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MasterChief

UVIC vs UBC

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A bit late to the party but I just got accepted to UBC off the wait list and now I'm having some difficulty in deciding where I want to spend the next three or so years of my life. I found a few good discussions in comparing the two schools but I was hoping I'd be able to get some more opinions on a few other things. 

 

Here's a post I found helpful in case anyone else is interested:

http://lawstudents.ca/forums/topic/43341-ubc-vs-uvic/?hl=%2Bubc+%2Buvic

 

For me, unlike the Op of the post linked, corporate law is something I could see myself being interested in. Also, as of right now my ideal location to settle down would be Vancouver and I have 0 desire to establish a career in Victoria. Yet, I would say my gut is making me lean about 70:30 towards UVIC. I think the biggest things pulling me towards UVIC are its Co op program and the change of pace it would provide after spending 5 years doing undergrad at UBC. It would also be slightly cheaper but this isn't a huge factor for me. 

 

I also keep hearing that the student body of UBC is typically is more cliquey and more "cut throat" in comparison to UVIC's. However these are all 2nd hand accounts so I'm not putting too much significance into them but I'd still very much appreciate hearing some opinions from people who have experience with the two schools. 

 

I guess after typing all that, what I'm really trying to get a sense of is whether I'd be putting myself at a major disadvantage if my final goal is to work in Vancouver and potentially do corporate law if I were to attend UVIC.

Edited by MasterChief

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I'd recommend UBC, but you won't be at a "major" disadvantage if you choose to attend UVic and want to work in corporate. UBC has the leg up though, as you're in closer proximity to the large corporate firms. 

I can also attest to what you have heard in regards to UBC being "cliquey." It is VERY much so. 

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Being at UVic campus myself(undergrad), I would recommend UBC. Victoria is itself just a tougher place to live. Not as much diversity, opportunities, services etc. The culture also is a bit exclusive. Also, UBC and UVic are actually very similar in price. Rent and tuition is higher in Vancouver sure, but everything else in Victoria is much higher too (food, services, transportation,etc.) UVic is a fine university with some really good amenities and professors but the city and culture hold it back greatly. 

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Being at UVic campus myself(undergrad), I would recommend UBC. Victoria is itself just a tougher place to live. Not as much diversity, opportunities, services etc. The culture also is a bit exclusive. Also, UBC and UVic are actually very similar in price. Rent and tuition is higher in Vancouver sure, but everything else in Victoria is much higher too (food, services, transportation,etc.) UVic is a fine university with some really good amenities and professors but the city and culture hold it back greatly. 

 

Would you mind elaborating on the culture being exclusive? From what I've been reading Victoria seems to be really hit or miss, people either love it or find it a really boring city. 

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I did my undergrad at UVIC and found the city itself to be rather boring (as mentioned above) compared to life in Vancouver. Sure, the rent is a bit cheaper in Victoria, but I would personally rather pay a little bit more to be Vancouver. Why? Because in Victoria, if you're living alone and studying your brains out, there isn't a whole lot to do in this city. It's simply a slower pace of life here. Maybe you want that? If you're an outdoors-sy kind of person, you might really like it here. If I had a choice between the two cities, I would go with Vancouver hands down. I wouldn't say you'd be at a disadvantage if you chose UVIC but wanted to work in Vancouver. If you go to school in BC, I don't think you'd have a problem finding work in Vancouver as long as you proactively network and line up some solid OCI's while at UVIC. If I were in your shoes, I would probably have to go with UBC. Mainly because it would provide convenient opportunities for meeting up with lawyers at various firms for coffee or "informational" meetings. Feel free to PM me for any questions about UVIC living if you'd like!

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Would you mind elaborating on the culture being exclusive? From what I've been reading Victoria seems to be really hit or miss, people either love it or find it a really boring city. 

 

 

Well by culture I mean specifically extremely left politics, hippy, anti-science (anti-gmo, pro-gluten, pro-organic etc.), lack of diversity, etc. There is also lots of issues with inclusivity (if you dont conform or hold certain views, you are excluded). 

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The problems, in terms of the city itself, that pursuant88 mentioned are also true. 

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This is just me, but even if I did get into UBC for next year (which I wouldn't ever) and UVic (where I'm going), I would choose UVic.
 

