UCLA Visit

(Where, When and What Did You Think)
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Camm
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UCLA Visit

Postby Camm » Thu Feb 26, 2009 11:32 am

I just visited UCLA this past week. Overall, I think I had built the school up too much in my head and was slightly disappointed when I actually visited. Here are my thoughts on a few things that interested me.

The Campus:
The campus was very pretty, even though it was slightly overcast and the weather was "horrible" according to everyone there. The law library has a lot of open space and light. The classrooms are set up nicely, though they look a little old. There are outlets at every desk. The whole campus has wireless, but it is blocked in the classrooms.

Admissions:
I met with Robert Schwartz while I was there, he was really helpful and even offered to set up meetings with other departments.

Clinics:
The tour guide made it seem very easy to get into clinics. However, when I spoke with the woman who runs the International Human Rights Clinic, she told me that it was very selective, only 8 people get in. They do, however, look at more than just grades.

Housing:
I visited Weyburn Terrace, the graduate student housing. It's pretty nice, and a good deal considering its location (Though it's still around $1,000/mo). You can ask the admissions to reserve you a spot ahead of time and you won't have to rely on the lottery. That way, you"ll also be guaranteed a spot for your 2L if you chose to stay there.

Visiting the campus:
Unless you only plan on seeing the law school, I would NOT stay at the UCLA Guesthouse like they recommend. It is really close to the law school, but the campus buses to Westwood don't run on the weekends or after 7pm. It makes more sense to stay somewhere off campus, because you can easily take a bus to the law school any time during the day. That way you won't be stuck at the guesthouse in the evening.

Also, don't talk to 1Ls unless you want to hear a lot of complaining. My friends spent the entire time trying to convince me not to go to law school.

thruruby
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby thruruby » Sat Mar 14, 2009 4:45 am

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Last edited by thruruby on Tue Dec 27, 2011 7:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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badfish
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby badfish » Sat Mar 14, 2009 5:53 am

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RussianGirl
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby RussianGirl » Sat Mar 14, 2009 6:59 am

Hahaha, badfish! Hilarious...

I <3 this thread

ecclaw07
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby ecclaw07 » Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:04 am

Anyone who has any advice on visiting LA, please PM me...I have never been, but after finding out that I will not be getting financial aid from half the schools I got into, UCLA is starting to look like a very serious option. Just don't know anything about the area...where to stay, if I need to rent a car, where to eat, etc. etc. etc. :) Thanks in advance for any help!!

stevededalus
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby stevededalus » Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:15 am

Great reviews; thanks for the pics. I agree that the admissions staff has been helpful. Also, I've found that UCLA blog by current students on the admitted students' site insightful, if you haven't seen it.

Camm wrote:Also, don't talk to 1Ls unless you want to hear a lot of complaining. My friends spent the entire time trying to convince me not to go to law school.

You have my curiosity piqued. Were these UCLA-specific complaints or just 1Ls stressed out about being 1Ls and possibly worried about the recession?

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Camm
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby Camm » Wed Mar 18, 2009 2:26 pm

stevededalus wrote: Were these UCLA-specific complaints or just 1Ls stressed out about being 1Ls and possibly worried about the recession?


Just 1Ls being stressed, nothing specific to UCLA. Although I did not hear as much complaining/stress when I visited Northwestern...maybe the older students are able to cope with it better?

ecclaw07 wrote: Just don't know anything about the area...where to stay, if I need to rent a car, where to eat, etc. etc. etc.

I would rent a car, you definitely need one to get around LA. I took the buses while I was there and it wasn't too bad, but the UCLA buses don't run on the weekend and even from the law school to Westwood it's kind of a far walk, and hilly.

UCSDMissy
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby UCSDMissy » Thu Mar 19, 2009 2:29 am

I feel like my experience when I visited was very different...in a bad way (at least compared to when I went to see USC).

