University of California-Santa Barbara Top Questions

What is the stereotype of students at your school? Is this stereotype accurate?


The stereotype is that we party hard...and it's true. Halloween in IV is unlike any party you've ever experienced. But UCSB students are also dedicated, motivated, and smart. We party hard, but we also study hard.


UCSB definitely has a stereotype as a "party school," but there are parties at every college; with the exception of a couple crazy weekend each year (Halloween, for one), I think the average student here has a relatively normal social life with respect to other universities. It would be a mistake to think the primary student experience here is partying. Our academics are world-class, and the amazing climate leads to a really active, vibrant student body. Your college experience will be what you make of it, and UCSB has great opportunities to have an amazing time, whatever that means for you.


The typical stereotype for students at UCSB are people that like to party hard but also study hard at the same time. Students are known for getting their work done during the day so that they can have fun at night. Our campus is also diverse with a range of ethnicities and everyone is very accepting.


The stereotype of a typical UCSB student is prominently party animals. Known as one of the best party schools in the US, this reputation has been passed onto the students that study here. Although many students at UCSB do their fair share of partying, the majority do not. Also, the students who do party at UCSB, for the most part, are still quite good students, as you have to be to get in. Overall I would say that the UCSB student stereotype is not accurate because it is greatly over exaggerated.


The stereotype of students at UCSB is that all we ever do is party, like class is an option and studying never gets done because we live by the beach! But in fact students at UCSB study incredibly hard and the professors expect our students to study and attend class if they want to do well. On the weekends, yes, our students know how to have a good time but that's after spending hours in the library, or dragging our books to the beach. UCSB students worked hard to get here, and they work even harder to continue doing well here.


UCSB has a stereotype of everyone being heavy "partiers." honestly, it seems this way but really it's not entirely true. Half of Isla Vista (the college town connected to the UCSB campus) is comprised of Sbcc students (community college) which makes the town more crazy than it would be if it were just UCSB students. Although UCSB has the party stereotype, there are many students that do not arty excessively and many who do not even drink. Also, everyone who got into UCSB are smart and very focused on school so although the weekends may be full of parties, UCSB students "party" responsibly because they care about school and put a lot of effort into schoolwork and studying.


Many people consider UC Santa Barbara to be a school populated mainly by sorority girls and surfer guys. It's true that there are many sororities and fraternities as well as many people who enjoy the beach (It's a major draw for our school!). But there are also so many other "kinds" of people and organizations one can become involved in - the Environmental Affairs board, ethnic-based clubs, etc. You definitely don't have to be a Greek to have a great time at UC Santa Barbara nor do you have to party all the time - though a great party is usually right around the corner!


UCSB is a party school.


I'd say that from an outsider's perspective, UC Santa Barbara students are often viewed as a collective group of smart, engaged students who also happen to enjoy having fun. There is a strong stereotype that people seem to associate with UC Santa Barbara, along the lines of “Oh ya, Santa Barbara, that’s a crazy party school isn’t it?” and usually mention Isla Vista somewhere in the matter. While to some extent that may be true and I won’t deny the fact that UCSB kids know how to play, they also know how to work really, really hard to do well in school. It's a matter of balance, and this party reputation does not take away from the fact that it is well-known that Santa Barbara offers a superior education and that students take advantage of this. What with the beautiful weather, exceptional location on the beach, and conglomerate community of college students, the fun-having is also concentrated to a small area, known as Isla Vista, and therefore a very visible target, not to mention a Halloween destination, for many people who aren’t students at UC Santa Barbara. There are also the usual stereotypes of Santa Barbara being a school of surfers, rich kids, white people, pretty people, etc. and yes, the location perhaps encourages all of the above to come to UCSB. But it not limited to these stereotypes and not representative of the whole. The reputation for pretty students, both male and female, is often impressively true, and there are many surfers floating around campus. They are not an anomaly, but they are not the majority either. UC Santa Barbara has the vibe of a school sitting on the beach, blessed with some amazing weather year-round, and this undoubtedly influences the lifestyle and attitude of students there, but it is absolutely not a crowd of identical people. There is a lot of diversity and campus activity, and the desire to do well is infectious, especially as you get older and start to realize future plans and appreciate the quality of learning found at UC Santa Barbara. It is perhaps easy to get distracted, but it's all about learning discipline, and the stereotypes, though perhaps somewhat true, are balanced by hard work and, if anything, promote the happy environment that makes so many UCSB students feel blessed to be right where they are.


