Costa Mesa, CA
Vanguard University of Southern California


70 Ratings

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Recent Reviews

Ashley
What is your overall opinion of this school?

What I love about Vanguard is how close everyone is. When I got here freshman year, everyone was SO accepting of me. Being so...

What is your overall opinion of this school?

What I love about Vanguard is how close everyone is. When I got here freshman year, everyone was SO accepting of me. Being somewhat of an outcast in junior high and high school, I was surprised how friendly people were. People will literally come up to you and introduce themselves if you're sitting alone at lunch- or even just in line for food at the caf. And EVERYONE holds the door open for you--even girls, which is really sweet. One time when I got my printer in the mail, I was struggling to carry it to my class, and someone that I didn't even know just offered to help me. Vanguard is really small though. If you mention that you go to Vanguard to people outside of Vanguard, they will typically never have heard about it, and you will have to explain that it is a small private school, and not a technical school or community college. The campus itself is extremely small, and if you don't have a car, it's easy to feel very closed off from the world (the 'Vanguard Bubble' as it is termed by students). I myself don't have a car, but I use my bike and the public transportation to get around as much as I can. Even then, I don't get off campus nearly as much as I'd like to. I am currently saving up for a car. :) I am also getting more involved in a nearby church (but not TOO nearby). On campus, I usually end up spending my time in my room or in my friends rooms, though I can often be found outside on a bench reading or doing homework, or in the Library. Most people hang out in the cove- which has a really nice coffee shop feeling to it. Vanguard administration and services have often been criticized as being inadequate. Just last year, there was a huge scandal about the school spending too much money which ended in a change of president, and budget cuts such as taking out the computer lab (which a lot of students are enraged about-and rightfully so) The financial aid office is known for being heartless and unhelpful, but they still manage to hand out really great financial aid packages. The cafeteria is also notorious for questionable food and service. However, they have made a huge effort to make it fairly healthy, and there are quite a bit of options. But if you are eating there for every meal it gets boring really fast. Breakfasts are the best because the cooks make a mean omelette. :) The school pride at Vanguard is almost non-existant. There is no football team and no cheerleading squad, and therefore no spirit whatsoever. No one except for athletes themselves ever dress up in school colors for anything, and there are no set spirit days.

Describe the students at your school.

The school is mainly white; the second largest group is probably Hispanics, then African Americans. Even though the school is located in Orange County, I am sad to report there is probably about 2 Asians on campus. There is almost no homosexual population at Vanguard-and those that ARE don't come out about it. Socio-economic backgrounds are very diverse. I don't think anyone would feel out of place at Vanguard. Everyone is so accepting and friendly, as said earlier. Though there aren't many gay people, and it's technically against school code, people would still be loving towards you if you were. There's no judgement at all. This is not a "bible belt" sort of school. :) Almost everyone at Vanguard is from California, though there are some from various other places like Washington, Colorado, Arizona, and even as far as East Coast, as well as international students. Students are fairly politically aware and active, though not extremely. A majority of Vanguard students are very conservative, though there are quite a few liberals too. No I've never heard anyone talk about how much they'll earn one day.... that's just a really weird question...

Here's your chance: Say anything about your college!

Fun Facts: Vanguard Library rents out a large variety of free DVDs as well as VHSs. You get about $11 for printing money in the library computer lab OC Public Transportation System is really good, so if you know how to use them, the busses are a great way to get around Sadly, Miley Cyrus-Party in the USA can often be heard playing in the hallways Last year there was one day when it poured and the lawn in front of the Heath building flooded. Soon after, students could be found running and sliding on skim boards on the lawn. Last year at the Mr. VU competition, In the Cove was a favorite http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sc5WJsNWpZ0 Campus security uses segweys haha You are practically quaranteed if Resident Life somehow finds out you're sick (because of the swine flu)--in fact, they've installed purrell dispensers at various locations throughout campus. Britney Spears was going to come to Vanguard, but she apparently couldn't get a room to herself so she ended up not coming.

Is the stereotype of students at your school accurate?

