Where to transfer?

I’m sure this has been asked somewhere before but probably not on the same schools so here goes. I’m basically kind of at a loss on deciding what school to transfer to…I was originally planning to go to UC Santa Cruz instead of UC Davis because the heat in NorCal is just ridiculous and I want no part of it. On the other hand, I’ve heard a lot of bad things about Santa Cruz (not the college, everyone loves the college) as well as the college students and how it has a reputation for being the school that everyone goes to when every other college rejects their application. So I’ve never been too enthusiastic about that part of SC because I’m sure medical schools are aware of reputations too.

On the flipside, Davis has a great reputation, from what I understand the area is very nice, and obviously since Davis has a medical school attached to it I’m sure they have a good reputation; especially for pre-meds. The problem here is that I want to major in marine biology and obviously Davis doesn’t have a major like that anyways. Their biomedical engineering and genetics majors look somewhat interesting but not nearly as much as MB.

I could solve both problems by going to Stanford since that’s on the coast and offers marine biology, but since I’m not 25 yet and my stepdad is a dentist, they’re going to consider me a dependent and therefore expect me to come up with the entire $45,000 a year on my own since they’re going to go off my stepdad’s income; regardless of the fact that he can’t give me that much help and I wouldn’t think it right to ask that much money from someone else anyways.

Anyone have any suggestions?

I think you are hearing unsubstantiated rumors about the reputation of UCSC. It is an excellent school and now that they apparently don’t have the “evaluations” for grades that used to drive us all crazy in med admissions, it is much easier to evaluate the transcript. If marine biology is your love, by all means, go to UCSC. My son graduated from UCD and I think it is a great school, but it was great for what he wanted out of it (and he seems to love the Central Valley weather, although he is back in the SF Bay Area again).

And, as I am sitting here in my pre-med advising office at Stanford (I’m helping out through October, part-time), I know that out of 1500 transfer applicants this year, 82 were admitted. Slim odds. However, I think that you’ll find that Stanford has better financial aid than you are giving it credit for. (This is just a supposition, having tried to keep up on the news from the bursar’s office.)

You won’t ever have this type of college opportunity again. Follow your heart in your major and don’t worry about the “reputation” of UCSC. Just do well both now and in your future coursework.