UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

(Rankings, Profiles, Tuition, Student Life, . . . )

Which one?

UCLA (90k over 3 years)
31
67%
UC Irvine (165k over 3 years)
15
33%
 
Total votes: 46

lionLawyer
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UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby lionLawyer » Mon Apr 02, 2012 7:46 pm

I know this topic was raised in years past, but I was wondering if people had new insights with job prospects for UCI's inaugural class being released (3rd highest clerkships in the country).

It's an interesting theoretical discussion, but is directly practical for me. I got 90k over 3 years from UCLA, which would leave me with 65k debt (my dad's giving me some COL help), and 165k at irvine (full tuition).

What do we think? Established school with average class size and some debt? Or new school with small class size and almost no debt?

TheDoof
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby TheDoof » Mon Apr 02, 2012 7:56 pm

Depends.

UCLA is, and will likely remain a better school (and although UCI has assembled an awesome start-up team, it will be close in rankings, but likely not as high). I went to UCI for undergrad, and it's a great school with a really personable faculty. You may be able to offset your debt from UCLA after law school with excellent prospects. However, a free education is nothing to sneeze at, though I'm sure job prospects after graduation will be a foremost concern. UCLA most likely wins there as well.

It's really a tough choice. It'll be interesting to see how well UCI places its students into the workplace. I got a teaching credential from there, and they were awful at placing me due to the downturn in teaching immediately after receiving my credential. Go with your gut.

hellothisisme
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby hellothisisme » Tue Apr 03, 2012 11:20 pm

Just bumping this because I'm in an almost identical situation and would also appreciate insight.

stevens2011
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby stevens2011 » Wed Apr 04, 2012 10:02 pm

First ever post, just to bump.

Also debating this with these exact scholarships.

moneymoney
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby moneymoney » Tue Apr 10, 2012 4:32 pm

BUMP.

I'm also debating this exact same question. Would really like it if people could help out on this one. I think a lot of people are in this situation. I have to decide soon since UCI's deadline to enroll is in 3 days.

CanadianWolf
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue Apr 10, 2012 4:50 pm

UCLA law has a large alumni network whereas UC-Irvine has none.

UCLA has a national reputation; UC-Irvine has a local, maybe regional, name recognition.

UCLA is respected nationally, while UCI is relatively unknown in the legal community.

$65,000 of total law school debt for a degree from a T-18 law school is a bargain, in my opinion.

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bk1
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby bk1 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 4:56 pm

If you're ending up with 65k debt (probably more since I imagine that doesn't count interest), this is UCLA hands down. UCI is a risky unknown and just not worth saving the money.

My response to UCI's placement in another thread:

bk1 wrote:There is some data and it's promising. For example, a surprising amount of UCI students have managed to snag A3 clerkships. But it's stupid to think that UCI will be on par with UCLA/USC. UCLA/USC have entrenched alumni networks and connections to firms that expect to hire a certain number of grads each year from those schools, UCI does not have this. UCLA/USC have a history of being the prestigious local schools in SoCal, UCI does not have this and it is something that would take a while to build considering the legal field is a prestige-obsessed industry that is resistant to change. UCI being a peer of UCLA/USC in terms of prestige would be pretty unprecedented and it doesn't make sense to believe that it will happen without any proof.

As for job placement, it is in the realm of possibility that UCI's first class puts up job placement numbers on par with UCLA/USC. But UCI's first class was 60 people. The fewer people the school has to place the easier it is to put up good numbers. The school increased its class size by 50% in its second year and will likely increase it more as time goes on. Furthermore Chemerinsky and other faculty are calling favors to help their students. Those favors are going to run out some time and aren't going to extend indefinitely into the future. That makes it pretty much impossible for them to sustain their placement. The school will also have to be self-sustainable in terms of cost and will have trouble pulling in the same level of talent in its student body due to the fact that they are basically hemorrhaging money for the moment (their first class paid 0 in tuition) on top of the increase in size. This drop in student quality likely will also hurt their placement. UCLA/USC have established pipelines to firms/judges that UCI does not.


I think the most important thing to look at UCI's A3 placement for the first class is to consider the increase in class size that happened (50%) and that there were likely many favors called in by the faculty and there is no guarantee that those will continue.

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bk1
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby bk1 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 4:59 pm

stevens2011 wrote:Also debating this with these exact scholarships.


For those debating these scholarships, I'm not sure the same analysis applies for you as it does OP. OP is getting help from outside sources that will keep his debt to around 65k. On the other hand, people paying for it entirely in loans but with a 30k/year scholarship will end up 120k in debt once interest is factored in. I think at a 120k I would still take UCLA but at that point it's becoming a close call. And if you aren't in-state then that 120k will be over 150k+.

moneymoney
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby moneymoney » Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:04 pm

^^^ If I have 105k from UCLA and am from out-of-state and do not have the living expense help that the OP has...would you still say UCLA is the answer? (vs the full scholarship from irvine). Also I have heard from many people that it is possible to get in-state tuition the second and third years in CA...

