I've asked a few questions on american universities and safety in certain cities but i'm still unsure. I'm looking to go on exchange to the university of california, berkeley. i'm a 21 year old female and i would be going alone. i've never been to america and would love to see as much as possible. ive found out that oakland and richmond are pretty dangerous and wondering if that will affect my travels around berkeley and san francisco. i will be relying on public transport so will i have to pass through oakland to get to san francisco? would it be dangerous?

i know nothing about the cities over there and what they are like. i understand common sense is needed and you shouldnt walk alone at night. im from australia and our cities are relatively safe even at night due to the vibrant nightlife.

other options for me are the university of washington, seattle or the university of california in los angeles. would these be better?

thanks in advance.