UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
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BottomOfTotem

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby BottomOfTotem » Sun Jul 30, 2017 1:37 am

pixy22 wrote:Hello. I was previously committed to UC hastings but got admitted of the waitlist to T20 (WUSTL/Vandy/Notre Dame). I was admitted to the T20 with the same amount of scholarship money as Hastings. I'm not sure what to do. Hastings will not give me more aid. I have free housing in SF if I live with my family, not an ideal situation. Also cost of living in the T20 city is very low. I would ideally like to practice in SF, DC or NY. No interest in practicing in south or midwest.

Hastings employment prospects are very dismal. However, it seems like a high number of the top 10% transfer to Berkeley or UCLA. Based on my lsat/gpa, I am in the top quarter at Hastings. However, it seems like being median at a T20 is better than median at hastings. And there is no guarantee that I will be top 10% at hastings. It is not possible for me to retake the LSAT (took it several times, studied for months, and took a course).
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


To be honest, Hastings only makes sense if you have a desire to be in SF, either for school or for a career. It is clear that Hastings places much better than those schools in the Bay Area, for obvious reasons. But those schools most likely place much better than hastings in NY and D.C. If you are simply trying to be as risk adverse as possible, and you view those cities equally, take one of the t20 schools.

The advice I received, and it seems to make sense, is to bank on not being in the top 10%. Like another poster said, everyone is just as smart as you, and law school grading is tricky. With that said, top 1/3 at Hastings will serve you decently well, just not as well as those other schools in their respective markets, and most likely NY (DC seems like a insulated market).

Hope that helps somewhat. I realize it was sort of a babble, but I'm too tired to attempt better.

ladysansastark

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby ladysansastark » Mon Aug 07, 2017 6:50 pm

Hello! Does anyone have advice/tips about the following professors? Any suggestions are welcome!

Reiss: Torts
Martinez: Contracts
Price: Civil Procedure
Kane: Legal Writing
Lefstin: Inns of Courts

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby SFSpartan » Mon Aug 07, 2017 7:28 pm

ladysansastark wrote:Hello! Does anyone have advice/tips about the following professors? Any suggestions are welcome!

Reiss: Torts
Martinez: Contracts
Price: Civil Procedure
Kane: Legal Writing
Lefstin: Inns of Courts


I have no earthly idea what Inns of Courts is (UCH didn't have that when I was a 1L), but Lefstin is a really awesome prof. He talks fast, though, and his final is extremely comprehensive, so make sure you pay attention in class.

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby 265489164158 » Mon Aug 07, 2017 11:16 pm

Inns of Court is not graded and is professional development which is optional. You will see Lefstin only briefly and have more contact with CDO and Student Services. I found it helpful and went to most of the meetings—they always served lunch, which you will learn is a big bonus.

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BottomOfTotem

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questionsh

Postby BottomOfTotem » Tue Aug 08, 2017 5:29 pm

Martinez is great -- very entertaining lecturer. Of note, don't let him lure you into a false sense of security. He makes contracts sound easy, and will often times breeze through the material. Make sure you truly understand what it is he is talking about. Office hours were helpful.

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General_Tso

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby General_Tso » Fri Aug 18, 2017 2:43 pm

Martinez is an awesome guy and great teacher, but in my Fed Income Tax class his grading curve was brutally tough. I was disappointed to get a "B" but when I looked at the curve, that was like top 30% or so.

Maybe he's chiller now, I took him in 2011 or so

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General_Tso

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby General_Tso » Fri Aug 18, 2017 2:44 pm

Bob Kane is a nice guy and very chill... you are lucky to have him for LWR he's a good one

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby sash » Sun Dec 24, 2017 5:14 pm

Are there any women going to UC Hastings willing to share their experience living on campus or just generally going to Hastings in that area? I have a friend who lives a short 10 minute walk up Hyde street so I’ve spent a lot of time in that part of the tenderloin closer to little Saigon. I’ve enjoyed my time there and felt comfortable and I assumed UC Hastings would be similar. I figured at worst it would be like DTLA which is cool with me. I was planning on walking down to check out the campus and grab a coffee at 10am before my flight back to LA. Didn’t even want to grab a coffee and felt really uncomfortable walking down there and standing in front of the campus a few min while waiting for my uber. Can’t imagine going out late one night and having to just step out of an uber to get into the tower if I lived on campus. Or studying late and having to walk from campus to the tower. Also the tower doesn’t really seem secure? I just walked in and there was a young small guy sitting at a reception desk and he didn’t say anything to me so seems like anyone can just walk in off the street

