UCLA Screenwriting - Housing, transport, visa etc.

louweaver

Member
hey - congratulations to everyone. can't wait to meet you all in the fall. i'm 40, so if anyone has questions about coping with senility while in grad school, please don't hesitate to ask. i don't have anywhere near the interesting personal stories or resumes you guys have. right now, i pretty much just have sciatica. but i'm very much looking toward UCLA. and best of luck to the people still making decisions! that sounds like a good problem to have. better than sciatica, anyway. i'll stop now.
 

Zeno

Active Member
hey - congratulations to everyone. can't wait to meet you all in the fall. i'm 40, so if anyone has questions about coping with senility while in grad school, please don't hesitate to ask. i don't have anywhere near the interesting personal stories or resumes you guys have. right now, i pretty much just have sciatica. but i'm very much looking toward UCLA. and best of luck to the people still making decisions! that sounds like a good problem to have. better than sciatica, anyway. i'll stop now.
I'm 44 and applied and interviewed @ AFI (Screenwriting), Columbia University (Screenwriting/Directing), and UCLA (Production/Directing). So far, got into Art Center College of Design (Film MFA). Nevertheless, I feel your pain. Ha. I heard that there was a Columbia University Screenwriting/Directing grad student in her late sixties the year before last so it's all good. Encouraging that us "old timers" are getting some oxygen in these programs.
 
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daveymd

New Member
Thanks again for the support and encouragement! We've got a few more friends and family in LA than in Austin, but have really enjoyed our time in both cities when we've been out to visit. Hearing that Austin is a tight-knit, friendly artistic environment is definitely encouraging if we wind up out there. It feels like a can't-go-wrong-either-way scenario, which should alleviate the stress, but so far really, really hasn't. Thanks again, and good luck! :)
 

Zeno

Active Member
Thanks again for the support and encouragement! We've got a few more friends and family in LA than in Austin, but have really enjoyed our time in both cities when we've been out to visit. Hearing that Austin is a tight-knit, friendly artistic environment is definitely encouraging if we wind up out there. It feels like a can't-go-wrong-either-way scenario, which should alleviate the stress, but so far really, really hasn't. Thanks again, and good luck! :)
You too and if you have friends and family in LA you should be just as fine socially as in Austin. Sounds like you are pretty familiar with the vibe with both places. I'm referring to the folks who go without a network of folks to LA as I did years ago. I too have a base of supportive people in LA now so much better scenario this time around if selected. Anyway, listen to your inner voice and you'll make the right decision.
 
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SonnyP

New Member
Fellow midwesterner! Where are you from?
Oklahoma City, so I'd say more mid-south haha. Where are you from?

Storytime: I am 31, working in and around local the industry for 8 years. I applied to UCLA once before in 2012, got an interview but didn't get in. So I took the money I had saved for grad school and made a feature film. Learned a ton from that, started a writers group here, got married to an amazing woman who told me I needed to apply again. So here I am. I also got accepted in to Columbia for Dir/Scr and haven't heard back after my interview for Chapman producing yet. Officially rejected from USC producing and unofficially from NYU (never heard anything at all after applying). I am super excited, just trying to figure out the best fit now. :)
 

Kira

MFA TV Writer @UCLA
Staff member
FilmSchool.org Writer
UCLA
I'm very excited to meet such an interesting and diverse cohort! Really looking forward to meeting you all in the fall :)

@SonnyP I'm pretty close - Dallas. Congrats on Columbia as well!
 

Kira

MFA TV Writer @UCLA
Staff member
FilmSchool.org Writer
UCLA

louweaver

Member
hey Zeno - thanks for making me feel better. someone in their 60s?! wow. i'm from ny as well, so if you decide on columbia, let me know. best of luck everyone!
 
Oklahoma City, so I'd say more mid-south haha. Where are you from?

Storytime: I am 31, working in and around local the industry for 8 years. I applied to UCLA once before in 2012, got an interview but didn't get in. So I took the money I had saved for grad school and made a feature film. Learned a ton from that, started a writers group here, got married to an amazing woman who told me I needed to apply again. So here I am. I also got accepted in to Columbia for Dir/Scr and haven't heard back after my interview for Chapman producing yet. Officially rejected from USC producing and unofficially from NYU (never heard anything at all after applying). I am super excited, just trying to figure out the best fit now. :)
I'm originally from Wisconsin, so about as midwestern as it gets haha. Very cool story! Hope to see you in the fall :)
 

