It’s come to my attention that those who have applied to university for this coming school year are getting their offers. So I thought I would share a bit of my wisdom, if you can call it that.
Around this time in 2011, it all came down to UCLA and UC Berkeley. I visited both campuses, experienced the dorm life, and attended a class or two; and ended up loving both of them. However I felt much more at home in Los Angeles, maybe because I’m a child of Southern California and I was used to the general environment. Even though I liked Berkeley, I felt so out of place and a little uncomfortable. In the end I ended up choosing the later.
You wanna know why?
Because it was Berkeley, one of the highest-ranked universities in the world. I thought that if I went to such a renowned university I’d be set. What a complete mistake that was because when I was actually there, I hated it. After the first few months, I was completely miserable and flew back to San Diego every single month. And maybe it had to do with my depression and anxiety, but even when they were dormant I was indifferent at best.
And so I’ll tell you something that’s probably obvious: Don’t ever ever ever ever ever choose a university because of the glory that’s associated with the name. In fact, don’t choose a university because a good friend of yours is going or your parents want you to. I know that some parents have had a university picked out for their child since he/she was born and were dead set on their child going, but the parents aren’t the ones attending the school.
You’re going to be spending the next four, or maybe five, years at that school so it’s important you choose the right one for you even if it’s not your first choice. My first choice was actually Stanford but I visited the campus, spent some time there and realized that I didn’t like it at all. The campus was gorgeous and the professors seemed knowledgable and interesting, but it just wasn’t for me. At least I made the right decision there.
I’m no counselor but I hope I did help a little. I don’t want anyone to make the same mistakes I made when choosing a university. I have a lot more advice but I guess I’ll save that for when uni actually begins.
One last thing: go with your gut.