UC Santa Barbara vs. UWisc Madison

<p>First question: I've gotten into four schools so far and am hearing from my top choices in the next couple of weeks. Out of the four I have gotten into, these are my favorites so far. Cost aside, which would you choose and why? I feel like both have a ton of merits and I truly love them both. I would really appreciate a second opinion though.</p>

<p>Answer some questions first:</p>

<li> Are you in-state for either?</li>
<li> Any major interests?</li>
<li> Do you like Div 1 sports?</li>
<li> How far away from home are you looking?</li>
<li> Do you like seasonal weather or more consistent beach weather?</li>

<p>Personally, being born and raised in SoCal, and if costs were no matter, I'd have no qualms choosing Wisconsin. It's a great school, great town, big time college sports environment, and different enough from Socal...but, that's me.</p>

<li>I live in minnesota so due to reciprocity get close to in-state prices at Wisc</li>
<li>i wanted a school where I could get a great education, study psychology, work on the school newspaper, and be a part of a good social scene. i also wanted to be far enough away from home</li>
<li>yes but they are not a big factor in my choice</li>
<li> far is good... but i know that wisc will feel far enough away too. </li>
<li> i am desperate for some warmness but i can suck it up as a minnesotan and deal with it if i need to</li>

<p>It seems like Madison is the obvious choice because of cost, but I just loved UCSB so much when I visited. Plus I have family near there so it isn't like I am completely alone. About 100 people go to Madison from my school every year, and I just feel the need to get away. It's hard to justify paying double the price though, I know.</p>

<p>Hmmm...Congrats on your acceptances. UCSB is nice, but if I were in your shoes, I'd save the money and go to UW.</p>

<p>^I agree</p>

<p>I'd go to Wisconsin for a year or two and if it's not what you want, you can always transfer. I know UCSB might sound like the sexy choice now, but how sexy is it going to be when you're 22/23 and in debt?</p>

<p>ucsb is a great school, and like all the UCs a great deal for CA residents. However I can't see why people would pay $40K/year to go there when for that kind of money they could go to a solid private where they have smaller classes, personal attention, etc. Take the $20K savings per year and put isome of it into spring breaks in the best place you can think of; you'll still be $17-18K ahead each year.</p>

<p>I think you can actually get in-state tuition in CA after your first two years. I think I read that when I was looking at the UCs.</p>

<p>Normally I encourage people to go with the better options financially, but it seems like you really do have a strong preference for UCSB. So in this case, I'm going to say follow your heart.</p>

I think you can actually get in-state tuition in CA after your first two years. I think I read that when I was looking at the UCs.

No, you can't. If you are not a CA resident when you start a UC, it is pretty much impossible to get in-state rates ever.
If the student's parents do not meet the requirements for residence for tuition purposes, the student must be financially independent in order to be a resident for tuition purposes.</p>

<p>Note that the financial independence requirement makes it extremely difficult for most undergraduates whose parents are not California residents, including transfer students from community colleges and other post-secondary institutions within California, to qualify for classification as a resident at a University of California campus.
UCLA</a> Registrar's Office: Residence for Tuition Purposes--Establishing Residence


<p>Wisconsin > UCSB </p>

<p>This is no contest. Madison is a way cooler city than Santa Barbara. I have visited both and there is no comparison. And the Wisconsin campus has spirit and a clear cut identity. I did not feel anything on the UCSB. I understand your desire to get away, but in this case, it would make no sense.</p>

<p>This, however, may be the only time in one's life that living in Santa Barbara is affordable.</p>

<p>Icy, with the $80,000 that the OP will save by attending Wisconsin, she/he can live very comfortably in Santa Barbara for an entire year! hehe!</p>

<p>Midwest all the way.. + there are shark attacks in santa barbara</p>

<p>^ And there are people dying of carbon monoxide poisioning due to faulty heaters in the midwest...:rolleyes:</p>

<p>haha, yes, take your pick, stay out of the ocean or stay out of the indoors</p>

<p>As for academic quality, I think Wisconsin wins hands down. It's just a better school in all regards in terms of academics.</p>

<p>Location may be a wash. Santa Barbara is beautiful and warm, but relatively quiet for a college town. Madison is also beautiful but can get painfully frigid for a long period of the year, but it has a lot more going on in terms of off-campus events.</p>

<p>I vote for Madison. It's big enough that you will seldom see the hundred kids from your school. It's a known flagship, so it seems to me that it has more prestige, if that matters. If you end up living in the midwest, it will give you far more career contacts. Plus it is cheaper. Spend the extra money on travel or save it.</p>

<p>follow your heart. it doesnt matter about the price because your spending the money on something very important. your education. theres no such thing as wasting your money when you paying for a well respected school such as UCSB. you dont have to worry about missing out on fun if yur in debt. There is a lot to do in SB and socal. such as numerous beaches, parties, LA , Hollywood, snowboarding, dirt bike riding , quadding, etc. a million times better than boring, no name states such as wisconsin</p>

How much fun are you going to have later in life when you're $100k in the hole with a liberal arts degree making $35k/yr? Better to get the same degree at a cheaper school and not be saddled with the debt...</p>

<p>People don't seem to understand the value of money these days...</p>

but I just loved UCSB so much when I visited.


Perhaps you can tell us what you like so much about UCSB ... the campus, the people, the school spirit, the campus life, etc.? I presume you have visited Madison already. What specifically do you like UCSB more than UW-Madison?</p>

<p>Sure Wisconsin gets frigidly cold in the winter, but you are from Minnesota so you should be used to that. On the other hand, you don't get the seasonal change in California.</p>

<p>And I agree with mohammad, academically Wisconsin wins hands down.</p>

About 100 people go to Madison from my school every year, and I just feel the need to get away.


UW is so big you can get lost in the crowd if that's what you want.</p>