University of California-Santa Cruz Top Questions

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?


Party school--NOT TRUE! Especially for the sciences. UCSC has a world-famous physics and astrophysics department with people such as Sandra Faber and Joel Primack who are literally experts in their fields. As a research university, most undergrads have the opportunity to get scholarships or work with their professors over the summer on projects, unlike schools like Berkeley which--while famous--don't funnel as much money towards the undergrads, preferring to send the money to graduate programs. Stoners and laid back? Also not correct. There are a lot of pot-smokers on campus, but it's not that noticeable. It's not like you turn a corner and see a bunch of kids enveloped in smoke. Most of my fellow physics majors are good students, they work hard, but they do have lives.


I guess there are more hippies at Santa Cruz than there would be in So Cal.


Yes, i heard it on a magazine or news.


To a certain degree, but it is certainly exaggerated to seem like more of a problem than it is.


Yes, to a greater extent than the general population of college students, but to a lesser extent than the sensationalized picture of UCSC in the minds of the college-age public.


No. While a lot of students smoke pot, I don't think it's any more common than outside UCSC. People may be more open about pot here, but I doubt they smoke it more than the general population of the same age. And there aren't very many "hippies."


not all the time


I heard about 2,000 students attend a 4/20 smokeout at the Porter meadow. If that's true then I imagine about 15-25% of students smoke pot. I think we probably have higher than average drug user ratio than most schools. I think UCSC's reputation attracts hippies and stoners, but I think a lot of students smoke less pot than they did in high school because its tough to be a stoner and take on academically rigorous subjects. I know a few people who smoke much less because of that reason. UCSC is very environmentally conscious. Everyone is very aware of the importance of being environmentally conscious and organizations promote it a lot. But, not that many people are hard-core hippies who live in the forests.


In a way they are, except the dirty one, even our hippies are relatively clean, the hippies are in fact a small minority, just a vocal and very visible minority. There are copious amounts of drugs but it's not something that is forced on anyone. It is a very liberal school, probably not a good idea to go there if you're a conservative who feels strongly about your beliefs.


no, i don't think any of these stereotypes are true. there are a lot of different types of people all over the campus.


We do care about the environment, and things are more close knit, but few of us are hippies. But it is sort of a culture to smoke pot in the woods, though it isn't required of people.


There are a lot of people who smoke weed at UCSC, however not everybody does. Yes, the weed here is dank and plentiful, and policies about smoking are relaxed, but it is easy to find people who do not smoke. In essence, the school is not filled with pot heads, although there are decent amount. Just as not everybody who attends UCSC is a stoner, not everybody who attends UCSC is a hippie. There are a few "dirty hippies" who come to class without shoes on, and some even live in the forest. But for the most part people shower regularly, and dare I say, dress trendy?


Absolutely not. Many of us come from different backgrounds and all viewpoints are respected within the classroom. Some of the students are more liberal than others. I guess if you want to call them hippies you can, but nobody goes to class naked. While we may have section outside sometimes on nice days, we don't sit in the trees.


yes, except the classes aren't quite as easy as expected


The stereotypes dealing with the campus itself are held in the organization of its ten "undergraduate colleges" which make up the University itself. The stereotypes with these colleges are only generally true and should not be taken as a rule. Crown College is the dork's playground, where world of warcraft is played on laptops in public dining areas, and ytmnd references are common; Cowell college, the first college, has a beach-side view and easy access to recreational areas, and so it seems to be a common place for the long-legged buffies and fraternity "bros" kick back; and so on. Not necessarily true, but there is some truth to these rumors none-the-less.


The stoner, liberal UCSC student is easier to fit into a stereotyped image but it is clear that the overpowering majority of students attending UCSC are incapable of being categorized into a simple group. On the same topic, UCSC students can actually be very studious and punctual. As for the LRDP, anyone who has tried to park on campus can attest to how potently UCSC needs more parking. As for UCSC students being liberal, we are living in a time when constriction to one side of the political spectrum or the other is a sign of fatal weakness. Intelligent UCSC students are carefully watching the shifting state of politics.


NO, students at every school do drugs and smoke pot.


Yes they are.


While there are definitely your fair share of potheads, partiers, and hippies at UCSC, there are also plenty of nerds, theater kids, and gamers as well. I would say that in terms of genres of students, UCSC has a pretty even distribution.


the stereotypes are as accurate as people believe...I will say however that there are a lot of liberals here. A lot of people smoke pot like they smoke cigarettes. There a lot of vegetarians/vegans; a number of students here don't identify as heterosexual; there are hippies but they aren't a significant chunk of the student body. People choose not to shower for their own reasons: water conservation (apparently we're experiencing a shortage), don't care to shower...I have seen people walking around barefoot but i've also seen a lot of people in shoes as well. the stereotypes about the colleges are accurate according to who you ask. for the most part, at least they are a accurate about the college.


While some people fit this description, this does not describe all or even most of the people at UCSC. I have known all different types of people here, and one shouldn't be put off by the stereotype.


Not really, it's as hard as you want to make it and some majors/classes are more difficult than others but it's definitely not a walk in the park. It is not entirely full of hippies, there are some here but it's a big school and ultimately there are a lot of different people, some just attract more attention than others like any school.




There are people that party at any school, as well as people with liberal views. UCSC has a wide range of perspectives and personalities.


pretty accurate




Not entirely. There are some crazy hippies and just crazy people in general and there are definitely a handful of liberals but there is also a very wide variety of people.


Theres actually a lot of different types of people that go here. Its nice not to have a school where it feels like you need to play a sport and go greek to fit in, theres a group for anyone and everyone. It is pretty liberal though.


There are alot of stoners, but not everyone is one.


for the most part yes. Although only about a third of the school actually smokes weed on a daily basis.


Yes, but not the surfing.


Not really. I know some hippies and a lot of people who spend all their time smoking pot, but most of my friends are not really like that. There is a lot of weird stuff that happens like the First Rain and 4/20, but there's stuff like that at a lot of colleges, we're just known for it and it's really just an extreme generalization. As far as UCSC being the 'easy' UC, we actually have a really strong undergrad program in several majors, especially linguistics, much better than a lot of more competitive schools in California (those schools have great grad programs and that's where their prestige comes from, but undergrad there is underfunded). I've taken some amazing classes, and most people I know are very intelligent, not a bunch of slackers.


Even though there are hippies, there are also jocks, preps, gangsters, and everything else across the board. The part of us that is still hippie-like is our thinking. Everyone is really positive and all about peace and love. Its amazing to walk into a bathroom stall and see a bunch of graffiti that, instead of hate messages and swear words, has poetry and uplifting thoughts and quotes.