Allard Hall is beautiful. I spent a few months studying there for the LSAT after finishing my undergraduate. I just never really clicked with UBC. The campus is massive, has a huge commuter population, and just never really felt like a community to me. I've heard from a few people that went there for law recently that people are very studious, just go to class, and peace out right after. 

UVic kinda has that more small town feel. You would really get to know the people around you. Classes are smaller and the campus is pretty compact (and in a pretty cool ring). I'm really interested in doing co-op and UVic's less competitive atmosphere. No interest in corporate law at all, and possibly not returning to Vancouver, so that decent edge for UBC doesn't do much for me.

The weather in Victoria is pretty much similar, a little bit less rain and more sunshine than Vancouver. Rent is a bit cheaper, tuition is cheaper ($12k vs. $10.5k), and general cost of living is lower in Victoria.

 

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For what it's worth, I was the one who started the thread linked in the first post, and in the end, I picked UVic. I might yet live to regret this, but I basically came to the exact same conclusion as sharper44, just above, co-op, and potential differences in cost made the difference for me. I love  Vancouver, but the thought of living there on bank loans just stressesme out. There would be so many activities I would want to do, but at the same time price myself out of... More importantly, I see co-op as a pretty valuable tool for someone who doesn't want to go into corporate law. 

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Well by culture I mean specifically extremely left politics, hippy, anti-science (anti-gmo, pro-gluten, pro-organic etc.), lack of diversity, etc. There is also lots of issues with inclusivity (if you dont conform or hold certain views, you are excluded).

How dare those hippies like bread

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How dare those hippies like bread

 

Lol, I meant to write anti-gluten.

Edited by yeezy

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Lol, I meant to write anti-gluten.

Don't worry, there is still free pizza at the lunch time events. Just gotta make sure you don't accidentally take a slice from the tiny token gluten-free one!

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I also keep hearing that the student body of UBC is typically is more cliquey and more "cut throat" in comparison to UVIC's.

 

I keep hearing this, though every Allard student (past and present) I have spoken to has told me the atmosphere was one of collegiality and mutual support. 

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I keep hearing this, though every Allard student (past and present) I have spoken to has told me the atmosphere was one of collegiality and mutual support. 

 

Me too.

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Who is it that is telling all of you this? You keep hearing it from whom?

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Who is it that is telling all of you this? You keep hearing it from whom?

 

Several people on the forum have mentioned that they felt UBC Law was cutthroat and cliquey.

 

The people I know who go there currently had the opposite experience and said everyone was extremely supportive and kind so I'm sure it's subjective.

Edited by Starling
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What Starling said. Most of the negative characterizations I have seen of UBC's atmosphere are on these forums, mostly in school comparison/"where should I for X or Y" threads.

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What Starling said. Most of the negative characterizations I have seen of UBC's atmosphere are on these forums, mostly in school comparison/"where should I for X or Y" threads.

 

People with negative experiences are always going to be the most vocal. Even if someone has an absolutely terrific experience, they are not going to be as vocal as their counterpart. 

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I agree with yeezy. I wouldn't put much stock in the comments of a few people here on the forums. Even if that was their personal experience, it is the experience of, what, two or three people perhaps? In a school of hundreds. And I'd actually question those individuals for details of what they are claiming. What do they mean by cliquey and cutthroat? For years, I've heard claims of students hearing that U of T is so cutthroat and usually, they cannot give one example of anyone acting in that way. The comments are almost always coming from individuals who have not attended U of T, and it morphs into myth when it's repeated often enough, yet I never knew anyone when I was attending U of T who had ever had that type of experience.

 

If you are seriously considering a school, any school, I would suggest that you do further research on the atmosphere of the school. Make a visit. Talk to several grads and current students, if possible, and form your own opinions about things, both good and bad.

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The example I always heard thrown around is that people are going in and taking/hiding material that the whole class is supposed to work from. Though that's always from "a friend of a friend who knew someone at U of T/Osgood" (often they thought Osgoode was part of U of T).

 

When I hear these kinds of things it always seems to be from someone who notes that there's assholes everywhere they go. And it reminds of the old saying that "If you go somewhere and someone's an asshole, then you met an asshole. If you go to a bunch of places and everyone's an asshole, then you're the asshole." Or something like that. Anyways, the point is that people who talk about one school being cliquey/competitive is because they had a particularly negative experience and saw fit to cast dispersion on the entire population of a school even though it could very well have been their own fault that they had a negative experience. 

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