University of California-Santa Cruz Top Questions

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

Guadalupe

i don't know

Kyla

Hiking, surfing, tree climbing, going to the gym, video games, you name it some one hears probs into it

Chelsea

There are so many students and organizations that I don't know which are the most popular. There is probably a most popular one within each major. There are newspapers to write for, film clubs, student governments, club sports, Key Club, Interact Club, fraternities and sororities, and so many more.I am involved with my student government (Cowell Senate) and the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. I have also gone to a film club and some volunteering clubs. I like being in Cowell Senate because I get to know what's going on in my college and university and get to help control where our money is being spent. We also are very involved with helping other students and planning activities. People in the dorms are all different. In my dorm last year, students mostly kept to themselves, but I did make friends with a few people in my dorm. I know other people though who made friends with everyone on their floor because everyone was outgoing or willing to meet new people, and everyone ended up getting along great and staying friends. There are guest speakers every other week, I think, and plays every few months. There is always something going on in one of the colleges on weekends or at night. There are sports games on weekends on the field that everyone can watch. I met my closest friends in classes, in my dorm, from being in Cowell Senate, or from seeing them around in the dining hall and around campus often. I stay awake a lot because of homework. I like to hang out with people during the day and then I'll end up starting my homework late. There are always parties on weekends off-campus in downtown Santa Cruz at people's houses. Sometimes they're hard to find, but you just have to know the right people. There generally safe, but cops come often and make people leave because of noise complaints. People have movie nights and it is really easy to stay on campus and have fun on weekends with your friends. Fraternities and sororities are not really important and barely anyone is in them compared to the population on the school, but there are multiple for different interests and majors if people want to join one.

ERICK

Lots of people here love to join intramural sports, who wouldn't with the beautiful weather we have! I am on the UCSC Mens Division three soccer team and love my teammates. They are all very helpful with school ad social standings. There are a wide range of people who party, some might party the day before class and others only on weekends. Some don't party at all, it all depends on the group of people. In college there are lots of things to do besides party on Saturday. For example, watch a movie with friends, go for a late night hike, or go downtown!

Rotem

There are sports teams, clubs, theatre shows and soririties largely available. Sororities aren't a huge deal at school but are there if anyone wants to join.There are also many dances, which do not serve alcohol and many people like to downtown and go to the beach. The dating scene is open and people are friendly. Some people in the dorms leave there doors open to socialize and some choose not to. Most of my friends I met in the dorms or somewhere on campus. We are racially and socio-economically diverse.

Kimberly

The sports teams on campus are not very popular; the athletics program isn't too big, but the teams we do have are pretty good. There are a lot of clubs on campus, so it;s hard to pinpoint which one is the most popular one. The people at school are really friendly, and some of them do keep their doors open, but it depends which residential college you choose to live in. If you're awake on a Tuesday night, you're most likely studying, seeing as it's a weekday, but if you're awake on a Saturday night, then you'll definitely see a lot of people at parties or just hanging out with friends. Weekends tend to be lively on campus and off campus. Each year, there is one tradition that mostly everyone participates in. The first day that it rains, students will participate in a "naked run", meaning that they run naked in the rain from one side of campus to the other. After the run, students usually go into the pool and have one massive pool party. Sororities and fraternities are not big on campus at all, and friends are usually made in classes, or in the dorms.

Genevieve

There are so many activities and groups on campus! Some of the most popular include a variety of sports, theater, and outdoor excursion clubs like skiing and snowboarding. There are also many jobs and volunteer opportunities to get involved with. Some people are weary of UCSC because there is no football team. But many people still play football for fun, and there are other games to attend including basketball and soccer games. The most common way students have made friends is in their residential college. I met a lot of my best friends in my dorm building my freshman year! It's also very easy to make friends in classes, because everyone is positive, encouraging, and eager to study in groups. Another concern about UCSC is that there isn't enough Greek life. This isn't true, because Greek life does exist, it just isn't as prevalent as it is at most universities. Still, it is definitely there for you if you're interested. As I mentioned before, there is a lot to do on the weekends that doesn't involve drinking or drugs. For example, colleges screen movies, host interesting guest speakers, and there are a variety of performances by choirs, musicians, actors, poets, and more. Plus if you want to go off campus, downtown is always fun and easy to get to.

