University of California-Santa Barbara Top Questions

What is your overall opinion of this school?

Kristin

UCSB is arguably one of the most beautiful schools in California. It is right on the Pacific Ocean, and there is nothing that I love to do more than go for a run on the beach at sunset, then stop to stretch and watch the surfers at Campus Point. I feel so lucky to be surrounded by the beauty of Santa Barbara: the mountains, the ocean, the perfect weather. everyone is so happy here, they ride their beach-cruiser bikes around campusIt makes it easy to go to class! Isla Vista is such a fun college community; it truly is its own little bubble. This college town is populated by only 18 to 25 year olds; it feels strange whenever you see a parent walking around. And I always feel safe here, even at 2 in the morning!

Andy

Isla Vista melds into the campus, absolutely amazing. Most rad vibe here, type of town that you call home after 2 months though you might have lived elsewhere for 18 years of your life. Not a lot of school pride in sports or any particular area, but in general if you're from UCSB you are proud and pompous about it. Big Picture? You get in here, you come here. Unless you're too stuck on going to some hype school and your picture of a perfect Friday night is a studious time on the Academics Floor.

Alex

I feel that this school is perfect for me. I grew up my entire life on the ocean so being able to attend school here is like a dream come true. It couldn't be a more beautiful place to wake up in. I feel like I am on vacation everyday here.

Alex

best thing about ucsb is the beautiful campus. i feel fortunate to go to class by the ocean everyday. isla vista is also a very fun place to live because of the close-knit community of students.

courtney

i think our school is a good size because i run into people i know a lot but there are also so mant different people that i am also meeting new people all the time. when i tell people a go to ucsb i get one of two reactions. some are like "ohhh party school?" but are still jealous, and others are "ohhh thats so hard to get into!" and are also jealous! i spend most of my time probably in the dorms, in my own room or a friends. we have the best college town. there is a great party scene, but there is also downtown where there are great little restaurants, and some great hiking areas. one of my biggest complaints is how it is very hard to get an on campus job. i have a work study and have been struggling to get a job for over a quarter now.

Alex

this school is the perfect size. you see people you know on campus which makes you feel at home but there are still plenty of people that are out there for you to meet. isla vista is such a great community. it's so fun being a bike ride away from all of your friends. i know that everyone is proud to be a gaucho but i wish there was a little more school pride. however, if you are looking for spirit, you can definitely find it by joining the gaucho locos or taking a bus to an away game. that was one of my favorite experiences in college thus far. we took a bus to pepperdine for a men's volleyball game and it was a blast! everyone on that bus was so proud to be a gaucho!

Christine

The best thing about UCSB is the laid back attitude of most of the students. Isla Vista is awesome in that it is seemingly mostly college students, with some families, and everyone is close to one one another. The courses are awesome and the professors are great in that they realize they can teach at a great school to students who care, but also live a beautiful area and work on a gorgeous campus! There isn't an overwhelming amount of school spirit but when it does come to really big sporting events or things along those lines the students pull together and rally in the best ways to have a good time and cheer on their teams.

lydia

Isla Vista is the greatest place for a college student. 20,000 students in 1 square mile creates an atmosphere unlike anywhere else. UCSB administration is like most other large schools...kinda impersonal and you are just a number, but if you're on top of your stuff you won't really have to worry about them. There are some really helpful resources on campus that not many people take advantage of.

Corey

The weather is beautiful, and so are the people. So many people are smart, but it doesn't show in the standings because people drink too much. The engineering department has great computer labs with thousands of dollars worth of software and free printing. Isla Vista, the college town, is pretty small but has a few good joints to eat. Del Playa (DP) are where Da Parties are at, especially oceanside.

Katherine

The size of our school is just right. Any bigger would be too much. IV is perfect and close to everything, so you don't really need a car to go to school here. People react well when I tell them I go to UCSB, and always seem jealous of our lifestyle, campus, and amazing location. I mostly spend my time on campus in class, battling the bike path, or at the library studying around midterms and finals.

Amy

UCSB is a good-sized school. The campus is pretty small compared to a lot of the other UCs so it's easy to get around quickly. If I could change anything about UCSB it'd be out reputation. When you say UCSB, most people automatically think of a party school. I've even had a professor say it may damage our chances of getting some jobs because we won't be taken seriously. Which is ridiculous because, at least speaking for myself, I go to class, I study, and I get good grades. We are still part of the UC system which should say something.

