University of California – Santa Cruz

The University of California – Santa Cruz (also known as UC Santa Cruz or UCSC), is a public, collegiate university and one of 10 campuses in the University of California system

Located 75 miles (120km) south of San Francisco at the edge of the coastal community of Santa Cruz, University of California – Santa Cruz campus lies on 2,001 acres (810 ha) of rolling, forested hills overlooking the Pacific Ocean and Monterey Bay.

Founded in 1965, UC Santa Cruz began as a showcase for progressive, cross-disciplinary undergraduate education, innovative teaching methods and contemporary architecture. Since then, it has evolved into a modern research university with a wide variety of both undergraduate and graduate programs, while retaining its reputation for strong undergraduate support and student political activism. The residential college system, which consists of ten small colleges, is intended to combine the student support of a small college with the resources of a major university (this concept is not unlike that at southern California’s private Claremont Colleges, which was implemented 40 years earlier with five small colleges).

The university offers 63 undergraduate majors and 35 minors, with graduate programs in 33 fields. Popular undergraduate majors include Art, Business Management Economics, Molecular and Cell Biology, and Psychology. Interdisciplinary programs, such as Feminist Studies, American Studies, Environmental Studies, Visual Studies, Digital Arts and New Media, and the unique History of Consciousness Department are also hosted alongside UCSC’s more traditional academic departments.

A new joint program, the first of its kind in the University of California system, will enable UC Santa Cruz students to earn a bachelor’s degree and law degree in six years instead of the usual seven. The “3+3 BA/JD” Program between UC Santa Cruz and UC Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco is set to accept its first applicants in Fall 2014.

UCSC students who declare their intent in their freshman or early sophomore year will complete three years at UCSC and then move on to UC Hastings to begin the three-year law curriculum. Credits from the first year of law school will count toward a student’s bachelor’s degree. Students who successfully complete the first-year law course work will receive their bachelor’s degree and be able to graduate with their UCSC class, then continue at UC Hastings for the final two years of law study.

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