Cierra

At UCSC everyone is active in something. Personally I am captain of the cheer team, but I also participate in French Club! My roommate is involved with a pre-dental society and I have friends in basketball to friends in theater. Everyone is interested in what is going on, leaving dorm doors open and conversations open too. This is a great way to meet friends and get involved in activities.

Maria

Greek life is not a very big deal here. We have two national sororities, and a handful more fraternities. It doesn't hurt to join, of course, and I know of a lot of people who have met their best friends through Greek life, but it is absolutely not a requirement here, and there presence is not felt too much on campus. Downtown is fairly close, just a quick bus ride away, and there's a decent amount of stuff to do - hookah bars, nice restaurants, movie theaters, etc. The boardwalk is always fun for an afternoon, and the beaches surrounding Santa Cruz are beautiful. If you're looking for packed sports games and buff jocks, you will have a hard time finding them in Santa Cruz. Sports are not a huge draw here at all, and while there's a ton of intramurals, funding for the sports is virtually nonexistent, and most students are much more involved in other activities.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

The soup boxcar races were part of a class called Visiting Artists. The class is an art class that has various visiting artists come and teach the class. Students in the class made all the soup box carts. They all had to be made from scavenged material, they had to be able to be steered, and they had to have breaks. This is a good example of how UCSC has some unique art classes and how we are an art oriented school.

Cameron

Porter College Dodgeball

Cameron

This is an OPERS trip. Every quarter OPERS (office of physical education, recreation, and sports) offers numerous adventure trips to students. The trips are run by trained and experienced student trip-leaders, so no teachers are involved. There are numerous trips every weekend in the quarter starting the second or third week in the quarter. This particular trip I went on was a beginning kayak trip to Cache Creek in Northern California. The trips are really cheap. This one cost $40 including food and transportation. They are a great way to get away on the weekend, and the best way to get involved in the outdoors at UCSC.

Cameron

This is an OPERS trip. Every quarter OPERS (office of physical education, recreation, and sports) offers numerous adventure trips to students. The trips are run by trained and experienced student trip-leaders, so no teachers are involved. There are numerous trips every weekend in the quarter starting the second or third week in the quarter. This particular trip I went on was a beginning kayak trip to Cache Creek in Northern California. The trips are really cheap. This one cost $40 including food and transportation. They are a great way to get away on the weekend, and the best way to get involved in the outdoors at UCSC.

Cameron

This is an OPERS trip. Every quarter OPERS (office of physical education, recreation, and sports) offers numerous adventure trips to students. The trips are run by trained and experienced student trip-leaders, so no teachers are involved. There are numerous trips every weekend in the quarter starting the second or third week in the quarter. This particular trip I went on was a beginning kayak trip to Cache Creek in Northern California. The trips are really cheap. This one cost $40 including food and transportation. They are a great way to get away on the weekend, and the best way to get involved in the outdoors at UCSC.

Cameron

This is an OPERS trip. Every quarter OPERS (office of physical education, recreation, and sports) offers numerous adventure trips to students. The trips are run by trained and experienced student trip-leaders, so no teachers are involved. There are numerous trips every weekend in the quarter starting the second or third week in the quarter. This particular trip I went on was a beginning kayak trip to Cache Creek in Northern California. The trips are really cheap. This one cost $40 including food and transportation. They are a great way to get away on the weekend, and the best way to get involved in the outdoors at UCSC.

Cameron

This is an OPERS trip. Every quarter OPERS (office of physical education, recreation, and sports) offers numerous adventure trips to students. The trips are run by trained and experienced student trip-leaders, so no teachers are involved. There are numerous trips every weekend in the quarter starting the second or third week in the quarter. This particular trip I went on was a beginning kayak trip to Cache Creek in Northern California. The trips are really cheap. This one cost $40 including food and transportation. They are a great way to get away on the weekend, and the best way to get involved in the outdoors at UCSC.

