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Living in San Diego


The UC San Diego Internal Medicine Residency Program is blessed not only with superb academic qualifications but also with a truly stunning location. Situated in Southern California, San Diego is well known for its great weather and beautiful beaches. Sailing, surfing, diving, water-skiing, swimming, tennis, volleyball, and biking are quite popular year-round activities.

Mexico is less than an hour's drive to the south, and the desert community of Palm Springs are two hours to the east. For snow enthusiasts, the Big Bear ski resort is only a few hours away by car.

San Diego Scenes


balboa.jpgRanging from the eclectic to the sublime, San Diego's array of museums is filled with wonders that appeal to just about any taste for art, machinery, sports, classic cars, and scientific discovery. Many museums are clustered in Balboa Park within walking distance of each other, while others are tucked in outlying neighborhoods.

Performing Arts

kevinconcert.jpgSan Diego is well known for its sun, surf, and sand, but when the sun goes down, the curtain goes up on stages all over the county. From the California Center for the Arts, Escondido to historic theaters built at the turn of the century, from ballet to traditional folk dance, from symphony performances to dramatic opera and outdoor calliopes, San Diego offers the best performing arts all year round.

Photo by Kevin Yang Med/Peds Class of 2021


Gary Ma, Class of 2019San Diego's 70 miles of beaches are like a family of people; each has a distinct personality. Some are havens for surfers and divers, others are remote getaways, and many are perfect for any activity.
Photo by Gary Ma Class of 2019


dunes.jpgThe outdoor fun doesn't just lie at the water's edge. San Diego is also home to several parks and open space preserves including the Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve (pictured at left), Mission Bay Park, and several preserves with miles of trails and camping facilities.


happypanda.jpgSan Diego is home to several world-renowned wildlife centers. The San Diego Zoo is located within Balboa Park and is a great place to spend an hour or an entire day observing the various exhibits.

The San Diego Zoo's Safari Park is a unique place where you are the one behind the fence. The animals are free to roam about in large areas in which various coindigenous species live. You can watch giraffes and gazelles follow the rhinos around.

Photo by Jenny Zhou Class of 2021

Current Residents Testimony

Charlotte Ellberg, PGY-2

elberg-charlotte.jpegNeighborhood: North Park, lives alone
What do you love about SD?
The beach, endless outdoor activities, great breweries, and amazing weather! I’ve gotten to stop by the beach on the way home after a long day on the wards and go for a swim even at 6 PM!
How do you afford to live in SD?
You don’t think about the rent as much when you are enjoying the amazing weather and beach (and training at an excellent program). The housing stipend helps and it feels like the salary and stipend balance things out when comparing the cost of living for other programs.

Richa Sheth, PGY-3

sheth-richa.jpegNeighborhood: Hillcrest, lives with partner
What do you love about SD?
Good food and good walks
How do you afford to live in SD?
Usually, the more popular and walkable areas cost more, but the nice thing about San Diego is that these neighborhoods are so easy to get to by car and they are all within a 15-minute drive of each other. It’s great because you can live in a more affordable area and beaches, restaurants, fun bars, and friends’ houses are all still very accessible.

Emma Mulligan, PGY-2

mulligan-emma.jpegNeighborhood:  San Marcos, lives with partner
What do you love about SD?
Japanese Friendship Garden and Balboa park, always beautiful weather, ocean and mountains right next to one another, Torrey Pines, variety of environments and landscapes
How do you afford to live in SD? Living outside of the city is definitely doable as an intern and much cheaper.

Varsha Sathappan, PGY-2

sathappan-varsha.jpeg Neighborhood:  University City (UTC), lives with partner
What do you love about SD?
Amazing weather - even on call days it's so nice to take a walk around and enjoy the sun. Access to the beach and hiking is a major plus. I love the amount of affordable healthy food options. And the people just seem happier here.
How do you afford to live in SD?
UTC is very affordable if you split the cost with a roommate. Pictured is me and my roommate (lol my husband).