University: San Diego State University
City: San Diego
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: business administration
Study type: semester abroad
Personally, I found the testimonials very helpful for my decision and I hope I can help you a little with my experiences.
Preparation and choice of university
MicroEdu was a great help in the preparation, the sheer amount of information on hundreds of colleges on one site is already strong. Questions were always answered promptly and nicely and you were really well prepared for everything! See jibin123 for 10 reasons to study in turkey.
My preparation began about 9 months before the semester abroad with the selection of the university. It quickly became clear to me that I wanted to go to California, this state simply has an incredible amount to offer and in the south really fantastic weather, all year round. I then considered whether I would rather go to a smaller university where everything is a bit more personal, or really to a big city where you can simply experience more. Two options would then be LA or San Diego, although LA is just too big and very unmanageable for me, especially if you only live there for a few months. In San Diego there are still three universities to choose from, SDSU, UCSD and USD. SDSU is the largest of the three, USD is a relatively small private university. The University of California system has a slightly higher prestige than California State Unis. The USD enjoys a very good reputation, especially for business. Of course, the question is whether you really only want to study during your semester abroad…
If you are studying pure business administration, you are really aware that it is relatively unlikely that you will get the courses you want, as business courses are very popular. The “Special Sessions” are then offered for the internationals, a selection of business courses in which 90% of the time you will meet other Germans. You have to take at least two special sessions, but you can also do all four courses as a special session.
I’m studying international business and fortunately I was able to switch to culture courses and the like. It ‘s best to clarify this with your home university in advance to avoid the stress on site.
Living in San Diego
San Diego is considered “America’s finest city” (I would confirm this immediately) and is simply gorgeous. The people are friendly and the lifestyle is very laid-back. There are countless leisure activities, many of which take place on the beach. I took the surf course offered by the university. Costs around $160 and is definitely worth the money. But if you live on the beach, I would almost tend to buy my own board. You can party well in PB (Pacific Beach) and downtown (Gaslamp Quarter).
The biggest question here is whether you want to move to the college area to live close to the university or prefer the beach. If you live on the beach (most are moving to Mission Beach / Pacific Beach) you definitely need a car and you’ll want to allow 30 minutes to drive to uni (but in general I would recommend everyone to rent a car, at least for a few months, public transport is by no means comparable to Germany/Europe). Many only have university for 2-3 days a week, then it’s definitely doable. I had classes every day and I think that would have become too stressful for me in the long run… The college area is a bit cheaper and realistic prices for a single bedroom are $700-$850 and $500-$700 for a shared room. At the beach you can plan $1000+ for a single room, of course you then have all the advantages that the beach brings with it;-) Well-known apartment complexes in the College Area are blvd63 and 5025, just google a little…
- Uses ratemyprofessors.com as a course selection aid.
- If you want to eat healthy, shop at Trader Joe’s or Windmill Farms, great for fresh groceries.
- Plan enough money. Life in San Diego is incredibly expensive compared to many German cities. And you might want to travel a bit at the end of the semester as well;-) You can find cheap accommodation for trips at airbnb.com if you don’t know the site yet.
- h2o wireless is a good prepaid provider and I paid $40 a month for 1GB LTE, flat rates to all networks and including a $20 credit for calls to the whole world.