Generally, students have positive things to say about going to school here. Students who want to focus solely on academics or Cal’s prestigious name leave here satisfied with their educations. Those who come to "Berzerkeley" for its radicalism (or drug scene) are excited to see that the school is still carrying on its Free Speech Movement reputation. The students who chose Berkeley because it was the best college they got into are happy to know that Cal doesn’t have to be too weird. And anyone looking for good conversation will want to stay here forever.
Cal definitely has the ups and downs of being a public school. The large class sizes and lack of personal attention are the two major gripes. Being “just a number” makes it easy to become lonely, and many people see Berkeley as a place that’s difficult to make friends. While there is minimal hand-holding, the University teaches students to be independent and proactive. Most students at Cal are proud to be at a school that doesn’t spoil its students. The low tuition make it a tempting alternative to private schools, and football and big parties give Berkeley smarties the best of both academic and social worlds. Many students had a difficult time explaining the Berkeley personality, which most students here love. This is a place where you can really learn something new every day. Many students love being surrounded by other people who are down-to-earth, self-aware, and appreciate a good conversation. While some students feel the need to constantly assert their intelligence, most of the time it is accepted and looked past.