I've been to Riverside many a time with our school's Mock Trial team, and I am officially a student of UC Riverside through my MFA program, which runs out of the Palm Desert Campus. But I have never been to the main campus. I was excited to see it.
Even though it was raining, and freezing, and RAINING SO HARD, I loved it. I'm sure there's a slight bias here, but I was definitely surprised and impressed by this school. Riverside the city isn't anything to write home about, but the university was quite nice. Even though I have been completely impressed beyond belief by my program itself, it's easy to think of it in a void. I think since I do most of my work online (which feels kind of strange and also--at times--completely frustrating because of the stupid program we use) and then I go to residency at a fancy schmancy hotel twice a year for my classes (which feels too good to be true) I didn't have the official college feeling about being in grad school. I think it was good to walk on the campus and feel like I'm sending my money to a legitimate place. I will admit to being a little bit giddy.
Also, do you know UCR invented Cuties? You're welcome, America.
After UCR, we headed down to La Jolla to check into our next hotel. Our shower was awesomely poop-free, and our hotel was across from a mall where we could let the kiddos shop and find something to eat for dinner. Everyone was back and tucked into bed by a decent hour.
Saturday we visited San Diego State University first. It was the only school that we saw that disappointed me a bit. I think this was probably because it was all but deserted. They don't offer tours on Saturdays, so we pretty much had to just roam around on our own. I loved the Spanish architecture and the Love Library, but there wasn't much else to see here, unfortunately. It's too bad, because from what I hear, SDSU is a pretty lively school.
Our final college was probably one of my favorites, UC San Diego. It was such a nice mix of nature and modern architecture. Even though it was Saturday, things were happening. Our tour was kind of lame--we didn't get to see a lot of the huge campus--but what we did see was great and I could tell that the philosophy of the school was great. I'd love to learn more about it, actually, so I can help kids apply.
Very comfortable, very beautiful place to be. I loved it here. This was another place I could see my monkeys being happy.
Thoughts about all of these college visits:
- It makes me a better high school teacher to go see as many schools as I can.
- It will help me so much as a parent to see as many schools as I can -- it won't be long until we're doing this for Miss Roo and Hanko.
- California has so much to offer in terms of different colleges.
- I love college bookstores.
- There are no bad decisions when it comes to choosing a school.
- God bless my good tennis shoes.