First Person Accounts (FPA’s) are meant to provide a first-hand account of Indian graduates who have pursued, or are pursuing, a post-graduate course (LL.M. or otherwise) from different universities across the world.

Saraswati Iyer is a 2016 LLM graduate from the California Western Law School (CWSL), and is currently working in the US, focusing on the field of immigration law. Saraswati decided to enrol for the LLM two years after graduating with a law degree from MS University in Baroda. In this FPA, she discusses her reasons for applying for an LLM, her experiences at CWSL and a lot more.

Saraswati Iyer is a 2016 LLM graduate from the California Western Law School (
Saraswati Iyer

How did you go about selecting where to apply for an LLM? And what got you to narrow down on CWSL?

I considered multiple different factors during the application process. The location of the school, the background of the faculty members, bar exam and employment opportunities afterward. And of course, the course fees was also important.

CWSL was the perfect fit considering the reputed faculty and the overall cost of the program.

Any advice on the LLM application itself? How much time do you think one requires for the application process?

I would advise everyone to start early as every college has different timelines and different requirements. Identifying the right school for you is the most important part of the application process.

Once you know which school/schools you would like to apply to, ensure you are able to convey your fitment with the school culture through your SOP. I would recommend setting aside enough time to prepare all the required documents.

The CWSL admissions team is extremely helpful and will guide all applicants through the process.

Did you apply for/receive financial aid?

I did not apply for financial aid but received a partial waiver on the tuition fees considering my background.

How was the LLM experience at CWSL? Looking back, what were some of the highlights of the course?

It was a great experience, mixed with both learning and fun. I look back and think of every single aspect of the program and the culture, and now see how it added immense value to my experience overall.

Interacting with the faculty members and the admissions staff through casual conversation over breakfast or lunch helped me learn so much more than just classroom learning.

You are currently working in the US, in fact with a CWSL alum – how easy or difficult do you think it is for the international LLM graduate to find employment in the US?

The alumni network is a great place to start to find the right job opportunities for you. That is how I was also able to find employment with an alum. Being an international student obviously comes with certain restrictions so it is never too early to start.

Lastly, any advice for the Indian law graduate who may be considering a master’s abroad?

Consider the holistic course program offering in making your decision.


(This interview was first published here)


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