Jennifer

The best thing about UCSB is its location. The fact that it is on the beach makes this campus ten times more awesome (not that it isn't already). If I had to change something, I would definitely make nursing an option as a major at our school. It is something that I am highly interested in and I wish it would be offered at UCSB. When I first decided to come to UCSB most people were excited for me because the UC is a highly recognized system for its academics. However, there were a few people who thought of it as "just a party school", but after being here for almost three years, I know that this is simply not the case.

Marie

The best thing about UCSB is the more laid back atmosphere and the people who are so well rounded. They are people you can have a highly intellectual and highly fun conversation with all in one day. The school may seem big at first but I have come to realize that i see tons of people i know on campus, on the bike paths, in IV and class each day. UCSB or better IV is the most unique and ultimate college town.

Rebecca

The location of UCSB is one of the best aspects about the campus. If I would change one thing, it would be that the administration would be as friendly and nice and helpful as the students. When I tell other people that I attend UCSB, I find that they react in an envious manner. I spend most of my time on campus at the Student Resource Building, one of the newer facilities on campus. Most all of the students that attend UCSB live in Isla Vista which is THE college town. Unfortunatly there is not much school pride within UCSB, however within the Greek system, you will find the most outgoing people.

Alexandra

I think the best thing about UCSB besides our location (of course) would be the people I've met so far. Being in a sorority helped that part of my life out a ton, but I feel like due to such a relaxing atmosphere everyone including my friends are very laid back and easy going. We enjoy where we are and are just enjoying life at our beautiful college. I love the fact that we have a relatively small campus compared to other UC's and public schools. I feel like we are our own community and the fact that we have Isla Vista helps that out even more. Our college town is just what you would imagine, local shops, bikes everyone, tons good times and a great vibe - We respect where we live, and being at such an environmental school makes us appreciate our surroundings that much more. My professors have all been great, (at least those I've had the courage to speak too!) and the T.A's are extremely helpful. Once students begin to enter upper division classes is where you really become close with professors and actually begin to feel the college class room experience. One down fall is that we don't have a football team, but our Gaucho Loco's make up for that at almost every sporting event. Lacrosse has become one of my new favorite sports, not only that but soccer games, volley ball games and water polo games are super fun to attend! We cheer loud, and represent our school just as if we were in a huge stadium cheering for a football team. This school honestly couldn't get any better if I had hand picked its attributes myself, I couldn't imagine being anywhere else.

alexa

UCSB is just right in size. Since it the university is becoming increasingly academically acclaimed each year (competing with UCLA), people are impressed to hear I go here. I spend most of my time at the library when I'm on campus; however since I live about a minute bike ride from campus I usually spend most of my time studying at home. UCSB is in Isla Vista, the typical college town. The administration in the political science department is exceptional and many of the professors are nationally and internationally known political scientists, researchers, and authors. Even though we do not have a football team and our other spectator sports team aren't necessarily the best, there is tons of school pride at UCSB - there is always support for the sports teams and academic events/achievements. For example when our mens soccer team won the national championship last year, students went wild here at home and threw a goal post into the ocean in celebration.

Carson

Honestly, I could not ask for a better school. This is as close to perfect as you can get. You meet someone new everyday, and that is what I love most about this campus. People care. They are interested in you and will make an effort to show it. Joining the Greek system has definitely made a huge impact on my life as well. I am open to many more opportunities and meeting more people than I would normally. There is tremendous school pride at UCSB. I mean honestly, why wouldn't there be? You can't beat this.

Blake

I love UCSB! I love how it offers the complete college experience whether it's the parties, surfing, competitive academics, or student involvement, UCSB offers it all and then some.

Jess

The best thing at UCSB is simply its location. Besides being in sunny southern california and directly on the beach, ucsb is located in isla vista. For those of you who do not know, isla vista is a college town for college students only. Th location of the university offers a unique and opportunistic environment for its students.

