University: California State University Northridge
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: economy, sports
Study type: semester abroad
As you would expect, my semester abroad in the USA was just great. MicroEdu also made preparation easy. With its countless visa regulations, the USA is of course not the easiest choice for a semester abroad. But all the effort involved in applying for a visa is worth it. At this point I can only give high praise to MicroEdu. I really had a lot of questions and sometimes something didn’t work out for me with the visa. However, all my questions were answered quickly and I was really helped with every problem. In the end, you get through the madness of bureaucracy unscathed. Check ehuacom.com to see CSULB study abroad opportunities.
The application to the CSUN itself worked well. In the meantime, I’ve thought about applying to two universities to make sure I’m accepted. But I was assured that it wasn’t necessary, and it was. The online application portal of the CSUN is clear and easy to master with the help from MicroEdu. You can specify ten desired courses. The course catalog is a bit confusing. A good tip is that courses are marked with a number, the higher the number, the more difficult the course and, above all, the greater the workload in this course. I have taken the Marketing 304, Management 360, Sport Movement KIN201/L and The Olympic Games KIN 408 courses and would recommend all four as overall I was very happy with all of them. Courses give different numbers of credits. In the end you need a total of 12 to meet the requirements for the visa. There is no need to worry if you have not set any courses before you leave. In addition, you don’t have to worry about registering or anything like that online. The responsible office of the CSUN takes care of all that. They try to enroll you in the courses you want. If that doesn’t work, there’s always the option of “crashing” courses. You can then simply go to the professor in the first lesson and ask for a confirmation number for this course. With a bit of perseverance and luck, in the end you will get exactly the courses that you would like and that you can also incorporate into your German studies. But there will be an information event in the first week, where everything will be explained again in detail. On-site support is good. If you have any questions, you can go to the CSUN office at any time and they will always help you there.
Northridge as a suburb is relatively boring in itself. In the area around the university there is not much to be found apart from restaurants, a cinema and a bowling alley. But overall, Northridge is perfect. One can make day trips to all well-known sights like Santa Monica, Hollywood, Universal Studios, Venice Beach or LA Downtown. Everything can be reached by car in an hour, if you don’t get caught in traffic. So weekdays between 7-10 and 16-19 you should avoid the highway. I don’t use public transport very often, but I can say that much. Catastrophe! Buses come too late or not at all and they only run a few times a day anyway. You can certainly achieve anything with it, but you have to be patient.
It’s a 3 hour drive to San Diego and you can also drive to San Francisco for a few days. So I think you got the whole California experience.
I really liked the university campus. The lecture halls are modern and equipped with the latest technology. There are various restaurants (American Food, Burger King, Panda Express…) and coffee shops all over the campus. Plenty of reading material can be found in the huge library and impressive performances of all kinds are held in its own Performance of Arts theater. What I liked best was the new gym. An absolute dream for all sports fans. You have to pay 25 euros a month, but this price is definitely worth it. An unbelievable number of devices of the latest generation, free courses from Zumba, yoga to cardio training and boxing, a climbing wall for climbing and bouldering and a private swimming pool for swimming and splashing around. Just impressive. Right next to the fitness center there is a dedicated outdoor office that offers great activities. So you can get to the Californian national parks cheaply and see something from the area while hiking, pressing or taking excursions to the lake, which are even free. The university also has its own bookshop. So here I would advise everyone to look for their books online first and best to order them from amazon or something similar. The bookstore has overpriced prices, but of course offers the advantage that you don’t have to worry about anything. You just go there with your schedule and you get your books. Be prepared for a larger edition, however, because university books are generally outrageously expensive. Another tip. You can print 20 pages a day for free on the university campus with your student ID card (everywhere EXCEPT in the library!
Living in a hall of residence:
I decided to live in a student hall of residence because I wasn’t too sure about looking for an apartment. I would make this decision again any time. You pay quite a lot of money, but you can walk to the university, have your own pool, volleyball/basketball court and a canteen. The dorm room rate includes 10 meals a week in the cafeteria and $22 a week to spend on campus. The 4-person flat shares are spacious and the equipment is okay. You share a room with one other person, have a large bathroom, a kitchen with fridge and microwave and a living room. If you want to cook more, you can use the communal kitchen. What I liked best about the student residence is that you get in touch with other people very quickly. Although the roommates are certainly international students (many Asians), my room was the only international one in the corridor, so I quickly got to know many Americans. Which usually takes a while in the lectures because you only see each other in the course and you have to break the ice first. As a neighbor, it’s easier to start a conversation. Many activities such as pool parties, sports tournaments or a canteen party are also offered free of charge. I highly recommend the dorm to get the full American college experience. because you only see each other on the course and you have to break the ice first. As a neighbor, it’s easier to start a conversation. Many activities such as pool parties, sports tournaments or a canteen party are also offered free of charge. I highly recommend the dorm to get the full American college experience. because you only see each other on the course and you have to break the ice first. As a neighbor, it’s easier to start a conversation. Many activities such as pool parties, sports tournaments or a canteen party are also offered free of charge. I highly recommend the dorm to get the full American college experience.
Finally, I can only advise anyone who can somehow afford it to do a semester abroad in the USA. An experience that was simply breathtaking and that has definitely become an unforgettable time thanks to the CSUN. I didn’t see the sea every day, but actually every weekend. What more do you want.