Why USC is better than UCLA (and every other school)

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Discus: College Admissions: March 2004 Archive: Why USC is better than UCLA (and every other school)
By Evan195 (Evan195) on Saturday, March 20, 2004 - 10:50 pm: Edit

Okay I already put this under another discussion but I think it deserves its own. By the way, this is dswmo456 on evan195's name because I forgot my password and know his. So anyways, here goes:

Okay I've made up my mind. I just got back from UCLA today (the only other school I was considering) and that place f-ing blows the nuts!!! Now if any Bruins are reading this, just hear me out or just skip this message because it's about why I (personally) love USC so much more than UCLA:

Reason 1: UCLA is massive! At first I thought it was cool that the place is so big. It feels like there is always something new, but after today I feel completely different. To me, at least, the size is actually a disadvantage. First of all, I'd never get to class on time because of all the walking. Second, for every marginal amount that it's geographically big, it's ten times as big in terms of students. Something like 30k total including graduates. Overwhelming isn't really the word but for the sake of my sanity, I'll just say it's overwhelming. The size of the school drives me crazy.

Reason 2: Modern art sucks. And it's all over campus. At first I thought it was pretty cool but it turns into an eyesore very very fast to me. Like the statue of the guy bending over to the side of the sculpture garden. Anyone know the one I'm talking about? *shudders*

Reason 3: Professors are too cool to be teaching stupid little undergrads. Come on, when I win the nobel prize (which I will...) the last thing I want to do is repeatedly teach kids about things I already know instead of doing research and winning another nobel prize. Having nobel laureates as teachers looks good on paper, but just because you're a genius doesn't make you a good lecturer. Now this doesn't mean that USC has better teachers because there are less nobel prize winners. I'm simply trying to say that at a smaller school, you will at least know your professors and learn directly from them. A good balance between small classes and genius teachers is very very rare. That's why everyone wants to go to Stanford. But if I have to choose between genius teachers and a more personal education, I'd choose the personal education. Plus, I think there should be a nobel prize for teaching.

Reason 4: USC is on the rise, UCLA (and all the UC's for that matter) is struggling. The governator really seems to find it necessary to terminate public education. The UC's are becoming more expensive for a lower quality education. I know several UC professors personally and many are looking for new jobs at private schools (like USC). They'll make more money there. UCLA dropped out of the US world news top 25 this year and I expect it to keep falling. USC moved up a few notches I believe.

Reason 5: USC can whoop anyone at football. 'Nuff said. And Matt Leinart is my homeboy... sort of.

Reason 6: ANTI SOCIAL PEOPLE!!! This is probably the most significant reason to me. I am everything that a UCLA student is not. My friends and I snuck into a bunch of the dorms at UCLA to find every single door closed and nobody in the hallways. I understand this is finals week but everything seemed so dead that it gave off this creepy evil vibe. There are quiet study rooms on each floor- empty. Library- empty. Commons/dining hall- empty. Frat row (predictably)- empty. We had to resort to riding in elevators and bombarding anyone who would get in with questions about how they liked it at the school. We were lucky to get more than a "eh, it's good". Maybe something was weird tonight, I don't know, but I took a class at USC last summer and the students there generally are much more outgoing. I went into the class knowing absolutely nobody and came out with several new friends... including my professor. It was a class of 8 of us (personalized education, see?) and each day I went to eat with completely random people that I didn't know and by the end of lunch we'd be total friends. I got a great picture of what life at USC is like just from talking to the students while at UCLA I had to basically force answers out of them and still am left with a great deal of questions unanswered. It was very frustrating. I'm not going to comment on the party scene though, because I understand it was finals week at UCLA so the parties were definitely toned down for right now.

Then there's the more obvious reasons: USC has great connections. USC has a communication school and UCLA does not. USC's mascot is that of America's Most Trusted Condom (TM). USC has the world's best film school (which I plan to have as half of my double major), and for me, at least, the size is perfect. The list can still go on and on but they are for more personal reasons. But EVERY SINGLE PERSON I've talked to has said that the college one chooses must be based on personal fit. I know I won't fit at UCLA. I've made my decision and am going to buy a USC sweatshirt this weekend so I can wear it around school. Ha, I'm going to be so baller wearing that...

Thanks for reading.

By Peterline (Peterline) on Saturday, March 20, 2004 - 10:54 pm: Edit

ive been to both campuses and couldnt agree with you more.

By Bart_Simpson22 (Bart_Simpson22) on Saturday, March 20, 2004 - 10:59 pm: Edit

I completely agree with everything said.

By Serdu (Serdu) on Saturday, March 20, 2004 - 11:35 pm: Edit

Umm. how about no? USC is in the ghetto and although academics are improving, they are by no means great. Film is good.. but what other field is the school really notable for? Not much... as opposed to the research powerhouse that is UCLA.

