Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

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Samms
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Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Samms » Fri May 03, 2013 9:23 pm

I'm currently deciding between going to UC Berkeley or UC Irvine as a Political Science major. On the surface, this might seem like a very obvious choice, but upon further reflection and based on my current economic situation, it's becoming complicated. UCI offered me their highest scholarship award (which comes with 5 grand) plus a bunch of other perks if I accepted their invitation. I also still live with my parents rent free (which has allowed me to save tons of money) right near UCI, so I could live off campus , paying only tuition and books. Juxtaposed to this would be moving myself to Berkeley, CA and paying a total of about 60K in tuition, fees, and living expenses. The difference in cost between UCI and UCB is about 20K vs 60K, so I'd save 40 grand.

In addition to the above, the chances of me beating the bell curve at Berkeley are significantly lower than at UCI unless I devote much more of my time to study. I could go to UCI and have a much greater chance of maintaining my 4.0 (or above) than at UCB, while also during ECs and continuing to work. There would be no chance of me working, ECing, and maintaining a 4.0 at UCB. I always planned to take the LSAT during my Senior year and go to LS after I get my BA, so I know GPA is very important.

Here are my questions:

1) Would any of the T10 care of they saw me get a 4.0 from UCI as opposed to UCB, and;

2) During OCI or any of the various processes third years go through to get jobs at any of the V50 companies, would an employer be more impressed with a BA from Berkeley as opposed to UCI? Or put in a different way, would my investment of 40,000 more dollars to go to Berkeley and infinitely more time studying to remain ahead of my curve pay off in any meaningful way when it comes to getting employed in a law firm?

Thanks!

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stillwater
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby stillwater » Fri May 03, 2013 9:26 pm

Samms wrote:I'm currently deciding between going to UC Berkeley or UC Irvine as a Political Science major. On the surface, this might seem like a very obvious choice, but upon further reflection and based on my current economic situation, it's becoming complicated. UCI offered me their highest scholarship award (which comes with 5 grand) plus a bunch of other perks if I accepted their invitation. I also still live with my parents rent free (which has allowed me to save tons of money) right near UCI, so I could live off campus , paying only tuition and books. Juxtaposed to this would be moving myself to Berkeley, CA and paying a total of about 60K in tuition, fees, and living expenses. The difference in cost between UCI and UCB is about 20K vs 60K, so I'd save 40 grand.

In addition to the above, the chances of me beating the bell curve at Berkeley are significantly lower than at UCI unless I devote much more of my time to study. I could go to UCI and have a much greater chance of maintaining my 4.0 (or above) than at UCB, while also during ECs and continuing to work. There would be no chance of me working, ECing, and maintaining a 4.0 at UCB. I always planned to take the LSAT during my Senior year and go to LS after I get my BA, so I know GPA is very important.

Here are my questions:

1) Would any of the T10 care of they saw me get a 4.0 from UCI as opposed to UCB, and;

2) During OCI or any of the various processes third years go through to get jobs at any of the V50 companies, would an employer be more impressed with a BA from Berkeley as opposed to UCI? Or put in a different way, would my investment of 40,000 more dollars to go to Berkeley and infinitely more time studying to remain ahead of my curve pay off in any meaningful way when it comes to getting employed in a law firm?

Thanks!


No one cares. Maximum GPA is the idea for law school. The only concern is you may change your mind between now and graduation, which sometimes can make an advantage of a better ranked school. I don't purport to know anything about California but it's just something to keep in mind if you decide to pursue an avenue other than law.

Danteshek
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Danteshek » Fri May 03, 2013 9:27 pm

Go to Berk and study hard science. Forget about law school.

ChaseInk
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby ChaseInk » Fri May 03, 2013 9:39 pm

Go to UCI. I know several lawyers who went to UCI, finished with a near 4.0, nailed the LSAT, ended up with scholarships from T6s, and are now scattered throughout the V100.

But this advice is only if you are dead set on going to law school and know you can get a 170+. If not, go to Cal.

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stillwater
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby stillwater » Fri May 03, 2013 9:53 pm

I just think its hard in high school to know going to law school is the right decision, if it ever is.

Samms
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Samms » Fri May 03, 2013 9:59 pm

ChaseInk wrote:Go to UCI. I know several lawyers who went to UCI, finished with a near 4.0, nailed the LSAT, ended up with scholarships from T6s, and are now scattered throughout the V100.