Sadly, yes, for the most part. Even the girls that make fun of girls for being really boy crazy are extremely boy crazy themselves. 'Ring by spring' is the term used by students that means that girls always expect a ring by spring semester. This one is more of a rumor and less of a reality, thankfully for all you men out there. I'm not as sure about the sports teams, but I have heard a few people talking about going to a hookah bar. The baseball team has the WORST reputation for bad behavior. There ARE quite a few white people, but there's still quite a bit of diversity.

What are the academics like at your school?

Vanguard academics are GREAT. Not only do we have wonderful acadmeics, but we also have a pretty light homework load--unless you're a biology major. A majority of students are religion majors but the theater and film majors are well known for their excellence. Most of the other majors are wonderful too though. The only programs that are less-than-adequate are the math majors and art minor. They're actually doing away with the math major soon. The art minor just started though, so it may improve in coming years. My major-business- is also a very good program, though so far there has been a lot of classes I haven't enjoyed a whole lot- namely computer applications and accounting, but they are still very helpful as far as job training goes. I am looking forward to higher level business courses :). By the way-the best business teacher I've had so far is Stachowiak-she's wonderful :) and now she's my academic advisor! :) Teachers at Vanguard are very accessible as well as helpful and understanding. The most well known and liked professors are Camery-Hoggatt, Roberson, Robinette, and Marley. At least those are the ones that come to mind right now. I have only met one professor so far that I really haven't liked-DON'T TAKE GAULT!! It seems like most students study alone, though depending on how hard the class is and what your major is, group studying will occur as well. Biology majors, for example, are often very connected, and are often found studying together in the hallways. There's quite a bit of class participation, depending on the class of course. Classes like sociology are obviously more hands on while some classes, like New Testament involve more listening than anything else-though all classes are equally enjoyable--except for a select few general ed. classes. I wouldn't say that many students have intellectual conversations outside of class. At least in my friend groups. Though I think religion majors do have quite a few deep spiritual conversations. I haven't yet taken any really unique classes, though I am planning on taking Human Sexuality soon. I will say that my favorite class so far has been New Testament because the teacher is AMAZING. I unfortunately haven't spent a lot of time outside of class with my professors, though I want to start doing that, and a lot of other students do it. Vanguard's academic requirements are fairly reasonable. There are ALOT of required religion classes, but it's not too bad, and the ones I've taken so far are enjoyable. In fact, if you take two extra religion classes, you can have a religion minor. I feel Vanguard has an equal balance between learning for learning's sake and job geared education.

What are the most popular student activities/groups?

If you want to get involved on campus, there are a lot of great ways. Though they are mandatory, chapels are wonderfully lead. There are a lot of wonderful Bible studies you can be involved in (especially freshman year) as well as a prayer group on Thursday nights. There are a lot of great clubs, though I know of few people who actual attend one. Some include Live2Free (women's rights/domestic violence issues), Mosaic (diversity), and SIFE (Students in Free Enterprise- a business/community service club). A campus favorite is Delivery Boys and Entourage- both comedy groups that travel to youth camps during the summer and act at events on campus during the school year. The only difference between the two is that Delivery Boys is a group of males, and Entourage is a group of females. Last but not least is the welcome group for freshman and transfers--frontline. Frontline is AMAZING! Frontline is how I met one of my best friends (and through her I met two of my other best friends). I also became very good friends with my frontline leaders. Frontline is a great way to break you into the Vanguard community and get you a little more comfortable. DON'T skip it if you end up coming to Vanguard. You WILL regret it. Atleast that's my opinion I'm not involved in any campus groups at this moment, though I am thinking of beginning a club soon. Whether doors are open or not depends on what dorms you live in. Huntington and Laguna (the towers) are very social and most everyone will have their doors open. The other dorms like Catalina are a little more lax so a lot of people shut their doors, though everyone is still super-sweet and friendly (I actually like Catalina more because of this- I'm a really chill person, so I like the relaxed feel here). Almost no one goes to athletic events. It's a sad truth. We have quite a few guest speakers in chapel, but not otherwise. We do have a theater, and the theater dept. puts on WONDERFUL plays. Not enough people go to them though. It's sad. Many of Vanguard's extracurriculars are under-represented. The dating scene is complicated. Most people are either at boyfriend/girlfriend status or single. Almost no one just dates around like normal people. Here's an interesting fact: the girl to boy ratio at vanguard is 3 to 1. So there are ALOT of single women. Vanguard has a lot of great events. Some are pretty lame, but a lot are really fun. GYRAD (stands for Get Your Roommate a Date) for example, is really fun as is HABU (Hook a Brother Up)--GYRAD for the dudes. Woofest and Mr. VU (contest) are also very entertaining and well known. Most of the people I know don't really party. There's a lot of people that go clubbing, though I don't know how wild it gets. Drinking is against school code though and most are pretty good about following that code. There are no fraternities or sororities. Most people are gone on the weekends so campus is pretty empty. If you are on campus on the weekends though, there's so much to do. Self Serve Frozen Yogurt places (FroYo) are very popular and there are SO many. If you have a Disneyland pass, Anaheim is only 20 minutes away. Newport beach is even closer, and very beautiful and relaxing. A lot of people hang out at target, which is kind of weird I suppose, but it can be fun if you go with the right people. Also nearby is Tewinkle park, the OC Fairgrounds, Woodbridge Dollar Theater, and South Coast Plaza (mall). Me and my friends have a lot of fun hanging out in the dorms, though, as well.