The first question I--and probably many others--got asked the second we announced the college we were attending? "Isn't that a part school?" Here at UCSB, it's not hard to see the vast amounts of alcohol surrounding the campus and student lifestyle. But people fail to see the rest of the school buried underneath the metaphorical red cup mountain. Is UCSB a party school? Well, is any school not? Yes, some students party here. But the fact is that if you take over 20,000 young students and push them into a beachfront mecca, people will party. Does that mean going here means endless weekends spent hungover and smelling like a minibar? Only if you choose to do that. Students make a choice here every day whether or not to buy into that stereotype or not. It's not fair to judge every student by the front others put up.


UCSB has a reputation of being filled with airhead surfers. Three years on campus has clearly demonstrated to me the falsehood of this stereotype. Like any UC body, the students here are well-informed and critically thinking adults. I am proud to be a part of a campus that is rich with intellectual activity as well as extracurricular opportunities. Students don't just surf; they go on hikes, play recreational sports, or socialize in downtown Santa Barbara. Most importantly, they get their school work done. During orientation, I was blessed with a wonderful group leader who said, "You'll see hundreds of kids outside everyday throwing frisbees, laughing, talking, and messing around. What you don't get to see are the other 25,000 students studying in their rooms."


The biggest stereotype about UCSB is that it is a party school. This stereotype is actually what deterred me from attending this school, but I loved the campus so much that I came here anyways. Although UCSB definately is a party school, all colleges have party people. Also, the first two people I met were not party people and they are now my best friends. So, if you are not a party person, but want to go to UCSB, do not be deterred by the stereotype. Yes, you will meet many people that like to party, but you will also meet people who have other hobbies as well.


UCSB definitely has a party atmosphere, but that just translates to people that like to have fun. This is a UC so the students do care about getting their academics in order, though once it is the weekend it's time to socialize and have fun. People here are chill and friendly. There is a hippie culture here so there will be days when you see people and activities that will make you think, 'Only in IV.'


The first stereotype that comes to mind labels UCSB as a notorious party school, and subsequently labels it's students as heavy drinkers. While I can't say this stereotype is completely accurate because there are many students here who aren't into the party scene or drinking at all, it has some truth to it. UCSB students know how to party, and it can get pretty crazy any weekend out of the year except for finals and dead week.


UCSB is called a "Party School" by most people who know of it. While this stereotype is true to an extent because there is a lot of partying on the weekends in the neighboring collegetown of Isla Vista; it doesn't mean that all students at UCSB party. There are plenty of students here who don't party at all. I'm one of them. This is besides the point because partying does not preclude performance in school. If people manage their time properly they can party and do well in school. How students spend their time in college is completely up to them. This notion of a party school can apply at any school, because college parties are ubiquitous.


The first thing people think about when they hear UCSB is a bunch of drunk kids partying on the beach. Just leveling with you, there is some truth to this, but there is so much more these students have to offer than a cheap thirty rack on a balcony hanging over the ocean. First of all, not everyone drinks, and surprisingly, I met some pretty awesome and sober kids freshman year. Also, everyone loves their drink but are vain enough to work out on even the worst hangover days. Students are interested in fitness. The two kinds are those who are in Greek life who go to the gym daily to lift or jog prettily (frat or sorority respectively), and those who take advantage of the beautiful outdoor activities Santa Barbara has to offer. Students here are also smart, not ditzy party animals like many think. I have friends who are smart enough to go to Harvard, but chose SB for the scenery, people, and opportunities to do literally anything you set your mind to.