But this advice is only if you are dead set on going to law school and know you can get a 170+. If not, go to Cal.


Yes, this is my sketched plan, at least it is as a sort of nebulous cloud in my mind. If I went to Berkeley and I came out with a 3.7, but ended up nailing the LSAT, my dreams of Harvard would be dashed BUT I'd have the prestigious Berkeley BA.

I'm pretty dead set on going to LS as of now and also I've always fantisized about getting a 175+ on the LSAT, but I don't know that I'd get that for sure, obviously. My hubris is underdeveloped in that regard.


Here, find a LSAT Preptest, take it under timed conditions, if you break 150 go to UCI, otherwise Cal.


Probably a decent idea, although with 2 years of undergraduate logic, tough course work and mental masterbation, it might up my LSAT by a decent amount. Food for abstraction.

I just think its hard in high school to know going to law school is the right decision, if it ever is.


Actually, I'm 23 years old and it took me 3 years to get through my local CC because I took months and months off to work. I've been working since 17 years old in various fields. I was top 8 in my CC and interviewed for Valedictorian, but they ended up not taking me because of the extra year and my lack of interest in volunteering for anything campus-based. Straight A's, though. As far as interest in law, my dream is HYS , top 20% of my class, Law Review, and then V10 for 5-6 years and the possibly starting my own company. I really enjoy law and debate, and I think it's too late for me to go into Hard Sciences @poster above who said to.

Ty for responses so far.

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Doorkeeper
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Doorkeeper » Fri May 03, 2013 10:22 pm

Samms wrote:As far as interest in law, my dream is HYS , top 20% of my class, Law Review, and then V10 for 5-6 years and the possibly starting my own company.

LOL.

Try to stay modest, why don't you?

Go to the school that allows you to keep your debt low and your GPA high.

Golden Bear 11
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Golden Bear 11 » Fri May 03, 2013 10:38 pm

Oh you are going to be transfer student....if you go to Berkeley you've already avoid all the 30%A-30%B-30%C curved lower division classes. I don't know that much about the political science department, but if you pick your classes right you can enroll in 50%A -50%B upper division classes

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Cobretti
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Cobretti » Fri May 03, 2013 10:39 pm

Doorkeeper wrote:
Samms wrote:As far as interest in law, my dream is HYS , top 20% of my class, Law Review, and then V10 for 5-6 years and the possibly starting my own company.

LOL.

Try to stay modest, why don't you?

Go to the school that allows you to keep your debt low and your GPA high.

Hey now, remember he's settling from his original goal of astronaut-president-batman

Samms
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Samms » Fri May 03, 2013 10:42 pm

Doorkeeper wrote:
Samms wrote:As far as interest in law, my dream is HYS , top 20% of my class, Law Review, and then V10 for 5-6 years and the possibly starting my own company.

LOL.

Try to stay modest, why don't you?

Go to the school that allows you to keep your debt low and your GPA high.


Why would I stay modest with my dreams? Dream big or go home, IMO. I believe my elders when they say "sky is the limit" and I don't believe in being cynical.

Oh you are going to be transfer student....if you go to Berkeley you've already avoid all the 30%A-30%B-30%C curved lower division classes. I don't know that much about the political science department, but if you pick your classes right you can enroll in 50%A -50%B upper division classes


So it would be just as easy to maintain or expand upon my 4.0 at Berkeley as it would be at UCI? Is there any external stats or links that would provide evidence for this besides anecdotes or your own recollection? Anything would be great to help sway this decision.

Samms
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Samms » Fri May 03, 2013 10:51 pm

Hey now, remember he's settling from his original goal of astronaut-president-batman


Go ahead and settle for being mediocre. Once you stop dreaming you're dead, IMO.

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pupshaw
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby pupshaw » Fri May 03, 2013 10:53 pm

I can't think of anything more depressing than someone's pre-college "dream" being a job at a V10 firm.

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Doorkeeper
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Doorkeeper » Fri May 03, 2013 10:55 pm

Samms wrote:
Doorkeeper wrote:
Samms wrote:As far as interest in law, my dream is HYS , top 20% of my class, Law Review, and then V10 for 5-6 years and the possibly starting my own company.

LOL.

Try to stay modest, why don't you?

