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California, United States
University of California - Los Angeles is a public research university founded in 1919. It’s amongst the top universities in the USA, and is a hot favourite among Asians (specially Indians) although it should be noted that it’s not easy to get in at all.
While UCLA is naturally renowned because of its excellent academic programs, that’s not the only thing it’s famous for. A hair-raising statistic about UCLA is its Olympic tradition - the university has had at least one gold medalist in each and every Olympics since 1920.
It ranks #13 according to U.S. News' 'Best Global Universities Ranking' list.
*Average tuition fee is only an indicator of the estimate annual cost for Sciences courses at UCLA. Course specific tuition fee may vary and it's best to refer to the university's [official website]. An estimate of the average tuition fee at University of California, Los Angeles in Indian Rupees is INR 23,00,000 as of 15 Oct 2019.
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Like the name suggests, the university is located in the very posh city of Los Angeles. It’s about 5 miles from the ocean and pretty close to the Getty Center. The postal address says it’s in Westwood Village, although nothing about the place seems like a village. It’s a lovely student town, with a million things to do nearby. There’s Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Disneyland almost next door, so all you star-struck people out there should definitely try getting into UCLA.
The UCLA campus is stretched over about 420 acres and consists of 163 magnificent buildings. The campus is full of both natural and man-made beauty, with gardens, fountains and museums. The library system has over 8 million volumes, distributed nicely in a number of buildings. The university is also known for its research, and accordingly has fantastic research facilities and laboratories.
As for residing options, living on campus often becomes slightly expensive, even though UCLA offers excellent accommodation for students. Instead, graduate students try finding apartments to rent off-campus. UCLA is surrounded by frightfully expensive areas like Brent Wood, BelAir, and Beverly Hills, so you can expect to pay as much as $1000 a month for a studio apartment. Yes, it’s scary.
Well, California is known for its climate, and Los Angeles epitomizes everything that is good about California. Most days are sunny, and LA receives rainfall roughly 30 days a year. The average annual temperature is about 20°C, and it barely ever goes more than 5°C here or there the entire year. There’s no snowfall, and the weather on a whole is quite pleasant.
The faculty here is certainly excellent. While it would perhaps be an exaggeration to say that professors are extra keen, they are definitely willing to go out of the way for enthusiastic students. Most of the professors are highly knowledgeable, having funny-sounding degrees from prestigious institutes over the world. While their busy schedules may, at times, be slightly frustrating, it can’t be doubted that it’s an absolute joy to study under such prodigies.
Historically, UCLA is rather generous with its scholarships, but you have to be extremely deserving. It's really difficult to get a research assistantship (known as "Graduate Student Researcher" position here), especially in Electrical Engineering.
Since UCLA is one of the better colleges around, it certainly shouldn’t be a problem getting a pretty-high-paying job once you’re here. Where you get placed naturally depends on the course you’re doing, but more often than not, you can expect to get picked up by one of the top players in whatever field you’re specializing in.
Though it’s easy to get sold just by knowing the location, you should bear in mind that it’s a brilliant school as well. One thing you can be sure of is that you would never regret going to UCLA.
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