Do yourself a favor: Move to Pacific Beach

by Jimmy Janszen, Staff Columnist

The surrounding neighborhood of San Diego State known as College Area is a drag.

There isn’t a large bar scene, the ocean isn’t close enough to provide a nice breeze and students continually run into the same faces all too often. 

Living on or near campus can make it difficult to appreciate San Diego for what it actually is.

The beach communities are truly what make San Diego such an extraordinary city.

College Area has neither the college-town atmosphere like Tucson, Arizona, nor the urban feel of a university like New York University. SDSU’s College Area neighborhood is a peculiar blend of college students and families living in the same area and, because of this, it lacks a legitimate college feel.  However, San Diego has something that Tucson or New York City doesn’t have: over 60 miles of coastline with a rich beach culture. It’s no wonder why most travel advertisements for San Diego depict some bit of beach culture.

As an SDSU student you should take full advantage of it.

Seventy-two percent of freshmen live on campus, partially because every first-time freshman admitted outside of SDSU’s local admission area is required to live on campus. But after freshman year, students should try to get out of College Area and move to the unofficial beach community of SDSU, Pacific Beach.

While Mission Beach is typical of University of San Diego students, PB is bustling with SDSU students. Because PB is one of the most popular areas of nightlife in San Diego and the beach culture is so vibrant, it’s an easy choice for SDSU students.

Living in one area for the entirety of college is repetitive and mundane. Moving out of College Area can open up a new perspective of San Diego.

SDSU alumnus Ryan Nolen relocated to Pacific Beach his senior year after living in College Area for the first three years at SDSU.

“Pacific Beach provides a community of young people,” Nolen said. “There are options for both nighttime and daytime activities like better parks, bars and restaurants.”

Not only did the dynamic atmosphere of PB entice Nolen to move there, but the lack of what College Area could provide also had him wanting out.

“College Area lacks a university identity,” he said. “I didn’t think the neighborhood had a college atmosphere. College Area is just a label. The reality is that it’s not a college area, it’s misleading.”

While PB may not have the Aztec pride that College Area lacks, it does have a college atmosphere that is particular to San Diego. Every day in PB there are deals on drinks at a plethora of bars on Garnet Avenue or Mission Boulevard. Whether it’s bottomless mimosas in the morning or shots of alcohol at last call, many SDSU students and others visiting from out of town crowd the streets and beach boardwalk to let loose with people their age.

Plenty of the PB bars also have deals on drinks during an SDSU football or basketball game. SDSU students and alumni gather together at those bars supporting their beloved Aztecs. It’s a great environment for someone wanting to experience SDSU not too far from campus.

Aside from the partying, PB offers some great surf. On certain swells, waves will break cleanly off Crystal Pier to form clean, open barrels.

There are peaks from the Mission Beach jetty all the way to PB point that line up the coastline all year-round. College is the time to experience as much as possible, so why not take advantage of some of the most consistent surf in the country?

Whether it’s to enrich your college experience, get out in the ocean more or to simply gain a larger perspective of San Diego, SDSU students best move out to Pacific Beach. Plus, it has to get old seeing the same faces and going to the same frat parties at SDSU.