Hastings is a magnificent university in the heart of San Francisco. San Francisco is one of the most beautiful cities of the United States. It’s good to live in California especially in San Francisco because you are in a city with human dimensions and you can feel easily at home. San Francisco is a very lively town both during the day and at night. Every district is different. You will find a multitude of unique atmospheres that will allow you to discover a lot of different cultures, and different people.
Furthermore, it is good to know that Hastings works closely together with other universities. Hastings is bound with universities such as Stanford, Berkeley and UCLA. The professors teach not only in their own universities but also in the others so you can have professors from several universities. This enriches your education, which is priceless because you ‘travel intellectually’ between several universities. Another advantage of Hastings is that you are paying a reasonable price for a good education compared to the astronomical price of the other universities. Hastings is the third university in the region of San Francisco after Stanford and Berkeley. It is the university that will allow you to realize your dreams.
Studying abroad is a formidable experience that will mark you forever both in your personal and professional life. It gives you a new perspective on studying, living, but especially on thinking. Furthermore, it offers you new possibilities for your career and several opportunities. The law seems to be a hermetic field for the exterior person. Today, it is difficult to believe that there is no interaction between the various types of law. You will find out that the Civil law countries and the Common law countries have so many differences but also a lot of resemblances.
Today, society asks from law students to be more and more successful and knowledgeable. The possibility to succeed in reaching this level of excellence is to do an LL.M. during one year abroad. The University of Hastings is one of the ways to succeed in building bridges between your objectives, your dreams and the reality of the world of working. Nowadays we should not forget that the competition is wild in law. It is always necessary to keep in mind that the more trump cards in our game, the more we can realize our dreams. But you will say to me “Yes, sure! An LL.M. in the United States, it is not available to everybody." I would answer that you are partially right but it is necessary to know that several solutions exist to finance your year, and not only a student loan. Both Hastings’ tuition grants and national and private scholarships are there to help us to realize our dreams.
Law Studies in France and in the United States
Like me, you followed a multitude of classes to gain the legal bases to argue in French law. Sincerely, how many lessons did you enjoy during these last years? I think that we can count them on the fingers of one hand. Moreover, there is a big gap between what we learn at the university and working in the real legal world. Maybe you already experienced it by doing internships.
It is true that your first opportunity in studying in the United States is to improve your English. To be sincere, your English is going to improve without you realizing it. Little by little you will dream in English, then you will think in English, and finally English will become your second language without noticing it! It is fabulous because you do not have to spend hours in front of English grammar books to achieve this.
At Hastings the university world is totally different than in France. It is necessary to live it personally to understand it. Everything is different: not only the classes but also the way of teaching, of learning and of supervising you. First of all, let me speak about classes because you do not come to do a LLM only to improve your English or your CV. You also come with the idea to learn another legal system and to discover new subjects. The first time when they said to me at Hastings, "You need to choose your classes," I did not really understand what this means. More than one hundred classes are proposed to you every semester. There are so many possibilities of opening your spirit towards new subjects. Nevertheless, it means you will have to work. I can assure you that when you take pleasure in the morning by getting up to go to classes that you chose, which are not imposed because you are in some fields, it changes your life. Every class presents new challenges.
Let me speak about the classes themselves. You know those hours spent on the benches of the French faculty where you think, "Why am I here? Why am I doing these law studies?” At Hastings this will never happen. The classes are not annoying. You will not hear a professor give a monologue for hours. An interaction between the students and the professors exists. Yes I confirm it! It is a dream. Law classes can be fascinating and will push you to think. As you probably know, law professors everywhere repeat, "You are here to learn how to think.” However, how can they expect us to think and to develop reasoning if we can never engage during classes with them? At Hastings, the professors make us think aloud. It is another way to teach, much more educational and more beneficial for us. They push us to ask real questions and allow us to understand the law in its daily application.
One of the extraordinary aspects of this university is that they do not abandon you after your year of the LL.M., as they do in France. Here, there are services for everything in order to support students during and after their studies. They help you to find an employment in accordance with what you want. This is precious assistance. It is necessary to recognize this as exceptional today. Moreover, you can call the career service during all your life. I promise you to be in this university will change your life and offer you to have gold in your hand.