The University of California, Los Angeles, School of Law, also referred to as UCLA School of Law and UCLA Law, is the law school of UCLA, located in the Westwood neighborhood of Los Angeles, California, United States.
Founded in 1949, UCLA School of Law was the first public law school in Southern California and is currently the youngest top-ranked law school in the nation. In 2017, U.S. News & World Report ranked UCLA Law tied at No. 15, and the school has consistently ranked between 15th and 17th since 2009. Its Class of 2020, which entered the school in the fall of 2017, came in with a median LSAT score of 167 and a median GPA of 3.76. 91% of the Class of 2016 was employed in bar-required, J.D.-advantage jobs 10 months after graduation. The student to faculty ratio is 10.6 to 1. The dean of the school is Jennifer L. Mnookin.
The Hugh and Hazel Darling Law Library, UCLA School of Law
Founded in 1949, UCLA School of Law is one of five law schools within the University of California system. L. Dale Coffman became the school's first dean and recruited Harvard dean Roscoe Pound to become one of its first professors. The school was forced to operate in a Quonset hut for its first two years until a proper building was constructed. In September 1949, Pound insisted on delivering the school's first keynote address in the Latin language, inside the Quonset hut.
The UCLA Law Review, the law school's flagship scholarly journal, was first published in 1953. From 1971 to 1983, UCLA School of Law additionally published the Alaska Law Review, a publication dedicated to the legal issues that pertain to Alaskans. Additionally, the first scholarly journal in the nation focused on issues affecting Latinos, the Chicana/o Latina/o Law Review, was first published in 1972 as the Chicano Law Review.
Degrees and areas of specialization
The school offers standard Juris Doctor degrees in addition to notable programs of specialization within the schools. Students can elect to specialize in Business Law and Policy, Entertainment Law, Public Interest Law, Critical Race Studies, and Law and Philosophy. The roughly 300 students who begin Law School at UCLA every year are divided into sections to encourage a sense of community. Students take all of their first year courses with their sections.
The Socratic method is still in use by most professors, but some faculty allow for a slightly more relaxed classroom atmosphere than at other top-tier law schools. The school also has traditionally offered a strong clinical program, which is housed in its own wing (built at a cost of $9 million). Each year, the clinical program puts students through realistic simulations of trials, depositions, and client meetings; these are staffed with a pool of nearly 500 volunteers drawn from all over the Southland who play parties, witnesses, judges, and jurors.
Several joint degree programs are available, which require four years of study and result in the simultaneous award of a Juris Doctor and master's degree in Afro-American Studies, American Indian Studies, Law and Management, Public Health, Public Policy, Philosophy, Social Welfare, and Urban Planning.
The school also offers a Master of Laws (LL.M.) law program, which involves one year of post-law-graduate studies. This program is popular among foreign students intending to take the California bar exam.
The school additionally offers a Doctor of Juridical Science (S.J.D.) degree, designed for students who already have a J.D. and hope to become law professors.
Faculty and students
UCLA School of Law has a faculty of over 100 members with expertise in all major disciplines of law, representing "one of the most diverse in the country." Thirteen members of the school's tenured faculty have been recognized for being the most-cited scholars in their areas of specialty.
|Diversity Class of 2017|
- 138 Undergraduate schools represented
- 49.4% Female; 50.6% Male
- 34% Students of Color
- 61% California Residents; 39% Non-residents
The school sponsors a chapter of the Order of the Coif, a national law school honorary society founded for the purposes of encouraging legal scholarship and advancing the ethical standards of the legal profession.
UCLA School of Law's south entrance facing Charles E. Young Drive East
UCLA School of Law is located on the northeastern edge of the UCLA campus in the Westwood area of Los Angeles. The school is located approximately five miles from the Pacific Ocean and 12 miles from downtown Los Angeles.
The school proper is housed in a five-story brick building known simply as the Law Building. The oldest parts of the Law Building's interior are notorious for a "high school atmosphere" and "dark, drafty classrooms," but the Law Building has been extensively improved by the addition of the clinical wing in 1990 and the Hugh & Hazel Darling Law Library in 2001. A few offices, like the Office of Career Services and the Office of Admissions, are housed in an adjacent building, Dodd Hall.
The UCLA campus sits on the sloping foothills of the Santa Monica Mountains, between the communities of Brentwood to the west, Bel Air to the north, Holmby Hills to the east and Westwood to the south. The school is easily accessible via Wilshire Boulevard, Sunset Boulevard and Interstate 405.
In 2017 US News & World Report ranked UCLA as 15th of U.S. law schools. In 2010, it had the largest student body in the UC system after Hastings, and the smallest student-faculty ratio. UCLA Law has a student-faculty ratio of 10.4:1. Also it was the second least expensive law school in the UC system, Hastings being the cheapest.
According to Brian Leiter's Law School rankings, UCLA Law ranks 8th in the nation in terms of scholarly impact as measured by academic citations of tenure-stream faculty during the years 2009-2013.
