Why you would ask this question is a wonder to me in the first place. But for the people that are still in doubt about studying abroad in California, I have created a list of 10 reasons that should make you want to step in the plane right away!
- The university of California is one of the world-renowned academic institutions with 10 campuses spread throughout California. It is an honour to be walking through the beautiful campus to then take a seat in your lecture, listening to a great professor. In 2015 ‘Topuniversities.com’ placed UCLA as number 8 and UCB as number 11 in the ranking for the top universities of the world. Studying abroad in the UC system will also greatly boost your CV.
- Being a student at UC opens further doors. You are here to study but don’t forget about the networks that you can create. I have found a position in the neuroscience lab as a research assistant (RA) for running EEGs, a type of brain imaging technique. I am exploding with excitement to have the opportunity to be contributing to research at one of the most famous research institutions of the world! UCB, located right by San Francisco, is very close to Silicon Valley, which is the home to many high-tech corporations and thousands of start-up companies. There are many career fairs held at the university and many students find internships in big companies. It is a buzzling place with a lot of innovation!
- You have the chance to encounter many curious, enthusiastic and intellectual minds. UCB is filled with many interesting characters from all over the world, sharing their culture, knowledge and ideas.
- As well as experiencing the typical American food ranging from juicy burgers to amazing ice cream and to crispy bacon, California is the state to also indulge in various ethnic cuisines. California is known as a healthy state with lots of tofu, quinoa and juices – yum!!
- In Los Angeles, San Diego or Santa Barbara surfing could be your DAILY hobby!
- Forget about those endless wet and grey days that you just want to stay in bed and watch Netflix – California has something called ‘SUN‘. Berkeley has a maximum of 67 days of rain in a year (the 4 times it has rained here in the past 2 months it really was more like a light drizzle).
- It can be very rewarding to be learning a new language while studying abroad in a different country. However, feeling comfortable in your language enables you to easily establish deep relationships. Being able to speak English helps you to get around, meet new people as well as settling in.
- Berkeley is known for its academics, as well as its hippie vibes. People are very open and creative. My friend Pav, gave me a great example that reflects this: transportation here is very diverse – people use skateboards, walk, cruise around on their kiddie scooters or ‘float’ on their high-tech swagways – and this is just normal. In Glasgow people would turn around their heads and think people are ‘l-o-c-o’!
- California has so many places to visit. There is a lot to discover from surfing the Californian waves, casinos in Las Vegas, hiking in Yosemite, walking down the hall of fame in Los Angeles, seeing Death Valley and skiing in Lake Tahoe.
- The United States of America is known for being the land of opportunities. Studying abroad should be a year of experiences and exploration – I am trying to say that the two things go hand in hand! At the end of the day, the University of California is a very popular choice. If you really want this, you can make it happen. However, if you do not make it to any of the UC campuses, don’t worry – studying abroad in the USA is still an unforgettable experience with endless impressions and priceless memories! Just make the best of it!
Any questions – holler at me!