Go to the school that allows you to keep your debt low and your GPA high.


Why would I stay modest with my dreams?

Oh, I have no problem with having lofty dreams. I think it's great that an individual wanting to achieve a lot in life.

I have problems with people creating their dreams around vacuous prestige whoring for the sake of accumulating fancy sounding titles for no other purpose than comforting yourself at night when you doubt your entire purpose on this earth.

LSHopeful91
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby LSHopeful91 » Fri May 03, 2013 10:59 pm

Me: Berkeley undergrad in political science straight through to a T-14 here.

I can say, with no hesitation at all, that your undergrad school makes absolutely no difference. The "prestige" of a BA from Berkeley, especially in political science, is not as lofty as you think. The only time Berkeley has come in handy for me at law school has been as a conversation starter when people see it on my resume and realize we went to the same undergrad. That's it. Trust me on this.

I would say at my school that there are maybe 6 Berkeley people (including myself) and 4 Irvine people, but I don't think that's because UC Irvine was viewed as less than Berkeley.

Further, I'd be careful about the assumption that it is easier to beat the bell curve at Irvine than it is at Berkeley. It's the same thing as when you come to law school - the people are admitted based off metrics that aren't really indicative of how they will perform in college.

Finally, at least in my experience at Berkeley, I was only graded on a hard curve once out of my entire political science career, so I wouldn't worry about the curve anyway.

For full disclosure I'm at a lower sub 10 T-14 right now, but I got into multiple T-10s and decided not to go.

071816
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby 071816 » Fri May 03, 2013 11:00 pm

Samms wrote:As far as interest in law, my dream is HYS , top 20% of my class, Law Review, and then V10 for 5-6 years and the possibly starting my own company.

Image

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Dmini7
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Dmini7 » Fri May 03, 2013 11:16 pm

LSHopeful91 wrote:Me: Berkeley undergrad in political science straight through to a T-14 here.

I can say, with no hesitation at all, that your undergrad school makes absolutely no difference. The "prestige" of a BA from Berkeley, especially in political science, is not as lofty as you think. The only time Berkeley has come in handy for me at law school has been as a conversation starter when people see it on my resume and realize we went to the same undergrad. That's it. Trust me on this.

I would say at my school that there are maybe 6 Berkeley people (including myself) and 4 Irvine people, but I don't think that's because UC Irvine was viewed as less than Berkeley.

Further, I'd be careful about the assumption that it is easier to beat the bell curve at Irvine than it is at Berkeley. It's the same thing as when you come to law school - the people are admitted based off metrics that aren't really indicative of how they will perform in college.

Finally, at least in my experience at Berkeley, I was only graded on a hard curve once out of my entire political science career, so I wouldn't worry about the curve anyway.

For full disclosure I'm at a lower sub 10 T-14 right now, but I got into multiple T-10s and decided not to go.



BA classes have curves?? I always thought everyone could theoretically get an A in those classes hence why everyone suggests doing them for the easy GPA boost. To get back on topic to your question though: I would choose UCI. If you know you want to go to law school, save your money. Besides, a BA won't get you a job regardless, so don't spend extra for the name brand of Cal.

ChaseInk
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby ChaseInk » Fri May 03, 2013 11:25 pm

Cobretti wrote:
Doorkeeper wrote:
Samms wrote:As far as interest in law, my dream is HYS , top 20% of my class, Law Review, and then V10 for 5-6 years and the possibly starting my own company.

LOL.

Try to stay modest, why don't you?

Go to the school that allows you to keep your debt low and your GPA high.

Hey now, remember he's settling from his original goal of astronaut-president-batman


He also left out Bugatti, trophy wife, and weekend house in Montecito.

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dr123
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby dr123 » Fri May 03, 2013 11:27 pm

Don't major in Poli Sci. At least do Econ or something.

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bearsfan23
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby bearsfan23 » Fri May 03, 2013 11:29 pm

Samms wrote:
Hey now, remember he's settling from his original goal of astronaut-president-batman


Go ahead and settle for being mediocre. Once you stop dreaming you're dead, IMO.

Your number 1 goal in undergrad should be to get laid as much as possible, hth

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worldtraveler
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby worldtraveler » Fri May 03, 2013 11:29 pm

UCI and save the money. But having your life planned out that far ahead is just crazy. Focus on just keeping your gpa up and go from there.
But given how you said you didn't want to do school activities, if you really want an elite law school you should do something to make yourself sound interesting.

