My S is deciding between these three. Cost is comparable as he has a scholarship at USC. We are in state. All have a great college life and the campuses and locations all have many pros and some cons (not so excited about downtown LA). All have great reputations and if he does well, he will have excellent job options. So we know all of that...
What really matters is: WHERE WILL HE LEARN THE MOST? Here is what I understand:
UCB - World-renowned, great faculty, lots of "weeder" classes, competitive, less focus on undergraduates. Will he have the chance to do hands-on learning on a regular basis? Will he just be a number? Are the other engineering students collaborative?
CP SLO - Highly regarded "Learn by Doing" curriculum. Every engineer I know really likes this place. Said to be highly collaborative. Is that true?
USC - Great all around school and network. Well-respected engineering program. They seem to really care about their students. But what is it like to learn there? Don't have a good sense of that.
Please give your thoughts if you have experience with any of these schools.