University: San Diego State University
City: San Diego
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: business administration
Study type: semester abroad
After a 13 hour flight I landed exhausted in San Diego and what did I see first? – Palm trees. My mood was up again. I took the bus to my hostel in Down Town – the Lucky Ds (highly recommended, great atmosphere, clean for a hostel, nice staff and always something going on – I actually met most of my friends in the first two weeks in the hostel learned). Yes, I stayed in the hostel for two weeks. Why? Everyone told me beforehand that finding an apartment would not be a problem. Unfortunately this was not the case! As soon as I arrived at the hostel (2 weeks before the start of my studies), great panic broke out because so many people could not find an apartment. My tip for you is to book from home, but definitely not private apartments but apartment complexes (highly recommended: BLVD63 and Sterling). I would continue to look at private apartments on site and rent them once everything has been clarified. This has proven to be difficult for us, as most landlords wanted to do a credit check (not possible with foreign students), only award 1-year contracts (not recommended, as it is difficult to find a replacement tenant) or rent the entire property Want to have it in advance (don’t do it, most landlords will rip you off). However, there were also some who were lucky and found an apartment from private individuals. However, I would always tend towards an apartment complex – you have no problems with the landlords, as soon as something breaks it is repaired, you get to know a lot of people (including Americans) and there is always something going on. See iamaccepted for best law schools in USA.
When looking for an apartment you have to be aware that it is not easy to find something and that it is also very expensive in San Diego. You often pay more for a room on the beach than in the college area. However, I wouldn’t recommend anyone to look for something outside of these two regions, because otherwise you live relatively isolated and don’t notice anything from typical student life.
I ended up living in a 5-person shared flat in the Sterling Alvaradoused. A complex with a pool, gym, solarium and its own cinema. The apartments are very large and each room has its own bathroom. I lived with two German girls, a German boy and an Italian. I would recommend everyone to at least live with an international student. We had a lot of contact with other international students and you are forced to speak English at home.
University started in mid-August. I had decided not to crash courses, to play it safe and only choose special sessions. However, it is possible to crash courses, but for business administration courses you first need approval from the university. I chose the following courses:
- Multinational Business & Comp Mgt (2 midterms, 1 final, exams not difficult, just a lot to learn by heart and at the end a group presentation that only requires creativity, so no knowledge – it’s about a country and the economic, cultural and political situation)
- Business Plan Development (relatively exciting course, you have to develop your own business idea here, only 1 midterm and 1 final, but in between some presentations that are not graded, at the end a big final presentation)
- International Entrepreneurship (no quizzes, some assignments, relatively difficult exams), not very informative
- Supply Chain (a lot of math, relatively boring professor, a quiz almost every week, which you can do at home – in a group)
In general, one can say that the workload is higher than at German universities. However, the level in most courses is not as high as at the German university and if the courses are difficult, the grades are usually upgraded at the end of the semester.
San Diego is an expensive city. For the apartment you have to calculate 700 to 1000$ (single or shared room). You also need a car, I shared one with two other students, so I only had to pay $500 for the entire period (rent the car at Express Car Renatlwith the reference that you get a cheaper rate at Dirt Cheap. Usually the price goes down and you get a better car than Dirt Cheap. Furthermore, you don’t have to rent a new car for every trip, you can upgrade the car for relatively little money). For living there I needed about $400 to $500 a month (shopping, activities, etc.). However, this doesn’t include the trips you take (depending on you, of course, we’ve always lived in hostels and looked at the prices so we got away relatively cheaply).
San Diego is a super beautiful city. I would do my semester abroad here again and again. You get to know a lot of people of different nationalities, the weather is great, you can explore a lot and there is always something delicious to eat
Now some tips:
Drive to Coronado and have a burrito (preferably shrimp) at La Salsa (across from Hotel del Coronado) – the best burritos in town. Go to Mexico and party there (don’t forget your visa) – one of the best nights there. Take someone who can speak Spanish!
If you’re ever on the west coast go to Hawaii, not cheap but it was one of my highlights – incredible nature!!!
And of course you have to do a road trip – it’s most fun with a large group. Rent a big car and just travel for two weeks – a great experience.
Yosemite National Park is definitely worth a trip (better than Grand Canyon)!! But go in the summer!
In San Diego you definitely have to watch a basketball game (get in the ticket line early – the tickets are free for us and therefore go quickly).
Check out great deals on Groupon and go jet skiing in the Bay – a great experience.
And go to Tacco Tuesday as often as possible – go to the tavern and eat the Cheesy Fries or cheap tacos and magharitas in Typhoon.