By Araesova (Araesova) on Saturday, March 20, 2004 - 11:56 pm: Edit

I agree with what you said about the socializing. However, UCLA's academics are FAR MORE superior than USC. Now I completely understand that you don't fit at UCLA, but I think it's an awesome campus. You just have to know how to talk to the people. And I said I agree with you because the first time I went to UCLA, I didn't know how to converse with the students. The second time I went, I had the time of my life. I mean, UCLA has its own "strip" with stores and everything. USC has a Starbucks and a dinky shopping center next to it. Which do you choose? I frankly don't care, but I know that UCLA OWNS usc. OWNS!!!!!

Also, you can't expect anybody to be wandering around in the halls during finals week. Maybe in USC because they don't care about their academics, but in UCLA, they are actually serious.

The funny thing is that about a month ago I created a thread that bashed USC lmao

By Socalstudent (Socalstudent) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 12:12 am: Edit

I'll be going to usc in the fall. I think these disucssions about which school is better are dumb. You can't really compare these two besides the fact that both schools are in la. I give props to anyone who goes to ucla. Maybe the ucla dorms seem less social at ucla because they aren't afraid to go out around the areas near the campus. I think both schools have their pros and cons. UCLA acadmeics are better for some majors, but USC academics are better for others. Sciences, I would say UCLA. Film and Business, I would say USC. I'm only at usc for a special program and I might transfer later (likely science major).

By Evan195 (Evan195) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 01:09 am: Edit

"UCLA's academics are far more superior than USC's"
-see reasons 3 & 4 above. I'm not saying USC has better academics, but I am getting the impression that one day soon they'll be up there with UCLA or perhaps even better.

"Of course the hallways wouldn't be crowded during finals week"
-see reason 6. "There are quiet study rooms on each floor- empty [...] library- empty."

Westwood is also overrated. Hookah bars get old. And university park at USC isn't all that bad either. But then again, who needs to hang out in the silly little village when you have real parties at USC.

By Araesova (Araesova) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 01:18 am: Edit

"I'm not saying USC has better academics, but I am getting the impression that one day soon they'll be up there with UCLA or perhaps even better."

No, UCLA has fastest growing research center in the world. It has one of the most renowned hospitals in the world. It has its own architectural department (my dad used to work there and he got hired to work in LAX while in UCLA). You just can't compare a well known university such as UCLA with a small private college, covering less square feet than my room.

Hookah, yes, I don't like that crap and never will. That's the only thing I don't like in UCLA.

University park...*shakes head in dismay*

By Socalstudent (Socalstudent) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 03:45 am: Edit

You guys are all missing the most important factor...UCLA sells dead bodies for cash...literally...budget cuts... ::shakes head::

By Chemyst (Chemyst) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 04:13 am: Edit

I know somone who attended USC. He woke up one night to an intruder lying on his chest looking at him. When the intruder realized my family friend was awake, he scrammed. But still......USC is in the ghetto! And unless you like that style of living, you're not going to like USC.

By Dswmo456 (Dswmo456) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 04:26 am: Edit

haha socalstudent! And as for the "intruder"? That's called a "random girl" the morning after a "party". We need to explain this stuff to UCLA kids...

By Chemyst (Chemyst) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 04:48 am: Edit

What if it were a guy on a straight guy? ;-) With a window left wide open, lol? And who wasn't a student? What's that all about?

By Chitownsfnst3 (Chitownsfnst3) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 09:59 am: Edit

Serdu & Chemyst....USC is definitely NOT in the ghetto. that comment really shows how ignorant both of you are.

By Jennyzsong (Jennyzsong) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 12:51 pm: Edit

oooooooooh shut uppppppp

i am so sick of you people continuously comparing and comparing and arguing about which is better! admit it! it doesn't matter how much you argue, nobody is going to change their opinion! you don't even have good arguments!

and chitownblahblah, stop jumping to random conclusions about ignorance. just because someone's opinion differs from yours doesn't make them ignorant!

By Kcjones27 (Kcjones27) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 01:05 pm: Edit

I stayed in the UCLA dorms for a few weeks over the summer a couple years ago. While of course most my time was spent on the UCLA campus, I did also get to go over to USC for a couple days to see what was over there.

While my opinion is probably biased as I've been raised to dislike the trojans and adore the bruins, I tended to prefer the atmosphere of UCLA better than that of USC.

Even though this was over the summer, I have visited the campuses numerous times during the fall/spring semesters as well. I found that, while yes, USC does seem to have a better grasp on how to have a 'good time', UCLA has their share of parties as well. UCLA just, to me, seemed to be more serious about academics and saw parties as a side factor of college.

I'm not going to say that UCLA is a better school than USC. Obviously they each have their high points and their low points... especially depending on the major you declare (I spent my time looking at their nursing programs).

