Graduate Division

Campus & Community Life

The University of California, Irvine is a thriving campus community situated in one of the most vibrant regions of the U.S. Students can enjoy a range of opportunities on campus that support both professional growth and student life. Love to surf or snowboard? We’re 5 miles from the Newport Coast and 80 miles from the nearest ski lift — with easy access to almost anything you could want in between. UCI students also enjoy a wealth of local shopping and entertainment opportunities, from the world-renowned South Coast Plaza, to restaurants and major attractions, such as Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm, Angel Stadium, and the Honda Center. Plus, Southern California features many museums, as the Getty Center, Discovery Science Center and Griffith Observatory, and is home to the Hollywood Bowl and the Disney Concert Hall.


Located 40 miles south of Los Angeles and 90 miles north of San Diego, UC Irvine is minutes from the ocean and borders the majestic beach cities of Laguna and Newport Beach. The mountain resorts of Big Bear and Mountain High are just a short drive away. With Orange County’s mild climate, it’s possible in winter and spring to play in the snow in the morning and swim with the dolphins in the afternoon.

Ranked by Money magazine as one of the Top 25 cities to live in the United States, Irvine features more than 40,000 acres of open space open to hikers, joggers and bikers alike. Irvine also is repeatedly ranked as the nation’s safest large city.


UCI graduate students hail from all 50 states, and from 65 countries. With 80% of new Ph.D. students living on campus, UCI embodies the world community. Such high residential rates are unique within the University of California system and, perhaps, the nation. When not in the classroom, library or lab, graduate students can work out at the Anteater Recreation Center, listen to world-renowned speakers, attend concerts, plays, and dance performances, watch UC Irvine’s nationally ranked Division I sports teams, get involved in their local community, sample a diversity of cuisines, mingle with fellow students and postdoctoral scholars at the Anthill Pub & Grille, or enjoy the sunshine at Aldrich Park.


Graduate students play an active role in campus life by getting involved in clubs and organizations, including the Associated Graduate Students — UC Irvine’s officially recognized graduate student government. Graduate students also form many reading groups and journal clubs, and take part in intramural sports through the Anteater Recreation Center.


UC Irvine offers guaranteed on-campus housing to all new Ph.D., M.F.A. and J.D. students who are admitted and respond to their Housing offer prior to the Housing application deadline, which is generally around May 1st. On-campus housing provides students with a community environment while they pursue their studies. Housing offers are for one of five graduate housing communities and must be accepted prior to arrival at UCI. Eligibility for housing extends for a minimum of three years, with the possibility of lease renewal thereafter. The UCI Graduate Housing Guarantee offers: 

  • The security of knowing that you will have a place to live on campus by the start of fall quarter
  • The convenience of living close to classes and campus resources
  • An opportunity to meet fellow graduate students from across the campus
  • Rental rates that are typically much lower than the local housing market

images of campus and community life