University: San Diego State University
City: San Diego
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: Business
Study type: semester abroad
San Diego – America’s finest city! My personal favorite city.
Like all other review writers, I don’t know where to start as San Diego has everything your heart desires. First of all, the best: the weather! Never too cold, never too warm. The nights are cool during the winter, but in the morning you slip back into your t-shirt or wet suit, but more on that later.;-) Besides the weather or maybe as a result of it, the people are all super nice. You are welcome wherever you go, and I personally don’t agree with the stereotype that Americans are supposed to be superficial. The university is huge and great and the nightlife and leisure activities are second to none. See act-test-centers for UCI Study Abroad.
In the following I will go into more detail about the advantages of San Diego under the points of organization, living in SD, SDSU, and free time.
Preparing for a semester abroad isn’t exactly fun, I have to admit, but it’s worth the effort 1000 times over. Of course, MicroEdu helps a lot with the organization, but there is still plenty to do in advance with regard to the visa and coordination with the university, which is why I advise you to start early. Can’t hurt. The American Embassy wants all kinds of documents for the visa that somehow prove that you are not staying in the States and have reason to come back. Unfortunately, you cannot avoid a visit to the embassy, although that in itself was just a long wait for a stamp from them. I can’t really say anything about the coordination with the universities because every school has its own regulations. I just got in touch with our international office and it was relatively uncomplicated with them. You get the basic information anyway from MicroEdu and thus also have a good guide that you can use before you leave.
Once you have managed to enter the USA and settle down in SD, you can start at the SDSU with the orientation days especially for international students. At that point, the local students are not even on campus. It starts with the registration at the ALI, where you also get your student ID. So girls, dress up for the photo;-) Then it’s explained how the course crashing works, which in itself just means going to the course early and begging for a place and is the most annoying part of university life at first. However, as a motivation I can say that in the end almost everyone actually got the courses they wanted because when there was an absolute overcrowding, new courses were also created by the ALI (American Language Institute). These were with us but mostly at pretty stupid times. 6 p.m. upwards. In addition to crashing courses, everything else is explained in a more or less idiot-proof manner. Then there is a scavenger hunt in groups of 5 and getting to know the campus and finally an optional “American culture reading” and a “San Diego bus tour” are offered. The reading is nonsense the bus tour makes sense. After the orientation week, the courses begin. Easy! After the orientation week, the courses begin. Easy! After the orientation week, the courses begin. Easy!
When it comes to housing, I am very convinced that I have done everything right. I lived in Pacific Beach about 10 blocks from the beach. 10 blocks is also about a 10 minute walk. I always had to drive 15-20 minutes to university. In addition to PB, there is also the option of living directly at the university, the dorms there are usually quite expensive and you often have to share a room. Mission Beach is also a great address for house hunting. This is right next to PB and also stop at the beach where it is most beautiful. The apartments in Mission and Pacific Beach are a bit worse in quality than those in the Collage Area, but I think if you have the opportunity to live on the beach. Make! Also works better if you plan to learn to surf, which everyone in San Diego does and I highly recommend! surfing rocks! The apartments are usually advertised on Craigslist. Alternatively, you can just move into the “Banana Hostel” ($20 per day) which is almost exactly on the border of PB and MB and then drive through the streets from there and contact houses with “for rent” signs. As a student it’s easy to find a room, somehow renting your own is super difficult because you don’t have a “social security” number. In PB there is everything you need. The people are all very relaxed and mostly very young, the best bars are in PB and PB is just awesome! Point.
The San Diego State (Courses, Supervision, Studies)
Studying at State is definitely something completely different than what I’ve known before. I mainly took marketing courses. With regard to units/credits, everyone must of course clarify with their university or decide for themselves. I did 3 courses with 4 units each. Two were awesome and one was super heavy. It is best to always check in advance at Rate my Prof which professor is good. Professor good all good!;-) Unlike here, studying felt more like school than studying. Exams in the semester, oral participation was evaluated and so on. The lectures are much more modern than ours. The proffs always refer to current events and show relaxing videos between the info parts of the lecture. One doesn’t like the other. I catch at least the more modern design very relaxing and beneficial. In terms of effort, I have to say that you have a lot to do, especially at the end of the finals. However, the tasks seemed somehow more interesting and fun to me than the stubborn cramming that you know from Germany during the exam phase. In any case, a lot of value is placed on group presentations. But as I said. They’re really fun and you get to meet the locals, who will show you other corners of San Diego in their free time. As for the level of difficulty, I can say that it was comparable to what you know from Germany. However, the tasks seemed somehow more interesting and fun to me than the stubborn cramming that you know from Germany during the exam phase. In any case, a lot of value is placed on group presentations. But as I said. They’re really fun and you get to meet the locals, who will show you other corners of San Diego in their free time. As for the level of difficulty, I can say that it was comparable to what you know from Germany. However, the tasks seemed somehow more interesting and fun to me than the stubborn cramming that you know from Germany during the exam phase. In any case, a lot of value is placed on group presentations. But as I said. They’re really fun and you get to meet the locals, who will show you other corners of San Diego in their free time. As for the level of difficulty, I can say that it was comparable to what you know from Germany.
There is so much to experience in and around San Diego. In the meantime, I lacked the time between the new impressions to process what I had experienced. Be it a trip to Tijuana, LA, Santa Barbara, San Francisco or Las Vegas, all of these famous, notorious cities are super easy to get to and also part of the stay during and after the semester. There are countless shopping opportunities for the girls, while the boys can fulfill their dream of a Mustang convertible for a road trip. There are no limits to recreational opportunities in California. Surfing is of course also an integral part of Southern California’s coastal culture and definitely addictive. In the Gasslamp Quarter downtown there are a few famous discotheques, which are relatively expensive but often have star guests visiting. in the fluxx, Ivy and Stingaree hosted all sorts of hip DJs like “Mark Solveig” during my time there. In Pacific and Mission Beach, towards the evening, the beach bars are more relaxed and without a dress code. During the day, especially in the college area, there is a wealth of sports on offer around the “Aztecs Recreation Center”. Some organized by college staff, others privately. In addition, there is a free ticket for students for each game of the SDSU teams, so that football, baseball, basketball and soccer can also be enjoyed very often and among many other students as spectators or fans. I love San Diego and I am sure that once you have been there you will love it too.