- Class: Senior
- Major: Other
- Gender: F
- High School: University High School
- Transfer Student: N
Honestly, for those people with cars or friends with cars, UCR is located right in the middle of some nice spots. You've got Big Bear to the East, Los Angeles/Hollywood/Santa Monica/etc... to the West, Various theme parks... Disneyland/Knotts Berry Farm/Raging Waters (for when it's hot), Theatres (I mean plays, not movies. movies are everywhere, like starbucks is everywhere) like the Pantages in Hollywood, Amphitheatres (Staples Center downtown Los Angeles). The only down side right now is gas prices, so carpooling is a must and everyone has to chip in about ten bucks a tank no matter where you're heading to. I like the size of the school, it's one of the smallest UC campuses so while you still don't get all the classes you want because the honor students and upperclassmen stole them first, when you do hit junior year you pretty much can take whatever you want. So by the time you hit Senior year, if you haven't messed around your first three years, you suddenly have most of your requirements for you major done and all these extra class slots to take fun stuff. If you had asked me two years ago where I spent all my time, I would've replied "my room" because there wasn't really a hang out on campus. Then they built this huge Commons building with all sorts of shiny rooms and TV areas and food spots... so whenever I'm stuck on campus for a few hours between classes, you can usually find me up in one of the lounges watching TV. Unless it's finals week, then I'm in the Library with everyone else.
As an unstated rule, Lower Division classes are huge and the only way a Professor will know your name is if s/he sees you outside of class at least three times for various reasons. (Unless you're my friend who sits in the front and asks obnoxious questions and has the Professor so annoyed that they start throwing chalk at him, I don't recommend this route) My favorite class is one that's unique to UCR, Natural Hazards and Disasters. I took it, I got a high grade, I would take it again just because it was such a fun class. It is tag teamed by two professors who switch off lecture days and the class project is to put together a report over the course of the quarter that shows all the possible hazards to your own home. You get to see lots of videos and learn about various weather patterns and such, it's kind of like taking a class right off the Discovery Channel.
UC Riverside is so eclectic that I doubt anyone wouldn't find themselves a niche somewhere. I remember doing a lot of campus tours, some campuses were obviously frat/sor heavy because all the kids were wearing trendy clothes... some were a bit more hip hop friendly, but UCR pretty much has everything all at once. Well, I admit... we often wear pajamas to classes before 10am, but they're comfy and we didn't feel like getting dressed. Most UCR students are from Southern California,so the parking lots for the apartments and dorms are pretty empty on weekends. A lot of students like to live far enough away from mom and dad that they have to live on or near campus, but close enough to go home and do laundry on weekends.
The Best Things
Location. Bus,train,car however you get there, there is somewhere to go. Or if you're an outdoor person like me, go hiking, we're right on top of a national park!
The Worst Things
It is desert weather, so beginning of Fall quarter and end of Spring quarters are already starting to get Hot. Winters get really cold at night.