Katie

The best thing about UCSB is the location and the weather... who can beat beach days in February and the laid back atmosphere Santa Barbara presents. The size of the school is perfect, and as a greek, the community involvement and cohesiveness is incredible. I spend most of my time at the SRB on campus... it's a study area for students with multiple computer labs, relaxing areas, and it is also the center for all of the extra curricular groups. The biggest recent controversy was the "juicy campus" outbreak.... school pride is big if we are winning ie. soccer (National Champs) and things like that. Something cool about UCSB? Jack Johnson went here and sings about it in his songs :-)

Jamie

I love UCSB. I didn't want to come here because the location is a lot like my hometown, but why would I want to live anywhere else. It is a perfect college community & I have never felt in danger. Coming I was also really frustrated because all of my friends who did not work hard in high school were able to go to SBCC, but it is SO different. Being a part of the greek system is great because instead of going to random DP parties [like my friends at sbcc] I have great friends who are greek and we hang out in the fraternities in IV. It's wonderful because it is entering a community within the large student body of UCSB.

Michelle

The best thing about UCSB is our sense of community. Most people live in Isla Vista (IV) after freshman year and we have a close-knit community feel. It's pretty much all students. You don't get that overwhelming, competitive, people-will-stab-you-in-the-back-to-get-a-better-grade feeling, ever. People are happy here: you see people smiling, the weather is beautiful, we live by the ocean. The school is big, but you're always meeting new people, and once you're in your major classes, you see the same people in all of your classes. Most people are impressed when I tell them I go to UCSB, but you always get some that say, "Oh, that's a party school." And you just gotta say, "Yeah, we know how to have a good time, but school is hard, you have to study a lot too. And we get it done!" We basically do everything big: academics, partying, school pride...our Gaucho Locos group follows our sports team around everywhere and consistently beats the home school in fan attendance!

Jordan

-large school, lots of students -not that much school spirit since we don't have a football team -greek system is getting larger and larger, a huge part of having fun at ucsb -great weather

Olivia

The UCSB faculty is really amazing. I haven't experienced one teacher, yet, that I didn't like. They challenge you as a student and as a member of society. The material for class never seems to be pointless. UCSB is also on the beach, but don't be fooled, it usually isn't as warm as you'd think. Usually its windy if its sunny, or cold and sunny. The fog is pretty intense too and the salty air rusts your bike. Besides that, I believe our school is the perfect size. It's large enough that you're not constantly bombarded by groups of people you know, but you still feel like you know people. It's also flat, which makes for smooth biking. If you hate hills, don't go to UCLA, come here! I spend most of my time on campus either in the dance studios, at home (I currently live in Manzanita, Montecito House, and I love it,) or with Alpha Phi at events. It's definitely a college town, Goleta.

Jessica

The campus is the right size and is beautiful. People are jealous of the location because we have Isla Vista and the beach. There is a lot of school pride when it involves sports, which is a little dissapointing.

Brittany

the best thing about ucsb is the availability of research opportunities I have had so many good experiences because of them, I just wish they did not limit you to only 20 unitsbof research

Andy

It is amazing. I didn't think I wanted to come here after high school, but now I couldn't imagine being anywhere else. Coming here was the best decision I've ever made. Not only is the campus and area beyond beautiful, but the classes are rigorous, and the social life is amazing. My time at UCSB has been incomparable because I have made the most of every single moment of every single day.

Christina

UCSB is basically the most amazing place ever. Students here know how to work hard and party hard. Not only is everyone so much fun when you see them out, but people are great to study with and hang out with as well. Greek life is amazing, but even if you aren't involved you can always find something to do. No matter what you want to be involved in, there is something for you at UCSB!

Owen

The best thing about UCSB is the location and the people. Isla Vista is a beach town where everyone is laid back, wearing their rainbows when they ride their skateboards to lecture. Even though there are so many students, its easy to get involved in something and make friends.

Laura

UCSB is a big school but by the end of your senior year you know many of the faces you bike/walk by. It is a great place to find a good mixture between school, socializing, and activities. IV is definetely a college town and you have easy access to downtown through the buses or if you have a car. There is a lot of school pride and our soccer team is AWESOME!! Most people think we are a less diverse campus but I have multicultural friends and enjoy it here very much!

Andy

I like that UCSB is it's own environment. Because campus and IV are separated from Santa Barbara, it gives campus more of a small town feel where you know people wherever you go and everyone hangs out at the same places. I think that most people are pretty laid back and nice and don't mind helping someone out. Most people are here to focus on their own studies and have a good time at college.

