UCLA 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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sundance1988
Posts: 29
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:34 pm

UCLA Transfer

Postby sundance1988 » Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:39 pm

Hey everyone,

I'm just wondering if anyone on here has any information/advice concerning transferring out of UCLA. I finished 1L with a 3.72 overall and a 3.85 in the substantive classes (i.e., all classes except Lawyering Skills). UCLA does not rank students after the first year (they don't do it until after 2L) so I don't have a definitive estimate of where I am ranked. I would assume somewhere around 15% but that really is a guess. Our curve is at a 3.3 I believe.

First, does anyone know whether schools give more weight to the overall GPA or the substantive GPA? I've heard that lawyering skills type classes (legal writing) aren't as important (who knows if this is true).

Second, I'm wondering if I'd have a reasonable chance at any of the following:

Berkeley
Michigan
Chicago
Columbia
NYU

Thanks in advance for the info!

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Lawquacious
Posts: 2037
Joined: Fri Oct 23, 2009 10:36 am

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby Lawquacious » Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:44 pm

I think you have a reasonable chance at all the schools you listed. If you want to work in California I probably wouldn't advise transferring though, except perhaps to Columbia, H/Y/ or S.

sundance1988
Posts: 29
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:34 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby sundance1988 » Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:48 pm

Lawquacious wrote:I think you have a reasonable chance at all the schools you listed. If you want to work in California I probably wouldn't advise transferring though, except perhaps to Columbia, H/Y/ or S.


I actually do want to work in CA (likely Los Angeles, too) so you think no go on any of the others? Even Cal?

keg411
Posts: 5935
Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:10 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby keg411 » Thu Jun 09, 2011 9:06 pm

sundance1988 wrote:
Lawquacious wrote:I think you have a reasonable chance at all the schools you listed. If you want to work in California I probably wouldn't advise transferring though, except perhaps to Columbia, H/Y/ or S.


I actually do want to work in CA (likely Los Angeles, too) so you think no go on any of the others? Even Cal?


If you want to work in LA, why would you leave?

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starchinkilt
Posts: 361
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2009 4:22 am

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby starchinkilt » Thu Jun 09, 2011 9:11 pm

keg411 wrote:If you want to work in LA, why would you leave?

sundance1988
Posts: 29
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:34 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby sundance1988 » Thu Jun 09, 2011 9:12 pm

starchinkilt wrote:
keg411 wrote:If you want to work in LA, why would you leave?


Although I anticipate working in LA, I do not want to be limited to LA or even CA.

de5igual
Posts: 1463
Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2008 11:52 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby de5igual » Thu Jun 09, 2011 9:14 pm

starchinkilt wrote:
keg411 wrote:If you want to work in LA, why would you leave?


seriously. top of the class at UCLA is pretty damn golden for LA

sundance1988
Posts: 29
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:34 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby sundance1988 » Thu Jun 09, 2011 9:18 pm

f0bolous wrote:
starchinkilt wrote:
keg411 wrote:If you want to work in LA, why would you leave?


seriously. top of the class at UCLA is pretty damn golden for LA


True, but I intend to practice securities law and I might find LA to be too limited for that. I may ultimately want to make the move to NY and the transitition is difficult for UCLA grads.

keg411
Posts: 5935
Joined: Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:10 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby keg411 » Thu Jun 09, 2011 9:34 pm

sundance1988 wrote:
f0bolous wrote:
starchinkilt wrote:
keg411 wrote:If you want to work in LA, why would you leave?


seriously. top of the class at UCLA is pretty damn golden for LA


True, but I intend to practice securities law and I might find LA to be too limited for that. I may ultimately want to make the move to NY and the transitition is difficult for UCLA grads.


There is no "ultimately". You have about a month to figure it out. And if you decide to transfer, bidding on two markets 3000 miles away from each other strikes me as a poor strategy and a disaster waiting to happen.

saladfiend
Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:19 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby saladfiend » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:16 pm

UCLA Law's median GPA is around 3.2, not 3.3. It is lower than USC's.

As a top student from UCLA, you are not "limited" in where you can practice in the future. If your first job is at a big firm, that is your new credential, not where you went to law school.

Do people put different GPAs on their resumes for substantive courses and substantive + lawyering skills?

sundance1988
Posts: 29
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:34 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby sundance1988 » Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:53 pm

There is no "ultimately". You have about a month to figure it out. And if you decide to transfer, bidding on two markets 3000 miles away from each other strikes me as a poor strategy and a disaster waiting to happen.[/quote]

Really? So I have to decide where I will work for the rest of my life this upcoming August? I'm from NY so I could very much make the transition back after working in LA for a few years. My question was not on the merits of my decision to transfer, it was on the likelihood of being accepted at other schools.

saladfiend
Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:19 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby saladfiend » Fri Jun 10, 2011 11:11 pm

I would put your odds of acceptance, assuming normal letters of recommendation, at those schools at:

Berkeley: 70%
Michigan: 50%
Chicago: 30%
Columbia: 90%
NYU: 60%

Would transferring to those schools help you find your first job? No, you'll be in about the same position as you would be if you stayed at UCLA, and you'd be in a worse position for the LA market. Will transferring help you for your second or third job? Probably not that much, especially if you end up with a mediocre GPA at those schools. If you transfer to Columbia and end up with a high GPA, then you probably will have done yourself a favor for your prospects in New York one day, but I still doubt it would be worth it.
Last edited by saladfiend on Fri Jun 10, 2011 11:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

saladfiend
Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:19 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby saladfiend » Fri Jun 10, 2011 11:13 pm

BTW, if you are from NY, LA firms will be somewhat skeptical of you, even though you go to UCLA. They don't want flight risks. You'll need to play up falling in love with California and never wanting to leave (even though you do want to leave). UCLA is fine for NY firms.

Pilaf Rocket
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2009 11:30 pm

Re: UCLA Transfer

Postby Pilaf Rocket » Thu Jun 16, 2011 2:14 pm

I'd advise against transferring.

With a GPA > 3.7 you'll be able to interview with the top firms at OCI this August, and as long as you have strong interviewing skills, you'll get multiple call backs and potentially multiple offers. Check Symplicity and see how many firms are sending out reps from NY offices. I'm a 3L so haven't looked but I heard OCI is shaping up to be a huge improvement from last year (which was already much improved from the year before). Bid on a combination of LA and NY offices and then send out resumes to other NY offices on your own. During OCI, check the interview list (posted on the hotel doors) each day to try to fill in your name where there's a cancellation and smooze with attorneys at the (crappy) lunches to try to get an interview.

Like some of the other posters said, either figure out where you actually want to practice and why or make sure you have a very convincing narrative of why you want to work in NY.

Also consider the other negatives of transferring (more money, miss all your 1L friends, starting a new school = new system to master, not 68 degrees everyday).




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