Zeno

Active Member
hey Zeno - thanks for making me feel better. someone in their 60s?! wow. i'm from ny as well, so if you decide on columbia, let me know. best of luck everyone!
Congrats, hopefulstudent. And, yes, louweaver, that woman at Columbia University was a grad in her 60's. It's never too late to do great things. Most of these schools we're applying to are adamant about people with life experience (and, therefore, stories to tell) in addition to talent, a voice, and, perhaps, some technique. Def keep you posted about Columbia as I just found out I got waitlisted. Not ideal but not bad either. These applicant pools are pretty dynamic so I can only assume a spot will open up. I'm also waiting to hear from UCLA production/directing program and AFI screenwriting program. Kind of tired of east coast weather so a west coast option might be nice. Anyway, all looking good. Where you looking to go and how have things been with your potential schools?
 

louweaver

Member
thanks again, zeno - that's great to hear. i'm with you on the weather. hang in there - you're absolutely right about spots opening up. thank you for asking - i was accepted into ucla MFA screenwriting (the only place i want to go) but it's looking like i won't be able to make it out there this fall. i have three young kids, and pulling them out of school doesn't seem like the best move right now. still trying to find a way to make it work, but we'll see.
for what it's worth, my cousin went to AFI grad for editing, and loved the program. i think they've been very helpful about setting him up with job interviews since graduation as well. i don't know how much contact he had with the screenwriting program, but i can ask.
best of luck - hope it all works it out.
PS - i've heard that "no one gets into columbia on their first try" - a different cousin applied to columbia's graduate theater (or theater management?) program and was told that straight up. have you found that to be the case? thanks again!
 

bimshine

Member
Can we talk dollars and sense for a second? Did the prices go up for this year? Are scholarships common? I called the admissions office and they said we apply for scholarship in the fall. I think that means we sign up for the sticker price and then hope for the best, but I'm hoping I'm wrong. Does anybody have good info that will be useful by April 15?
 
Can we talk dollars and sense for a second? Did the prices go up for this year? Are scholarships common? I called the admissions office and they said we apply for scholarship in the fall. I think that means we sign up for the sticker price and then hope for the best, but I'm hoping I'm wrong. Does anybody have good info that will be useful by April 15?
This is something I've been actively looking into as well. So far, it seems there are many more scholarship/fellowship opportunities going into our second year, because as you noted, the scholarship deadline for this upcoming fall has already passed (passed about 6 months ago).

That said, I don't think you'll be paying sticker price if you're willing to work for it. It seems like there are a lot of opportunities for reader/TA positions, which provide fairly substantial tuition remission if you work 10 hours a week. This is what I'm counting on.

Additionally, after talking with the Residency office for quite a while yesterday, it's very easy - almost too easy - to be considered in state for the second year. Essentially, if you're financially independent (which you're automatically considered if you're over 24), live in California for 366 days prior to your second year (they allow 6 weeks of out-of-state travel within that time), and get your driver's license, vehicle registration, and voter registration switched over to California within the first quarter, you will receive in-state tuition your second year. In-state tuition is nearly half that of out-of-state, so that substantially brings the cost down. It looks like you're from New York, so this should be a great option for you. Of course, this is a bit trickier if you're under 24 or an international student.

So yeah, you'll probably be closer to sticker price for your first year, unless you snag a reader/TA position, but the second year should be well under that. I think there have been a couple other posts concerning financial aid/scholarships on this forum that you should check out as well. Hope this helps!
 

bimshine

Member
This is something I've been actively looking into as well. So far, it seems there are many more scholarship/fellowship opportunities going into our second year, because as you noted, the scholarship deadline for this upcoming fall has already passed (passed about 6 months ago).

That said, I don't think you'll be paying sticker price if you're willing to work for it. It seems like there are a lot of opportunities for reader/TA positions, which provide fairly substantial tuition remission if you work 10 hours a week. This is what I'm counting on.

Additionally, after talking with the Residency office for quite a while yesterday, it's very easy - almost too easy - to be considered in state for the second year. Essentially, if you're financially independent (which you're automatically considered if you're over 24), live in California for 366 days prior to your second year (they allow 6 weeks of out-of-state travel within that time), and get your driver's license, vehicle registration, and voter registration switched over to California within the first quarter, you will receive in-state tuition your second year. In-state tuition is nearly half that of out-of-state, so that substantially brings the cost down. It looks like you're from New York, so this should be a great option for you. Of course, this is a bit trickier if you're under 24 or an international student.

So yeah, you'll probably be closer to sticker price for your first year, unless you snag a reader/TA position, but the second year should be well under that. I think there have been a couple other posts concerning financial aid/scholarships on this forum that you should check out as well. Hope this helps!
Thanks for this advice. I have the numbers quoted at 39k out of state and 27k in state. Is that correct, to your knowledge?
 

Bruin17

New Member
In state tuition and fees should be about 17k not including books and living expenses. Log onto myucla and check out your award letter.
 

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