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road trip, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, Berkeley

road trip, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, Berkeley

Old Jul 17th, 2016, 01:09 PM
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road trip, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, Berkeley

I am planning a road trip in November from Orange County to Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz and Berkeley with our 19 year old daughter. She attended a private small college her freshman year in San Diego but has decided to stay home in the fall, go to Community College and transfer to a UC school for her Junior and Senior year... with how the system works, she has to apply in the fall for the following year... so she will, but has never been to any of the schools so we will take a road trip in November... (based on her academics and the way the transfer system works she will get into Santa Barbara and Santa Cruz... Berkeley is not a slam dunk... )

I have only been to Santa Barbara a handful of times and never to Santa Cruz or Berkeley.

We have Wed night after work/traffic until Sunday evening... (meaning we need to be home Sunday night)

thoughts:

Wed: Drive to Santa Barbara spend night
Thurs: See UCSB explore town a little - drive up coast to Santa Cruz... spend night in: ??
Friday: See Santa Cruz... drive to SF (daughter has never been to SF) spend night in SF
Sat: See Berkley head back south and stay???
Sunday: continue drive home...

I also thought about renting a car and dropping it in SF and taking public transportation into Berkley and flying home on Sunday.... checking out drop fees...

Open to suggestions!
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 01:45 PM
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What a smart move on your daughter's part. I am familiar with the TAG (it used to be called years ago, not sure how or if it has changed). You mentioned Cal is not guaranteed, but if she goes to the required community college in the Berkeley (same with UC Santa Barbara and UC Santa Cruz) area and maintains a certain GPA is she guaranteed a spot as a jr/sr?
I'm just curious.
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 02:01 PM
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You should also check out Cal Poly, SLO on your way up.
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 02:21 PM
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Getting into UC Berkeley has become more and more difficult in the past few years. The daughter of one of our neighbors had a 4.2 average, tons of APs, was on the tennis team and did a lot of other extra-curricular activities. She was wait-listed for Berkeley but didn't get in and is going to Santa Barbara.

One comment about UCSB: another neighbor kid went there for his first year and really disliked the fact that the campus is isolated from the town. Something to think about.
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 02:25 PM
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If it was me I'd fly up to SFO or Oakland and see SF and UC Berkeley the first 1.5 days no need to even have a car for that bit. Then collect a rental car and drive to Santa Cruz, stay the night. See the town of Santa Cruz that evening evening and check out the campus the next morning. Drive to SLO (for MichelleY and then on to Santa Barbara for the evening, see the campus the next morning. Drive home, turn in rental car . . .
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 02:26 PM
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Nanabee - unfortunately, only 6 UC schools remain in the TAGS program. http://admission.universityofcalifor...fer/guarantee/ - http://admission.universityofcalifor...tag-matrix.pdf

Michelle - that is an excellent idea!!! Thanks for bringing that up!!

While she LOVED San Diego (she is her Momma's daughter ) and she LOVED her professors (she will miss the personal attention she got at such a small school I am sure) she did not love Point Loma Nazarene over all and for a variety of reasons asked to stay home this year and do this route.
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 02:30 PM
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Janisj - that is a GREAT idea... see why I love you guys Will look at doing it that way.. far more relaxing that way too...

Underhill - she most likely won't get in... but her chances are higher as she will be a transfer student... she is also applying to UCLA but that also most likely won't happen. She is a good student, she got 2 B's in her freshman year at PLNU (all other A) but that isn't what it use to be...
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 06:27 PM
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Just so you know, most of UCSB is in Goleta. I don't know much about the dorms but the family housing was quite bad.
DS, DIL, 2 kids and a dog in 800 square feet was terrible.
You could possibly take the Coast Starlight from Burbank to a station near San Francisco and use other public transport and then fly back to Santa Barbara.
There are several Surfliner trains between Santa Barbara and Burbank.
The Burbank Amtrak station is across the street from the Burbank airport.
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 06:37 PM
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I didn't realize Cal and UCLA and UCSD have discontinued the TAG program momdd. That is unfortunate. Cal Poly SLO is a very good option to consider as well. What about UC Davis? I've know so many people who graduated from there and loved it.
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 06:42 PM
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My husband got his PhD at UC Davis, and we still live here in the town. It's a fine school and community; the eastern side of the campus borders the downtown area, which is lively. The neighbor's son who went to and didn't like UCSB transferred to Davis in his sophomore year.
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Old Jul 17th, 2016, 07:13 PM
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Our children went to UCDavis, UCSanta Barbara and UCSanta Cruz. DH and I met at UCSC. So admittedly I am a bit biased. That said, seeing the campuses is a really good idea because ours picked their campuses for reasons that became obvious to them after campus visits. So take that drive up the coast, enjoy the time with your daughter and take the campus tours if available. Berkeley is a long shot for most students these days, so see it and then see how her year goes. I guess what I am trying to say is that any of the campuses will provide your daughter with a very fine education.
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Old Jul 18th, 2016, 06:05 AM
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This is great information - thank you! I believe Berkeley has around a 22% transfer acceptance rate...so like I said, she most likely won't be admitted... but even though she was born and raised mainly in Socal - she has never been to that area so we thought we would make the trip