Also, while both schools are in LA, they are both very much so in urban areas of the city. One plus that I found at UCLA is that a lot of things could be found on campus. They seemed to have their own little 'UCLA village' of pretty much all you'd ever need. While USC seemed to have something like this as well, it seemed to me that USC students needed to go into the city more than the students of UCLA. And personally, while if I had a choice I wouldn't walk around either, I would prefer walking around Westwood than the city surrounding USC.

Once again, my opinion is probably biased, but that's just what I observed from both campuses.

By H0neymoon (H0neymoon) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 01:17 pm: Edit

I have an opinion which I would like to share. From what I've read so far all over this board, I have been able to conclude that most of the people who diss UCLA were in fact rejected from UCLA, and those who were rejected from USC, diss USC. I could be wrong, but that's just the way it seemed. I think both are great schools, and unless someone is asking which is 'better' because they cannot decide which school to attend, this whole comparison is a waste of time.

Now for the important part. Do many of the USC people party on Sunset blvd??!?! Coz i can't wait to go back!!!!!!

By Kcjones27 (Kcjones27) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 01:27 pm: Edit

They're both close to Sunset. UCLA is within 10 or so minutes of it. I'd imagine both schools party there. I mean, I go there all the time... and I'm further than either school. Most anyone within an hour of Sunset pretty much lives there ;-) .

Oh... and I got rejected from UCLA.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 04:48 pm: Edit

From the LA TIMES, 3/19, article about USC's $100 Million Campaign to upgrade faculty.

They just lured a philosophy prof from Princeton and have hired four UC Professors (from Irvine, Davis, and Riverside...not the top UC's).

Two interesting tidbits: In the last 10 years, USC has raised its entering SAT I scores from 1095 to 1341 (this year). Side note: USC, being a private university, does not have its scores audited. Umm.

But the most interesting point the article makes is in the context of the College of Arts and Sciences.
"But academic experts say many of USC's social sciences and humanities programs and its general intellectual atmosphere have lagged."

Yeah...you can raise the students SAT scores but it's a slower process to change the academic culture.

By Chitownsfnst3 (Chitownsfnst3) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 09:22 pm: Edit

Jennyzsong...i am NOT jumping to any conclusions. saying that usc is in the ghetto is just - wrong. the reason why it does bother me is that b/c people just don't say it jokingly, like so many people actually believe it, and it's untrue.

furthermore, it's not an opinion. it's a fact. usc is not in the ghetto. it's not like usc is located in the middle of watts.

By Jaug1 (Jaug1) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 09:53 pm: Edit

Alright, I do live in LA. USC is in the middle of South Central. When there are bars on your windows that isnt exactly the best sign. UCLA has one of the largest, most diverse campuses in the country, unlike the brick buildings of USC. Parties are suppossed to be secondary to education. What makes USC different than UCLA is how Bruins treat their academics more seriously. SC is one of the largest party schools in the country. UCLA is a more serious school, with a better campus (not a refuttable point) and a better community. Even if the UC's are going down because of the governator, UCLA will always have a better reputation than USC.

By Flyguy (Flyguy) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 10:04 pm: Edit

Trojans beat Bruins, thats for sure

By Jlq3d3 (Jlq3d3) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 10:14 pm: Edit

Jaug, I live in LA and the Staples Center and Exposition park (where USC is) are not in South Central. South Central is further south than USC in compton, watts, carson...

By Mrpancake_2000 (Mrpancake_2000) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 10:22 pm: Edit

I don't see how anyone could deny that USC is in a ghetto. I have been to USC and have no opinion about UCLA or USC as academic institutions, but USC is in a ghetto-ish area. That doesn't make it bad, but it is a fact. I don't think people who have physically been there could honestly say the area wasn't shady.

By Flyguy (Flyguy) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 10:30 pm: Edit

Obviously the LA Times and CNN didn't find it too ghetto to have a democrat party debate

By Dswmo456 (Dswmo456) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 10:54 pm: Edit

Honeymoon, that's a good point but I was accepted to both and haven't been raised to like/hate either school so I figure I'm as unbiased as someone can get. And for the last time, WESTWOOD IS OVERRATED!!! And some people would rather play soccer at hoover park with the locals. I prefer the "ghetto". I mean there's supposedly enough rich kids at USC and UCLA, why would I want to hang out with even more in Westwood? UCLA has great diversity in its student body. USC has (much) greater diversity in its surroundings. And all of you just sound paranoid. You guys who say USC is ghetto remind me of this quote from Family Guy that says "guns don't kill people, dangerous minorities do!" You know what? Unless the person is going to rob you or someone else, then who cares how much money they have or whether or not they're "ghetto".

And to Aresova:
"No, UCLA has fastest growing research center in the world. It has one of the most renowned hospitals in the world."
-Okay, so the place has good doctors. Do they have good teachers? And if so, they definitely don't have enough of them with hundreds of kids per class. (see 2nd paragraph from the end of this message)

"It has its own architectural department (my dad used to work there and he got hired to work in LAX while in UCLA)."
-Wow. USC has its own communications department. Double wow. Doesn't prove that UCLA is better. Doesn't prove that USC's better (there are other reasons why). And, (Doing my best not to be disrespectful of your dad's job) LAX? I know some kids who went to work for George Lucas while at USC

"a small private college, covering less square feet than my room."
-YES!!! My point exactly! And it has fewer students too! See reason 1 of the original post.

