School Choice for San Diego Practice

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jakewitt9

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School Choice for San Diego Practice

Post by jakewitt9 » Wed Apr 07, 2021 9:02 pm

I am entering law school in the fall and have a few different options:

USD with 135k scholarship
UCI with 90k scholarship (this might be increased soon)
USC at sticker price
On waitlist at UCLA

My goal is to practice in San Diego after law school. I am interested in litigation but beyond that, I am not entirely sure what kind of law I want to practice. I would like to do public interest or government work eventually but obviously would be tempted by Big Law if given the option.

Right now I am leaning towards UCI, but I am tempted by both USD and USC/UCLA, for different but probably obvious reasons.

Given those choices and my desire to live/practice in San Diego, which of the choices do you think are my best options? What factors would you advise me to consider?

Thanks for your help!
Last edited by cavalier1138 on Thu Apr 08, 2021 6:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Moved to appropriate forum (0Ls cannot post in Legal Employment).

crazywafflez

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Re: School Choice for San Diego Practice

Post by crazywafflez » Sat Apr 10, 2021 2:50 pm

I don't know very much about the market in San Diego- I've heard it is much more insular than LA.
While the scholly numbers are cool, we would really need to see the total COA @ 3 years (so tuition plus what cost of living is for 3 years- and if you're taking loans out to cover this or not).
If biglaw is your goal, you'll need UCLA or USC. I would not go to USC for sticker price ever. I probs still wouldn't go to UCLA at sticker price either.
At USD would you be living at home?
I have no idea how Irvine places in SD, but since you're from SD, presumably you would still be able to place there, but not sure what Irvine gets you that USD doesn't if you are just aiming for local smaller firm stuff or local govt. I'd just take the cheaper option between USD and UCI.
If you could get USC to half price (like 100k or so total debt- I would consider it). But LA is expensive. If you get in to UCLA, I wouldn't pay sticker but I would show that to USC and see if they'd give you a better scholarship. Did you apply to other schools? If I had to make a sticker bet though, I guess it would be UCLA and roll the dice on biglaw. I wouldn't do it, but I know folks who have.
Maybe someone with knowledge of Cali market could jump in, as I'm kinda flying blind, but if you are going to only be paying like 60k for USD (including cost of living) I think it is a defensible choice, same for UCI.

DebtPrisoner

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Re: School Choice for San Diego Practice

Post by DebtPrisoner » Sat Apr 10, 2021 3:37 pm

jakewitt9 wrote:
Wed Apr 07, 2021 9:02 pm
I am interested in litigation but beyond that, I am not entirely sure what kind of law I want to practice. I would like to do public interest or government work eventually but obviously would be tempted by Big Law if given the option.
San Diego government recruits heavily at UCLA. DA's Office does on campus interviews and has hired summers from there, and I think the City Attorney sent notices through career services. Small/Mid size San Diego civil lit firms also solicit resumes. I can't say the same about PI, though I'm not sure. PI at UCLA seems to be dominated by LA-based and national PI organizations. But because PI at UCLA is so strong, You could probably find a way to network into San Diego-based orgs.
crazywafflez wrote:
Sat Apr 10, 2021 2:50 pm
If biglaw is your goal, you'll need UCLA or USC.

I would agree with this, except to the extent that I have no idea what the deal is with UCI. I know that San Diego Big Law offices recruit heavily from UCLA, and I imagine the same is true at USC. OCI for UCLA/USC is usually on adjoining days, and I think firms send the same people up to do both.

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