University of California Hastings College of the Law

The information on this page was provided by the law school.

Official Guide to ABA-Approved JD Programs


Introduction

Established in 1878 as the original law department of the University of California, UC Hastings is the oldest law school in California and the first law school established west of the Rocky Mountains. UC Hastings’ legacy of producing highly skilled practitioners of the bench and bar is a matter of record within the legal profession.

Location

UC Hastings’ location is one of its greatest assets. Few law schools, if any, provide the variety of legal, judicial, political, and entrepreneurial entities within such close proximity of their classrooms, giving Hastings students a relevancy to their legal education that is usually hard to achieve on a college or university campus.

The law school’s location provides the opportunity to study the law in the very forum where it is practiced and determined. Situated in the heart of San Francisco, on the border of the city’s Civic Center and Tenderloin neighborhoods, the law school occupies three buildings on McAllister Street. The Civic Center is the legal epicenter of the American West, with four major courthouses, as well as San Francisco’s City Hall, the San Francisco Federal Building, and United Nations Plaza concentrated within a four-block radius of the law school. Many of San Francisco’s law firms are situated in the Financial District, located just two stops away from UC Hastings via the city’s extensive public transportation system. San Francisco is also widely regarded as the technology hub of the United States. Twitter’s world headquarters, for instance, is a short walk from the law school’s campus and many other tech companies and start-ups, such as Zynga and Airbnb, operate in the nearby South of Market (SOMA) neighborhood.

Academic Programs

The UC Hastings curriculum offers a broad spectrum of foundational and specialized courses. The law school’s curricular strengths mirror the strengths of San Francisco. Students can focus on business and corporate law, intellectual property law, litigation or its alternatives, international human rights, or public interest law. San Francisco is a global city that draws on adjunct faculty from Silicon Valley and the greater Bay Area to enrich curricular offerings.

Concentrations

Students may earn a certificate of concentration in any of the following areas:

  • Business Law
  • Civil Litigation and Dispute Resolution
  • Criminal Law
  • Environmental Law
  • Government Law
  • Intellectual Property
  • International Law
  • Law and Health Sciences
  • Social Justice Lawyering
  • Tax Law

Clinics

UC Hastings was a pioneer in introducing clinical training into the law school curriculum. Today, the law school offers 14 clinics, one of the largest clinical programs in the country. Under clinical faculty supervision, students represent real clients in the following areas:

  • Business Tax Practicum for Social Enterprises
  • Civil Justice (Individual Representation)
  • Community Economic Development
  • Community Group Advocacy
  • Criminal Practice
  • Environmental Law
  • Immigrants’ Rights
  • Legislation
  • Local Government
  • Mediation
  • Medical-Legal Partnership for Seniors
  • Practicum at Legal Services for Children
  • Refugee and Human Rights
  • Social Enterprise and Economic Empowerment

In addition, simulation courses teach trial and appellate advocacy, negotiation, mediation, contract drafting, problem solving, and professional ethics.

Startup Legal Garage

Students in the Startup Legal Garage join the Bay Area start-up community and provide corporate and intellectual property work to real start-up companies under the supervision of leading attorneys.

Lawyers for America (LfA)

LfA’s mission is to improve the practical skills of new lawyers, to expand the availability of legal services for those who cannot afford lawyers, and to increase the ability of government and nonprofit legal offices to render such services. To accomplish these goals, LfA works with law schools, governmental organizations, and legal nonprofits to create two-year fellowships that encompass law students’ final year of law school and their first year as new attorneys.

Judicial Externships

More than 100 students per year spend a semester serving as externs in the state and federal courts, including the Supreme Court of California. Students can also extern for judges during the summer.

International Programs

UC Hastings offers a robust curriculum focusing on international business and trade law, as well as international human rights. The college offers study-abroad programs in Argentina, Australia, China, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, and Spain and supports students who wish to study abroad in other locations. Students may participate in the work of the Hastings-to-Haiti Partnership, which sponsors a trip to Haiti each spring.

Joint-Degree Programs

Hastings students may participate in a joint-degree program with any accredited graduate program throughout the country. In the past, students have simultaneously earned degrees in public policy, public health, and business administration, among others. In addition, students have the opportunity to earn the JD and an LLM in three years through partnership arrangements with the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London and the University of Paris II.

Legal Education Opportunity Program (LEOP)

UC Hastings created LEOP in 1969 in order to make a top-tier legal education accessible to those who come from significantly adverse backgrounds. The only program of its kind in the country, LEOP recognizes that the traditional numeric criteria used to determine admission may not be sufficient indicators of academic potential for students who have experienced significant obstacles—educational, economic, social, or physical—that have restricted access to academic opportunities and resources. Once enrolled, LEOP participants are offered extensive, individualized resources designed to help them excel academically throughout their entire course of study.

Research Centers and Institutes

Students have opportunities to work in the law school’s nationally acclaimed research and advocacy centers.

  • The Center for Gender and Refugee Studies protects the fundamental human rights of refugee women, children, LGBT individuals, and others who flee persecution in their home countries through legal expertise and training, impact litigation, policy development, research, and in-country fact-finding.
  • The award-winning Center for Negotiation and Dispute Resolution offers superior education and cutting-edge scholarship in dispute resolution to law students, attorneys, practitioners, and international visitors.
  • The Center for WorkLife Law seeks to jumpstart the stalled gender revolution by focusing, at any given time, on a few projects that hold the promise of producing concrete social or institutional change within a three-to-five-year time frame.
  • The Institute for Innovation Law engages in academic research and education to encourage innovation through the practice and development of law and policy.
  • The Institute for Criminal Law is dedicated to promoting the fair, effective, and ethical administration of criminal justice.