KCjones, that was actually rather unbiased compared to some people.

Thedad, I think you sort of proved my point. $100 million for new faculty. That's a lot of money. So what if teachers were from "lower" UC schools; it's been less than a year since King Arnold's been in charge and USC (and other private schools) are already luring teachers away. Obviously they didn't spend all $100 million on 4 teachers so really, the instructional quality will keep getting better and better at private schools and worse at public schools (in CA at least). I know personally the head of the history department at UC Irvine. He's most likely joining USC too and he is one of the most brilliant TEACHERS (and to a lesser extent researcher) I have ever encountered. He's also young for a teacher. It's like in European soccer. For those of you who don't follow it, good young players get drafted from their local teams to play for the biggest clubs in the world and become superstars. You know who else wanted him? Harvard. Please, someone start arguing about how Harvard's a bad school now.

And back to how he's a great "Teacher (and to a lesser extent researcher)": Teachers should know how to teach first, and do research second. That's why when people say "oh well UCLA is a great research university" I always go, "so what? How many kids are in your class and how often do you talk directly to your world class researcher who is lecturing you?"

My dad actually calculated that if every student in an introductory UCLA class went to see a teacher during their office hours, it comes out to about 15 minutes per student per semester. Thank God UCLA students take their academics too seriously for everyone to go talk to their professors. The lucky slackers who aren't locked in their rooms studying actually get a couple hours a semester instead. Still, it's no comparison to a class of much fewer students who can talk directly to their professors on an almost daily basis.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 12:10 am: Edit

Dswmo, faculty recruiting isn't being hurt by any UC budget crunches. I'm tangentially involved with this and I can tell you that UCLA is being very aggressive.

A little number to check out: the amount of research grants given per year to different universities. *That* ranking will surprise you and you don't get that kind of dollars without having the faculty behind it.

Fwiw, the people I know have never had any trouble getting time with the profs at UCLA. It's up to you whether you make the effort but it hasn't been a problem *for anyone I know*. I'm not saying that *every* prof is accessible but most are.

Choosing a school because of recent football success is really really really dumb. (Also UCLA beat SC eight straight times before SC's current streak of five again. This adds up to a massive "so what?")

A couple of numbers from PR's THE BEST 351:

Academics: UCLA 85, USC 80
Selectivity: UCLA 94, USC83

The OP's original reasons--"massive size," "modern art," "the football team"--are clearly consistent with the rigor of thought at USC, LOL.

Btw, of people who get admitted to both schools, more choose UCLA. There's a reason for this.

By Flyguy (Flyguy) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 12:21 am: Edit


By R00t (R00t) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 12:33 am: Edit

While UCLA is quite noteworthy in its academics, USC is by no means greatly inferior to UCLA. In fact USC is equal to, if not better than UCLA in Academics. You all may be boasting about the name of UCLA now, but I gurantee that half of you are gonna be whining by the time yall are sophomores about the intense workload and about the completely extraneous bull •••• your big time nobel prize winning phd professors are going to teach you all. Trust me on this, my sister is a Bruin Alumna.

By Araesova (Araesova) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 12:47 am: Edit

root, greatly inferior does not even begin to describe it...

"The OP's original reasons--"massive size," "modern art," "the football team"--are clearly consistent with the rigor of thought at USC, LOL." ahhahahaa

By R00t (R00t) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 12:58 am: Edit

USC Engineering > UCLA Engineering. UCLA academics only prepare you for graduate school. This why cal poly pomona engineers have higher job acceptance rates than undergrad UCLa engineers do =/. I have two friends one a EE grad from USC and one EE grad from UCLA. BOth of whom are close friends. They applied to Intel in Arizona. Both got accpeted but guess who is getting paid more, my friend from USC, starting salary 80000, the other got 75000. Nuff said.

By Dswmo456 (Dswmo456) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 01:02 am: Edit

Okay, thedad, do you want to hear what my book says? It's entitled Pocket Guide to Colleges, by the Princeton Review. Let's take a look at the two schools in question:

Avg. HS GPA- 3.5
Avg. SAT I- 1277 (660 M, 617 V)
Avg. ACT Composite- 26
Percent of students graduating in top 10% of HS: 97%

Avg. HS GPA- 3.0
Avg. SAT I- 1310 (670M, 640V)
Avg. ACT Composite- 29
No statistic for % in top 10% of HS.

Seems to me USC has better test scores than UCLA. In yo' faces!

