UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

A forum for those current students who are or may be transferring from one school to another. Post any questions, advice, or other transfer related comments here.
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hadokenstyle
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UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby hadokenstyle » Wed May 19, 2010 1:28 am

I thought I'd ask for some advice about this. Thoughts are appreciated.

I am currently a 0L with acceptances at both UCLA and GULC. My father is currently in pretty bad shape and I want to be around for him. I also want to begin law school while he is still around. I am originally from LA and did BS / MA at UCLA.

I am very keen on international criminal law (got back from working in The Hague and speaking with many attorneys there, so I have a fairly realistic idea of what I need to pursue).

Given all of this, I really like GULC. Really like it. USNews aside many may characterize it a "lateral" relationship though as far as my specific program, GULC blows UCLA out of the water (and arguably there are general prestige advantages, location, OCI, alumni, etc.).

My ideal would be to complete 1L (which does not include international law) and then transfer for 2L and 3L EA to GULC. This would let me take advantage of the course offerings and programs in what I'm interested in. From my research, given rankings and all, I think I would need to perform above average to get considered, though it does not seem I need to be at the very top of the class.

Now, there is just one problem. The little maxim that goes "never go somewhere with the intent of transferring." And I've noticed that 1L... well, owns people. Can't bank on 1L grades. Everyone is an overachiever, it catches you off guard, things can happen on test day, and there is a certain degree of luck involved.

But, family is very important to me, and I feel that if I chose GULC now I may regret it for the personal reasons (definitely not for my own passions). I don't know - I need to really think about this. I mean, I could fly home once a month, which wouldn't be cheap, though I am working and could really cut corners to save up since this is meaningful to me.

My worst fear is going to UCLA for these personal reasons and being "stuck" after something horrible grade-wise in 1L. However, I suppose at the end of the day I could do a study visit there, and also I plan to study abroad, which would mean 2 semesters if I was there (bear in mind again that I already attended UCLA for over four years). Then there is always the option of an L.L.M. in international law if I would want to be in school for another year. But I suppose I would miss out bonding with other students and attorneys who are passionate about similar things.

Hopefully all this conveys that I have been reading many of the posts here and am trying to be realistic about this issue. However, please understand my rather complicated and difficult situation. Thank you!

thatsnotmyname
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby thatsnotmyname » Wed May 19, 2010 1:35 am

Why are you so set on starting law school immediately? I would say you should attempt to get a deferral from GULC and see if they'll request it... and if they do wait a year.

Danteshek
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby Danteshek » Wed May 19, 2010 1:44 am

Realistically, how many additional courses would you take in international law at Georgetown, that you wouldn't be able to take at UCLA? If two or three, I say don't sweat it and go to UCLA. If you already have contacts at the Hague and you extern there after 1L, you will be in good shape. Plus, if you go to UCLA you will further develope your network in your hometown and the place you are most likely going to practice long term. So, go to UCLA and don't worry about transferring.

hadokenstyle
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby hadokenstyle » Wed May 19, 2010 2:06 am

thatsnotmyname wrote:Why are you so set on starting law school immediately? I would say you should attempt to get a deferral from GULC and see if they'll request it... and if they do wait a year.


Probably would, but note that I wanted to start while my dad was around.

Danteshek wrote:Realistically, how many additional courses would you take in international law at Georgetown, that you wouldn't be able to take at UCLA? If two or three, I say don't sweat it and go to UCLA. If you already have contacts at the Hague and you extern there after 1L, you will be in good shape. Plus, if you go to UCLA you will further develope your network in your hometown and the place you are most likely going to practice long term. So, go to UCLA and don't worry about transferring.


This is a really good point and gets to the heart. 2L and 3L is open-ended, and GULC has about 120+ offerings, but realistically I'd say I could take 10-12, as I think with 16-20 courses total over those years any decent attorney should take some taxation, corporations, criminal law, etc. to be well-rounded (in addition to mandatory ethics, etc.).

The only attraction are the large faculty in the specialty (about 3-4 times as many as UCLA with only twice the entering class size) which would add to the variation of teaching and arguably the quality.