Sasha

People complain about actually having to go class, there is drunken school pride, I never see/experience UCSB's administration and I will always remember rushing the week before school started. When I tell people that I go here, they always assume it is because of the party atmosphere. But really, it's not. I swear.

Sara

the best thing about UCSB is the atmosphere-everyone is friendly and laid back and there is not the sort of academic pressure/competition that occurs at UCLA or Berkeley, but everyone is smart. I would change the amount f people that are here...i love going to a big school but it frustrating not always being able to get into the classes you want. Crashing works sometimes but not always. When i tell someone I go to UCSB, they usually say "oh wow thats a great school", but they do throw in the fact that it a party school. but it is normally acknowledged that it is an academically tough school. I spend most of my time in IV, not on campus...but when I'm on campus I hang out in the UCEN since it is has a gorgeous view of the lagoon and it is a good study area. Isla Vista is our college town, and it is amazing...I love our college town, everyone here has a lot of pride about going to UCSB. 90% of the people here absolutley love it. There are a lot of college parties always, especially on Del Playa, our party street. I will always remember my first time walking down DP on a friday night and being overwhelmr by how cool it was. Biggest complaints are not getting into the best section time. Biggest recent controversy? Sigma Chi getting their charter taken away

Brittany

I believe that my school is just right. It's perfect here. Since I've been here at UCSB, I've felt a dramatic growth within my own personal life and lifestyle. I am more open, more out going, and best of all more knowledgeable of the world which I live in. I have become more involved in certain movements like protesting the war and being involved in campus related activities. I love UCSB and all that it has to offer. The people here are friendly, approachable, and kind. Yes, there are the occasional mishaps, but overall I feel blessed to be here. I am here for one reason and one reason only: to further myself in education and in doing so accomplish all that I have ever wanted to do; thus in the end I will make my parents proud.

Jennifer

It feels like a college town yet there are thousands of students. Surprisingly you still run into people you know on campus all the time. Outsiders looking in judge us a lot on our "party" name and they assume that we're dumb, but when you're here you realize thats not the case. Almost everyone that comes here LOVES it. even the kids who aren't big partiers (like my roomie). Isla Vista is unique but unfortunately the community is going to give it a "face-lift" that many students are against. It looks fine and it will cause SB to lose its' beachy feel. That sucks. coming to SB was the best decision i ever made.

Laura

People don't respect UCSB enough when you tell them where you go - I wish the school would become more selective in accepting applicants and try to elevate the SAT and GPA needed to get in. I feel like a lot of people in my classes aren't up to the university level.

Leah

UCSB has probably the prettiest campus EVER. From my dorm room, I have a beautiful ocean view that I am going to be really sad to leave at the end of the year. It is a fun school that always has something going on. Having IV right next to campus is so nice since everything is then in walking distance. Being right on the beach isn't too bad either.

Andy

the best thing about ucsb: the people, everyone is laidback and chill. isla vista is ALMOST perfect, but it's not a college town per se. ucsb's administration is okay, but they could use some work for sure. juicy campus was sort of controversial.. there's not a lot of school pride, no one really cares about sports.

Ryan

I LOVE UCSB. UCSB has the ideal location, the perfect size, an amazing atmosphere, and great academics. When I tell people I attend UCSB, they automatically assume I spend all my time at the beach, when in reality I spend most of it at the library or doing other things, I stay quite busy. I spend alot of my time equally in Isla Vista and on campus, for class and extracurricular activities and socializing. So far, UCSB administration is fine. I am not really familiar with them however, I haven't had much interaction with anyone on faculty other than my professors and TAs. I think there is lots of school pride, especially in sports, mainly in soccer. I wish more people would go to more of the other sporting events (myself included) but all in all I feel UCSB is represented rather well in spirit. I love that there is always something going on. If you're bored or not happy at UCSB, something is wrong with you. I think you have to actually TRY to be bored here. UCSB is unique in it's amazing location, awesome atmosphere, while still maintaining UC prestige. One experience I will always remember is joining a sorority - definitely one of the best decisions of my college career. I did not come to UCSB with my close friends, so the Greek system definitely helped me branch out, come out of my shell, and I have met some of my best friends for life through the Greek system.