Actually, we all know those facts are completely wrong for both schools. Hmmmmm, it seems to me that PR can make errors after all. I guess they aren't perfect. I guess their rankings aren't the end-all be-all of what school is the best and which one isn't.

And you only counted three of my six main points, thedad. Two of which were my least significant. Honestly, I don't even like football that much. You did leave out a couple of less important arguments (sarcasm) like the fact that UCLA professors spend too much time focusing on grad students (I've heard this from many many many undergrads there). USC's reputation is growing. I don't care if the LA Times says that the liberal arts at SC are "lagging", I am confident there is still some growth and faculty recruiting will only improve the situation. And as far as I'm concerned, the Times is as credible as the Princeton Review. You also forgot to mention my point that research (and the number of research grants, in your case) means nothing as long as the teachers do their job well. And for me, at least, it seems that teachers can do their job best when it is easy to interact with their students in a smaller classroom.

"The OP's original reasons--'massive size,' 'modern art,' 'the football team'--are clearly consistent with the rigor of thought at USC, LOL."
-Oh, and don't insult my intelligence. UCLA did accept me, remember? And their selectivity rating is 94.

By Nmoreno1 (Nmoreno1) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 01:02 am: Edit

oh no, 5k! That's one less teeth-whitening for the "unfortunate" friend making 75k/year...

By Bjturlington (Bjturlington) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 03:54 am: Edit


To back up TheDad, you would not go to either school if class size and an intimate undergraduate experience is what you seek, you would have gone to a school like Occidental. At any research university (like USC and UCLA) research is a driving force; it's an arguement about shades of gray.

Also, UCLA is more diverse. Thus, in the classroom, where differences are more important to a reasoned debate, UCLA is better. More community diversity is less relevant to an education unless you spend a significant amount of time off-campus, which studies have show do not happen as much over the course of four years.

You seem to selectively ignore the fact that USC is $40,000 a year while UCLA costs far less. In the late 80's early 90's USC had an acceptance rate in the 70 percent range. UCLA then, like now remains consistant. That is why they have a sustainable reputation, while USC does not. That's like saying Wash U. in St. Louis is a great school since they are ranked in the top ten. In the 90's they were far less reputable, at least for undergrad work. A safety for the better schools. They began to pump $$$ into their construction budget rather than financial aid, so that their spending per student went up. This helped Wash U., at least with USnews.


By Araesova (Araesova) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 04:20 am: Edit

Dswmo456, I got accepted to UCLA too and I don't consider myself extremely intelligent, so calm down ok? Second of all, you could go to USC and pay back loans for the rest of your life, WHO CARES? I like UCLA (actually leaning towards UCSD now) and I think the UC system kicks way more @$$ than that dinky little school. UC's are known for their prestige. California is known for bad high schools and a hell of a good UC system. Don't try to compare USC, a school where the biggest morons from my school got into, with the prestigious UCLA.

By Flyguy (Flyguy) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:43 am: Edit

nMoreno, to some people 5k is 5k too much to be spending for school. Not everyone can afford college as easily as you so it's not wise to make assumptions like that.

Also, I'm getting my teeth whitened for only 30 bucks...it's called Crest White strips and they be working great my friend :)

By Tsdad (Tsdad) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:50 am: Edit


I wish the Mods would ban all USC v. UCLA threads. They're useless. Why do these two schools produce more of this type of nonsense than any other universities? Maybe it's because I'm from the east coast, but I just don't get it.

Can't you enjoy your college, be proud of it, without the need to run down someone else's?

By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 10:23 am: Edit

There are some threads that have gotten even more heated Tsdad. There was a pitched battle that would have been hilarious except a few of the participants were ready to kill each other-about Cornell and Northwestern, I think.

Most of us take this all in stride. S is visiting USC and UCLA and he is visiting as an eastcoaster with little knowledge about either school and no predjudices regarding reputation. Will report his impressions--BUT they are one kid's impressions, certainly not the gospel truth. LA is fortunate to have these two fine schools and I think it depends on the kid, the field of study, and any number of personal preferances and situations as to which is the better school. For CA residents, the cost is a huge factor, I am sure, especially if the kid can commute. I know that when we lived in Pittsburgh, there was no question where a kid went to school when it was between Penn State and Pitt. Though the tuition costs were about the same, if the parents were tight on cash, the kid went to Pitt and commuted unless Penn State coughed up some aid which was not often. Pitt also was more generous in grants. I am not saying this happened all of the time, but I have kept a pretty extensive talley and it happened far more time than not. And that's with a preference on the part of both kids and parents for the kid to live in at Penn State. If the money does not work out, the decision is impacted by financials.

Both schools are very fine school where I would be proud to send my son. The question is whether he could get into either.

By Mjl86 (Mjl86) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 10:38 am: Edit

in my opinion, both are bad, brown all the way baby

By Bjturlington (Bjturlington) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 12:59 pm: Edit

LOL. :)

I actually don't like the UCLA vs. USC thread, but there are a couple of times I've responded because USC responses have been....extreme. UCLA responses seem more balanced.

