ulv_dropout wrote:Didn't have time to read this whole post, but I think I have some info that might help you. I attended ULV Fall '09 and decided to leave after one semester. I had a 168 LSAT and 3.45 GPA and got a full scholarship there. I was very torn as to whether to go to the school because of my numbers, but it turned out to be the only option that had a night program within driving distance from my job.
When I got to the school I was actually pleasantly surprised by the level of the students and faculty. I was less impressed by the day students than the evening students, but I didn't really get to know very many of the day students. The professors are generally very good. If you have a desire to learn the law you will be able to do it at ULV. My experience with the school administration was terrible, but I won't go into that.
The level of respect that you will get coming out of this school in the area is not horrible, but you will not be in the running for the few mid size law firms that are out here. When they brought in former alumni to talk to us about their careers after law school it was kind of depressing. Even they admitted that a government gig was the best you could hope for and would only be available to the top of the class.
As far as transferring out, some people have done it. I talked to my TA for contracts who finished in the top 5 or so and he expressed regret for not transferring out when he could. He felt that he would never be able to achieve his goal of becoming a law professor even after getting an LLM from a better school. It says something that even ULV won't hire their own grads as professors (there are a few token exceptions) I finished top 3 (out of a whopping 30 people in our evening class) for the first semester and I would likely have quit my job and tried to transfer out had I decided to stay with law school. For anyone else with my situation, you should know that most schools will not give scholarships for transfer students. So, even though I would have gotten at least a partial scholarship at Loyola as a 1L, I would have gotten nothing as a transfer.
As far as accreditation, when I decided to enroll, I was convinced that they would get their ABA accreditation. The incoming classes have gotten progressively better since 2006 and you will find several people in your class who chose the school over schools like Loyola and San Diego because of family or work constraints or because of the scholarships. However, just before the ABA came to visit us our bar passage rate came in at something like 30%. This seemed to send the faculty and administration into panic mode. One of my professors spent an hour explaining to us why it was OK because our average passage rate over the last X years was where it needed to be. He then went on to say that accreditation is pointless anyway because they require things like "poetry and the law" which we won't need because we will be practicing attorneys and not academics. My crim law professor said basically the same thing. She was a visiting scholar at Yale before coming to ULV (even though she made it sound as though she were a tenure track professor there.) She made sure to let us know how noble she was to be slumming it with us because we weren't going to be Senators or Presidents, we were going to be working "in the trenches."
I have just been rambling on here, but my general point is that if you decide to go there, you will not be surrounded by idiots (although there are a few of them), it will not be impossible to transfer out or impossible to get a job after graduation. You must be realistic, though. It will not be as academically engaging as going to UCLA; they treat law school as a vocational school so don't expect to learn about philosophy of law or some such crap. People will always judge you as being "not good enough" to get into a better school when they find out you attended there. If you want to work as an attorney, you either need to be ready to strike out on your own or be toward the top of the class and go for a government position (this is what my goal would have been with a law degree).
What is "ULV" and why did you decide not to apply elsewhere after dropping out? You might be able to just do normal admissions again and finishing top 3 out of 30 would at least prove you know what you are doing if any school asks about your prior enrollment at an unacreditted school.