Also, I worked at the ICTY which is shutting down very soon (barring a couple accused being extradited from Serbia). So my contacts would not matter as much. LA connections would be cool, though I think my previous internships (county public defender) probably wouldn't make for the best summer positions.

Danteshek
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby Danteshek » Wed May 19, 2010 5:37 am

Have you read the book "Under the Blue Flag"? It is about a SF district attorney who goes to Kosovo to prosecute war crimes.

Overall, I think your goals are ambitious, and perhaps not achievable coming out of LS. However that doesn't mean you shouldn't try. I don't think law school attended will play that much of a role. Much more important will be your performance in law school, relevant experience, and stuff like foreign languages.

I still think you should go to UCLA. If you must, you can always vlsit Georgetown as a 3L.

solidsnake
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby solidsnake » Wed May 19, 2010 11:52 am

Go to gulc for 1L and visit your dad during christmas break. If health is a very big concern, most schools have fall and winter breaks in the middle of each semester as well. I hate to be the bearer of bad news; but if you are spending as much as time as possible w your family (which might happen if go to ucla for 1L) instead of with your face buried in law books, that doesn't bode well for a successful 1L performance.

hadokenstyle
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby hadokenstyle » Wed May 19, 2010 12:17 pm

Danteshek wrote:Have you read the book "Under the Blue Flag"? It is about a SF district attorney who goes to Kosovo to prosecute war crimes.

Overall, I think your goals are ambitious, and perhaps not achievable coming out of LS. However that doesn't mean you shouldn't try. I don't think law school attended will play that much of a role. Much more important will be your performance in law school, relevant experience, and stuff like foreign languages.

I still think you should go to UCLA. If you must, you can always vlsit Georgetown as a 3L.


Generally it takes a couple years out of LS to land a job like this, but a great number of attorneys I came across were in their late 20s or early 30s.

I haven't read that though it sound good, I'll track it down.

I suppose the interest in GULC is less practical for my career (I mean, minus externship opportunities), but it's for personal interest and growth, networking with wide-eyed law students who want to save the world, etc.

solidsnake wrote:Go to gulc for 1L and visit your dad during christmas break. If health is a very big concern, most schools have fall and winter breaks in the middle of each semester as well. I hate to be the bearer of bad news; but if you are spending as much as time as possible w your family (which might happen if go to ucla for 1L) instead of with your face buried in law books, that doesn't bode well for a successful 1L performance.


Just visiting on weekends. Not as much time as possible, probably 3-4 times a month as opposed to 2-3 times every two months.

yabbadabbado
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby yabbadabbado » Thu May 20, 2010 3:27 pm

I'd also echo the thoughts about starting law school while your father is ill and dying is not a good idea. Maybe you need to sit down and have a talk with him. Deferring a year, wherever you decide to go, is really going to be your best course of action. 1L is not the time to be dealing with family deaths and that sort of thing. Odds are it will impact your performance and your future career.

As for your dream job, it's fine to have those kinds of dreams but if you are interested in doing that sort of thing and nothing else, I'd urge you to reconsider whether going to law school is for you. The odds of getting a job like that are incredibly low no matter what law school you decide to go to, so if you don't have some sort of realistic back up plan I guarantee you are going to be extremely unhappy after law school.

shmoo597
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby shmoo597 » Thu May 20, 2010 3:35 pm

I don't think transferring is so easy. My good friend at USC did not get into georgetown EA even though he was top 15%. You'd have to be top 10% at UCLA to be an autoadmit into GULC, so don't count on it. I'd go to GULC from the beginning. Fly home once a month (you can make it happen). Get the most out of your legal education, get out of LA, and follow your dreams.

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Joga Bonito
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby Joga Bonito » Thu May 20, 2010 3:38 pm

Either go to GULC now or try and defer and start next year. Starting at UCLA and hoping to transfer (even though you will probably be able to), doesnt sound like the best plan.

