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The University of California San Diego

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My experience at this school during the twoQuite BrightPsychology
My experience at this school during the two years I was here might be aptly characterized as psychological torture. I arrived filled with enthusiasm, eager to learn and meet new people. I leave bitter and mean, spirit crushed, hoping to God that with enough time I can erase this place from my memory and get on with life. The students here were the most miserable and hateful group of human beings I've ever encountered. I don't know what it was--I guess I didn't fit the UCSD aesthetic--but their behavior towards me was beyond repugnant. I recall encountering several students from some of my classes out and about and giving them a friendly little smile, only to be met with scowls and a huffy attitude. Most students will avert their eyes as they walk on the campus and have an aura of wariness/fragility/anger about them that makes for a very awkward social environment. There is this strange sense that one is doing something wrong or offending others by virtue of simply existing.

The school is deeply segregated by race. At one point I overheard a white girl talking to her friend about "those f***ing Asians." The whites hate the Asians, the Asians hate the whites. They both hate the other groups. I think a lot of this racial animosity is responsible for the churlish behavior and the hostile atmosphere that permeates the campus. There are also a lot of big, burly, immature young men here who get off on intimidating those of more diminutive stature, who in turn attempt to bully the women and each other. This in conjunction with the military jets flying overhead at all hours of the day leaves one feeling he's in 1930s Germany rather than at a prestigious California university in the 21st century. On more than one occasion I saw a poor young girl walking to her next class with tears in her eyes. Fiat lux? Definitely not an environment conducive to enlightenment.

I'd like to say the academic side of things was a little bit better, but this too was rather dismal. I had about four professors who were great, intelligent, grounded human beings. The rest were either status seekers who enjoyed having a captive audience to bloviate at (hey, professor, why don't you "unpack" this!) or couldn't give an impromptu lecture if their lives depended on it. The pace of the coursework is relentless, but for most classes you'd be better off just studying the topics on your own. Nearly all of my work was read and graded by teaching assistants who knew very little about the subjects being taught. Assuming you aren't shut out of interaction as I was, if you are at all cultured or socially aware, you are going to have a tough time finding people to talk to. No discussions of politics, films, ideas, etc. Lots of gossip, talk about the minutiae of schoolwork, relationships, careers, and other inanities, though.As the capstone to this lovely experience, my final quarter was marked by a near daily onslaught of dirty looks and shoulder checks. Caveat lector: If you have even a shred of human decency or an ounce of verve in you, do not come here. This place is a deep, dark abyss that will slowly but gradually suck all the energy out of you and sap your will to live. If you're a sociopath, though, you'll fit in just fine.

2nd Year Male -- Class 2017
Education Quality: C, Faculty Accessibility: F
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The advisory here is terrible.BrightBiology
The advisory here is terrible. You should never go to advising expecting clarity. Advising is there to treat you like a child and avoid answering your questions.

Professors for GE classes don't care about their students, plain and simple. Their choice in TAs is even worse.You pay a lot of money to go to UCSD for them to squander all of it, take away student parking, and completely ignore the student body. It's sad that this is considered a good school.

1st Year Male -- Class 2019
Education Quality: B, Individual Value: F
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As an international student, I never felt IBrightBiology
As an international student, I never felt I was part of the school. I even feel like the school is not even trying to be friendly to us and all my friends feel the same way. If you have some problems going on in your schoolwork, the best situation you'd end up with would be you having no clue what's going on and no body cared to help you out until you figure it out yourself; normally you end up with getting an F, getting a really bad GPA, or getting suspended and as a result dropping out of school. No school stuff cares about you and no professors either. Only a tiny portion of all the professors here are excellent at their teaching jobs as teachers; most of them only enjoys whatever professional achievements they are known for and don't give a crap about their students. Some of them have serious attitude problem, and most of them don't have a clue what they're talking about in class. Only if you're lucky you'd end up with good professors, in my case I've met no more than three in my four-year experience here. They're inspiring, they're passionate, they encourage you to challenge yourself and constantly make progresses; but sadly those professors are normally chairs of the department, they're busy and therefore only teaches a tiny portion of the classes. Also, even if those teachers are not that good at their jobs, they're making their class super competitive, and pre-med students here are super good at that. Note that you're going to meet the nerdiest students ever in this school. Be prepared to get f*cked if you're not a scientist material.
4th Year Female -- Class 1920
Collaboration/Competitive: A+, Education Quality: F
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