Vanessa

UCSB is the smartest party school out there. Our incoming freshman have 4.2 high school GPA's and can still go out/drink more than any SDSU student, hands down. Our students are as dedicated to drinking as they are to their studies, and you can find the same person pulling a late night on Sat and in the library all day on Sunday. If you ask me, UCSB is the ultimate balancing act. We do nothing in moderation and have the best experience ever as a result.

Tate

The school is bigger than I expected, but not so big that you don't see people you know when you are on campus.

Lauren

The best thing about UCSB is the college environment. It is purely a college town and Isla Vista is one of the only places where 13,000 students can live together in a square mile radius. The one thing I would change about Santa Barbara is for our school to have a football team and more school pride in sports. I wanted a school with a huge football team and to attend those weekly games, but UCSB does not have this. I wanted to a big school so i think that Santa Barbara is the perfect size for me. Most people react the same way when I tell them I go to UCSB. They usually laugh and ask me how Isla Vista and Halloween are. On campus I spend most of my time in the bookstore in between classes because you can sleep in the couches inside the UCEN. The administration at UCSB is fine. I do not really here too much about them. There is some school pride on campus, but it is dedicated mostly to our soccer team and thats it. I wish that there was more school pride. One experience I will always remember is meeting my best friend on my floor the first week here and ending up joining the same sorority. The most frequent complaints about UCSB is the lack of diversity on campus.

Vanessa

The best thing about UCSB is that the whole environment. Isla Vista is a great little town where all the kids live. Its great being able to walk around the town and see people in the same situation as you are. Most people laugh when I tell them I go to UCSB, especially the kids my age. Adults usually wish that they had come here when they were in college. They think all I do is party and that is not true. I don't think that the school has a major amount of pride in the traditional sense that we are all united under a specific sports team but everyone is always happy to be going to school here. One of my favorite memories is from the night I met my best friend. We were walking down the stairs during a fire drill and everyone was complaining about how we were missing America's Next Top Model. This girl from my floor was walking down with us, and so we started talking about the show. We were both in our pajama's and she was eating Cup of Noodle. After the drill was over, she came up and watched with me and my roommate. We've been inseparable ever since.

Danielle

Great location, school spirit and pride, laid-back and a lot of fun

Parker

UCSB's campus is beautiful...it has a good amount of people who attend and is fairly diverse but i wouldn't mind seeing more diversity.

Mary

UCSB is a laid back school on the Pacific Ocean. Consisting of around 18,000 students, UCSB is large, but not small enough to see familiar faces on campus. The school is known for partying and its laid back atmosphere. Isla Vista, where most of the campus resides, is a wild town full of students ready to kick back in the sun with a beer. Besides enjoying life to the fullest, most students are academically talented and motivated to do well in school. I was attracted to the school because of academic prestige, and the reputation to party.

Casey

UCSB is located between the mountains and the ocean. What is better than that?! We are a broad scope of people- Nor Cal, So Cal, Cen Cal (!!) surfers, bros, yay-area-ers, hippies, nerds. Its amazing here, and really diverse in activities, opinions, and people.

Kelly

In my opinion UCSB is the perfect size and iv is the definition of a college campus.

Jessica

UCSB is the perfect size. We are right on the beach and have the most amazing weather anyone could ever ask for. People think i am a partier when i tell them i go to UCSB, and they are right, i am, but iknow how to balance my work :).... I only go to class and then get off campus, mostly spend my time in my sorority house or on the beach. AMAZING college town. UCSBs staff is pretty laid back, just like the atmosphere. The biggest controversey on campus was JuicyCampus.com but its sizzling down. We dont have football team but there is school pride in many other areas. UCSB is the most amazing school, every night is a unforgettable memory here. I go running for excercise and always see dolphins swimming right next to me. who could ask for more!?

Kelsey

Everything at UCSB is amazing! I have an a amazing dorm with an ocean view. I jog on the beach a few times a week. Classes are amazing and not that hard to get into. We have a lot of fun but the campus also has very good resources for tutoring and things like that. It is the best college town you could ever as for! Everything is in walking distance. Housing is a bit pricey because of the towns beach front location but it is well worth. Sorority and Fraternity housing can be a bit cheaper. Associated Students is very involved on campus and a lot of people come out to the sporting events. One thing I will always remember is buying some books in town (Isla Vista) at the start of fall quarter and walking through town on a warm day looking at the ocean with bikers cruising by. It just made me realize how lucky I am to have this experience.

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