Visiting University of California, Hastings Law

March 9, 2013 § Leave a comment

It’s ideal if you go to a graduate school that also has an undergraduate campus. That way, you can join a collegiate figure skating team that can recruit skaters from a wider portion of the student body. Otherwise, you’re left looking for figure skating teammates at your graduate school if you want to field a strong team. How does a competition between UC Hastings’ figure skating lawyers, University of Pacific’s figure skating dentists, and UC San Francisco’s figure skating doctors sound? Do they even have mascots?

Yeah... no.

Yeah… no.

You want to check out UC Hastings. Maybe it’s the ideal school. Maybe it’s the fallback school in case Yale, Harvard, NYU, and Columbia say no. Maybe you have no idea why you want to go to law school and you just want to visit a law school in your area. Maybe you need to know for sure that this isn’t Berkeley’s law school. The reasoning works for me.

Hey Yale, Columbia, NYU, I applied. Did I get in?

Hey Yale, Columbia, NYU, I applied. Did I get in?

How Do I Get There?

Mary Kay Kane and David E. Snodgrass Halls, the two buildings that make up the UC Hastings campus are located in the Tenderloin, one of the more gritty, dangerous neighborhoods of San Francisco. Chances are, you may have heard someone reference the illicit activities that go on in the Tenderloin, kinda like the occasional UC Berkeley students clueless about Oakland, California. Just be aware of your surroundings (listen to your MP3 player later) and if you ride public transportation, catch the necessary transfer trains. Here’s some directions to follow along:

  • BART: Coming from the East Bay, catch a Millbrae/SFO train or if you get on a Fremont train, transfer at MacArthur Station. Get off at Civic Center Station. Coming from Millbrae, any train will take you directly through San Francisco. But still, get off at Civic Center Station. In any event, exit Civic Center Station  from the UN Plaza exitwhich puts you closer to your destination. Walk through the plaza to Larkin Street and make your way up to 198 McAllister.
  • MUNI: F-Wharves above ground light rail and J, K, L, M, N, S, and T underground light rail vehicles will take you from various neighborhoods to downtown San Francisco. Get off at Civic Center Station and go to the UN Plaza exit.
  • Car101-North or I-80 South towards Civic Center/9th Street freeway exit. Take Larkin Street up to McAllister. Street parking is limited but there’s a parking structure on the corner of Larkin and Golden Gate Streets.
Make sure you don't leave valuables in the car.

Make sure you don’t leave valuables in the car.

In case you want to RSVP your place in a guided tour at UC Hastings, feel free to email the admissions office at Otherwise, you enter in 198 McAllister Street, sign your name on the visitor’s log at the front desk, receive a visitor’s pass from the security guard, go up a floor to 275A and check in at the admissions office. The 2nd floor of Kane Hall is a maze but you can either stick it out and look for the room or… you know, ask someone in the hallways or cafeterias.

They generally ask you to show up ten minutes before the start of the tour, noon on Tuesdays and Fridays and 3:40 pm on Wednesdays during the academic year. If you get to the admissions office pretty early, grab some Philz Coffee on Van Ness between Turk and Eddy. If you’re hungry, grab some chicken pho at Turtle Tower further up on Larkin or order some beignets and other sweet/savory treats at Brenda’s Soul Food off of Polk and Eddy. Try not to be late though.

Class visits are offered. Admissions would appreciate it if you give them at least a week’s notice from when you plan on visiting a specific class from this list. Priority is given to those recently admitted to the JD program but there’s likely enough room for visitors and/or their parents. Spring semester tours and class visits are offered until April 12th, 2013.

Ugh, schedule, y u no cooperate!?

Ugh, schedule, y u no cooperate!?

Highlights & Stray Observations

  • Two students and their respective parent(s) accompanied me during the tour. Shree, currently a junior in college and her parents from the East Bay. Megan, six years removed from graduating from VCU and her dad are from Virginia.
  • Your tour guide may or may not be at UC Hastings due to the LEOP program, a progressive admissions program detailed here. Admissions will still dedicate 20% of the incoming class to LEOP students, despite Chancellor and Dean Frank Wu’s mandate to accept less students. Thanks for the tour, Brandon Collins.
  • LEOP students spend a little more time than the non-LEOP peers in their graduating class go through instruction and Saturday study sessions.
  • Visitor’s pass is necessary to entering 200 McAllister/Snodgrass Hall. Don’t be that person whose too cool for a visitor’s pass.
  • UC Hastings recently partnered with UC San Francisco to create a joint JD/MSL program, which intersects law, science, and health policy.
  • Their moot court teams do pretty damn well at competitions. They consistently make out rounds, if not win tournaments outright. If you had debate experience in your high school or undergraduate career, nerd the flock out about Hastings’ rich culture of making moot court dreams come true.


  • Three LexisNexis printer/copiers by the library in Kane Hall are the only ones that print for free. The rest print out documents at 10 cents/page.
  • There a big library with all your studying and production assignment needs. Whether you want to study in a noise-free room or a louder room, the library’s got you covered. When you’re on the tour though, students will notice a disturbance in the force. They smirk and laugh inside about how you’re going to experience law school insanity soon, then go back to studying.
  • Unlike George Washington Law, the library is open to the public during business hours. GW Law doesn’t let you in if you don’t have GW Law ID.
  • Unlike George Washington Law, lockers provided by are centrally located in the basement of Snodgrass Hall. It’s a little dingy but located not too far from the lockers is a small police station manned by SFPD.
  • The bookstore is moving from its original location to somewhere to be determined. Books are being bought online, leaving moot court materials the only thing needed to be sold at the bookstore (maybe).
  • The business center takes care of your printing needs, whether you need a lot of documents or business cards. Don’t forget to ask your tour guide for a business card.
  • SFPD can and will walk you a short distance to either your apartment, car, or public transportation in the gritty, frothing Tenderloin of San Francisco.
By the wrath of Kenny Loggins, stop mentioning anyone's frothing loins!

By the wrath of Kenny Loggins, stop mentioning anyone’s frothing loins!

  • Most of the classrooms look the same, except for the seminar rooms with roundtables.
  • The tour takes you a little further down McAllister in order to visit housing offered to Hastings students. McAllister Tower, known to many as “The Tower.” The gym at The Tower is open to all students, whether or not you live at The Tower.
  • The 23rd floor holds all of the staff offices for every Hastings journal. They also give away free copies of the previous published issue.
  • 24th floor of The Tower is known as the Skylight Room, where you get an amazing 360 degree view of SOMA, Embarcadero, China Basin, AT&T Park, and most of the northeast corner of San Francisco.



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