UCI has continually attracted a lot of prospective students, partially because of the resources the campus provides as well as its general atmosphere. The Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education ranked UCI third among top U.S colleges in 2018 for providing a productive learning environment. It’s the number one and two choice among the UCs for Latino and African-American high school grads respectively. UCI’s programs have drawn in a large amount of minority in-state applicants.
The campus is designed in a way that enables a combination of lecture halls and nature by the inclusion of Aldrich Park at its center. The university offers a variety of resources for students such as peer tutoring programs, Learning and Academic Resource Center, mentorship programs and more. There are plenty of places to study on campus and overall where it’s tranquil.
Research opportunities abound for students. These enable a deeper learning than that of the lecture hall because practical skills are being applied. Since UCI is a large public university that is a great place for undergraduate research, it breeds a large number of future researchers and thinkers that can find nearly any niche subject they like and pursue it. There is much to be said about the value of hands-on learning. The subjects we read in textbooks and hear about in lectures were made possible by contributions of others. To be able to work with professors in labs to strengthen your base knowledge and technical skills is an invaluable tool, especially for graduate school and beyond.
Generally speaking, a lot of the people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting are willing to help out and work with you. Part of what makes a university as large as UCI feel like a whole community is the amount of people who care for each other. The diversity of perspectives and backgrounds and experiences is truly remarkable. It challenges me to think critically and engage in intellectual conversations with those around me. There are support systems available for students in the form of these friendly connections. Although the university is not perfect, and there is certainly room for improvement, it feels like the student body works towards creating changes in policy. There are causes to support and issues to bring to the forefront.
A plethora of on-campus organizations make it easy for fresh undergraduate entrees to find a group or collective they can associate with. These bonds in turn help create an environment of tolerance and acceptance. The students that care, really do care and it shows. They booth on Ring Road for causes. They organize protests when they perceive injustices and see a cause worth fighting for. They look after each other. They entertain each other and help each other, be it through posting memes or through organizing group activities. As a campus that is constantly evolving, UCI has a diverse student body that enables one to develop a much wider perspective and challenge each other to become better individuals in society.
Eashan Kotha is a second-year biological sciences major. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.