University: San Diego State University
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: business administration
Study type: semester abroad
- Application Process
With the support of MicroEdu, you don’t really have to worry about the application process. The support here is great and in the end you only have to send your documents to MicroEdu and your responsible supervisor will take care of the rest. In addition, your supervisor will give you several checklists for things that you should clarify before you leave, information about the documents you need, a timetable, what needs to be done when, and much more. The start couldhardly be made easier for you. Especially the schedule is very helpful because it answers important questions in advance, such as when you should take care of the visa. See andyeducation for Boston University Study Abroad.
- Studies & course choice
At SDSU you have the option of taking either the “general courses” or the “business courses” program. What makes more sense for you personally is of course up to you. I’m studying business administration and I therefore decided on the “business courses”, which is certainly the better alternative for all business courses. In this program you choose 2 courses in advance, which you can take and save yourself part of the very competitive “course crashing”. The course crashing at SDSU is a bit annoying and you have to expect not to get the courses you want or need. Nevertheless, with a little skill and alternatives you can always reach your goal. So don’t get infected by the scaremongering and go well prepared with alternative courses when looking for a course.
I think the first week is a bit stressful for any exchange student at SDSU as the systems and processes are very different and it takes some time to get used to the campus. But don’t worry, that will wear off after a short time and you can enjoy your time in San Diego and on campus.
The academic level of the course itself cannot really be compared to that in Germany. It goes much less deep into the theory and everything is more reminiscent of the good old school days. You need to be prepared to do more practical work (term papers, presentations, grades, papers, activities, etc.). The grades do not fall back on a single final exam like we do, but you have to perform continuously throughout the semester. In addition to the practical part, there are usually 3-4 exams spread over the semester. This means that you work with your learning material for the entire semester, but there is not the huge workload at the end of the semester, which certainly has its advantages. II can say retrospectively that this type of learning brought me a lot, especially through the continuous work and the practical orientation. And if you work a little, you can pack some very nice sheet music in your suitcase without missing out on your free time.
- On-site support
The on-site support from the SDSU could be better, especially in the initial phase, but this is more or less due to the number of students. Nevertheless, there is always a contact person if questions or problems arise. If you have any questions about courses, the professors are always ready to help. Should problems arise that you cannot solve, MicroEdu is also at your side. But I can’t imagine it going that far. After 1-2 weeks, everyone will usually find their way around and get used to the other processes.
- Accommodation search
When looking for accommodation, you should ask yourself one question before you start looking: campus or beach? Those are actually the only 2 options that make sense from my point of view. If you prefer to have short distances to the university and not miss a campus or house party, I would recommend the campus. Who, however, the merits of California want to enjoy, i.e. the beach, bars, surfing and golden sunsets, the beach is the right place for you. I chose the beach. Firstly because of the advantages just mentioned and secondly I like to separate the beautiful from the duty. However, you have to reckon with daily journeys of 25 minutes (car) or 60 minutes (public) to the campus. But since you can count on 3 to max. 4 days of university per week, this is a manageable evil. In general, almost all exchange students live on the beach (Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, La Jolla), which is of course great on the one hand, because you have the opportunity to make friends incredibly quickly, on the other hand, of course, you get less contact with local students. This is also a point to consider when making your choice. In terms of housing costs, both options are roughly on the same level. For a “shared room” you have to calculate around 750 €, unless you want to live directly on campus in one of the student dormitories, in which case the price can rise to 1000 € per month. However, these dormitories are also the most convenient option, as you will receive offers from the SDSU in advance and thus save yourself the search. At that time I was already trying to find a room from Germany, which turned out to be almost impossible. I have not received a serious answer to any of my inquiries. Therefore, if you are looking for one yourself, it is best to book a hostel for the first few days and then start your search intensively. It would therefore also be good to be at the university in San Diego 1-2 weeks before the first event,
- Leisure activities
Let’s get to the most interesting part, free time! You’ll be hard pressed to find a place that has more to offer than San Diego in this regard ! If you like to be outside and love the sea or the beach, this is the place for you!As long as the sun shines, which it almost always does, you can do anything from beach and water activities you can imagine, from volleyball to surfing. You also have the option of renting water sports equipment from the university at reasonable prices. The boardwalk is also great for skateboarding, biking or just enjoying the sunset. San Diego is also dotted with basketball courts, baseball parks and skate parks. Even if it should rain, San Diego offers everything that you won’t find in other big cities (cinema, galleries, exhibitions, etc.). What is particularly important in San Diego is going out to party. The beach area is dotted with bars, where everyone can get in (whether in flip flops or a suit) and most of them do not charge an entrance fee. The majority plays Hip Hop, which I personally really liked, but there is certainly something for other tastes as well. Downtown is an alternative to the beach bars, here you will find a few large discotheques that tend towards house/techno music. It looks difficult to get in here and the prices are higher than on the beach. However, there are often party buses that take you from the beach and campus to the beach at very good prices and, of course, back home if you don’t miss the bus;). San Diego also offers great destinations for road trips. Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Grand Canyon or Phoenix, just to name a few. So you can let off steam and let your wanderlust run wild! I could probably write another 5 pages about activities in and around San Diego, but you should also discover things yourself, because if you get bored in San Diego, it’s your own fault!;)
One thing is clear, San Diego will not be cheap! You should reckon with the fact that, in addition to the rent (approx. €750), you should reckon with a further €700 – €1000 per month if you want to party and enjoy the time. The cost of groceries in San Diego is slightly higher than in Germany and especially if you want to eat fresh and healthy, it quickly becomes expensive. Depending on how much else you want to see from the USA, you should of course plan one or the other euro for travel.
- Do & Don’t
There really isn’t much to say about this topic. San Diego is a very safe city, especially compared to other cities in the US. You can actually move freely at any time of the day or night without worrying. The police have also adapted to the lifestyle in San Diego and are super relaxed. However, there is one thing you should avoid: drinking alcohol on the street. There is little mercy and it quickly gets expensive ($300). However, if you still want to treat yourself to a drink on the beach, just find a quiet spot on Mission Bay.Of course, you should also stick to the classics. Don’t talk about politics or war, but you’ll find out for yourself who you can and shouldn’t talk to about it. Otherwise, I highly recommend everyone to go to San Diego! I had the time of my life and I don’t regret a minute or a dollar I spent.
- Other questions
If you need more information or have specific questions, please feel free to write to me. I’m happy to help you! Otherwise have fun with the hottest half year of your life!