When I went to visit the law school, there was no one in the admissions office (and school was in session). I waited around for a while until a girl walked in who sort of helped me. I wanted to do the self guided tour because I wasn't able to make it to the actual one. This is a bad idea. Don't do the self guided tour. It's a bunch of bullet points made for tourguides that does not give you the information you need to know. Navigating the self guided tour is difficult considering they only give you a hand drawn map on the back. =/ The law building is pretty nice and the library is beautiful! I think overall I was unsatisfied because I felt like they didn't care about their applicants. I feel like law schools should be trying to entice you, and it seemed like UCLA would have preferred it if I didn't bother them. That didn't leave me feeling too good.

Things that I love about UCLA include: the campus, Westwood Area, Diddy Riese, and the fact that UCLA campus food doesn't suck.

I think I'll give UCLA another look in the coming months, but USC made me feel much more welcome.

thruruby
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby thruruby » Thu Mar 19, 2009 3:48 am

UCSDMissy wrote:Don't do the self guided tour. It's a bunch of bullet points made for tour guides that does not give you the information you need to know. Navigating the self guided tour is difficult considering they only give you a hand drawn map on the back. =/



I did the self guided tour too. I actually thought it was easy to understand and simple to follow the instructions. The law school map they gave me had little drawn-on footprints that showed you which way you should be going.
The bullet point list (which is actually three pages long back and front) gave a LOT of info. I felt that this was actually way more info than a live tour guide could possibly bother giving; it definitely didn't feel like less info than than a guide would give.

It sucks that you had a bad experience there. :( When I went, everyone was very attentive and friendly. There were 2-3 people working in the admissions office at 3pm on a Friday afternoon who invited me to come back after my tour and ask questions. When I toured the library, the librarian noticed I was doing a self-guided tour and actually came over to talk to me about the building and the facilities.

Perhaps you just caught them on an off day?

UCSDMissy
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby UCSDMissy » Thu Mar 19, 2009 12:29 pm

thruruby wrote:
UCSDMissy wrote:Don't do the self guided tour. It's a bunch of bullet points made for tour guides that does not give you the information you need to know. Navigating the self guided tour is difficult considering they only give you a hand drawn map on the back. =/



I did the self guided tour too. I actually thought it was easy to understand and simple to follow the instructions. The law school map they gave me had little drawn-on footprints that showed you which way you should be going.
The bullet point list (which is actually three pages long back and front) gave a LOT of info. I felt that this was actually way more info than a live tour guide could possibly bother giving; it definitely didn't feel like less info than than a guide would give.

It sucks that you had a bad experience there. :( When I went, everyone was very attentive and friendly. There were 2-3 people working in the admissions office at 3pm on a Friday afternoon who invited me to come back after my tour and ask questions. When I toured the library, the librarian noticed I was doing a self-guided tour and actually came over to talk to me about the building and the facilities.

Perhaps you just caught them on an off day?


I guess so. I think I also expected more from them. When I was reading the bullet points, it wasn't giving me the information I wanted. I also thinking waiting for 15 minutes before anyone showed up at the admissions office put me in a bad mood. haha. I think I still would have rather had someone walk me around and show me. I felt really dumb walking into these rooms and have people give me weird looks. Not fun. Plus, there was no one there for me to ask questions. I'm hoping I just caught them on a bad day. It would really suck if that's how the admin at UCLA actually was if you were a student there. That thought is something that really turns me off.

tcortez
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby tcortez » Sat Mar 21, 2009 1:39 am

So I saw the post and i wanted to add a little input. I am still waiting to hear from UCLA for law school but I went there for undergrad. I think UCLA Law is a great place and it was my top choice for a long time. I am kind of used to the campus but the law school is beautiful. I agree that USC has nothing on the beauty of the building. Their Critical Race Studies Program is one that cannot be compared to by any other school, if that is what you are interested in. I know a lot of people there and I didn't really hear too many complaints about UCLA as a school. I think it was more so law school in general rather than UCLA. In fact, I was told you are treated much better in the law school then as an undergrad, which sucked for me.