Normally, I can read responses without having to post, but sometimes...

I think it's in search of validation on a personal level or a drive to go to a presigious school (external).

Just my 2 cents.
Rob :)

PS--Went to school on the east coast, but am originally from HI. I have a large number of friends that attended or are attending UCLA and USC, as well as their grad schools. But Thedad is right, UCLA vs. USC is a bit over done. I'm also getting tired with the same posters (primarily USC ones) for going over the same information to see if they get a better response.

By Uschicka (Uschicka) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 06:23 pm: Edit

Neither school is bad, and neither school has bad academics. USC is not "greatly inferior" to UCLA in academics. Saying that USC students don't care about academics is just ignorant. What makes USC so great is that it balances great academics and extracurriculars, whether they be parties, sports, etc.

And Chemyst- saying "unless you like that style of living, you're not going to like USC" about the "ghettoness" is just ridiculous. You can't truly know how it is unless you live there. Touring or hearing steretypes about the area isn't going to do it. I'm a freshman, and a female, from a suburban, middle-to-upper-class area. Coming to USC has not been a culture shock or made me fear for my life living in the area. Saying you won't like a school because you're not a fan of a ghetto area is absurd. And to all who consider the USC area to be really ghetto- you obviously have not seen bad areas before.

I could go much more into this, but I'm sick of it all. Everyone needs to just stop debating about the schools. USC haters are going to continue to hate, and UCLA haters are going to hate. I don't have a problem with UCLA (other than the whole rivalry thing of course). I'm just trying to get some facts out there.

P.S.- Sorry if you're sick of me, Rob with the :). I don't post to get a better response or for personal justification. People can have their opinions of the area or whatever, but unless you go there, you can't tell by driving by. By posting I am just attempting to rid the world a little bit of ignorance at a time, and to stand up for my school, which does not deserve the majority of attacks that it receives on these boards.

Instead of me defending my school, how about everyone just stop posting arguments? If Evan wants to love USC and spout the reasons why, let him. If someone from UCLA wants to say reasons why they love it, they should. Just try not to include put-downs of the other school.

By Dswmo456 (Dswmo456) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 06:23 pm: Edit

Bjturlington, you call it extreme, I call it reasonable. I actually started this thread in order to explain why I (emphasis on I) thought that USC was a good school for me. I wanted to try and enlighten students similar to myself who were having trouble choosing a school and are unable to visit both campuses like I did. Read the last paragraph of my original post. It's all about how the school is a good fit for me and people like me. Then, a few others start criticizing USC so I defended it. I'm not extreme, I have pride in my future school. I'll be the first one to admit the title of the discussion is pretty "extreme" but I just wanted people to read. That simple.

Now, onto my responses... *grins evilly*

Yes, the balance between class size and research capabilites is like determining shades of gray. You're absolutely right. However, I feel that USC has found the best balance. UCLA is one of the largest schools in student body size in the country. Or in the world (outside India) for that matter. And it is still a fact that I was in a summer school class at USC with 8 people. An 8 person class at a research university? I guess they're doing something right.

I admit, I made my statement about UCLA's superior diversity without doing research. I apologize for that. Now I have some interesting numbers; UCLA and USC have identical percentages of Latino, African-American and Native American populations (give or take a percent, my book's a year old). The book actually even says "great ethnic diversity" for BOTH schools, in those exact words! I guess the diversity isn't that awful at USC... either that or it isn't that great at UCLA. I think it's the former.

UCLA's consistent, eh? Great! You know what's better than being consistent? Improving! USC is improving while UCLA is being consistantly good. I'm the first one to admit that currently UCLA's academics are more highly regarded, but let me illustrate my theory of telling the future with a model:

Car 1 is driving on the freeway at 65 mph. Car 2 is driving on the freeway at 55 mph but is accelerating at 1mps/s. Car 2 will eventually catch up to, and then pass, car 1. The driver and passengers of car 1 will then post bitter messages on collegeconfidential.com about how their car is now slower and how I (dswmo456) can read the future. Guess which car represents which school. I'll bet even a USC student can figure that out...

By Dswmo456 (Dswmo456) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 06:34 pm: Edit

You took the words right out of my mouth, USChicka. Well said! I'm surprised "the biggest morons" (to quote Aeresova) are able to make coherent, let alone good, points like she did. Actually, Aeresova, you consistently make the worst points in this discussion. Way to attack USC without any proof. Seriously, good job. And for the last time, a "dinky little school" is what some people might just like. I'm not surprised you don't consider yourself "extremely intelligent". Stop calling us morons. I think you're the one who needs to calm down.

By H0neymoon (H0neymoon) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 06:37 pm: Edit

God, I hope I don't meet a UCLA student while I'm at USC and fall in love... there seems to be a huge split here. It's sad really... my goal... to unite us all in one big party.

