In California we have two very good systems, known as the University of California (UC) and the California State University (CSU) systems. UC has 10 campuses in California and all are very popular and well respected. Each school varies in size and location and “feel” of the campus. UC Berkeley is ranked as the #1 public university in the United States and UC Los Angeles is ranked #2. These universities require very good grades and test scores for admittance just like the best private schools, and normally accept the top 12% of students that apply. They are well respected for academics and research as well as their strong sports teams. There are 23 universities in the CSU system, and these are also very good schools and admit the top 30-50% of students that apply. Two of the most popular ones in my area are San Diego State and Cal Poly San Louis Obispo. The CSU schools are known for their practical training and don’t do as much research as the UCs.
Applications for the UC and CSU schools are accepted from October 1-November 30th, so many seniors at my school are busy completing these applications right now. I have visited the UCLA and UC Berkeley campuses this year and liked both of them.
There are many great choices of colleges and universities in the US. When selecting which ones to apply to its important to identify your goals and interests, and consider costs, class size, culture and environment of each school before choosing between a public university and private school.
What type of public school would you prefer to go to? Let me know in the comments!