UCSC Admission Stress

Thank you for the clarification.

I have a senior who is also stressed. I have been telling her that she will end up where she is meant to be and any school, UC or other will be lucky to have her. I truly believe that is the same for you. I have also advised her to stay off of social media and college blog sites as it gets in her head.

When my older daughter was applying to colleges 10 years ago things were a lot different than with my younger daughter applying this year. With that being said, my daughter is also worried she is not good enough and has been really down after reading about all these students getting accepted, having well above 4.0, awards, accolades, tons of EC and volunteer service, etc. and now feels that she might not be good enough to get into any UC school.

While her weighted GPA is 4.13 , she has completed 50 units in dual enrollment courses with 8 more in progress and in person at the local JC, works 25-30 hours a week, performs community service, is involved in a performance based EC, PIQ’s that tell her story and is a first gen college student (my husband and I did not attend but our older daughter is a doctor) she still is really down.

We remind her is that she applied and and it is out of her hands. She has already been accepted to some great schools and we make sure to celebrate that as she waits for other decisions.

As my mom used to say, “What is meant to be is meant to be… worrying about it does not change the outcome it only takes away from today.”

I wish you all the best and think you will do great things no matter where you go to college.

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“UCs do not consider race or ethnicity in admission.” they don’t explicitly but they do consider surrogates like first generation etc.

There is annecdotal evidences (but lots of it) that ethnicity/race does play a factor.

I’m not against it, as I do think the incoming Freshman class should represent the state of California.

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Hi Gumbymom, can you clarify this admit rate chart. Not sure if I understand it correctly. So, for example, for Santa Cruz does this mean that 69% of applicants with a 4.00+ that applied were admitted and that only 4% of applicants with a 3.00-3.29 GPA were admitted? Of course, understand this assumes total admit (those admitted off the wait list) and not first cut.

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The admit chart data is from the UCOP Freshman summary based on the calculated Capped Weighted GPA and overall applicants by campus (In-state, OOS and International applicants ). This data prior to this year had more GPA categories. 2022 data has been consolidated to 4.00+ vs 3.80-4.19 and 4.20+. The data for 2022 shows that applicants with a Capped weighted UC GPA of 4.0+ admit rate but this data does not differentiate by major competitiveness or the actual GPA range for admitted students for each major or College (if they do admit by major). It is more of a general guideline to determine if an applicant is within range for a possible acceptance. There are so many variables involved in the UC admissions so GPA alone is not the only deciding factor.

For comparison 2021 Admit rates

Campus 4.20+ 3.80-4.19 3.40-3.79 3.00-3.39
Berkeley 30% 11% 2% 1%
Davis 85% 55% 23% 10%
Irvine 60% 31% 14% 1%
Los Angeles 29% 6% 1% 0%
Merced 97% 98% 96% 89%
Riverside 97% 92% 62% 23%
San Diego 72% 25% 2% 0%
Santa Barbara 73% 28% 4% 1%
Santa Cruz 91% 81% 46% 9%
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Thanks, I’ve seen that chart alot, but how much does it vary by major?

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Thank you for the kind words

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This is very good information and provides me with a good bit of peace of mind

Admission rate varies a LOT by major… mostly by making admission more difficult for the more impacted majors. Is there a particular major you have in mind?

However, I do think the chart is a good start just to see whether a student’s GPA is within a competitive range for each UC campus. For example if a student’s weighted GPA is 3.4, they are not going to be competitive for UCLA, UCB, UCSD… but there are still UCs where they are in the range.

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If a campus or specific campus college like Engineering admits by major, there can be huge differences in the acceptance rate between majors.

Example #1;
UCLA’s Computer Science admit rate 2022 was 3.8% while Materials Engineering was 21.6%. Nursings admit rate was 1%.

Example #2 based on the UCSC discussion thread for some of the majors where students recently admitted. These are 2022 numbers.
Computer Science BS was 60% and BA 51%
Cognitive Science was 55%
Biology BS was 52%
Economics was 45%
Marine Biology was 45%
Computer Engineering was 46%

UCSC does not have as much variation in their acceptance rates vs. other UC’s but what is not presented with all this data is how competitive the applicant pool is for each major. UCSC admits into a proposed major and all applicants will have to complete the qualifying courses to declare a particular major.

The College of Engineering however requires that all applicants select their 1st choice major since there is no guarantee that students will be able to declare an Engineering major outside the college if not admitted directly.

Since Engineering for example is highly competitive for all the UC’s, the applicant pool would be self selecting and have higher stat applicants.

Also popular majors such as CS or Biology would have a higher # of applicants vs a less popular major such as Classics so the admit rates would be affected by the total number of applicants.

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Thank you, I understand it is a guide, and GPA is just one factor. Just curious if I was reading the guide correctly; that is, the percentage under each category says that of all applicants within this GPA range, that is the percentage that was admitted. I guess this has to be correct because not sure anything else would make sense.


Mom of kid #3 here.

I’ve been through this process 3 times now and it doesn’t get any easier. The waiting, the watching other kids getting accepted somewhere when you hear nothing (I’m not a fan of rolling admissions!). All I can say is that some of the best advice I ever heard was actually here on this site when my first child was applying. And that was: Love the school that loves you back.

Try not to get too hung up on one particular college - You will end up where you are supposed to be and will be most successful at the college that felt you were the best fit for them.

I know it’s hard, but the applications are in, the essays have been written and there is not much more you can do now but wait. Once you know where you have been accepted, embrace all those places and choose the best fit for you knowing they wanted you back.


You must be a great mother. Thank you. May I ask where they went to college?


Thank you for your kind words. The college application process is a difficult one.

#1 and #2 are both at UC Davis.


So did you get in?

I got waitlisted :frowning:

it seems that ucsc only admitted high gpa applicants because almost all students with a 4.0 weighted or higher got in. I accepted waitlist, I just need to wait for people to reject admission so I can go here. However waitlist is better than a rejection so there is still hope :slight_smile:


Good luck! My daughter got off the waitlist a couple years ago. It took a while. Hope you get in!