Going Bananas for Berkeley A Long Tradition On The Hill
• Students from the Hill have long travled north for an education at UC Berkeley.
As the school year comes to a close and graduation looms, many seniors have decided where they will be heading in September.
Each year, students are accepted into a wide range of great schools, and this year is no exception. Peninsula seniors have certainly left their mark on their high school campus and will continue to at their respective universities.
From a survey of 261 students done by the College and Career Center, some 20 students said they will attend the University of California, Berkeley in the fall. That number is always high, with people referring to Peninsula as a “feeder school” to UC Berkeley.
There were 87,353 students who applied for UC Berkeley admittance this year, and, with an acceptance rate of 16.9 percent in 2016-17, the accomplishment of getting into the school is an academic feat. According to Berkeley News, students accepted had an average SAT score of 1347 and an average ACT score of 29.
Many students accepted Berkeley not only because it is one of the most academically renowned UC’s, but because of a variety of other reasons, including environment and prices.
“Berkeley was not my first choice, but it was one of my top choices,” Connor Tumelty said. “I primarily chose Berkeley for the lower price, compared to privates and their biology programs.”
Berkeley’s most popular majors include social sciences, engineering, biological and biomedical sciences. Due to its academic ranking and the opportunities provided within each department, many students are attracted to its campus.
“I fell in love with Berkeley largely because the program I got into felt like it was almost made exactly for me and what I wanted to do,” said Robert Peltekov. “I would also be surrounded by people who are all just as motivated as me to make a difference with their education.”
While many students were determined to go to the East Coast and cultivate a new way of living and explore the differences between where they have lived the majority of their lives and how it is across the country, some students expect to thrive on the West Coast. California, arguably, has the best weather, which many students do not want to give up.
“I think that so many people choose to go to Berkeley from Palos Verdes High School and Peninsula High School because not only is it located in the amazing California, but it has a place for everyone to expand and succeed,” Peltekov said.
“It is not known as being best or good in just one focus, but it excels all around in giving students an education for whatever path they might choose,” Peltekov said. “Coupling that with in-state tuition that is usually half of what a similar-caliber private institution costs, Berkeley becomes a college that is pretty hard to pass up on.”
The exposure to the campus and multiple visits also solidified some students’ decision on where they would go. Whether it be field trips, conferences, campus tours or a relative that went to that school, many students, on a first visit were overcome with a sense of belonging.
“I absolutely loved Berkeley the first time I went to the campus for a Model United Nations conference,” Kiara Wong said. “The people, the food and the campus were all amazing. Berkeley just gives you so many opportunities to meet new people, go out into the world and explore and really just find yourself.”
To students who have lived in California for a long time, UC Berkeley, along with all the other UC schools, are a great opportunity and a chance to receive an amazing education.
“Berkeley and the UCs are colleges we have heard about since freshmen year,” Hannah Shever said. “Being accepted into a UC is an amazing accomplishment where their past freshmen year selves would be proud of.”