Westwood gets kind of old but it has great food choices (including Diddy Reese). If you are not from LA, you def want to get a car. It is a hassle trying to get around LA and you will eventually want to get away from school and enjoy beautiful LA. If you can live outside of Westwood you will find better rates on apartments. Westwood is overpriced but Palms is about 15 minutes away and has much better options. Also, Culver City and even Ladera Heights (next to Inglewood) are great places to live and not too far. Only downfall is traffic. If you have lived in snow or very cold temperatures, you will appreciate the beauty of LA. An ugly day to us is an overcast one. 70 degrees is getting a little cold. :)

Overall, I think UCLA is a great law school to attend. And if I didn't want to get out of LA for a while I would def pick it over USC. Although I guess I am a little biased. GO BRUINS!!!

Capella
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby Capella » Sat Apr 18, 2009 12:59 am

How long did the actual tour last? I am visiting on Monday and I wanted to get an idea of how long it will take. I am going to visit a class from about 10-12pm and then take the tour at 12:15. I hope I get to talk to the dean.

thruruby
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby thruruby » Sat Apr 18, 2009 1:03 am

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Last edited by thruruby on Tue Dec 27, 2011 7:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

Capella
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby Capella » Sat Apr 18, 2009 1:12 am

Hmm, only 45minutes? So I'd be done no later than 1:30 at the latest...that means I can make it to work that day, lol. :(

I am already familiar with the main campus, so I don't need that. Thanks for the info.

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uclapookie09
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby uclapookie09 » Sat Apr 18, 2009 1:18 am

There is wireless in the classroom...but many classrooms require that you set up a VPN client so that you can access the internet. You just have to take your computer to some office on campus and they set it up for you. I <3 UCLA.

palmstar
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby palmstar » Sat Apr 18, 2009 2:35 am

Every 1L I know is PANICKED and SCARED about fall OCI.

Career Services at UCLA had a meeting and told everyone that firms were only taking very high GPA's this fall.

They tried to act like, "it's no big deal if you don't get biglaw" there's LOTS of other things to do! *roll eyes*

People here are seeing their DREAMS CRUMBLE.

It sucks.

To have a shot at firms you need like a 3.5+ which is HARD to do, especially when everone here is smart. You CAN'T get ahead just by working harder than everyone else. Everyone works hard. You just have to be naturally gifted at writing law school exams.
Last edited by palmstar on Sat Apr 18, 2009 2:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Whatisthis
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby Whatisthis » Sat Apr 18, 2009 2:49 am

palmstar wrote:EVERY 1L I know is PANICKED and SCARED about fall OCI.

Career Services at UCLA had a meeting and told everyone that firms were only taking very high GPA's this fall.

They tried to act like, "it's no big deal if you don't get biglaw" there's LOTS of other things to do! *roll eyes*

People here are seeing their DREAMS CRUMBLE before their eyes.

It sucks.

To have a shot at firms you need like a 3.5+ which is HARD to do, especially whenever here is smart. You CAN'T get ahead just by working harder than everyone else. EVERYONE works hard. You just have to be naturally gifted at writing law school exams


So, UCLA is raising its tuition while telling its students that they shouldn't count on a job that may actually allow them to pay off their loans after graduation. Something about this doesn't sit well with me.

thruruby
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby thruruby » Sat Apr 18, 2009 4:27 am

palmstar wrote:Every 1L I know is PANICKED and SCARED about fall OCI.

Career Services at UCLA had a meeting and told everyone that firms were only taking very high GPA's this fall.

They tried to act like, "it's no big deal if you don't get biglaw" there's LOTS of other things to do! *roll eyes*

People here are seeing their DREAMS CRUMBLE.

It sucks.

