CCs, the CSUs, and the UC system, many of the State’s public universities have been forced to cut their enrollments through more intense admissions standards. Hence, these schools accept less freshman and transfer students. However, with schools like UC Riverside, UC Santa Cruz and even UC Merced (where previous reputation has been less than stellar among college admissions-hype beasts and GPA/SAT/ACT-obsessed high school seniors too caught up with the TOP 50 of the USNWR), the rise in demand, popularity, as well as increased competition of quality applicants, has helped ALL the UCs get on the fast-track towards increased prestige and improved rep with more selective applicant pools, and, in the long-term, more prepared and exceptionally qualified freshman and transfer students. UCR is definitely on this track and is truly rising. Therefore, UCR should be considered less as “UC Rejects” and more, the University of California, REDEMPTION.
This UC also boasts the #1 entomology program in the nation. not bad for being called the former bottom feeder uc. UC Santa Cruz, Santa Barbara and Irvine have recently dropped status according to Newsweek
Riverside itself is seedy and dangerous. I know only a very small handful of people who were not robbed at least once while living there…I was not one of those fortunate few. Crack whores (in the strictly literal sense) “work” up and down University Ave. less than half a mile from the campus. My own work as a pizza delivery driver exposed me and my co-workers to the ever present danger of armed robbery, gun-violence and gang-activity. That said, with the right perspective, this place offers a valuable opportunity for much of its student body to experience the “real world” in graduated steps, should they choose to do so. I can say from my own experience that it has had an incredible “humanizing” affect on my perception of the homeless and others living in horrible situations.
While the student body is largely apathetic (there is no school spirit as has been mentioned above but no one has bothered to ask whether or not school spirit is an admirable goal or merely a herd-mentality annoyance) there are plenty of very serious students and instructors. Several people have claimed that many instructors cannot speak English. A colleague of mine who is a Sociology lecturer of Chinese descent at UCR often finds that “cannot speak English” is on his student feedback forms despite the fact that he was born in New York, has spent his entire life in the US and speaks flawless English with no accent. I would also contest the notion that students graduating from UCR are bound to mediocrity. I am a graduate from UCR (if I have not already made that plainly obvious) who is currently pursuing his PhD at King’s College, London on a full-ride scholarship.
My reason for writing this very loose “definition” is to, hopefully, spread a much more balanced assessment of UCR both as an institution of higher learning as well as a social environment for students. It may not be a great school for parties, but that was never my scene so I couldn’t really comment much on that. There are some students who immerse themselves in the community and who generally find whatever it is that they’re looking for. There is another class of students who race home every weekend and who treat their time at UCR as an extension of high school. Like anything else, a student can expect to get out of their time at UCR exactly what they put in. I know I got a whole helluva lot, and IÃ¢ÂÂm sure many others have as well.