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The University of California - Berkeley

How this student rated the school
Educational QualityA Faculty AccessibilityA+
Useful SchoolworkB Excess CompetitionD
Academic SuccessB+ Creativity/ InnovationA-
Individual ValueD University Resource UseA
Campus Aesthetics/ BeautyA- FriendlinessB-
Campus MaintenanceB+ Social LifeD+
Surrounding CityB Extra CurricularsB-
Describes the student body as:
Friendly, Arrogant, Closeminded

Describes the faculty as:
Friendly, Helpful, Arrogant, Condescending, Self Absorbed

id='quarter' class='snapshot' style='color: #001397; line-height:80px';float:left;
Quite Bright
Lowest Rating
Excess Competition
Highest Rating
Faculty Accessibility
He cares more about Excess Competition than the average student.
Date: Jan 05 2005
Major: Other (This Major's Salary over time)
Even though I don't particularly like Cal—I still can't say much bad about it other than its sometimes really boring and the girls are ugly, which is often exaggerated, unless you mean personality wise, then there is absolute truth to it. Be aware, this is a semi-sarcastic jab at my friends who always joke about all "ugly" girls having great personalities to make up for their unattractiness—but at Cal, this simply isn't the case. Ugly and bitchy are an uglier combination.

First off, to everyone who bashes Cal for its liberalism; liberalism in the American University is a FACT! Just as ugly girls are a fact at Cal. No matter where you go, there will be at least ONE liberal professor and at least ONE huge liberal student group. Our odious rival across the bay, Stanfurd, is hugely more liberal than Cal ever thinks of being. We have the biggest Republican club in the country, or so I'm told. So blah to you who always call Cal a liberal school.

As for the last negative; Cal gives you so much work, you will find it quite boring at times simply because you are stuck working on a paper on a Friday or Saturday Night. I remember being depressed during my first year because I had few friends and little time to go out or socialize because of the amount of work thrust upon me. Let me iterate: YOU GET USED TO IT! You will get used to having few friends and even less time to spend with them. After your first year, you will probably start to take upper-div classes and these take up far less time, so decide on a major early and stick with it, otherwise you will be stuck in busy-work Lower Divs until your third year. Furthermore, in smaller classes—GET TO KNOW YOUR PROFESSORS! They will be the ones writing your recs for graduate school and jobs.

Also, if you are seeking diversity? Look elsewhere unless diversity means diversity in Asian Americans, who are about 45%-50% of the student populace last I checked. Latinos and Blacks are in short supply and Caucassians are quickly being squeezed out by the Asian supermajority.

Now that I have dispensed the advice; I have the good things here in a laundry list.

1. The academics are top-notch, even if slightly overrated. There are whisperings Cal will no longer be a top tier university in 20 years, but take advantage of the name before it pots!

2. Large number of clubs, fraternities and sororities. You are given like 1-2 hours a week (during the week, weekends are a little different, but you will be spending much of it in the library) of free time in your Freshman year, so take advantage of it—join a club, frat or soro. But don't get into smoking pot and drinking in the dorms, it seems fun at first—but what happens when you are living in an apartment by yourself or with only 1-3 other people doing the same thing over and over again, wasting your life? Seriously, join a club so you always have different people to hang out with.

3. Professors are accessible and INTERESTED in you. I know this sounds like a stretch, but in your upper-div classes; GET TO KNOW YOUR PROFESSORS! If you express interest, the Professors will love you because they are as bored as you of lecturing in classes where no one gives a crap.

4. The library. Though I generally avoid the library like a virulent plague, I have used its massive resources and could not be happier with it. Especially during term paper time. Shortens the amount of work you have to do by reducing the amount of bullsh!tting you have to do.

5. Last bit; the people—once you get through the ranks of ugly and shallow people, you are guarunteed to meet someone amazing. Eventually. Heh.

6. And my last bit of advice: If you are planning on going to Cal? Study what you are interested in, seriously. If you study something because it is popular or makes money, you will be miserable. I study/doubled in American Studies and German. Yes, two completely DISPARATE subject, but I did so because they interested me and to be frank; I'm much happier now than I was when I was trying to be a business major. The "smaller" majors are no less prestigious than their impacted counterparts, you have more free time and you get to relax more because the classes are often easier due to the lack of cutt-throatedness. OH, and another thing: Study abroad—Europe, Asia, South America, India—ANYWHERE! You are young and this may be your last chance to do something like that, so take it and run with it! Even if it is just for a summer.

So, if and when you get into Cal—come and enjoy. It might not be the most fun place (in terms of parties) around, and pretty dead socially, just sit back and enjoy your learning. While you probably waste the fun aspect of the "best" years of your life—you will be far better prepared to tackle the real world than your peers.

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