The Hollywood Reporter ranked UCLA the number one school for entertainment law in its inaugural 2012 rankings, and every year from 2014 through 2018.
Bar passage rates
Based on a 2001-2007 six-year-average, 88% of UCLA Law graduates passed the California State Bar.
American Bar Association data shows that 273 of 332 (82%) of 2013 graduates had secured full-time, long-term, JD-required employment within nine months of graduation. A total of 108 graduates (32.5%) had found employment in firms of more than 100 lawyers, and 23 graduates (6.9%) had secured federal judicial clerkships.
Specialized centers and institutes
Institute for Business Law and Policy
In 2011, the business law and policy program established the Lowell Milken Institute for Business Law and Policy with a 10 million dollar gift from alumnus Lowell Milken. The institute focuses on research in business law and policy in bankruptcy, corporate law, corporate governance, intellectual property, international business transactions, real estate, securities regulation and tax.
Center on Climate Change and The Environment
Founded in 2008 with a gift from Dan A. Emmett and his family, the Center was the first law school center established to focus on climate change. The Emmett Center curriculum details law and policy solutions to the climate change crisis locally, statewide, nationally and internationally.
Critical Race Studies Program
Founded in 2000, the program, which hosts many legal scholars, studies the intersection of race and law.
International Human Rights Program
The International Human Rights Program "engages in research, advocacy and public education to advance the norms of international human rights law."
Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Public Policy
The Williams Institute was founded in 2001 through a grant by Charles R. "Chuck" Williams. Williams's inaugural donation of $2.5 million to create the institute was the largest donation ever given to any academic institution in support of a gay and lesbian academic program in any discipline. In 2013, Williams donated an additional $5.5 million to support the institute.
Ziman Center Real Estate law
In 2001, the UCLA Law School real estate program was named in honor of Richard Ziman, who established a permanent endowment. In 2005, the Ziman center was reconstituted as a campus-wide center of both UCLA Anderson School of Management and UCLA School of Law.
Program in Public Interest Law and Policy
In Spring 1996, in response to a desire to produce and support high level training for lawyers pursuing public interest work, the UCLA School of Law established the David J. Epstein Program in Public Interest Law and Policy. The Program graduated its inaugural class of students in 2000.
Journals and student organizations
Journals and law reviews
- UCLA Law Review
- UCLA Asian/Pacific American Law Journal
- UCLA Chicano/Latino Law Review
- UCLA Disability Law Journal
- UCLA Dukeminier Awards Journal of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law
- UCLA Entertainment Law Review
- UCLA Journal of Environmental Law and Policy
- UCLA Journal of International Law & Foreign Affairs
- UCLA Journal of Islamic and Near Eastern Law
- UCLA Journal of Law & Technology
- UCLA Pacific Basin Law Journal
- UCLA Women's Law Journal
- National Black Law Journal
- Gary Chartier - professor, La Sierra University, law and business ethics (2012-), associate professor (2005-2012)
- Drucilla Cornell - professor, Rutgers University, in political science, comparative literature, and women's studies (2001-); former professor of law at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law (1989-1994) and Rutgers School of Law-Newark (1994-2001)
- Joshua Dressler - professor, Moritz College of Law, Ohio State University (2001-); prominent author in criminal law and criminal procedure
- Richard D. Freer - professor, Emory University School of Law (1983-); expert in civil procedure
- Eric Goldman - professor, Santa Clara University School of Law (2006-); expert in Internet law
- Richard L. Hasen - Chancellor's Professor, University of California, Irvine School of Law (2011-); expert in election law and campaign finance
- Laurie L. Levenson - professor, Loyola Law School; TV legal commentator, gained fame during Rodney King and O.J. Simpson trials
- Susan Westerberg Prager - former Dean of the School of Law (1982-1998) - one of the first female law school deans; Professor at the UCLA School of Law (1972-1998, 2001-2006); Provost of Dartmouth College (1998-2001); President of Occidental College (2006-2007), Executive Director of Association of American Law Schools (2008-2013); Dean of Southwestern Law School (2013-)
- James Tomkovicz - professor, University of Iowa College of Law (1982); expert in criminal procedure
- Eugene Volokh - UCLA Law professor and legal commentator
Business and private practice
Government and politics
- Stewart Baker - Assistant Secretary for Policy, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (2005-2009)
- Howard Berman - United States Congressman from California
- Peter Carlisle - Former Mayor of Honolulu (2010-2013) and Prosecuting Attorney of Honolulu (1996-2010)
- Anna Caballero - Secretary of the California State and Consumer Services Agency (2011-2016), member of the California State Assembly (2006-2010, 2016-)
- Lou Correa - California State Assemblyman, 69th District (1998-2004); California State Senator, 34th District (2006-2014); member of the U.S. House of Representatives from California's 46th Congressional District (2016-)
- David Dawson - member from the 14th District, Iowa House of Representatives (2013-)
- Roger Dickinson - member of the California State Assembly (2010-2014)
- Mike Eng - member of the California State Assembly (2006-2012)
- Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher - member of the California State Assembly (2013-)
- Kirsten Gillibrand - United States Senator from New York (2009-)
