Sunday, May 27, 2012

Middle Earth Vs. Mesa Court

So do you want to be a cool/geeky Middle Earth Kid or a Artistic/creative Mesa Court student?

Those are your two freshmen housing options for on-campus.  I'll give you facts first: (I got these tidbits from experience and friends/family who have or are going to UCI)

Middle Earth

- Named after the Lord of the Ring's series.  Enough said.
- Closer to campus
- More of a community
- If you're a math/science major, this is where most of the students who are majoring in those areas are housed.  You'll be closer to your classes as well
- Has the better selection of food between the two

Mesa Court
- New dorms = nicer dorms
- Slightly larger rooms
- More social (Has more activities going on)
- Houses more of the art/English majors (their buildings are closer)

This is UCI's Housing Facebook page, the link below provides pictures of both Mesa Court and Middle Earth!  Which one do you like better?

Friday, May 25, 2012


We all get it.

I got it, you'll get it and future seniors will get it.

BUT, do put some effort into your classes.  When you accept the terms and services for Irvine, there are requirements.

- Multiple D's & F's can result in them rescinding their offer of admission
- Complete all senior classes that you have reported 
- Graduate with a high school diploma!
- Maintain a 3.0 G.P.A weighted in your A-G approved courses
- Taking less rigorous classes than listed can also led to their withdrawal of admissions

You don't have to try as hard after you've been accepted, but please, don't take your foot completely off the gas petal.  You didn't work that hard to get in just to fail out due to laziness.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

It's Nice While it Lasted

Well, the warm feeling of happiness I got from being accepted to Irvine has worn off and now it's time to get down to business.

When you've been accepted, there will be automatic e-mails that will be sent to your desired e-mail account.  Make sure to check that out.  They will be sending you important stuff in the months of May and June that you will need to send in.

Here's a checklist:

- Send your Final Transcript
You should talk to your college counselor/guidance tech about that.  My due date was July 15th, but it could change over the years.

- Send in your AP/IB scores
I was confused about how to do this, but it's fairly simple.  Call this number (888) 225-5427, it will ask for the school that you want to send your scores to to and UCI's code is 004859.  Make sure to have your AP number identification on hand, they will ask for that as well.  Make sure you also have a credit card because there is a fee of $15.  I'm not positive about the I/B (I didn't take any), but this is what the website says: "To have IB scores sent to UCI, contact the International Baccalaureate Office at (301) 202-3025 or visit and see IB Answers"

- Check for Finical Aid
Turn in your FASFA summary in time.  This will determine whether or not you'll get a grant/loans/scholarships/etc.  Here's the website for UCI's finical aid.  You'll want to click on the "Log on to My Aid" tab on the left side of your screen.

- Sign up for Summer Orientation
It's mandatory for all freshmen to attend orientation, it's where you will be signing up for classes.  So make a reservation!  You'll get an e-mail saying when you can sign up.

- Apply for Housing
Very important!   No Housing means no school.  If /when you do accept Irvine's offer, there will be a button right next to it saying "Apply for Housing".  Click on that so you can reserve a housing application.  There is a $50 fee that comes with that reservation.  You don't complete your actual housing application until June.  Be patient!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

My Visit to UC Irvine

I have been to Irvine's campus twice.  The first time I fell in love with the campus.  It was so modern looking and it had such a comfortable, college life vibe to it.  It was busy, yet there were some parts of the college that were quiet and peaceful.

Aldrich park was one of the first places that grabbed my attention.  It's in the middle of the campus and it's very zen like.  There were definitely some parts of the park that were more active and other parts that were more secluded.

I am majoring in Mechanical Engineering, so I went to check out the Math & Science side of the campus.  Here's the building I am going to be in most of my college life. Hooray!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

And Now We Wait

Finding out whether you have gotten in or not is one of the most nerve-wrecking events that I have ever been through.  I checked my UCI portal everyday to see if I was accepted or not.  There's nothing I can say that will make the waiting easier, just keep checking your portal (and your anxiety levels as well).