By Uschicka (Uschicka) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:11 pm: Edit

lol, HOneymoon. There are couples that go to the two schools, so it does work out. It's really funny to hear about married couples like that, though. When one school beats the other, no matter their age- 35 or 85, that spouse will be so happy to hold it over their husband or wife.

Students do party together sometimes, but I don't know if you'll ever be able to completely unify everyone. :)

By Dswmo456 (Dswmo456) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:19 pm: Edit

Hey, thedad. I just found that article in the Times. Seems you left out some stuff:

In saying that the College of Letters, Arts and Sciences has "lagged", that is only "compared with professional schools, such as engineering and law". Actually, I found this in the exact same paragraph where you found your quote: USC's engineering school is ranked 8th and the law school is ranked 18th. I can't wait until the undergrad program is up there even ranked at 18, to be conservative. One day, I hope it will be number 8. Actually, there aren't any public schools in the top 18 (or top 20- Berkeley's 21) except for Penn, and I'm not sure if it's public or not. It cetainly doesn't make me happy to say that public education is becoming more expensive (in CA, at least) and less effective. It's sad but it's true. It's sort of disheartening that public schools have "lagged" recently.

By Araesova (Araesova) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:25 pm: Edit

Dswmo456, did I call you morons? NO...I am simply implying that you don't have to be a genius, which you were calling yourself (i quote Oh, and don't insult my intelligence. UCLA did accept me, remember? And their selectivity rating is 94. ) to get into UCLA. I am not going to UCLA and I agree with Tsdad in that this thread is meaningless since it will never reach a conclusion. All i want to say is UCSD ALL THE WAY!!!

By Dswmo456 (Dswmo456) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:33 pm: Edit

Actually, I was calling myself anything but a genius. I said many times that the selectivity rating by PR means absolutely nothing. I was just being sarcastic. Yes, I know this argument will never end. Still, as long as people bash SC, I'll defend it.

...actually I think honeymoon might be onto something. Maybe a USC-UCLA party would end this feud. TOGA TOGA TOGA!!!

By Araesova (Araesova) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:35 pm: Edit


By Dswmo456 (Dswmo456) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:47 pm: Edit

Once again, the UCLA supporter is the provocateur in the argument. Way to go, Araesova! You seem a bit insecure about your schools (UCLA and SD. Although I haven't visited SD so I won't comment on it.) I was just trying to show I'm not the narrow-minded prick that this argument makes me (and most of the rest of us) out to be. I have no problems with the UC system. The entire point of this discussion was to show how there might be limited resources for a student like myself.

By Bjturlington (Bjturlington) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:50 pm: Edit

Dsw and USC...

It's funny how you think I'm being extreme, never mind that I have 9 friends at USC and 12+ friends at UCLA. Visited several times and went again last month when my sis checked it out for med school. She will be attending USC's med school, dispite the location. We lived in California until high school. So, you mistake my opinion for a drive by and insult my intellectual skills?

It's funny, that you continue the USC vs. UCLA argument even though there is another thread about it. That's what I take offense to. I do not care if you like USC or UCLA better, because you have your reasons. It's just when you make blanket statements that are not factually accurate, and pronounce a winner that I need to respond.

Dsw....If you value, size and research opps, then why not Occidental (it's still in LA). Why ignore it, as it seems more suited for what you're after. Oh well. As for reputation, UCLA built its reputation on research, while USC bought theirs (like Wash. U.) you think buying prestige is a good thin, rather than earning it?

If you really care about USC and changing minds, then you should write about what you find interesting about the schools, instead of talking about how safe the campus is. You don't need to sell the school if it is what you say it its. The continuation of the thread makes others think so too.

My motivation for a counter arguement is to help a student who is interested in a school not make a bad decision based on bias views. That is what I worry about. Maybe you do not care too much about it, but know that you also need to take the responsibility for what information you pass on. If someone who is convinced to go to USC, in part by your view of the school, and is miserable, then you are partly to blame. I

too have stated adnauseum my stance between USC vs. UCLA in other posts and am just tired of being brow-beaten for thinking that USC is overrated given my focus on particular characteristics (in other posts). I really don't care about USC and UCLA because it does not fit with what I want from a school. I said, if I had to pick, I'd pick UCLA (for reasons stated before). That's it.

I am horrified by the discussion and if you want to go to USC, more power to you. I'm sure those that are of like mind with you are already enrolling or enrolled.

As for me, the top liberal arts schools are calling. I leave you to the West Coast.