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby lisavj » Sun Dec 24, 2017 5:16 pm

When I was there (so awhile ago now I guess) there was an evening escort service that would walk you home so long as you were within like a mile of campus, and a shuttle that would take folks home who were further out. I was all the way in Walnut Creek so I didn’t really use it (though I could have asked for the escort walk to BART had I wanted it).

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby CALaw717 » Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:00 pm

sash wrote:Are there any women going to UC Hastings willing to share their experience living on campus or just generally going to Hastings in that area? I have a friend who lives a short 10 minute walk up Hyde street so I’ve spent a lot of time in that part of the tenderloin closer to little Saigon. I’ve enjoyed my time there and felt comfortable and I assumed UC Hastings would be similar. I figured at worst it would be like DTLA which is cool with me. I was planning on walking down to check out the campus and grab a coffee at 10am before my flight back to LA. Didn’t even want to grab a coffee and felt really uncomfortable walking down there and standing in front of the campus a few min while waiting for my uber. Can’t imagine going out late one night and having to just step out of an uber to get into the tower if I lived on campus. Or studying late and having to walk from campus to the tower. Also the tower doesn’t really seem secure? I just walked in and there was a young small guy sitting at a reception desk and he didn’t say anything to me so seems like anyone can just walk in off the street


I'm not a woman, but a guy living in The Tower. You're supposed to tap your ID card when entering, and most security will ask you to tap in if you miss it, and I guess if you didn't look so much like a student they definitely would've stopped and questioned you. Also by 6pm or so those front doors lock and you can only open them by tapping your student ID. There's still an escort service to walk you to and from the classrooms if you're heading back in the evening/nighttime. While it's available, I'm not sure I've even seen a student utilize an escort for the 1 block walk back to The Tower. There's also still a free evening shuttle to take you up to a mile to/from campus in the evening. While I'm not a woman, my experience is you have many poor and psychologically distrbed people in the immediate area, but violent crimes are super rare. It also gets very nice walking just a few blocks away from campus - either down Market St. towards Hayes Valley or down Market in the other direction towards Union Square.

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby ladysansastark » Thu Jan 04, 2018 12:51 am

sash wrote:Are there any women going to UC Hastings willing to share their experience living on campus or just generally going to Hastings in that area? I have a friend who lives a short 10 minute walk up Hyde street so I’ve spent a lot of time in that part of the tenderloin closer to little Saigon. I’ve enjoyed my time there and felt comfortable and I assumed UC Hastings would be similar. I figured at worst it would be like DTLA which is cool with me. I was planning on walking down to check out the campus and grab a coffee at 10am before my flight back to LA. Didn’t even want to grab a coffee and felt really uncomfortable walking down there and standing in front of the campus a few min while waiting for my uber. Can’t imagine going out late one night and having to just step out of an uber to get into the tower if I lived on campus. Or studying late and having to walk from campus to the tower. Also the tower doesn’t really seem secure? I just walked in and there was a young small guy sitting at a reception desk and he didn’t say anything to me so seems like anyone can just walk in off the street


Hello. I am a woman in my early 20s at UC Hastings. I live about a 15 min walk from campus, and have never felt unsafe. I actually find the tenderloin safer than a lot of parts of Boston/east bay. While there are a lot of homeless persons, most of the crime in the area tends to be car burglaries rather than violent crime. If you're worried about the area, a lot of people commute so you could consider living in the mission or Berkeley, etc.

I usually walk home if I'm leaving library anytime during the day and take the shuttle home anytime after 8 pm. The shuttle that runs every half hour and can take you anywhere within a 1 mile radius of campus. Its runs from 5 pm - 11 pm. You also can request a walking escort to tower or BART. All buildings have a security guard and the cameras cover the area in front. However, I do usually wait inside while waiting for an uber.