What is the stereotype of students at your school?

All the girls go there to get married. The sports teams do a lot of drugs and alchohol. It's really white.

Chelsea
Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

My school has good quality academics as well as friendly staff and students.

Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

My school has good quality academics as well as friendly staff and students.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

To find the right college, decide want you want in a college: size, quality, community, etc. Then research colleges with those qualities. Visit the college, talk with students and professors, attend a class. To make the most of the college experience, be involved, but not so as it will interfere with your grades. Participate, come eager to learn. If you are a Christian, seek God's will for your school and your experiences there.

What kind of person should not attend this school?

People that are not serious about learning, or people that do not want to be a part of our friendly community.

Taylor
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

The best advice I could give is to find the campus that fits you the best. If you visit the campus and it feels like home the...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

The best advice I could give is to find the campus that fits you the best. If you visit the campus and it feels like home then you know that is where you should go and what would be best for you. Academics are extremely important but you need to find somewhere where you will have an amazing experience a part from that as well.

What kind of person should attend this school?

The type of person who wants to be a part of an amaing community, that wants to grow in their relationship with God and be able to find out what they want to do for the rest of their life or excel in what they already want to do. Someone who wants to be a part of a small campus by the beach.

What's the most frustrating thing about your school?

The most frustrating part of my school is that it is a small private school and so it does not have all of the advantages and amazing alumni group that you would have at a large university.

Kelsey
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Some advice that I would give parents/students on selecting the right college would honestly go with what you feel good about...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Some advice that I would give parents/students on selecting the right college would honestly go with what you feel good about. What I mean is that college is not just about going to some big name school for the popularity of it. For example, at my high school everyone wanted to go to USC or UCLA just becuase they are popular schools. Yet, once I really started looking at all of my options I found that maybe a smaller school would be a better fit for me. It's all about what you want out of your college experience. Some want to go to college to find themselves and experience fraternities and or sororities; I personally did not want to engage in that type of lifestyle, I wanted a more laid-back "homey" feeling at my college choice. So, in my personal opinion it is best to figure out what you want from a college in deciding where to go. What types of things each university has such as sports teams, clubs, extracurricular activities, majors and local social life. I am personally very happy I chose a small school insead of a big one.

What's unique about your campus?

The best thing about Vanguard University would probably be the community. The teachers are so personable and everyone is really friendly. I felt at home right away as a freshman. It is also a very small campus so you start to recognize people and you just say hello and its nice to see such familiar faces all the time.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

The worst thing about my school would probably have to be the cost of tuition. It costs almost $34,000 a year. Scholarships help most students but for those of us with middle class families loans are our best option.

Brittnie
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

To make a list of places that they want to go and give reasons why and then look into the programs there and see which school...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

To make a list of places that they want to go and give reasons why and then look into the programs there and see which school has the best program for their particular major and/or sport. If your an athlete go to the school that will give you a scholarship because those are extremely helpful when it comes to paying for your school. If it wasn't for mine I wouldn't be going to school right now. Also praying and seeing which school God would want you to go to where you would grow the most as a person and spiritually.

