First of all, I would like to say that the decision to spend a semester at SDSU was one of my best in life. You are guaranteed to have a wonderful time in this great city and university. According to Abbreviation Finder, SDSU is the abbreviation of San Diego State University.
I started planning relatively early. I applied through MicroEDU at the end of May 2013 and was accepted for the place at the end of July. Applying is really easy thanks to the great help from MicroEDU. It explains in detail what is necessary for the application so that the application can be put together really quickly. When applying, you also have the opportunity to apply for a room on campus. For this you should apply well in advance (6 months), as these are quickly sold out.
If you are a Bafög recipient, you should remember to submit an application as early as possible (6-9 months in advance). It is not at all bad if all the documents are not yet available, because you can still submit a lot later. At this point, it should also be said that the first payment only comes when you have the certificate of enrollment from the university. And that was only the case at the end of February, so that the first student loan payment came only then. Ie, be prepared for the fact that you have to advance money for the cost of living and tuition fees first.
I applied for the visa 3 months before departure. Remember that you have to come to the embassy in person and that you should allow up to 4 weeks to make an appointment.
In addition, I have completed my international KV with ADAC in advance. This is relatively cheap compared to other KV (€ 165 for the semester), but has a deductible of € 50 per claim.
I took the opportunity to live in one of the student residences on campus and haven’t regretted it. This option was ideal for me, because I wanted to have permanent accommodation when I arrived in San Diego and not have to go looking there first. Since I was only able to move into the dormitory a few days later after my arrival, I spent the first 2 nights at the Lucky D’s hostel in downtown. This is relatively cheap and comparatively clean. Many other German students also come here, so that you can make your first contacts here.
Now to the dormitory: When applying, you could choose between Fraternity Row and Sanctuary Apartment. Even if the second is a bit more expensive, I would prefer it. It’s cleaner, the rooms are bigger, and there isn’t that much partying. Both dormitories are right on campus, so of course you have very short distances. I was very lucky to live in the best apartment in the complex. It was the highest apartment with a huge living room and a large roof terrace from which one had a wonderful view of the SD area. But you should keep in mind that no Americans live here, only international students. I shared the app with a Norwegian, Chinese, Thai, French and Italian woman.
I haven’t regretted living on campus because since I didn’t have a car, it would have been a hassle for me to get to the university. Not only did I have short distances to the classroom, but also to the gym and the pool. In addition, the campus is so beautiful that I enjoyed living there every day.
Since I am a master’s student, I have taken 3 courses. One of them was a special session (every business master’s student is obliged to choose at least one special session) and the other 2 were regular courses at the university. The disadvantage of the special session is that only international students sit there (and 90% of them are German), but you will definitely have the course if you have registered.
I took the following courses:
Financial Management II (Special Session)
Auditing and Assurance Services
Product innovation management
In all 3 courses the level was quite low, because I already heard most of it in my bachelor’s degree. As a result, I didn’t have much to do for the courses. There were 3 exams in the first 2 courses. In PIM you had to write 2 smaller term papers, there were no exams. There was a final presentation in each of the courses. The grading was more than fair in all courses! Even if you did poorly in the individual exams, the final grade was raised if the course average did not correspond to the expected.
The master’s courses usually take place in the evening, mostly from 7 p.m. to 9:40 p.m.
The campus is spacious and beautiful. Here you can find everything you need to feel good. There are many green areas, a Mediterranean garden (highly recommended), a small pond, a lot of dining options, etc.
As mentioned, the university itself didn’t take up a lot of time with me, so I had a lot of free time. I only had courses on 2 days and since there are no other obligations, I have 5 days off. When and where else do you have something like that in life? J
I used the huge gym every day (free for students). It is well equipped and offers a wide variety of courses. There is also a sauna here and towels are also provided. There is also the Aquaplex, where I also spent a lot of time, as the sun was shining almost every day. The beach is only 20 minutes away by car. Since I didn’t have a car, I sometimes took the bus. However, this took twice as long. My favorite beach was La Jolla and the one in Del Mar (just outside SD). The sunsets on the beach are just beautiful.
When it comes to partying, you have a very large selection and you can go partying every day. Taco Tuesday is very popular in PB, where you can eat cheap tacos. In general, you can say that you can party casually in shorts and flip flops in PB and more chic in downtown. In downtown Stingaree, Fluxx and Basement are the most common clubs, where stars like Snoop Dog often perform live.
If you don’t have a car and live on campus, the party bus comes in very handy. He stops right on campus and takes you to the club and then picks you up again. The fun is often free for women, while men usually have to pay $ 20. The clubs always close at 1:30 or 2 a.m.
With so much free time, of course, you can also travel: During this time I have seen the area around SD, LA, Las Vegas, San Francisco, New York, Washington and Hawaii. During the spring break, many flew to Cancun / Mexico, which was also relatively cheap.
It is of course much more convenient to have a car, but you can also do without it! I got a semester ticket for $ 150 for public transport and got along quite well with it. The trolley (train) stops directly at the campus and from here you can reach the shopping malls in 15 minutes, downtown in 30 minutes and the airport in 45 minutes. You can also take a bus to the beach. Of course, you also get to know people who have a car, so they often take you along too.
The nearest shops are relatively close to the campus: VONS and Ralphs are about 5 minutes by bus from the university, Walmart about 10 minutes. I mostly shopped at Walmart and Northgate Gonzales (Mexican supermarket) because they were cheapest. The Mexikaner has an unbelievably great range of fruit and vegetables, and it’s even cheaper than Walmart.
The only downsides to SDSU are that 90% of international students come from Germany and that the cost of living is so high. JBut these are really the only disadvantages and for me it was worth going there because the sun shines every day and you are surrounded by palm trees everywhere – fantastic
Otherwise, all I can do is wish you all a lot of fun. Enjoy every second, because a semester is over very, very quickly! If I had the opportunity to spend another semester at the SDSU, I would definitely do it!