Cameron

A random group of students celebrating peace just for the sake of it in Kresge Town Hall.

Cameron

Most cafes and colleges have Open Mic Nights throughout the quarter. The Stevenson Coffee House Open Mic Night is one of the biggest Open Mic Nights on campus. Anyone can sign up and perform songs they’ve written or songs by their favorite artists. This really show how many musicians UCSC has, and how UCSC is an music oriented school.

Cameron

Most cafes and colleges have Open Mic Nights throughout the quarter. The Stevenson Coffee House Open Mic Night is one of the biggest Open Mic Nights on campus. Anyone can sign up and perform songs they’ve written or songs by their favorite artists. This really show how many musicians UCSC has, and how UCSC is an music oriented school.

Cameron

Most cafes and colleges have Open Mic Nights throughout the quarter. The Stevenson Coffee House Open Mic Night is one of the biggest Open Mic Nights on campus. Anyone can sign up and perform songs they’ve written or songs by their favorite artists. This really show how many musicians UCSC has, and how UCSC is an music oriented school.

Cameron

Most cafes and colleges have Open Mic Nights throughout the quarter. The Stevenson Coffee House Open Mic Night is one of the biggest Open Mic Nights on campus. Anyone can sign up and perform songs they’ve written or songs by their favorite artists. This really show how many musicians UCSC has, and how UCSC is an music oriented school.

Cameron

Most cafes and colleges have Open Mic Nights throughout the quarter. The Stevenson Coffee House Open Mic Night is one of the biggest Open Mic Nights on campus. Anyone can sign up and perform songs they’ve written or songs by their favorite artists. This really show how many musicians UCSC has, and how UCSC is an music oriented school.

Cameron

The Edward Gorey Fashion Show was put on entirely by students to honor Edward Gorey’s work and to put on an entirely environmentally friendly fashion show. All the outfits were scavenged from thrift stores etc…Each scene in the fashion show was a recreations of an Edward Gorey drawing. The event was held on a Sunday and it was of the many student created performances that happen on weekends. This is a good example of the strange events that happen on campus.

Cameron

Edward Gorey Show 2

Cameron

Edward Gorey show

Cameron

Every April 20th, almost the whole school gathers at the huge meadow on campus to enjoy this event.

Marshall

I was involved with intramural sports (volleyball) and lots of outdoor adventure activities, backpacking trips, river rafting, etc. I met a lot of great people (including people i have dated) in these activities. I highly recommend getting involved in at least one, it's a great way to meet people-as opposed to parties, where it is possible to meet someone worthwhile, but alcohol changes things unfortunately. Frats/sororities don't really exist, they have no authority. house parties can be fun, but the cops are very strict and bust them as soon as they are called by a neighbor. There is no student zoning, meaning there is no neighborhood in santa cruz that is just students. This means HUGE, MTV-style parties don't really happen. You tend to see the same party type people if you go to huge parties, best to mix it up with off campus, on campus, and bars for a social scene that's healthy and stimulating.

Parker

If you're awake at 2am on a Tuesday you are either smoking on the knoll in Stevenson, at a drum circle at Porter, running naked in order to pledge your loyalty to House 7, pulling a semi all nighter or mayber an actual all nighter or returning from a bar run in downtown Santa Cruz.

Alex

social life is pretty standard. parties on campus and off. frat life is not big, and depending on who you are you could definitely find a small hangout of party on a weeknight as well as on weekends. yet, bigger on weekends.

Jon

Some good options to spend ones time. Rugby for example was an excellent experience. Lots of good sports teams to enjoy without the size and competitiveness of your traditional US college.

Lavender

Every year, we have the Naked Run, in which many people gather at Porter college to run all over campus, together, DURING THE FIRST RAIN OF THE SCHOOL YEAR, naked (though some students still wear underwear and/or bras). You can actually read about it on Wikipedia. Frats and Sororities do exist here, but they are not as big or important as they might be at other universities. We don't have a Football team (yay!) but that means that all of our other sports get a lot of attention, like water polo, tennis, etc. Many students do leave their dorm doors opened because only residents have access to their buildings and a sense of familiarity and trust quickly builds (though I'm not sure of all colleges). And like I've said, we have really great and inspiring events, speakers, art exhibits, theater shows, student concerts and performances, and we also have a bunch of free, by-donation, or $2-$3 dances, almost every friday there's at least one dance on campus. After the first or second year though, students are no longer guaranteed with housing and so they live off campus. From what I hear, it's pretty alright if you like more liberty. But commuting can be a hastle.

