University: University of California San Diego
City: San Diego
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Study type: semester abroad
Thanks to the friendly and always helpful staff at MicroEdu, the application process went quickly and without complications. Even with short-term inquiries, I always had the feeling that I was in good hands. After receiving the confirmation, everything happened very quickly. When the visa was applied for and the formalities completed, the anticipation of the long journey to the land of opportunity was great. See jibin123 for Semester Abroad In University of California Riverside.
First weeks, looking for an apartment and choosing a course
My stay began upon arrival at a motel, as I had only looked locally for accommodation for the remainder of my stay. I then found this on Craigslist and can also recommend it. With a bit of luck, some of the advertised apartments can also be found in the immediate vicinity of the beach, as in my case. In order to get to know the university in advance, I walked the campus one day before the official start of the university, which I can recommend to everyone, because the distances are often further than we are used to in this country. The first days at the university began with a comprehensive introduction and a variety of eventsfor the international students to get to know each other. Due to its size, the UCSD allows a very wide choice of courses, which is not that easy. In the first few weeks, the courses are crashed, which means you go to the lecture without knowing exactly whether you can actually attend it, because this is only confirmed after the third week, when the capacity of the course allows it.
The courses themselves are very didactic and based on a variety of teaching methods. The professors personally care about the courses and each student. A lot of value is placed on cooperation, homework and learning success, which is expressed in short tests, mid-term exams or smaller project work. However, these were generally all doable. The evaluation often depends on the professor, which can be better or worse depending on the course. Compared to the German system, the grade is more likely to be divided into several evaluations, which are then combined to form a final grade.
Campus and campus life
Campus life at the UCSD is very diverse and convinces with the wide range of offers in all conceivable areas. The campus is always very busy, which is why there were often events on the site, be it through exhibitors from the various student associations / initiatives, the university itself or the sports facilities on campus. The Dalai Lama himself was visiting the UCSD premises to give a speech. There is a huge choice of food from various restaurants, all of which are united in the “Price Center” of the university and you can choose food, for example from Sub Way, Pizza, Mexican, Chinese, Japanese etc. There is even a cinema, bank and supermarket in the price center of the university. The home students are often on campus late into the night and the library in the lower area is open 24 hours a day.
A car is helpful in San Diego, but public transport and Uber are also easy to get around. I could take a bus route from home to uni and back and had everything else close at hand. A car is especially worthwhile if you plan to stay longer than one trimester or if you share it with fellow students. The bus system is very well developed and they run regularly. For as little as $2.50 you can ride an entire line that stretches from La Jolla to downtown.
San Diego offers a very high recreational value. Many different beaches invite you to surf, relax or go for a walk. In the immediate vicinity of the beaches in Pacific Beach there are a lot of bars, which also house a large part of the nightlife and attracts the party-goers. There are also many opportunities to go out downtown, to eat, bars, discotheques, and everything your heart desires. For the adventurous it is always worth making a detour to the many nature parks in California, to Tijuana or city tours such as LA, San Francisco and Santa Barbara. The weather was mostly very constant and pleasant. There are also the diverse districtsto discover, each with their own beautiful sides and sights.
San Diego is a very beautiful, clean and always worth seeing city, which also applies to UCSD. The view of the ocean from the UCSD campus is something special that you won’t soon forget. I really enjoyed my time in San Diego and at UCSD. Even if it is not very cheap in terms of price, I look back on my stay with fondness. I would be happy to recommend a stay there.