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University of California, Davis

California, United States

Est. 1905

Ranked among top 40 universities in US

About University of California, Davis

University of California, Davis is a public research university located in the college town of Davis. Established in 1905, it is consistently ranked among the top universities in the world. For whatever unknown reasons, though, it gets rather step-brotherly treatment in the field of engineering compared to its Berkeley and Los Angeles counterparts. It is, however, an excellent university, and definitely one that should be given consideration to. It ranks #60 according to U.S. News' 'Best Global Universities Ranking' list.

UC Davis's School of Engineering


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Davis really does have the best of both worlds. While it’s more or less a college town by itself, Sacramento is right next door, while Oakland, San Francisco and San Jose aren’t too far either. All in all, an excellent location and a good place to live in.


The massive UC Davis campus is spread across about 5000 acres, and is pretty beautiful for the best part of it. The largest campus in the University of California system by a margin, it’s the only one to boast of an airport (yes, an airport!) within campus. It also has its own fire department, and its own nuclear laboratory. As you probably expect by now, the infrastructure is top notch, with excellent libraries, laboratories, classrooms and athletic facilities.

Residing Options

Although almost all grad students live off-campus, you should bear in mind that it isn’t exactly easy to find pleasing accommodation. That’s not because it doesn’t exist, but only because the vacancy rate is so low. It’s always advisable to start searching pretty early, because it’s only then that you’ll get to see enough places. A better idea would be to get in touch with some seniors who may be vacating shortly, and try and see if they could get you connected to the landlords directly. Rates could range from about $300 to $1500 per month, depending on the number of bedrooms you want, and the number of roommates you’re willing to tolerate.


A very simple rule. If it’s California, the weather must be good. And it is just that – pleasant throughout the year without getting unreasonably warm or cold, Davis is an absolute joy to live in.

Faculty and pedagogy

The motto of UC Davis reads ‘Let There Be Light’, and the faculty tries its best to ensure this. Ranked amongst the top ten schools in the states constantly, UC Davis isn’t really all that popular for its engineering programs among Indians, but that’s probably thanks to its rather low acceptance rates. But don’t be fooled – it’s a top, top school with absolutely excellent professors.

Financial aid

While it isn’t impossible to get some kind of scholarship, you need to have a rather fantastic profile to even be eligible for them.


Would probably have been much higher ranked had it been in another state which didn’t also have Berkeley and LA. In spite of that, it’s a wonderful school, and an even better town.

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