Lauren

I would suggest Cowell, Steveson, Kresge or Oakes for dorms. The housing people rarely read those "matches" to place you with a roommate, so be careful. 420 is a big deal to a lot of people, but you can avoid it easily enough if that's not your thing. Difficult dating scene, and Santa Cruz is very small, so you run into people a lot. Fraternities/sororities are not big; you are not allowed to display Greek letters on a house in the city of Santa Cruz. There are several movie theaters downtown, cool stores and two hookah lounges. Otherwise you need to be 21 to have fun. But there is usually something fun happening on campus if you can't drink. Great food all over Santa Cruz, including vegetarian and vegan dining.

Megan

I met my friends in the dorms. There is a party scene in the dorms and marijuana is plentiful. Last weekend I went to a party and the Boardwalk. There are lots of things to do that don't involve drinking though, downtown is always a fun place to go, and the beach and forest are always available!

Lindsay

I think most people are involved with either a sorority/fraternity or a ethnic group. I am involved with Lambda Lil Sis which is an extention of the Lambda Phi Epsilon fraternity. Some students leave their doors open. i do not think athletic events are all too popular at all. I met my closest friends through my particular college and groups I am involved with. 2am on a Tuesday i am probably sitting in front of my computer talking to people online. Off campus my friends and i go to the movie theater downtown and we also eat dinner at one of the restaurants.

Alex

students in dorms usually leave rooms open until they get to know everyone, then they knock and just come in later in the year. only freshmen, sophomores, and transfer students can live on campus. athletic events aren't that popular, but guest speakers, forums, theater, and other performance art are all really popular. i met most of my friends in the dorms, and i still meet people in classes every year and quarter. if i'm awake on a tuesday at 2 a.m. i'm either studying or partying... every year, at the first rain of the school year, students run naked through the forest across campus. it's a great tradition and it's fun and exhilerating. if you're not into drinking there's still lots to do on the weekends. there are always concerts or shows downtown at clubs and venues.

Whitney

I don't know much about this topic. I've never lived on campus, and I have a family of my own, so I rarely participate in social activities there. There are several fun traditions, but many of them happen while I'm not on campus.

Jessica

You either meet your closest friend in the dorms or in your classes. Athletics here are here, but barely, we have some intercollegiate teams, but nothing too intense. Greek life is pretty mellow too, but growing. There is no official greek row or even official school sponsored houses, but they exist and have a good time. People party here as much as they want to. I know lots of people who go to bed at 10 and lots of people who go to bed at 4, there's not too much influence either way. First rain is something we are infamous for where a bunch of students run around campus naked the first time it rains for the winter. People have a good time and no one takes it too seriously. There is all kinds of shit to do here though, the boardwalk, Pacific street, hiking, the ocean, beaches, malls, all the good stuff. Its really a great place to live!

Admiral

Student government's receive a lot of student money, so I would suggest joining your college government (UCSC is split into ten sub-communities called colleges) and the campus wide government called the Student Union Assembly (SUA). Each college government has about $40,000 to allocate every year and SUA has even more. The governments not only allocate funding to student groups, but they also write resolutions which are statements which represent the official stance of undergraduate students. Many administrators come to visit and they have question and answer sessions, which I believe is something very rare and special. The Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs has an advisory board made up of students so that she can seek student input. She is also revamping her department and I have been involved in the Student Affairs Strategic Visioning Process, which has allowed me to interact with many administrators and staff from all over the campus.

Jamie

There are tongs of clubs on campus for pretty much anything, which is a good way to make friends with similar interests. Most of my friends are people that I live near, and a few are from classes (a lot of from my floor and stuff though). Most people drink and smoke all weekend, but you could find people who don't. Maybe. I have a few friends who don't.

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