The calm environment is definitely number one. Although there is always inevitable stress that comes along with finals, the tranquil redwood trees and serene atmosphere allows one to stop, take a breather, and feel at ease. UCSC was also rated one of the top most beautiful campuses in California and I can definitely attest to that! Another reason would be its resources. There's a plethora of resources in basically every facet of the campus and it never feels as though the students are trying to put each other down. Everyone is looking towards each other's success and pushing everyone forward. My third reason would be the opportunities. UCSC is known for being a very large research school so that allows students to venture out of their comfort zone and take part in a variety of research labs and internships, all while feeling like a small liberal arts school. After you pass your freshman GE's, the classrooms reduce to a much smaller size. It feels more intimate and like you're actually getting the attention you need and are PAYING for by the professors. Not to mention (once again), the large pool of resources that includes tutoring, cultural clubs, sports, and hobbie groups assuring that you will not get lost in the huge college population.