to UCI in terms of job prospects. But she also said to look at it in another way. She said something to the degree of, "While you have your own worries about jobs after graduating, understand that the school has a dual interest in your well-being. If you fail, we fail."
Also, she gave me a list of all of the majority of the summer employment offers that the inaugural class received. Because this list is going to be handed out on admit day, I will not list them all here. But I will share what I heard through my tour guide. He said that many students have found externships in los angeles. He also mentioned that students have gone even further, from Alaska, to Atlanta, to New York, and to Singapore. Some students even managed to grab paying summer jobs at law firms.
I really enjoyed the tour, the library is great. I must admit that it's always intimidating looking at the size of the books, but the mood of the library helps to offset that. Here are some photos:
Image
Image
Image
Image

I love the rocking chairs. I haven't sat in one since I was a kid. But back to the matter at hand, the photos that I took were of the top floor of the library, which occupies the bottom two floors of a four story building (at least I think it was four stories). The bottom floor had most of the books, some of you may be wondering. I was also lucky enough to go in the same direction that a couple of 1Ls were going on their way to class. They told me that a Law Review is being created with the guidance of some of the professors, and likewise with a moot court team. Also, a moot courtroom is going to be created in one of the buildings, as there was no need for it previously (since 1Ls can't join the team, something I didn't know).

Any insight that anyone can provide would be great, I hope this information and the few pictures that I took helped.

lakerfanimal
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby lakerfanimal » Thu Mar 25, 2010 2:55 am

If even some students were able to gain paid summer associate-ships at law firms, I think that speaks volumes about UCI having a higher chance of booming than busting.. regardless of what the percentage is, when you also look at all 1L's being able to find externships, UCI is carrying out what it said it would in terms of employment prospects so far it sounds like. In addition if even alumni at Davis spoke so highly of going to UCI, it seems like there's a lot going on at UCI that has people at least in CA excited about. It seems more and more clear that UCI could offer more opportunities :)

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20160810
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby 20160810 » Thu Mar 25, 2010 5:18 pm

I vote Davis.

I am also not impartial.

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arhmcpo
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby arhmcpo » Thu Mar 25, 2010 5:33 pm

I'm pretty impartial; don't have a "horse in this race", from everything I've heard from this site and elsewhere I don't think you would regret going to UCI, whereas you might wonder about a missed opportunity if you went to UCH or UCD instead of UCI.

You'll be part of something new, get to play a role in shaping the future of the school, and there is nothing but good press on the direction of the school and its job prospects (although these are just predictions after all). Yes, there is some risk going to UCI, but the whole law school process is a risk - you're foregoing 3 years of a paid job and worse, your taking on debt, in the belief that it will eventually pay off.

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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby davis3l » Thu Mar 25, 2010 8:34 pm

transparency wrote: I do ask myself the merits of a huge alumni base like Hastings. It is great for connections, there is no doubt about this. But I find myself wondering if I want to rely on others in the future in finding a job or a internship. I wish to develop on my own and reach goals on my own. Granted, learning from faculty means that I will merely be borrowing their knowledge, but I do find it disturbing that I'd be able to land a job over someone else simply because I am from their law school.



This is absolutely one of the smartest comments I've ever read on any pre-law site (not specifically about Hastings, but in general). You have a wise head on your shoulders.

ViP
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby ViP » Thu Mar 25, 2010 9:27 pm

Big news today: every single member of UCI's first-year class has landed a summer job.

http://abovethelaw.com/2010/03/uc-irvin ... has-a-job/

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Borhas
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby Borhas » Thu Mar 25, 2010 9:37 pm

I do ask myself the merits of a huge alumni base like Hastings. It is great for connections, there is no doubt about this. But I find myself wondering if I want to rely on others in the future in finding a job or a internship. I wish to develop on my own and reach goals on my own. Granted, learning from faculty means that I will merely be borrowing their knowledge, but I do find it disturbing that I'd be able to land a job over someone else simply because I am from their law school.


If this is how you feel take a full ride at a T2

transparency
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Re: UC Davis vs. UC Irvine vs. UC Hastings

Postby transparency » Sat Apr 03, 2010 1:11 am

Thank you for the responses that all of you have given; i've found it extremely helpful to listen to the opinions of others while I make this important decision.

Having gone through a tour of Davis, Hastings' admit day, and (just recently) UCI's admit day, I've decided to choose UCI. I feel that I've already written enough in this thread, so I will explain my decision in depth if anyone asks. I hope that I've made the right decision, although I do feel that any of those three schools could've been a "right" option.

Once again, thank you for your insight and I wish all of you the best of luck in law school.




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