University: California State University Northridge
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: business administration
Study type: semester abroad
I’ll start with my experience regarding the application process. It was actually important to be clear about the total costs of the university, since you have to show during the application process that you or your parents can pay this amount. Any scholarships that may arrive later are not taken into account and everything must be in an account that can be easily liquidated. When filling out the online application, it is important not to use special characters in the lines or in the uploaded files, as this will cause the page to crash and you can start again from the beginning. The email support of the CSU Northridge but it was quick and helpful. The confirmation of acceptance came after almost two weeks. Since I wanted to live in student housing, I had to apply here again, although I had to transfer the money for this with the semester fees after acceptance at the university. I was rather dissatisfied with the late answer, as I only got an answer after asking twice. This was a week before the semester started, which means that I would have really run out of time if I had had to look for an alternative. Check ehuacom.com to see CSUC study abroad opportunities.
During my studies I only had courses at a higher level. A total of three out of four courses were promised to me before the start of my studies, and I was able to get my fourth desired course on site. But I was very lucky with that. Many of the other business students had to switch to courses outside their area of specialization because they could no longer get a place on the courses. For areas of study outside of business courses, there was the possibility of “class crashing”. So in the first week you sat down in all the courses you wanted but didn’t get and hoped that other students wouldn’t show up and you could move up. This was somewhat successful for the other students. But completely impossible for economists.
The course itself was reasonably demanding in terms of content, but in my case it was mostly repetition. I had a Business Law, Management, Marketing and EconomicsCourse. The first three had compulsory attendance and included this in the grade. At my last course, attendance was only documented on a random basis, so you still had to be there at all times. The lecturers have also incorporated a great deal of homework, group work and presentations into their lectures. Due to the additional midterms and finals, you had to plan your time carefully. The lecturers also work a lot with the students in the lecture. People are constantly asking about personal experiences and recommendations, which I was previously rather unfamiliar with in Germany.
On -site support from the International Office was appropriate. We had get-togethers a few times during the semester, but they were more relaxed than formal. In addition, you could reach someone personally in the office, via email or even Facebook if you wanted. We were looked after by Natalie, Jess and Boris (German) who were also the ones who took care of our courses and visa.
As mentioned above, I lived in student housing. It was relatively expensive compared to my fellow students who lived off campus, but you had dining dollars and meals at an all-you-can-eat restaurant. All Semester at CSUN students lived on one floor and mostly four of them in an apartment. There wasn’t even toilet paper in the apartment itself, so you should arrange with your roommates to go to Target and shop there together. As additional support, we had a resident advisor who is supposed to check that all rules, such as the alcohol limit, quiet times or visiting strangers, are observed. Our RA actually let us do whatever we wanted, which turned out to be pretty useful. We also had the pool right in front of our building,
The person in charge from the office hardly ever got in touch and reacted very late or not at all to our inquiries as long as you didn’t get around to her office yourself. From her point of view, more commitment would have been important, since we sometimes couldn’t vacuum our apartments for two months because she didn’t take care of the broken vacuum cleaner. Otherwise, the dorms were good for getting and staying in contact with the other international students and also getting to know American students.
In general there is a lot to do in LA if you can rent or buy a car or use uber or lyft. There is the Getty Museum during the day or Griffith Park as well as Venice Beach or Malibu to spend the day. For the evenings there are cool bars and clubs in Santa Monica, West Hollywood or Beverly Hills, such as Poppys, Bungalow, No Vacancy or EP & LP As a woman, it is always worth looking for promoters on Instagram so that you can drink in the clubs for free can.