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CEEJ22
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby CEEJ22 » Thu May 20, 2010 3:50 pm

yabbadabbado wrote:As for your dream job, it's fine to have those kinds of dreams but if you are interested in doing that sort of thing and nothing else, I'd urge you to reconsider whether going to law school is for you. The odds of getting a job like that are incredibly low no matter what law school you decide to go to, so if you don't have some sort of realistic back up plan I guarantee you are going to be extremely unhappy after law school.


I disagree. If this is the one thing you want to do in life they you have to pursue it. I guarantee you that you will be even more unhappy not going after it than you would if you did everything possible and it just didn't pan out. I speak from experience. DO NOT be afraid to fail! Believe me it's fucking depressing 10 yrs later thinking that you could've have been this or that if you'd only followed your dreams.

If you want GULC, I do agree that you should postpone school 1 yr. You obviously care a great deal about your dad which means you will most likely need to take time off school, 1-2 weeks, to grieve and take care of the estate and funeral arrangements. It will be a daunting task to get back on track after that.

Mox
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby Mox » Thu May 20, 2010 6:02 pm

According to Gtown's website they typically consider top 15% competitive. I can assure you this would be a daunting task at UCLA. And assuming you do very well your 1L year it might not be in your best interest to transfer to GTown because you will be giving up a lot to do so(especially considering you want to work in LA). This includes potential scholly money, great OCI prospects, and your amazing grades. Also there is a risk that some of your credits will not transfer over. I agree with the consensus on this thread that you should try to defer your acceptance at GTown. Good luck.

hadokenstyle
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby hadokenstyle » Fri May 21, 2010 12:23 am

yabbadabbado wrote:I'd also echo the thoughts about starting law school while your father is ill and dying is not a good idea. Maybe you need to sit down and have a talk with him. Deferring a year, wherever you decide to go, is really going to be your best course of action. 1L is not the time to be dealing with family deaths and that sort of thing. Odds are it will impact your performance and your future career.

As for your dream job, it's fine to have those kinds of dreams but if you are interested in doing that sort of thing and nothing else, I'd urge you to reconsider whether going to law school is for you. The odds of getting a job like that are incredibly low no matter what law school you decide to go to, so if you don't have some sort of realistic back up plan I guarantee you are going to be extremely unhappy after law school.


He's still kicking, definitely not "dying."

I'm definitely not trying to go into this type of work directly out of school - it doesn't work that way. It's just a field that requires persistence, and being a good domestic lawyer first. I'm prepared for that. I didn't post this for suggestions to reconsider law school. Despite my interest in international law, perhaps my considerations show that I am being thorough and realistic about as many scenarios as I can.

shmoo597 wrote:I don't think transferring is so easy. My good friend at USC did not get into georgetown EA even though he was top 15%. You'd have to be top 10% at UCLA to be an autoadmit into GULC, so don't count on it. I'd go to GULC from the beginning. Fly home once a month (you can make it happen). Get the most out of your legal education, get out of LA, and follow your dreams.


It's probably changed since more people are doing it. I think EA is a different game, and is substantially more competitive (as they only reference first semester grades). I would think he would have had a good shot as a regular app with those grades. What kind of grades would top 15% be, anyway? Like a couple A's and a B? Obviously it depends on who gets what in that class, though there must be some general trend to it.

Joga Bonito wrote:Either go to GULC now or try and defer and start next year. Starting at UCLA and hoping to transfer (even though you will probably be able to), doesnt sound like the best plan.


That's why I have backup options, I completely agree. You can't go to a school expecting to leave.

CEEJ22 wrote:
yabbadabbado wrote:As for your dream job, it's fine to have those kinds of dreams but if you are interested in doing that sort of thing and nothing else, I'd urge you to reconsider whether going to law school is for you. The odds of getting a job like that are incredibly low no matter what law school you decide to go to, so if you don't have some sort of realistic back up plan I guarantee you are going to be extremely unhappy after law school.


I disagree. If this is the one thing you want to do in life they you have to pursue it. I guarantee you that you will be even more unhappy not going after it than you would if you did everything possible and it just didn't pan out. I speak from experience. DO NOT be afraid to fail! Believe me it's fucking depressing 10 yrs later thinking that you could've have been this or that if you'd only followed your dreams.