The walk between classrooms and tower is safe, you could always walk with a friend if you're worried. There are enough people living in the tower that its pretty easy to walk with someone. Also, the tower security always checks id's before allowing entry, so you can't just walk in off the street. They sometimes don't check ids when prospective students are visiting, so that might be why you weren't stopped. The tower doors are also locked at 7pm so people can't just enter unless they have an id. There is sometimes less security during day.

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby Bertles » Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:51 pm

I graduated from Hastings in 1989 and passed the bar easily first time around despite the fact that I am no genius. At this time, annual tuition was around $3,000!!! I had no idea that my alma mater’s rankings has declined so much. That’s really disturbing. I’ve retired now and moved out of state. I do know that back in the late 1980s, Hastings was a decently ranked and very respectable school. While it’s sad to see this decline, I must say that it doesn’t surprise me all that much. The UC system in general has been horribly managed for decades to the point where there has got to be a backlash at some point. Skyrocketing tuition, awful entrenched professors, overpaid administrators, way too much administrative staff and extreme competition for admissions make it a much less appealing choice than it used to be. If I was looking at college or grad school right now, I would steer clear of the entire mess and look at other states that have their act together more. Why invest the time, money and effort to obtain a degree that could become worthless in a few years? While California is busy dismantling its once grand system of higher education, the rest of the country is moving on! There are many excellent public universities that have solid programs and reasonable costs. I encourage everyone to look at the true value of what is being offered as opposed to the rankings. Vote with your feet people.

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BottomOfTotem

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby BottomOfTotem » Fri Apr 13, 2018 12:27 am

Bertles wrote:I graduated from Hastings in 1989 and passed the bar easily first time around despite the fact that I am no genius. At this time, annual tuition was around $3,000!!! I had no idea that my alma mater’s rankings has declined so much. That’s really disturbing. I’ve retired now and moved out of state. I do know that back in the late 1980s, Hastings was a decently ranked and very respectable school. While it’s sad to see this decline, I must say that it doesn’t surprise me all that much. The UC system in general has been horribly managed for decades to the point where there has got to be a backlash at some point. Skyrocketing tuition, awful entrenched professors, overpaid administrators, way too much administrative staff and extreme competition for admissions make it a much less appealing choice than it used to be. If I was looking at college or grad school right now, I would steer clear of the entire mess and look at other states that have their act together more. Why invest the time, money and effort to obtain a degree that could become worthless in a few years? While California is busy dismantling its once grand system of higher education, the rest of the country is moving on! There are many excellent public universities that have solid programs and reasonable costs. I encourage everyone to look at the true value of what is being offered as opposed to the rankings. Vote with your feet people.


This is a troll. He or she lives out of state and had no idea about the current state but is a reliable source for the administrative staffing of the college? I get you don’t like the UC system for some reason but don’t make shit up and spread lies. Also, Hastings does not run like other UC schools — it’s more of a stand alone college.

I don’t want people to think Hastings is perfect, but internet trolling isn’t helpful. It misinforms on so many levels.

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby OuijaBoard » Mon Apr 23, 2018 6:24 am

[[[I'm attending Hastings as a 1L in the fall and wanted to add some updated info - as a new requirement, they'll now require 3 bar-tested courses to be taken after 1L year: Con Law II, Criminal Procedure, and Evidence. While this does take away some coursework choice flexibility, it's a step in the right direction in addressing the poor bar passage numbers. Schools lower ranked than Hastings that have higher bar passage numbers largely attain these figures by limiting upper-level coursework choice flexibility, requiring all students to take several bar-tested courses. Some have said attending those schools is like attending 3 years of bar-test prep. Possibly if Hastings returns to attracting an incoming class where the median LSAT score's into the 160s, they can again make these required courses optional.]]]

Are you guys saying that all bar-test courses are not REQUIRED at UCH? I attended during the T20 era (which, btw, lasted for decades, after which there was a long T25 era and a long T30 era, before Gotterdammerung set in), and pretty sure it was mandatory to take everything. 1st-time pass rate reliably 83-87%, year in, year out. Average GPA for entrants was 3.38, LSAT upper 17%-20%-ish. And just about everybody passed first time. Of course, this was before the LSAT was dumbed down--yes, it was, in case anyone was unaware of that factoid.

