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The University of California - Santa Barbara

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I came into UCSB miserable that I wouldn'tNot so bright
I came into UCSB miserable that I wouldn't be attending my prestigious East Coast colleges because of cost, and after a year, I can really attest to the greatness of this school. It certainly has its negatives, which include some uninspiring members of the student body who simply come here or (more often) transfer here to party, some large class sizes, and the lack of things to do in the surrounding area if you don't have a car. But besides that, my education has been pretty great, and I've only finished one year of GEs. I've yet to have a professor who hasn't innovated greatly in their field, and many have had previous posts at Berkeley, USC, and UCLA, and chose to come to SB because of the beautiful location and great faculty. For a school that isn't at all known or recognized for its accomplishments in the humanities (besides sociology), one minute of googling "ucsb political science faculty" will prove that nearly every professor has received their doctorate from Stanford, Berkeley, Columbia, Princeton, etc. I'm studying Global Studies and was initially scared that UCSB is an engineering/science skill ill-fit for my major, but I've yet to have a class that wasn't incredibly insightful.

I occasionally struggled my freshman year with finding a good group of friends, since it seems really dependent on getting lucky with your freshman hall or joining greek life (oh-greek life is basically comprised of the most immature people of UCSB, and most other schools), but I've found a pretty good amount of interesting, smart, and friendly people.

The party reputation, as well as the danger of our community, are completely blown out of proportion and sensationalized by the media to get viewers/make headlines. I've attended many parties at SB, and many at Berkeley and UCLA when visiting friends, and I can honestly find little difference in the craziness of the party life. I've been at parties at SB where people discuss quantum mechanics over shots, and parties at UCLA where girls are doing cocaine off a bathroom sink. Berkeley frat parties are wilder than anything I've ever experienced at SB, since our past reputation has led to very strict enforcements on music that feel like curfews.

The thing I struggled with the most at SB has got to be the amount of pretentious people who like to make comments about the school's "inferiority" when compared to UCLA and Cal. These people tend not to do any research, and I can't find any tangible benefits to attending the more prestigious UCs, other than maybe a more competitive and driven student body. UCSB has some people who go on to Columbia and even Harvard law, Upenn for their MBA, and USC and UCLA for med school, but there are also a substantial amount of people without much drive or direction, and it's a wonder how those people were admitted. Then again, at any UC you're going to get some uninspiring and some inspiring people, since the quality of CA high schools varies so much. The valedictorian at one school may fail at Berkeley while the B student at another may have thrived there but never got in. Rare, but it happens.

Anyways, I didn't have the easiest freshman year and still find myself contemplating transferring to UCLA since all my friends attend there, but ultimately, UCSB is a beautiful, lovely community and place to attend school. Contrary to the beliefs of many suburban mothers and pretentious Ivy League grads, it is not a "joke" institution, and an SB degree is respected by academics and grad schools everywhere. Look at the Yale Law school incoming class profile. the three UCs from which students were admitted? UCLA, Berkeley, and UCSB. UCSB is the first biggest feeder school to UCLA Law, and I personally know two graduates headed to Georgetown for grad school next fall. UCSB will get you where you want to go (unless you want to be a Wall St mogul/investment banker-though some grads do work at Morgan Stanley!), and will give you a very enriching experience as you get there. It's become increasingly difficult to get in, and UCSB now accepts only 32% of applicants. The Chancellor is well aware of the school's reputation, and is working actively to make the school more selective and more safe. It's a great investment.

1st Year Female -- Class 2018
Education Quality: A, Perceived Campus Safety: C+
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Quite BrightBiology
Hey Gauchos! If you're struggling to pay for college, check out this Youtube video.
1st Year Male -- Class 2019
University Resource Use/ spending: A+, Faculty Accessibility: B
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I love this school so much! I didQuite BrightSociology
I love this school so much! I did not plan on going to this school, nor was it on my list of choices (or top choices at that). I did not think that I would enjoy the school and I actually dreaded coming but now that I am here, I feel at home. It is refreshing to go to a school where there are so many other intelligent individuals who are simply laid back and want to learn. I would suggest that you discipline yourself in setting aside time explicitly for studying. This place is so beautiful that all you want to do is soak up the sun and spend the day at the beach. Be prepared for rigorous academics and a whole lot of fun. This place will steal your heart!
1st Year Female -- Class 2018
Education Quality: A+, Campus Maintenance: A-
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The University of California - Santa Barbara
The University of California - Santa Barbara
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