UCI's portal is terribly confusing and it took me a solid half and hour to figure out where to even find where they posted their decision (decisions usually come in mid to late March).

Picture demonstration time!

Here's the URL to sign into your UCI portal:
You'll need to make an account.

They will post their decision in the first "Welcome" tab, then press on "My Admissions Application".  If you have been accepted, you'll need to decided whether or not UCI is the school for you.  If you decide that Irvine is the right fit for you, here's the next step:

Accepting their Offer:

That link will take you here:

Once you sign in that link will take you here:

See how inefficient this is?  We should petition to make this an easier process.  It's already hard enough waiting, but to do this as well?!? Not cool.

On the otherhand...Congrats! :) Be prepared for a letter to come in congratulating you as well.  Frame it.  I did...well I want to...

Saturday, May 19, 2012

UCI Campus

Irvine is the fifth largest UC campus, so it's not too big, but definitely not small.  Some might say "just right".

See, a CIRCLE!  So easy to navigate through.  My parents were saying you could think about it like a clock, so when you need to give directions to someone who is unfamiliar to the campus, just say "head towards twelve o'clock!" or something to that effect.  Brilliant!

See what I mean when I say modern architecture?  I'm always amazed by it.

What's so Great About UCI?

Here are some of the many great qualities about UC Irvine (that aren't number based) that I thought made Irvine unique from other UC's:

1.  Their mascot is an anteater, awesome, right?  His name is Peter.
2.  One of the freshmen housing is named Middle Earth, you know, after the EPIC novel called LORD OF THE RINGS by J.K. Rowling.
3.  The campus is literally a giant circle.  You can't get lost!  There's no fancy grid, just a sidewalk that encircles the entire campus.  A gift to all you direction-challenged people out there.
4.  The architecture is very modern.  I was immediately drawn into all the angular-like buildings.  It's clean as well!
5.  A busy campus life-when I went to visit, it was during Thanksgiving break and there was still plenty to do around campus!  

That's my two-cent for the day!

Friday, May 18, 2012

How Do I Apply?

Here is the UC's website for admissions:

Once you click on that button, there is a step by step process the website has in place that is easy to follow.  You have to create an account to apply and once you have access to it, fill out each section.  It's a long and tedious task, but this is what you have worked so hard for.  So shine up those trophies of accomplishments you have succeeded at and display them proudly.  Don't be humble, show the admission advisers why you should belong in the UC family.   

A little piece of advice from experience...

DON'T START  LATE!  Seriously.  Unless you like pulling all-nighters, then by all means, finish at the last moment.  I had several copies of my personal statement, all of which were completely different from one another.  It takes time and effort to complete the application and if you want it done right, the sooner the better.  

You can submit your UC application starting from November 1 to the last day in November. But don't wait until the last day to press that submit button.  Thousands of other students (who have decided to be lazy-slackers) will also be furiously pressing the submit button.  Their servers can CRASH! So get on it and stay on top of it.  I submitted mine mid-November which is the recommended time period to.  But you can work on it beforehand of course.  

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

What do UCs have to Offer?

There are ten UC's in total:

University of California Irvine
University of California Davis
University of California San Diego
University of California Berkeley
University of California Los Angeles
University of California Santa Barbara
University of California Santa Cruz
University of California Riverside
University of California Merced
University of California San Francisco (Graduate school)

All of these universities are of high prestige and have a huge variety of majors to choose from.  Each school has their pros and cons and I will be specifically talking about UC Irvine.

This blog won't strictly be about the numbers and statistics to get in (because let's face it, you could do that already on Wikipedia), but it will include what the "check-off list" doesn't tell you to do.  I'll be the first to admit that I wasn't always on top of things, so I want to include the how-to's for experiences that the UC system doesn't expect you to go through.