An unexamined part of the problem is UCH's long history of governance separate from the UC org chart. They're run by that UCH Board, which is a law unto itself. And the bald fact is that the UCH Board has always been composed of mediocrities. And what they have done for a long, long time now, is hire mediocrities to run the joint. That Wu was just the latest in a long line of hamburger Deans when filet mignon was needed. The person at the top sets the tone for the faculty hiring, the admission standards, the class sizes, the scholarship, all the rest of the factors that go into the alchemy translating into attracting top candidates, bar pass rates, employment stats, blah, blah. That UCH Board would never hire a Chemerinsky when they could give the Dean spot to a Tier 2 graduate from the Midwest with Rotary-Club lawyer credentials instead. I'm exaggerating, but not by much. And those chickens have come to roost.

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Re: UC Hastings Students Taking Questions

Postby CALaw717 » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:45 am

OuijaBoard wrote:[[[I'm attending Hastings as a 1L in the fall and wanted to add some updated info - as a new requirement, they'll now require 3 bar-tested courses to be taken after 1L year: Con Law II, Criminal Procedure, and Evidence. While this does take away some coursework choice flexibility, it's a step in the right direction in addressing the poor bar passage numbers. Schools lower ranked than Hastings that have higher bar passage numbers largely attain these figures by limiting upper-level coursework choice flexibility, requiring all students to take several bar-tested courses. Some have said attending those schools is like attending 3 years of bar-test prep. Possibly if Hastings returns to attracting an incoming class where the median LSAT score's into the 160s, they can again make these required courses optional.]]]

Are you guys saying that all bar-test courses are not REQUIRED at UCH? I attended during the T20 era (which, btw, lasted for decades, after which there was a long T25 era and a long T30 era, before Gotterdammerung set in), and pretty sure it was mandatory to take everything. 1st-time pass rate reliably 83-87%, year in, year out. Average GPA for entrants was 3.38, LSAT upper 17%-20%-ish. And just about everybody passed first time. Of course, this was before the LSAT was dumbed down--yes, it was, in case anyone was unaware of that factoid.

An unexamined part of the problem is UCH's long history of governance separate from the UC org chart. They're run by that UCH Board, which is a law unto itself. And the bald fact is that the UCH Board has always been composed of mediocrities. And what they have done for a long, long time now, is hire mediocrities to run the joint. That Wu was just the latest in a long line of hamburger Deans when filet mignon was needed. The person at the top sets the tone for the faculty hiring, the admission standards, the class sizes, the scholarship, all the rest of the factors that go into the alchemy translating into attracting top candidates, bar pass rates, employment stats, blah, blah. That UCH Board would never hire a Chemerinsky when they could give the Dean spot to a Tier 2 graduate from the Midwest with Rotary-Club lawyer credentials instead. I'm exaggerating, but not by much. And those chickens have come to roost.


Before the past couple of years, for many years besides all required 1L courses (including Con Law 1 which some students take after 1L year) the only required bar-tested course was either Professional Responsibility or Legal Ethics. Now, as mentioned, Crim Pro, Evidence, and Con Law II are required (and those are no longer allowed to be taken pass/fail). But there are tons of other courses that are on both the MBE and Essay portion or Essay only and if students were to take all of them, that would basically be their entire 3 year courseload. MBE and Essay: Civ Pro II, Federal Courts, Contracts II, Sales and Leases of Goods, Torts II; Essay Only: California Civ Pro, Business Associations, Community Prop, Remedies, Wills and Trusts.
As a current Hastings student, I truly believe the changes the current administration have put in place will bring up our bar passage numbers: Increasing scholarships so top students are less prone to transfer, requiring all 1L doctrinal class finals to be closed-book, adding in 3 bar-tested course requirements (and not allowing them to be taken pass/fail), adding in multiple choice question requirements as part of all 1L doctrinal course finals, and offering school-sponsered loans to students who need additional financial support to pay for a bar-prep course.



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