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The University of California - Santa Barbara

How this student rated the school
Educational QualityC Faculty AccessibilityB
Useful SchoolworkD+ Excess CompetitionA
Academic SuccessD Creativity/ InnovationD-
Individual ValueC University Resource UseA-
Campus Aesthetics/ BeautyB+ FriendlinessB
Campus MaintenanceA Social LifeF
Surrounding CityC- Extra CurricularsC
Describes the student body as:

Describes the faculty as:

Not so bright
Lowest Rating
Social Life
Highest Rating
Excess Competition
He cares more about Social Life than the average student.
Date: Apr 30 2007
Major: English (This Major's Salary over time)
UCSB is a miserable place for anyone interested in a liberal-arts type education. Most of the students are apathetic to anything to do with learning, and the faculty (especially those teaching undergraduate classes) is frequently lackluster or disinterested in their curriculum. The primary interests of the average UCSB student are, depending on inclination, drinking and smoking pot. The social life is great if all you're interested in doing is wandering around the couple blocks of beat-up houses that constitute Isla Vista trying to lure drunk girls back to your pad. It cannot be emphasized enough: at UCSB there are no good options for students who are not willing to buy into a bro mentality.

The town of Santa Barbara is boring and too expensive for most college students. Goleta is pleasantly suburban. For all intents and purposes, however, there is little incentive to leave Isla Vista. When I lived in the dorms, I could go weeks without leaving. Isla Vista itself, while featuring a pretty awesome food co-op and well stocked independent video store, has nothing else worthy of note. Even Freebird's, the well-known burrito shop, is about on par with Chipotle.

Added to this whole mix is the impression I get that the entire class is becoming, well, less cool. A school that caters to bros who have received good grades, which means lots of really toolish characters with poor social skills being abrasive and stupid. These are the kids in high school whose parents made them work hard, but you can only stretch such limited capacity so far. The situation is pathetic: a whole gaggle of nitwits trying to prove themselves to each other. If that description reminded you of the general nature of frat culture, it must be added that ALL culture at UCSB is roughly speaking frat culture, to the extent that fewer people actually need to participate in Greek life because it is recreated with less emphasis on fake charity events and image pumping on a regular basis in the houses of Del Playa. I don't mean to say that only an idiot would like UCSB, as that is clearly not the case—however, being an idiot certainly helps. Bottom line is that if your grades were good enough to get you into UCSB, you have no business going there.

questionHere's the question I have though: if you personally have the drive to do well and make use of your education, would this school be a good choice? Even if other students don't have the drive, my main concern is myself (as self-centered as that may sound).
responseI was the one who originally posted this, and I realize that I am probably very late in responding to this question. I think the answer is that it partially depends on the department. For instance, if you're serious about engineering, UCSB has a lot more resources than most schools. If you're interested in liberal arts curriculum, however, you could certainly do much better. I mean, with drive, you could make something of yourself at UCSB, but there are tons of other colleges out there that cater to more interested students, and I think you'll find that having even halfway respectable peers is a breath of fresh air. I transferred to a small liberal arts college, and while it hasn't been ideal, there's a lot more stimulating discourse and the professors are much more personally involved than at UCSB. I mean, why settle for less?
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The University of California - Santa Barbara
The University of California - Santa Barbara
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