ChaseInk
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby ChaseInk » Fri May 03, 2013 11:30 pm

dr123 wrote:Don't major in Poli Sci. At least do Econ or something.


This. A BS (or maybe even a BA) in Econ will give you some good, other options.

Samms
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby Samms » Sat May 04, 2013 4:06 am

LSHopeful91 wrote:Me: Berkeley undergrad in political science straight through to a T-14 here.

I can say, with no hesitation at all, that your undergrad school makes absolutely no difference. The "prestige" of a BA from Berkeley, especially in political science, is not as lofty as you think. The only time Berkeley has come in handy for me at law school has been as a conversation starter when people see it on my resume and realize we went to the same undergrad. That's it. Trust me on this.

I would say at my school that there are maybe 6 Berkeley people (including myself) and 4 Irvine people, but I don't think that's because UC Irvine was viewed as less than Berkeley.

Further, I'd be careful about the assumption that it is easier to beat the bell curve at Irvine than it is at Berkeley. It's the same thing as when you come to law school - the people are admitted based off metrics that aren't really indicative of how they will perform in college.

Finally, at least in my experience at Berkeley, I was only graded on a hard curve once out of my entire political science career, so I wouldn't worry about the curve anyway.

For full disclosure I'm at a lower sub 10 T-14 right now, but I got into multiple T-10s and decided not to go.


Hmm that's really interesting. I've heard differently but since you actually went there, I'm going to take your word for it. I'm not entirely worried about being able to maintain a decent GPA, and if I was, I wouldn't be that prepared for HYS either, so point taken. I'm really just looking at the economics of the situation now.

As to the various people who told me not to major in Political Science: why? People who graduate with decent grades and do things with their time in UG get jobs. In California, a Political Science degree isn't entirely worthless. I've grappled with the whole "hard science" vs. "soft science" question before, and my decision to major in Political Science came from basically my underlying desire to go to law school and the fact that there are 60k-70k salary government jobs at the state and local level here in California for people with PS BAs.

LSHopeful, does this bear out with what you've seen? Or should I be as jaded as everyone else in this thread regarding ever finding a job IF I decide not to go to law school with my PS degree.

Thanks for all the advice thus far guys. Definitely leaning towards UCI more and more.

igo2northwestern
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby igo2northwestern » Sat May 04, 2013 4:28 am

unless you have a full scholarship (or something significant), go to berk. it's not that hard and it's a great place to be, with SF nearby + great restaurants + academic recognition.

Samms wrote:As to the various people who told me not to major in Political Science: why? People who graduate with decent grades and do things with their time in UG get jobs. In California, a Political Science degree isn't entirely worthless. I've grappled with the whole "hard science" vs. "soft science" question before, and my decision to major in Political Science came from basically my underlying desire to go to law school and the fact that there are 60k-70k salary government jobs at the state and local level here in California for people with PS BAs.

Do some research on the availability of those 60-70k CA government jobs. (You'll see that they don't exist...)

indo
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby indo » Sat May 04, 2013 5:18 am

igo2northwestern wrote:unless you have a full scholarship (or something significant), go to berk. it's not that hard and it's a great place to be, with SF nearby + great restaurants + academic recognition.

Samms wrote:As to the various people who told me not to major in Political Science: why? People who graduate with decent grades and do things with their time in UG get jobs. In California, a Political Science degree isn't entirely worthless. I've grappled with the whole "hard science" vs. "soft science" question before, and my decision to major in Political Science came from basically my underlying desire to go to law school and the fact that there are 60k-70k salary government jobs at the state and local level here in California for people with PS BAs.

Do some research on the availability of those 60-70k CA government jobs. (You'll see that they don't exist...)


60 - 70 K Goverment jobs if you have 5 years experience.
you will be lucky get $ 40 K year without experience

hiima3L
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Re: Berkeley or UCI for Undergrad .. Does it matter?

Postby hiima3L » Sat May 04, 2013 7:48 am

Go to JC, get a 4.0, transfer to CSU anywhere, enjoy easy upper level classes, graduate summa with a fraction of the debt (or none at all) and stress, take the LSAT.

I assure no one cares whatsoever about your UG degree once you're at law school.




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