UC Davis is a good option as well -

- she LOVED San Diego/Point Loma and is a beach girl...but the school itself just wasn't a great fit... it is okay - it was a great experience for her - she is a beach girl...so that is why we were thinking UCSB and Santa Cruz...

tom - she would not be in the dorms as a junior - we would need to find an apartment or shared house etc... she hates dorm life... but good to know!
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Old Jul 18th, 2016, 10:00 AM
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--she is a beach girl-- yes, take a look at Cal Poly also. Davis is a nice college town. I think it also depends on her major.
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Old Jul 18th, 2016, 11:27 AM
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Political Science... she wants to go to law school...
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Old Jul 18th, 2016, 07:03 PM
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OK, as a UCLA grad (Go Bruins!) with a son who graduated from Cal (Go Bears!), we did this same adventure of college visits back in 2006.

First, don't dismiss Cal . . . they are always looking for quirky, square pegs, round hole kind of people, and the essay is everything. Cal remains the most holistically amenable UC campus, and I say this from experience. BUT, she's got to see Cal and say, this is my dream school. My son was like that, and it scared us to death.

Second, for a "beach girl" . . . I'd go to the mats on UCSC. If I hadn't gone to UCLA, that would have been the place for me. STAY THE NIGHT THERE! Santa Cruz is the place I would retire to (if not the south of France). The campus itself is beyond unique and has brilliant professors and you can find the banana slugs (their mascot) looking around their amphitheater. I only wish they still had the no grade system, ala Reed College in Oregon.

UCSC also has the best surfing (with wetsuit) and an amazing boardwalk/amusement park. Weekend bus trips to SF/Berkeley as well.

While I liked UCSB, son wasn't keen on it, but it's always been known as a party school and he has never been socially ept.

And MichelleY is right on for SLO's Cal Poly. Harder to get into that campus than most of the UC's. The thing is, look to see what each campus has to offer . . . each campus has its own superior major.
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Old Jul 20th, 2016, 05:00 AM
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Thanks everyone!!

I talked about it with my husband - we are going to fly up on Wed evening after work to SFO and spend the night in SF and go from there - he also liked the idea of flying up and renting a car and dropping back in Orange County.

Our daughter is in SB visiting with some friends right now (her first time there) hopefully she likes it!

Surfer - she is quirky... and good advice on essay is everything - she is a good writer - and thanks for the advice on spending the night in Santa Cruz - I will try to work out the schedule to fit it...

We have Wed night - Sun so we should be able to work this all in
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Old Jul 20th, 2016, 05:57 AM
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I also think spending the night in Santa Cruz is good, it really is a pretty beach town, just try to think past the summer vacationers. The vibe does change when the students return. And the campus is a great place for quirky independent thinkers.
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Old Jul 20th, 2016, 07:05 AM
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We are not going till November
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Old Jul 20th, 2016, 12:36 PM
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Question - would you fly into SFO and stay in SF on Wed night or fly into Oak and stay in Berkley - we won't be landing till around 8:00 pm or so...
cost is the same on airfare...
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Old Jul 20th, 2016, 12:43 PM
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Either would be fine. Mostly depends on what you want to do Wed. night.

Though if you are visiting the Cal Campus on Thurs AM, already being on the east side of the bay will help a lot.
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