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bk1
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby bk1 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:08 pm

moneymoney wrote:^^^ If I have 105k from UCLA and am from out-of-state and do not have the living expense help that the OP has...would you still say UCLA is the answer? (vs the full scholarship from irvine). Also I have heard from many people that it is possible to get in-state tuition the second and third years in CA...


Forgot about in-state years 2/3. If you can definitely get in-state then I'd say probably UCLA. But as I said, you'll be at about 120k debt at graduation and that's when I think things start to get sticky when compared to a full ride to UCI.

moneymoney
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby moneymoney » Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:21 pm

Thanks for the reply. I should add that my parents are going to help me out a little bit with living expenses, but not nearly to the extent the OP has. They're able to give me about 7k a year. So it's not too much, but 21k is definitely something.

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bk1
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby bk1 » Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:33 pm

moneymoney wrote:Thanks for the reply. I should add that my parents are going to help me out a little bit with living expenses, but not nearly to the extent the OP has. They're able to give me about 7k a year. So it's not too much, but 21k is definitely something.


In that case I'd personally take UCLA. You're bringing your projected debt level to under $100k. Is UCI worth it when you'd be at half that much debt from UCI? Maybe, but I personally don't think it is worth the risk when UCI is a huge unknown (see the reasons in my above post on UCI).

jck4487
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby jck4487 » Wed Apr 11, 2012 10:37 pm

Ask lawyers, not potential law students.

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bk1
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby bk1 » Wed Apr 11, 2012 10:58 pm

jck4487 wrote:Ask lawyers, not potential law students.


This seems reasonable at first but there are a lot of issues with it.

1. The older the lawyer the less removed they are from current hiring. Very few lawyers graduated after the crash and thus their views aren't representative of what things are like today.

2. Tuition is much higher now than that was even just a few years ago. The UC law schools were around 20k in 2005-2006. The fact that they have more than doubled means that the choice between schools today is much different than it was when most lawyers chose their schools.

3. When most of these lawyers chose schools they didn't have access to the kind of data that potential law students have today. They are also quite unlikely to have kept up with this information, thus making current/potential students likely more informed than actual lawyers about how various schools are doing.

4. If you're talking about UCI vs UCLA it's really anyone's guess. I don't see practicing lawyers can provide superior insight to current/potential students armed with actual data. And since in this case the data's lacking, the lawyer (like all of us) are only making guesses when choosing between UCI and INSERTSCHOOLHERE.

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Doorkeeper
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby Doorkeeper » Wed Apr 11, 2012 11:00 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:UCLA law has a large alumni network whereas UC-Irvine has none.

UCLA has a national reputation; UC-Irvine has a local, maybe regional, name recognition.

UCLA is respected nationally, while UCI is relatively unknown in the legal community.

$65,000 of total law school debt for a degree from a T-18 law school is a bargain, in my opinion.

Blatant pro-UCLA trolling.

Also, I agree with everything here.

stevens2011
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby stevens2011 » Fri Apr 13, 2012 3:49 pm

bk1 wrote:
stevens2011 wrote:Also debating this with these exact scholarships.


For those debating these scholarships, I'm not sure the same analysis applies for you as it does OP. OP is getting help from outside sources that will keep his debt to around 65k. On the other hand, people paying for it entirely in loans but with a 30k/year scholarship will end up 120k in debt once interest is factored in. I think at a 120k I would still take UCLA but at that point it's becoming a close call. And if you aren't in-state then that 120k will be over 150k+.


Sorry, should clarify.

My parents live near Irvine, so I would move back home. As not-so-great as that would be, I would be attending UCI without borrowing a penny--including COL.

If I go to UCLA, I'm borrowing $100k plus interest.

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splitbrain
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby splitbrain » Fri Apr 13, 2012 5:40 pm

stevens2011 wrote:Sorry, should clarify.

My parents live near Irvine, so I would move back home. As not-so-great as that would be, I would be attending UCI without borrowing a penny--including COL.

If I go to UCLA, I'm borrowing $100k plus interest.

Wow, that changes things...

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bk1
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Re: UCLA ($) vs. UC-Irvine ($$$)

Postby bk1 » Fri Apr 13, 2012 6:08 pm

stevens2011 wrote:Sorry, should clarify.

My parents live near Irvine, so I would move back home. As not-so-great as that would be, I would be attending UCI without borrowing a penny--including COL.

If I go to UCLA, I'm borrowing $100k plus interest.


That's a tough call. UCLA is established. You know what you're getting out of it and UCLA for 100k is a great price. That being said, UCI for 0 is pretty amazing. But there's risk in the unknown.

I think you can't really go wrong with either. Personally I'd probably lean towards UCLA, but that's because I believe (and this is just a guess) that UCLA would give a better shot at biglaw and that's what I want to do. It's probably not worth 100k, but I personally would lean towards avoiding the unknown risk at UCI when the alternative is 100k debt at UCLA. But as I said, I think both are fine choices.




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