University: California State University Fullerton
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: business Informatics
Study type: semester abroad
For several years I have planned to travel to the USA for a longer period of time. At the same time, it is compulsory in my degree program at my home university to complete a semester abroad. So my decision to go to the USA was very easy. At the same time, the climate in the destination country was very important to me, as I didn’t want to spend what might have been the best time of my life in the snow and rain. Therefore, the choice of state was easy for me and I decided to complete my semester abroad in California. Now it was just a matter of choosing the right university for my field of study ( business informatics ) and matched my available funds, so I chose California State University at Fullerton (CSUF). Check existingcountries.com to see California State University San Marcos Review 2.
In general, the application process was relatively easy. MicroEdu supported me at all times with my open questions and provided me with all the information I needed for a successful application . However, it was not always easy to compare the study content for crediting at my home university with the modules planned there, since not all syllabi of all modules were available. However, this is often due to the professors, who do not always provide them or who have not yet requested this module. However, I was provided with all the syllabi I needed, so I was able to register in advance for the desired courses.
Courses taken at the host university:
I took two Information Systems and Decision Sciences (ISDS) courses and one Management course. The ISDS courses were Telecommunications and Business Networks (ISDS 550) and Data Mining for Business Applications (ISDS 574) while the ISDS 550 course was an online course. As a management course, I had chosen a seminar in “Organizational Behavior” (MGMT 524). Overall it can be said that the effort during the semester is higher than in Germany, because in addition to several written examination phases, which are about four weeks apart, further tasks usually have to be submitted weekly – or presentations have to be held at the end of the semester. However, if you are well organized from the start and work through the topics on a weekly basis, the exam preparation effort is somewhat less than in Germany. Unfortunately, it was a pity that both face- to-face courses had somewhat unfavorable times, so unfortunately I had a lecture every Saturday. This made travel planning a bit difficult, but more on that later.
When I was looking for accommodation, MicroEdu gave me a few suggestions such as Oxford North, The Homestead Apartments or the dormitory directly on campusdid. Since I didn’t want to live directly on campus and wanted to move into furnished accommodation when I arrived, I decided on the Oxford North. First you choose whether you want to live in a classic or renovated apartment. You can also choose between a single studio, 2×2 or 3×2 apartment, where the first number stands for the number of bedrooms and the second number for the number of bathrooms. I chose a renovated 3×2 apartment with a private bedroom. The kitchen and living room were fully equipped, only the kitchen utensils had to be bought. In my private room there was a bed, a desk, two small drawer cabinets and a clothes rail.I had enough space and felt very comfortable. My two roommates were very pleasant and we got along very well. It should be mentioned that there are only a limited number of semester contracts and then only annual contracts are awarded. If you only plan to spend one semester there and have only been able to get an annual contract, you are obliged to find a new tenant yourself. You can also contact the Oxford North office, they will help you with the placement. Oxford North is just north of the CSUF campus. You only have to cross the street and you can walk to the campus center in about ten minutes.
Due to the tasks to be submitted weekly and the classroom lectures at the weekend, travel planning was a bit difficult, but with good organization you still found time to make short trips. For example, a trip along the coast from Los Angeles via Santa Barbara, Santa Maria, Santa Cruz, San José to San Francisco was one of my highlights. Experiencing Silicon Valley live and exploring the really beautiful city of San Francisco was simply breathtaking. It was also possible to drive to Las Vegas over the weekend to celebrate a bit there. And while you’re in Las Vegas, you should definitely visit the Grand Canyon, which is not very far away. For this I can only recommend renting a car. If you are traveling with a group, the costs can also be shared in this way. San Diego is also a very beautiful city that you can easily reach by train. Since I only had time for the aforementioned travel destinations during the semester, I then took some time to travel to Hawaii and New York. Hawaii is one of the most beautiful islands I have seen so far- with wonderful beaches, vantage points over large parts of the island, as well as the fantastic hiking trails through the jungle to the waterfalls. New York amazed me with its skyline and breathtaking places like Time Square.
The costs for my semester abroad, including the trips I made, were around €20,000. I did some calculations with these expenses before I started my journey. The biggest expenses are tuition and rent for accommodation. It can make sense to apply for a scholarship or foreign BAföG.
In summary, as already mentioned, the semester was perhaps the best time of my life. The contacts I made there are very valuable to me, and especially the new friends I found from all over the world. So now I have friends in California, Japan, Taiwan, India, South Korea and other cities in Germany. Due to the contact with people from many different nations and cultures, I was also able to gain valuable experience in this regard. Furthermore, my English skills have improved a lot and due to the regular contact with the newly found international friends, I can constantly develop them further. It was very exciting to live in the USA and to gain impressions that you probably can’t experience as a tourist. From an academic point of view, I found the management course particularly enriching, as it not only gave me the leadership skills I gained, but also my personal development.
In conclusion, I can say that I will never forget this journey, the experiences and impressions I have made and that I even like to remember certain moments!