UCSF/UC Hastings Consortium on Law, Science, and Health Policy

Through this partnership with the University of California San Francisco, one of the world’s greatest centers for medical education and research, UC Hastings students have the opportunity to work on legal issues at the nexus of health care and medical research.

Intercollegiate Moot Court Team

UC Hastings has one of the most successful and most well-respected moot court programs in the United States. Each year, Hastings students participate in, and often win, numerous national and international intercollegiate moot court competitions covering a wide range of current legal issues.

LLM Program

Graduates of non-US law schools may earn a Master of Laws degree in US Legal Studies in this one-year program.

MSL Program

Health, science, business, and technology professionals who do not seek to practice law, but who instead want to equip themselves with a more sophisticated understanding of legal reasoning and doctrine, may pursue a one-year Master of Studies in Law degree.

Faculty

At UC Hastings, it is common that the first-year Torts, Contracts, and Civil Procedure professors wrote the casebooks for their classes. It is likely that the Welfare Law professor argued federal welfare cases before the US Supreme Court and that the Civil Rights Clinic advisor has been a prosecutor for the Department of Justice. These prolific and professionally accomplished men and women are enthusiastic, engaged, and generous teachers and mentors of UC Hastings students. Complementing these nationally renowned scholars and gifted educators are a cadre of distinguished adjunct faculty drawn from senior members of the California judiciary, partners of major Bay Area law firms, and leading public officials in criminal law, environmental law, immigration, and civil rights.

Student Life and Housing

The strength and diversity of the UC Hastings student body are reflected in more than 40 student organizations that sponsor intellectual, social, and political events. Hastings publishes nine student-edited law reviews focusing on a variety of issues, including business law, constitutional law, communication and entertainment law, international and comparative law, environmental law, science and technology, race and poverty, and women’s law. Students can work out at an on-campus fitness center and a gym, where a free yoga class is offered on most weekdays. Students engage in a variety of legal community service and pro bono activities in and around the Tenderloin neighborhood.

McAllister Tower provides on-campus housing for about one third of the student body. UC Hastings students also live in various neighborhoods around San Francisco, including the Castro, the Marina, the Sunset, and North Beach. Increasingly, students are deciding to live in downtown Oakland, Berkeley, and areas directly to the south of the city such as Daly City and South San Francisco. Hastings students commute to campus via public transportation (the Muni and Bay Area Rapid Transit—known as BART—systems), bicycle, motorcycle, and scooter. For those with cars, UC Hastings has a large parking garage with discounted monthly rates for students.

Career and Professional Development

The UC Hastings Office of Career and Professional Development is staffed by full-time professionals who come from different legal practice areas. The office assists students and alumni in clarifying their goals, acquiring job-search strategies, and honing interviewing techniques. It provides access to full-time, part-time, and summer job listings. The office also manages an Alumni Mentor Program in which more than 800 UC Hastings graduates, spanning a wide array of practice areas, participate. Every year, approximately 150 employers visit the campus during the fall and spring on-campus interview programs and also interview for summer associate positions and postgraduation employment.

Alumni

The UC Hastings alumni network numbers more than 22,000, spread throughout California and major metropolitan legal markets, including New York City; Washington, DC; Seattle; and Phoenix. The college is especially proud of its legacy of producing judges; Hastings graduates currently sit or have sat on the State Supreme Courts of California, Hawaii, and Montana. Within California, nearly every county-level Superior Court bench includes at least one Hastings graduate. A brief list of notable UC Hastings alumni includes Kamala Harris, United States Senator representing California; Marvin Baxter and Carol Corrigan, Associate Justices of the California Supreme Court; Nancy Tellem, the Entertainment and Digital Media President of Microsoft; James Cole, the Deputy Attorney General of the United States; and Nicholas G. Moore, the former Chairman of PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Applying to UC Hastings

UC Hastings offers a full-time, three-year Juris Doctor degree. A part-time program is not offered. Applicants for the JD program should create an LSAC.org account. The JD application can be submitted as early as October, and the deadline is March 1.

UC Hastings welcomes applications from transfer and visiting (fall or spring semesters) students. Fall semester applications are due by July 1, and spring visitor applications are due by November 15.

Financial Aid

The majority of UC Hastings students receive need-based and merit-based scholarships from college-administered sources. Scholarships recognize and encourage the achievement, service, and professional promise of students. The school’s Financial Aid Supplement form is required of all applicants seeking need-based financial assistance. No separate application is required for merit-based awards. Students who pursue qualifying public interest and government sector employment may receive loan repayment assistance after graduation through the college’s Public Interest Career Assistance Program (PICAP).

Admitted Applicant Profile

25-75% UGPA Range at UC-Hastings:

3.20 to 3.60

2.00
2.58
3.16
3.74
4.33

25-75% LSAT Score Range at UC-Hastings:

155 to 161

120
135
150
165
180

25-75% UGPA Range at UC-Hastings:

3.20 to 3.60

2.00
2.58
3.16
3.74
4.33

25-75% LSAT Score Range at UC-Hastings:

155 to 161

120
135
150
165
180

25-75% UGPA Range at UC-Hastings:

3.20 to 3.60

2.00
2.58
3.16
3.74
4.33

25-75% LSAT Score Range at UC-Hastings:

155 to 161

120
135
150
165
180

Contact Information

200 McAllister Street,
San Francisco, CA 94102,
United States