Interesting Things I Wish I Knew Before Going to UCSD

Published: July 16, 2020
By Anthony
4 min read
Interesting Things I Wish I Knew Before Going to UCSD

1. Parking is a Competitive Sport

Gilman Parking

There are a couple of parking lots at UCSD. You'll also need to pay for a permit every quarter to be able to park. Not all parking spaces are equal either. There are spots for Student, Staff, Visitor, etc. Gilman Parking Structure is the main parking lot for commuters, but don't expect to find parking without struggling. The S spots lot generally fill up in the morning. People even joke around that parking is a competitive sport at UCSD! I know some commuters didn't want to bother with this so they parked off campus and took the shuttle to campus.

2. There Isn't Much to Do Around Campus Without a Car

Sungod Bird

There's a bunch to do in San Diego. There's great Korean food on Convoy Street. Coronado Island is a beautiful place to walk around. Balboa Park is an amazing cultural park to visit. But all of this is out of reach without a car. Most freshmen live on campus their first year and don't have a car either so it's difficult to explore without meeting people with a car or taking a long bus ride. Also, I was a bit shocked how little there was to do on campus and around campus why is probably why UCSD students are so studious.

3. Theft Accounts for Most Crimes on Campus

Triton Statue

My freshman year, I had my brand new bike stolen on campus. I had it locked up, but someone was still able to steal it. Apparently in 2014, bicycle theft accounted for $100k of stolen property according to this article. I also knew people who had their dorms broken into and had their entire suite raided. On the bright side, 95% of crimes on campus are theft related according to UCSD Guardian, so the campus is relatively safe. I've actually walked around campus at 3am and it's pretty much empty. If you do end up getting a bike, I reccommend buying a cheap bike that you don't mind getting stolen and buying a U Lock like the one linked below.

4. The Campus is Huge

Walking distance

Because there's multiple colleges and the classes are so spread out from one another, expect to walk a lot. Also, expect all your lecture halls to be in different locations. I sometimes had one lecture at Revelle College and another lecture after at Warren College. According to Google Maps, this will an 0.8 mile walk. In order to deal with these long stretches, I initially had a bike, but learned to longboard after the bike was stolen. Here's a list of some of the board I used throughout the years.

5. The Quality of Dorms is Different for Each College

The Village Room

I had the opportunity to live in three different dorms on campus before moving off campus my 4th year. I lived in Argo Halls in Revelle, Sixth College, and the Village. Amongst these three, I personally liked Sixth College the most. It wasn't old like Revelle's dorms and it wasn't obnoxiously cramped like in the Village. Although, I'm being a bit biased since we got a triplet in The Village. They had reconfigure many of the doubles to triplets so my room was extremely small (that picture from above was literally my corner in the triplet). Also, there were a lot of parties and people blasting music from The Tower at The Village. Another thing to note is that some colleges are strict on underage drinking. My friends and I almost got expelled for having alcohol at Sixth College because there were underage people in the apartment. Interestingly, when we lived in The Village, our suitemates would smoke weed in the apartment everyday and the police didn't care. Your mileage will range between having a chill RA and whoever is posted onduty that night.

6. Check Out the Farmers Market

While there's a bunch of cafeterias on campus, the cafeteria's food gets pretty boring really quick. Thankfully, there's a Farmers Market once a week. My favorites include Torpasta which serves pasta inside of bread and Carranza Citrus Fruit which serves Chamango.


Hope you guys learned something new. Did you attend UCSD as well? Also check out Things I Wish I Knew Before Going to UCSD as a Computer Science Major. Leave a comment in the comments section below!

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