Checklist for applying to UCs

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Leila Touati

Applying to UCs can be challenging, but staying focused and taking it one step at a time can help.

Applying to college is never an easy task. But applying to a University of California, a world-class public research research university, can be particularly stressful and nerve-wracking. Lucky for Amador students, the AV Counselors have created an informational presentation highlighting all the information for how to apply to UCs and CSUs. 

“I really like how the UC application is organized and easy to understand. Unlike some of the other college application portals, the user interface is very user-friendly,” said Suhani Singhal (‘21).

The UC application opened on August 1st, and submissions are accepted between November 1st through the 30th. There is one application that can be submitted to all nine UC campuses, and with the COVID-19 pandemic, all the schools are completely test-blind.

“I think that it is fair for the UCs to do the test-blind option because that gives the chance for people who did not score as well or strives in other areas a better shot. Not to mention the fact that some people do not have the same access to certain test prep programs that other kids do, which automatically gave them an advantage,” said Anisha De, Amador alumni and UC Davis student.

The bulk of the UC application are the Personal Insight Questions, 8 questions offered for applicants to pick 4 and write an essay on each. These questions are about getting to know each student better on a personal level. It is vital for applicants to be reflective because these essays provide context for the rest of the application.

“I enjoyed writing the personal statement questions because it was a great opportunity for me to reflect on my involvement in the community and my personal development over the past four years,” said Singhal.

Some UC majors require supplements that aren’t mentioned in the basic application, so be sure to check the requirements for specific majors. All UC campuses offer scholarships to students who meet specific criteria; applicants can choose up to 16 scholarships that fit their interests or background.

Best of luck to all Amador seniors applying at this moment, and be sure to take breaks, either going outside or focusing on something different.

“When I was a senior, it was easier for me to start early and do it part by part so I didn’t have to scramble last minute to get it done and stress myself out. And if I did start to get overwhelmed, I’d take a step back and work on an easier part and then go back to whatever was making me stressed,” said De.