To have a shot at firms you need like a 3.5+ which is HARD to do, especially when everone here is smart. You CAN'T get ahead just by working harder than everyone else. Everyone works hard. You just have to be naturally gifted at writing law school exams.


I'm confused! You say the 1L's are scared? As in, scared that they won't get a 1L summer job?

palmstar
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby palmstar » Sat Apr 18, 2009 3:50 pm

No...everyone is fine with 1L jobs. What everyone is scared about are 2L firm jobs, which is when you are a summer associate and then get (generally) an offer after graduation. (which you prob already know)

At UCLA OCI is in early August the summer after your 1L year (so for us current 1L's, 2L OCI is less than 4 months away)

In the past, it's always been crucial to get hired at a firm for your 2L summer otherwise you pretty much missed the biglaw boat, so to speak.

People are scared because the economy has really affected law firms, and nobody knows how many people firms are going to take this August during OCI. Most firms are dramatically cutting their class sizes, which means it's going to be really competitive to get an offer.

To be fair, 1L's everywhere are scared about how this economy is going to effect our chances. It's not really UCLA's fault that firms don't want to hire much this year after laying off tons of employees and deferring start dates the past couple months -- UCLA has no way of controlling any of it. What I do find annoying though is that they are already trying to act like it's no big deal if we don't get firm jobs for our 2L summer, etc.

The Class of 2011 is basically just a victim of bad timing. I would imagine that the Class of 2012 will be a lot better off than us if the economy starts to recover, and firms start resuming their normal hiring practices

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tallboone
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby tallboone » Thu Feb 11, 2010 9:53 pm

This might be helpful since I did my undergrad at UCLA:

There are a number of hotels within walking distance to UCLA, so if you are interested in doing that, it will make life easy. Here is a list: http://www.admissions.ucla.edu/tours/accommodations.htm That being said, they are all pretty expensive.

If you want to save some money, you can always stay at in Santa Monica, because there is a really cheap bus line that runs from Santa Monica to UCLA called the "Big Blue Bus."--LinkRemoved--

Santa Monica is close and is a beach community just west of UCLA, and the bus shouldn't take more than half an hour (even with LA traffic) to get from pretty much anywhere in Santa Monica directly to the campus. So just search Santa Monica for some comfort inns, etc. I know for a fact the Comfort Inn is on the bus route (http://www.comfortinnsantamonica.com/home.nxg).

Finally, if you are looking to really do it on the cheap, you can stay at the HI Hostel in Santa Monica which is actually in a great location about two blocks from the beach. http://www.hilosangeles.org/ You won't have a problem getting on the bus from this location, all you have to do is walk a couple of blocks to the stop and the bus will take you directly to UCLA. You can probably get a bunk bed for about $35 a night in a shared room with a locker.

As far as food/bars/attractions in Westwood, you just have to walk south of campus and you can't miss them. There are a lot of shops, great places to eat depending on your preferences, and two bars called O'Hara's and Westwood Brewing Company. I prefer "BrewCo" because the crowd is slightly less rowdy and there is a nice patio for eating/etc. When you get to campus, just ask people for directions because everyone is really friendly.

imisscollege
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby imisscollege » Wed Feb 17, 2010 5:19 pm

Is there parking in Santa Monica? How hard is it to park in the different areas one might live if one is not from LA/Cali?

scooter629
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby scooter629 » Fri Feb 19, 2010 6:26 am

There is public parking. I am not sure if they have overnight though. It was only 3 dollars which is really cheap for LA parking. To be honest I have been using a GPS. Its great as long as you aren't in downtown trying to get on the freeway and merge during rush hour. The thing kept taking me in circles :shock: I think most people complain too much about LA traffic its like any other big city

[1L]Hopeful
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby [1L]Hopeful » Sat Feb 20, 2010 7:21 pm

I'll take UCLA over any Southern Cali schools in a heart beat.

turkishangora
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Re: UCLA Visit

Postby turkishangora » Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:18 pm

is there a travel stipend?




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