- Rachel Goslins - executive director, President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities (2009-2016)
- Casey Gwinn - San Diego City Attorney, (1996-2004)
- Andrei Iancu - Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) (2018-)
- George David Kieffer - president, Board of Governors, California Community Colleges (1983-1985) and chair, Regents of the University of California (2017-)
- Susan Liebeler - Commissioner (1984-1988) and Chairman (1986-1988), United States International Trade Commission
- Jerry M. Patterson - member of the U.S. House of Representatives from California's 38th Congressional District (1975-1985)
- Marietta S. Robinson - Commissioner, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (2013-)
- James E. Rogan - California State Assemblyman, 43rd District (1994-1996); Congressman from California's 27th Congressional District (1997-2001); Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO (2001-2004); Judge of the Los Angeles Superior Court (2006-)
- Linda Sánchez - Congresswoman from California's 39th Congressional District (2002-)
- Henry A. Waxman - Congressman from California's 30th Congressional District (1975-2013)
- Jack Weiss - member, Los Angeles City Council (2001-2009)
- Joshua D. Wright - commissioner, Federal Trade Commission (2013-)
- Percy Anderson - United States district judge on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California (2002-)
- John Arguelles - associate justice, Supreme Court of California (1987-1989)
- Janice Rogers Brown - judge, D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals (2005-); former Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of California (1996-2005)
- Joe Brown - former judge of the Criminal Court of the Thirtieth Judicial District of Tennessee (Shelby County); star of court show Judge Joe Brown (1998-2013)
- Audrey B. Collins - associate justice, California Court of Appeal for the Second Appellate District (2014-); former United States district judge on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California (1994-2014)
- Dale A. Drozd - chief magistrate judge, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California (2011-), magistrate judge (1997-2010)
- Gary Allen Feess - United States district judge on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California (1999-)
- Gil Garcetti - Former Los Angeles County District Attorney (1992-2000)
- Dolly M. Gee - United States district judge on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California (2010-)
- Andrew Guilford - United States district judge on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California (2006-)
- Philip S. Gutierrez - United States district judge on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California (2007-)
- José Huizar - member from the 14th District, Los Angeles City Council, (2005-)
- Sandra Ikuta - judge, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (2006-)
- Robert Clive Jones - Chief Judge, U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada (2003-)
- William B. Keene - Former California Superior Court Judge and presiding judge on the court show Divorce Court.
- William Duffy Keller - United States district judge on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California (1984-)
- Alex Kozinski - Chief Judge, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (1985-2017)
- Alicia Limtiaco - United States Attorney of Guam
- Jeffrey T. Miller - judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California (1997-2010), Senior Judge (2010-)
- Salvador Mendoza, Jr. - United States district judge on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington (2014-)
- Dorothy Wright Nelson - Senior Judge, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (1979-); former Dean of the University of Southern California School of Law (1969-1980)
- Jacqueline Nguyen - judge, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (2012-), United States district judge on the United States District Court for the Central District of California (2009-2012)
- Thomas W. Sneddon, Jr. - Santa Barbara County District Attorney (1983-2010)
- Kim McLane Wardlaw - judge, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (1998-)
- Paul J. Watford - judge, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (2012-)
- John Branca - entertainment lawyer who specializes in representing rock and roll acts, as well as independent investors, music publishing catalogs, and independent music labels
- Thomas Bliss - motion picture producer with credits on over 30 films, including The Hurricane and Air Force One
- Jeff Cohen - entertainment lawyer best known for work as child actor in The Goonies (1985)
- Blye Pagon Faust - Academy Award-winning film producer best known for Spotlight (2015)
- Robert Fitzpatrick - entertainment attorney, film producer, and music executive; President of Allied Artists International
- Cynthia Gouw - television show host, news anchor, reporter, actress, and model
- Chip Johannessen - writer and producer for several popular television shows
- John Kerr - Tony Award-winning actor best known for Tea and Sympathy
- Kalyanee Mam - director and producer of the award-winning documentary A River Changes Course
- George Mastras - Emmy Award-winning writer and producer of AMC's Breaking Bad
- Stephan Pastis - creator of the comic strip Pearls Before Swine
- Kelly Perdew - winner of Season 2 of The Apprentice
- Robert Rotstein - entertainment attorney and novelist
- Stacey Snider - current co-chair of 20th Century Fox, former co-chair and CEO of DreamWorks, former chair of Universal
- Howard K. Stern - entertainment lawyer who was the former domestic partner, attorney and agent of model and actress Anna Nicole Smith.
- Lauren Woodland - Emmy Award-nominated actress
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Coordinates: 34°04?23?N 118°26?18?W / 34.073023°N 118.438443°W