University: California State University Fullerton
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: business administration
Study type: semester abroad
Time just flew by, now my semester abroad is over and I can look back on a very exciting and unforgettable time. I am very grateful that I was able to have these interesting experiences as part of my studies, and I am therefore all the more pleased to be able to share them with you. It was already clear to me in the first semester that I wanted to spend my semester abroad in the USA. When the first rays of Californian sun shone on my face in January, I realized that the dream had become a reality. See iamaccepted for Hawaii Pacific University Study Abroad.
Even though it was clear to me early on that I should go to California, the choice of university was not that easy at first due to the wide range of different university programs and universities. In the end, I decided on California State University Fullerton (CSUF) because it offers a broad portfolio of business and economics courses as part of a four-month semester abroad . Fullerton is a city in Orange County of nearly 140,000 people near Los Angeles. With almost 40,000 students, the CSUF is the largest of the state universities and accordingly offers a completely different everyday student life than at a small university, as I was used to in Germany. Just a few minutes by bike from my university, I lived with a Chinese woman and a fellow student in an apartment in the University Village with a pool and a canteen belonging to the apartment complex on the doorstep. In general, I can recommend the UV to all of you, you meet almost exclusively students here and there is always something going on. This is how you quickly make friends, even with Americans. What we appreciate about ours is that we get two meals a day Accommodation very. Because if you want to eat healthy, shopping in California is incredibly expensive… what I also now appreciate is being able to just buy sparkling water!
On the other hand, the frozen yoghurts in all the flavors you can imagine hit a lot again;)… with what feels like 50 more toppings, you’re quickly overwhelmed with the composition of your Frojo. But now back to the university, in America it’s not all about burgers, ice cream and co.
Similar to my home, my courses only consisted of up to 40 students, but the campus is almost a small town. The campus area extends over two motorway exits and has a large fitness studio including a pool area, several stadiums, sports halls, a climbing tower, bowling alleys, a diverse food court and much more, as well as Starbucks on every corner (very dangerous!) nothing to be desired. It took me days to find my way around completely. What I can only confirm now is that American life is exactly as portrayed in various series on television. Something different really happens here every day and every week there was a different campus event on the agenda. I don’t even want to start talking about the “fraternity and house parties”. Red cups, as I have learned, are now part of the basic equipment of every apartment.
For those of you who are already preparing for your semester abroad and are concerned about class crashes at American universities, I can only reassure you from personal experience. I had already been assured of two of my 10 desired courses, which I had previously been able to choose for “Class Crashing”, right from the start. Since you have to take a total of 4 courses, I “crashed” the other two and finally had them safely on the second day. After two weeks of orientation, things really got going. Studying differs significantly from “German” studying. In America it is common that you have to write tests and various quizzes, give presentations or submit various projects almost every week for the entire semester. The latter always offered me a good opportunity to talk to Americans. In addition to the final exams at the end of the semester, there are also several intermediate exams, the so-called “midterms”.
Due to the high workload described above, my life here did not consist exclusively of sun, sand and sea, according to all prejudices. But since I was fortunately able to plan my lectures in such a way that I only have lectures from Monday to Wednesday, I was of course able to use many a long weekend for various trips.
From Malibu to Santa Monica, Long Beach, Huntington, Newport and Laguna Beach to San Diego, we traveled the west coast of California and recognized the backdrops of OC California and 90210 Beverly Hills. These gorgeous beaches really exist!!! And every beach has its own flair. While Santa Monica has a carnival atmosphere on the pier, Huntington and Newport are the surfing strongholds par excellence and around Laguna one beautiful bay follows the other. San Diego, or rather “Sun Diego”, is not known as the most beautiful city on the West Coast for nothing.Against this background, a major advantage of the CSUF is its central location, since the most beautiful cities on the coast can be reached in just a few minutes. In contrast to the cities mentioned above, Los Angeles itself did not convince me very much. The skyline, however, viewed from the Hollywood Hills from horseback is terrific.
Over spring break I was with fellow students in Arizona at Lake Havasu. There we made the lake unsafe for two days with a motorboat. I will also particularly remember the crazy weekends in Las Vegas. I’m having a hard time finding words that even come close to describing life on the Strip. What counted in the end: We were able to return together both times without a missing person report, had neither chicken nor tiger in the hotel room, no baby to take care of and we all still have good memories of Calvin Harris, who made many a party night unforgettable. However, my parachute jump over the mountains of Nevada was an absolute thrill. I can only recommend this AIR experience to anyone who is not too afraid of heights. In addition, we have a nearly 2000 km road trip to Bryce, Grand Canyon and Horseshoe Bend. What did I learn from it?
When driving through the four states of California, Nevada, Arizona and Utah, there can definitely be time changes, which you prefer to have on screen for further planning for the weekend.
Utah is not the same as California. This is particularly noticeable when it comes to the weather. For 1 degree and snowfall it is important to equip yourself with sufficiently thick clothing. (Thanks to the spa in the hotel, you have the opportunity to thaw out again in the evening hours)
In order to avoid a remaining range of 6 miles on your car’s speedometer and driving at 10 km/h on the emergency lane, it is better to seize the moment when you reach that gas station in the endless desert for refueling. The tip of having a canister full of petrol with you is not overrated at all.
We actually wanted to do Antelope Canyon on this trip, but you might need a reservation for that, so it’s better to do some research beforehand. Judging by the pictures, it should definitely find a place on your to-do list!
I could go on for hours and I certainly wouldn’t be finished yet. Ultimately, it is the breathtaking landscapes of the USA that inspired me and the people from different countries that made my time there special. A few days ago, I had to start my return journey with mixed feelings. After the semester, however, we still had four weeks to travel. I used this time for trips to Seattle, Vancouver and New York. The cities cannot be compared, but each is definitely worth a visit. I can absolutely recommend a semester abroad in California, especially the CSUF. It still offers relatively favorable study conditions and a top location for California.The study conditions at the university itself are great! If you have any further questions, I am happy to help.