What's unique about your campus?

The Academics and Music program and also the TENNIS team!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

The community and the overall campus life is amazing and I enjoy every second of it. When school was out for the summer the girls on my floor including myself were crying because we were gonna miss each other so much and didn't want to leave

Jenny
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Find out what you are interested in, what you have passion for, and try to major in that. Don't worry if you have no idea wha...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Find out what you are interested in, what you have passion for, and try to major in that. Don't worry if you have no idea what you want to do in life, no one really does. Ultimately, find a college that makes you feel good. If you don't find it at the first college you attend, transfer. It's not a huge commitment. Visit the colleges you apply for and make sure you'll love where you are. Also, live on campus as much as you can--it's one of the best experiences I've ever had. Make friends and don't stress too much. It's not a race, it's some of the best years of your life and they go by way too quickly.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

The worst things about Vanguard is that we know we are a "holy huddle." We are such a strong community that we don't always assimilate well into the surrounding areas in Orange County. We can do mission trips around the world and do outreach work, but it's hard for us to make friends outside Vanguard who live in Orange County.

What's the most frustrating thing about your school?

Our financial aid department isn't the most competent in terms of filing. They often mess up our financial standings and request things that either we have already given them or that isn't applicable to us. It's frustrating because Vanguard is a private christian university, so it costs a great deal more than a state school and the majority of the students are in financial crises. We do receive a great amount of aid, but it's just not enough.

Jasun
Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

Vanguard is a fun filled place to grow and encounter new experiences.

Describe how your school looks to someone who's never seen it.

Vanguard is a fun filled place to grow and encounter new experiences.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Finding the right college takes a great deal of research. One needs to take into consideration the hobbies, major, location, weather, sports, living area, cafeteria and even safety into account when choosing a school. With technology and help of Campus discovery, pepole can find these facts all online. Money is very important but, when looking for schools I personally wouldn't let financial difficulties limit your opportunities. If you find an amazing school that is too expensive to attend all 4 years then it can be used for motivational purposes. You can always go to a community college for two years, save money and have a chance at the dream college/university. After doing all the research, you may find yourself with a top five or even top ten schools.

What's unique about your campus?

the best thing about our school is the size. Everyone knows eachother and can be there for eachother spiritually.

Roxanne
What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

To the parents and students who are trying to find the "right college" I would say keep your eyes, ears, mind, and heart open...

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

To the parents and students who are trying to find the "right college" I would say keep your eyes, ears, mind, and heart open. I use the word "open" because very often, when looking at our future, we bring along with us our own ideas that may or may not be rooted in reality. Being open to the opportunities that lie ahead is key to making the most of our college experience. It is during this crucial time. Parents - your son or daughter will be leaving home, may not in a physical and literal sense, but nonetheless will be away from you. For you parents, you should strive to think the best of your adult child and always encourage him/her. We, the students will have enough to think about without your constant reminders of right and wrong. And for you students, remember things may not always be as they seem and the one thing that you can be sure of is yourself. During the college experience, who you are will be questioned, proded, and poked in ways that you may have never experienced before; so take hold of this opportunity to discover you dreams and go for them.

What do you consider the worst thing about your school? Why?

Miscommunication. Some of the departments don't communicate well with each other and the students and it ends up being a lot of extra work and grief to get, what should have been a simple task done.

What do you brag about most when you tell your friends about your school?

The professors...they are all experts in their respective fields and could be making a lot more money if they decided to go back to those fields; but they stay and teach the next generation and invest in the lives of young people and the future of us all. They work at Vanguard because the believe in the students and teach the students to believe in themselves.

Dawn
Describe your favorite campus traditions.

Its religious focus, the larger majors, including the graduate programs, & its community based campus.

Describe your favorite campus traditions.

Its religious focus, the larger majors, including the graduate programs, & its community based campus.

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Definitely visit the campus, talk to current students, faculty, & staff in order to decide if it's the best fit for you.

What kind of person should not attend this school?

Those who have no moral values & do not want to live up to Christian standards.

Details

  • Enrollment
  • 1,791
  • Tuition & Fees
  • $31,430
  • Acceptance rate
  • 70%

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