If you want GULC, I do agree that you should postpone school 1 yr. You obviously care a great deal about your dad which means you will most likely need to take time off school, 1-2 weeks, to grieve and take care of the estate and funeral arrangements. It will be a daunting task to get back on track after that.


Thanks for the kind words. I think it goes both ways in this situation. Still, I think I would regret more not being there for my family.

However, I don't want to think about what-if's planning estate and funerals.
Though, I may add that schools do grant leave for that sort of situation.

Mox wrote:According to Gtown's website they typically consider top 15% competitive. I can assure you this would be a daunting task at UCLA. And assuming you do very well your 1L year it might not be in your best interest to transfer to GTown because you will be giving up a lot to do so(especially considering you want to work in LA). This includes potential scholly money, great OCI prospects, and your amazing grades. Also there is a risk that some of your credits will not transfer over. I agree with the consensus on this thread that you should try to defer your acceptance at GTown. Good luck.


Daunting indeed. I don't necessarily want to work in LA... though the benefits of staying with good grades are great too, as you mention.

I appreciate all of the input, and it has been tremendously helpful.

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romothesavior
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby romothesavior » Fri May 21, 2010 12:26 am

BLATANT ANTI-GULC/PRO-UCLA TROLLING!!!!!!!

yabbadabbado
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby yabbadabbado » Fri May 21, 2010 1:43 am


However, I don't want to think about what-if's planning estate and funerals.
Though, I may add that schools do grant leave for that sort of situation.



Yes, they do. However, leave is usually at your own expense. That means if you need to take extended leave during a semester, you will probably lose that semester, or possibly an entire year's worth of tuition and you will have to repeat those semesters/classes. There is at least one insurance company that offers tuition refund insurance, but I do not know all the details or how good the coverage is. If you expect that you might need to take sudden and extended leave during your 3 years of law school, an insurance plan like that might be something worth looking into.

hadokenstyle
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby hadokenstyle » Fri May 21, 2010 12:38 pm

yabbadabbado wrote:

However, I don't want to think about what-if's planning estate and funerals.
Though, I may add that schools do grant leave for that sort of situation.



Yes, they do. However, leave is usually at your own expense. That means if you need to take extended leave during a semester, you will probably lose that semester, or possibly an entire year's worth of tuition and you will have to repeat those semesters/classes. There is at least one insurance company that offers tuition refund insurance, but I do not know all the details or how good the coverage is. If you expect that you might need to take sudden and extended leave during your 3 years of law school, an insurance plan like that might be something worth looking into.


Good point.

Looking at numbers online, like Leiter, etc., Georgetown does seem to have noticeably better employment statistics than UCLA, though when the location of the firms he samples and class sizes are taken into consideration I think it evens out. Besides, that's for biglaw anyway. Not for government work.

1234567
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby 1234567 » Mon May 24, 2010 11:38 pm

Transfer applications from students who were originally admitted are treated a bit differently. Transferring from UCLA is also far different than doing so from even a top-30 school (thus, the top 15% is misleading- the admissions office looks at where you are coming from). Given your situation and your desire to attend school while your father is alive, I would go to UCLA but in the withdrawal process communicate with GULC. The one major issue could be the difficult time you may have in school while your father is sick. Since you were admitted your app will certainly be in a different pile but you probably can't get away with being median at UCLA.

Monticello
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Re: UCLA -> GULC Lateral Transfer

Postby Monticello » Tue May 25, 2010 12:13 am

If you are sure that GULC is the place you want to be in terms of what is best for your career, then do that. If your father's health is a huge issue, then like others said....either defer a year or have a discussion with him and see what he thinks about you going to Georgetown. I'm sure he would be supportive.

Seriously though man, coming from a guy who just finished his 1L year, if you are pretty sure that your father is not going to make it past this upcoming year and you feel that you need to be near him, then definitely defer a year. If there is one thing that can absolutely tank your grades it is outside the classroom distractions like family/spouse/girlfriend issues that make the stress of law school more than you can handle.

Transferring law schools is not like transferring undergrad. You lose law review, friends, connections, etc. Go to the school you want to be at and excel there.




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