The JD and MBA degrees are complementary. Lawyers regularly provide legal services that require an understanding of business and management principles and issues. In addition, lawyers use business skills to start and manage law practices. UC Hastings offers a rich array of business courses to all JD candidates. However, some students wish to obtain an additional degree from a business school. This page provides information regarding UC Hastings College of the Law’s relationships with domestic and foreign business schools. Prospective and current students can learn here about opportunities to earn multiple degrees concurrently, thereby shortening the amount of time necessary to earn both a JD and a business degree. In addition, current students can learn here about opportunities to obtain a degree from a business school after graduation from UC Hastings.
Concurrent JD/MBA Degree: UC Hastings and UC Berkeley Haas School of Business
UC Hastings has had a concurrent degree arrangement with UC Berkeley Haas School of Business (“Haas”) since 1976. Earning two degrees concurrently lets you make the most of your time at UC Hastings, and allows qualifying students to earn both a JD and an MBA in just four years, rather than the five years it would normally take to earn the two degrees serially in the absence of a concurrent degree arrangement.
Summary of the Program
The JD degree program at UC Hastings is normally a six-semester (three-year) program. The MBA degree program at Haas is normally a four-semester (two-year) degree program. Students earning the two degrees concurrently may earn the JD from UC Hastings in five semesters and the MBA from Haas in three semesters, reducing the overall time needed to obtain both degrees by one year’s worth of credits. For UC Hastings students, the reduction in the number of units required to obtain the JD results from the recognition of specific, pre-approved classes taken at Haas as counting toward the JD, up to a maximum of 12 units.
To concurrently obtain a JD from UC Hastings and an MBA from Haas, students must be accepted to each institution under its separate admissions procedures. Applications may be made to each institution at the same time, or after being admitted to either one of the two institutions. To be eligible to participate in the concurrent degree arrangement with Haas, current UC Hastings students should ideally apply to Haas during their 1L year, and must be admitted to Haas by no later than the end of their 2L year. In addition, once accepted, to be eligible to continue with the concurrent degree arrangement, UC Hastings students must successfully complete the 1L curriculum with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5, complete the Request for Approval Form from the Records Office, and receive approval of a study plan from the Associate Academic Dean. Only credits from Haas that are pre-approved pursuant to this process may be applied toward the JD, and, then, only if the UC Hastings student successfully completes the Haas degree requirements.
Students participating in the concurrent degree arrangement between UC Hastings and Haas must meet each institution’s separate standards for continued enrollment and for conferral of a degree. Each student is individually responsible for meeting those requirements, including by obtaining the necessary pre-approvals for credit transfers. To earn both degrees concurrently, students must complete 117 units total, 43 in business and 74 in law, which equates to five semesters at UC Hastings and three semesters at Haas. Spending five semesters at UC Hastings and three at Haas allows students to avoid paying fees at both institutions for the same semester. However, it means that students will carry a higher-than-normal unit load during their three Haas semesters.
In addition to the basic benefit of earning the JD and MBA concurrently in less time than it would require to earn the two degrees serially, students who participate in the concurrent degree arrangement between UC Hastings and Haas obtain, among other benefits, access to both institution’s career service offices during the time period that they are pursuing the concurrent degree.
Resources on Campus to Assist Interested Students
Prospective students who know they would like to obtain the UC Hastings JD and the Haas MBA concurrently should notify Professor Morris A. Ratner, who coordinates JD/MBA programming, by emailing him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Current students interested in exploring the possibility of concurrently earning an MBA should contact Professor Ratner as early as practicable in their law school career, preferably before the end of their 1L year.
Opportunities to Earn Course Credit at Business Schools Other than Haas
Even in the absence of a concurrent degree arrangement, and pursuant to UC Hastings’ Academic Regulations, students may apply up to six credits earned at a business school toward the JD degree, if specified conditions are met. Please see Academic Regulations and Other Rules Applicable to Students (2013-2014) (“Academic Regulations”), Section VII (“Credit for Work at Other Schools”), including Regulation 2213. This means that students may be able to obtain credit for some business school course work, even if the course is taken at a business school other than Haas, and even if the coursework is not taken as a student-created concurrent degree program. Additionally, students can create their own concurrent degree programs with business schools other than Haas, by obtaining in advance the approval of Associate Academic Dean Heather Field; if a student-designed program is approved by Dean Field and is designated as a concurrent degree program for that student, then the student can transfer up to 12 pre-approved units from the business school as counting toward the JD.
After the JD: Obtaining a Business Degree
After graduation, students may independently obtain additional advanced degrees from business schools, including business schools with which UC Hastings maintains informal relationships to facilitate admission of our current students or alumni. For example, Presidio Graduate School (“Presidio”) offers UC Hastings students and graduates special consideration, including a waiver of the application fee and the GMAT requirement. In addition, Presidio counts years of legal education and practice toward the requirement of prior business experience. UC Hastings has fostered and continues to foster informal relationships with other domestic and international business schools that may be attractive to UC Hastings alumni. For more information about these opportunities, please contact Professor Ratner at email@example.com.
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