Berkeley Memories With Yanni Zhang

Wuhan University student recalls her time taking Legal Studies courses

Yanni Zhang is majoring in History, Policy and Economics at Wuhan University. After graduation, Yanni wants to make the world a fairer place by continuing her studies in politics and economics—and that may include applying for Law School.

So when the opportunity to take legal studies courses as part of the Berkeley Global Access Discover program arose, Yanni jumped at the chance.

I recently caught up with Yanni to learn more about her experience here at UC Berkeley.

Why did you choose UC Berkeley?

UC Berkeley is a prestigious public university located in the famous Bay Area. I really wanted to see and experience American education. The lectures also attracted me. This program cooperates with my own university so I could transfer my credits.

Why did you choose Legal Studies courses while studying with us?

U.S. and China have different law systems. I am trying to find out their differences through the classes. Being a lawyer is one of my career plans. I want to know whether I am interested in this area and if I should apply for Law School. The Legal Studies courses provides a basic view of the U.S. law system and the teachings in Law School. Getting a good grade in my class may be proof for me to continue studying. It may be helpful for my Law School applications.

What was your experience like on campus?

It took me a while to fit in. For the first two weeks, I was busy choosing courses and adapting to the different environment. Once I was used to the professors’ lectures and the assignments, I felt great. I learned a lot.

What advice do you have for other students coming to Berkeley?

Berkeley has great professors and a great study environment—so use them a lot! The libraries are awesome. Do not skip classes, take every reading and assignment seriously so you can succeed in the classroom.

The Bay Area is great—use your weekends and holidays to explore and relax.

What are your top places to explore and relax?


  1. Go up to Sather Tower (the Campanile).
  2. Enjoy a concert in Hertz Hall.
  3. Study really late in Moffitt Library in the Main (Gardner) Stacks.
  4. Take BART to San Francisco.