I was a transfer student and applied to three schools around the bay area. I had friends there, and wanted to go. I also applied to a state school near my hometown as a backup. I had visited Berkeley before and loved the town, and decided to apply there, even though it would be hard to do. Luckily enough, I got into all of them, Berkeley being the best of the bunch, and you don't turn down UC Berkeley!
I chose UC Berkeley because it's one of the best schools in the country, and because it's located in the Bay Area. I considered many likable factors, like its proximity to San Francisco, but ultimately I decided that having a diploma from the #1 public university in the U.S. would always be the right choice for me.
I chose Berkeley because it is a top UC school and is well renowned throughout the country. Additionally, I wanted to attend a big school, with football games, greek life, etc. I wanted the traditional college experience...and that's definitely what I am getting!
The three things that were most important to me in choosing a college were Academics, Proximity to Family, and the area I would be living in. Berkeley is one of the best public schools in the country and has a great English program so it satisfied my criteria for academics. I am very close to my family and have an 8-year-old little brother. I didn't want to miss out on him growing up so I didn't want to move across the country. I am from Sacramento so Berkeley is just far enough away (about a 1.5 hour drive) to feel like I'm on my own, but close enough that I can make it home for birthdays and celebrations. I also wanted to be happy where I was living and I LOVE the Bay Area. There are so many things to do here and we have such a great, calm, friendly culture so Berkeley was a no-brainer for me!
The prestige and the rich history of Berkeley. I also thought it would be an inspiring and exciting place to life.
I decided to come to Cal for several reasons. Firstly, my major is English, and the Berkeley graduate school of English is ranked top in the country by U.S. News and World Report. The graduate students and faculty have a great deal of involvement with the undergraduate program, so the opportunities here are unmatched. When I toured the campus, I fell in love with the atmosphere and the overall layout. It's smaller than sprawling campuses like UCSD, but retains an open feel. You can enroll in classes back-to-back and have enough time to make it from one to the other if you walk quickly. I'm also something of a legacy student; my grandfather, uncle, stepfather, and stepsister all went to Cal and I have another uncle who is a faculty member in one of the other graduate schools. I've looked up to my grandfather and my uncle since childhood and consider it an accomplishment to study at the same institution that they did. Furthermore, my stepfather has been an extremely positive influence in my life and I can't think of a better way to take advantage of the opportunities he's given me than to obtain a degree from his alma mater. I'll hopefully be able to make the lot of them proud. Lastly, as a California resident, I felt the need to take advantage of the UC system at in-state tuition costs. UC Berkeley has been ranked by several systems as comparable to the ivy league schools of the East Coast, and by US News as the top public university in the US. The only other school I even really considered was UCLA, and I'm not exactly an "LA" type of girl. I grew up in the Bay Area and it's a great place to live. I'm far enough from home for independence, but close enough to be in frequent contact.
As shallow as it is, prestige. Berkeley's one of the best universities in the world. My experience here hasn't proved otherwise. The only comparable campus I was accepted to was UCLA, and I didn't want to live in LA.
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