By Araesova (Araesova) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:59 pm: Edit

hahah, dude Dswmo456, you seriously need to chill out man. If you enter college like the tightwad that your showing yourself to be right now, you're seriously going to be a loner. Man I'm only kidding....lmao

By Dswmo456 (Dswmo456) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 08:04 pm: Edit

-Dude, you called me extreme, not the other way around.
-I never "proclaimed a winner" (despite the title) EXCEPT for someone in my exact situation. I never forced anybody to take my advice, or even read this in the first place.
-As for "bad decisions", I'll flat out say that neither school will be a bad decision. I feel one is a better decision. You feel the other is. Great. Let's agree to disagree.
-I was only trying to "sell the school" to someone in my situation who hasn't fully researched USC yet. Trust me, the school can sell itself without my great convincing powers that I spread to the world on collegeconfidential.com.
-As for the title, and the "f-ing blows the nuts" statement in the original post, that was only to make sure this thread doesn't die. I suppose it worked. Probably too well.
-Learn to take things more lightly, everybody. I'm not insulting you, your friends or family (edit: although araesova did while I was writing this. Way to call me a tightwad and a loner. Those are good.) I'm stating an opinion, which last I checked, is legal in most places. Chill out, people. This place is so we can share ideas, not attack them.

By And1hoops (And1hoops) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 08:54 pm: Edit

OK this thread ends here since you all know very well it isn't going to go anywhere



By Uschicka (Uschicka) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 09:09 pm: Edit

Bjturlington- I'm sorry if you got so horrified by all this. I never once considered you extreme. As you said in another post, you were just playing devil's advocate. I said before that I am sick of all this, too.

When I said that people driving by did not have the full information about the school, I wasn't referring to you. You've mentioned before your background in California and your friends.

The reason I even started posting on CC was because I wanted to answer people's questions about USC. Also, if people wanted to know how their stats positioned them for admission to any of the schools to which I was accepted, I thought I could show them my stats to help. I never wanted to come on here and try to push USC. The only reason I write about the area surrounding the school is because people continue to mention it. I'm sorry if me trying to convince people that the area is not that horrific is annoying to you, or if you conceive of it as being false information. I don't think I'm pushing it as Westwood or as a perfect area. I've agreed that it is low-class and not the best, but I just highly disagree with everyone saying that it is extremely dangerous or really ghetto. I don't think that it is just my opinion, either, but, oh well, as you said, I shouldn't continue to try to convince people otherwise. I'm just trying to stop stereotypes from spreading.

Once again, sorry if I offended you, or frustrated you, or angered you. I was just trying to clear things up, but believe me, I see now that it isn't going to work, because people are going to continue to find faults with my statements.

I don't have a problem with people who like UCLA better than USC. And yes, UCLA has a better reputation, I won't deny that. USC and UCLA are both great schools that deserve respect.

By Uschicka (Uschicka) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 09:13 pm: Edit

Sorry, posted before I saw that-------- okay, NOW it's over.

By Freudboy (Freudboy) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 09:34 pm: Edit

i used to be a die hard ucla fan. after i visited usc, i found usc to have more resources and a better quality of life. i also agree with you on most of your points. the only thing that sucks about usc is the student body. either you are very underachieving and stupid (60% of students), or extremely overachieving and anal (30%, mostly scholarship students). Few lie inbetween. ucla, on the other hand, i feel has brighter students overall. usc buys most of its smart kids. right now i am considering usc vs stanford. the reason usc has my interest is because of 1.) generous merit financial aid 2.) special programs (i am a b/md applicant). i think, especially because of the rising costs of the ucs and budget cuts in CA, if you get a scholarship to usc or get into a special program like cinema-tv etc., go there over ucla. if you have no scholarship or interests in a special program, go to ucla. this is from a purely academic standpoint.

By Emyh (Emyh) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 09:36 pm: Edit

It's over.. over... over!
Stop this thread now!!

We can all agree USC is good and/or UCLA is good.

The end.

By Bjturlington (Bjturlington) on Tuesday, March 23, 2004 - 12:06 am: Edit


Most of my post was directed at Dsw. Sorry, for the misunderstanding. I just want to make sure that people can make up their minds about Usc or UCLA without the hype generated by trying to rank them.

The process is dependent on which criteria people use. That was my point. Your experiences at USC are valid and important. There are those on the board that go to extremes. I usually do not post much (been on here for almost 1.5 years) but when it looks like an unreasonable debate, I sometimes speak up.

It's just that most students are easily swayed by our obsession with rank, rather than other factors (i.e. percentage to go to grad school, research, cost, etc...) The objective, I thought, was to help those that needed it.

USC...you've been good, while others have been less so. I understand school pride, but when it affects those without info, it becomes an oppression of sorts. Those that have access to it can sometimes influence outcomes--either by being transparent or selectively disengenuous.

Sorry again about the spaz...just know that it much of it wasn't directed at you.

I'm so done too. Hope the semester is treating you well.

Have an awesome night.
Rob. :)

By Uschicka (Uschicka) on Tuesday, March 23, 2004 - 12:23 am: Edit

Thanks, Bj. I understand what you're saying. Now we can peacefully and happily put this thread to rest.

By Bjturlington (Bjturlington) on Tuesday, March 23, 2004 - 12:36 am: Edit

Amen. :)

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