When planning my stay abroad, I turned to your website and applied. This has the great advantage that you can always get help quickly and completely free of charge. Your website staff really take care of every question and always find answers to your questions.
Applying is pretty easy. The only thing that needed a little more time was the certificate in English from my house bank that I have enough money to finance my studies, as it is a small local bank that does not deal with it every day. The visa application is also not worth mentioning. It is imperative to have a credit card for the numerous fee transfers.
I booked my flight very late, two weeks before departure, because I got this insider tip from someone, and then paid only € 580 for a return flight. As an insider tip for the indispensable and necessary health insurance: DKV (formerly Viktoria Versicherungen) international health insurance at allemaxx.de. With the group tariff, you only pay a fraction of the costs.
Regarding accommodation, I have decided to move into a so-called dorm at the university in a cozy way. Above all, this is easy and safe, because every exchange student will find something there. Rooms are usually occupied by two people. A total of 8 students then live in a shared flat.
The disadvantage, on the other hand, is that you will be taken into account accordingly. I paid about $ 4,300 for one semester. However, it should be noted that a meal plan is also included herein. In my case, it was 12 meals a week and a one-time $ 200 to spend on campus.
All international students then live in this International House. In addition to many Asians, you will also meet many Europeans, such as Germans, French, Finns etc.
Life on campus is very interesting because of the variety of people you meet there. The campus also offers a fitness center, a few libraries, a Starbucks, a few fast food restaurants, grocery stores, etc.
Studied at the host university
In my experience, studying in the USA is easier and less intensive than in Germany. As a rule, there are two lectures per subject each week, each taking 1h50 each.
There are no exercises and seminars for this. Exercises are usually done in the lectures together with the professor.
At home there is then regular homework, projects or quizzes. This is ideal for students who do not want to put everything on one card.
In almost all courses there are at least two exams, one mid-term and one final; sometimes there are three or four. The good thing is that most of the time they are not accumulated.
In my opinion, as a German student at an American university, you are very well prepared and even the linguistic differences are quickly overcome. After a week I no longer had any problems speaking fluent English.
Lessons take place similarly in schools in classes of up to 50, sometimes 60 students. The direct conversation with the professor is easy to find and you are usually always treated in a friendly manner.
As a so-called visiting student you have the advantage that you can choose 3 subjects that interest you from all the offers (plus a sports course). This is very important to know because I didn’t know about it until I arrived. This then costs $ 3200, which is rather cheaper compared to the other US universities.
However, since my university in Germany made demands on its part, I had to attend another 4th course, which was then charged extra with 1200 $.
As a visiting student you have the disadvantage that you get into the so-called class crashing, also called open university, and therefore 1. have to ask for the permission of the individual professor, which is rather unproblematic, 2. but only after all regularly enrolled students get a place. In my case, I ended up taking courses that I picked out beforehand.
Everyday life and free time
On weekends it is a good idea to take the Bart (S-Bahn) to San Fransisco. The duration is about 30 minutes. The university itself is located undisturbed in complete seclusion on a hill in Hayward, a somewhat smaller town not far from San Francisco. I liked the quiet there myself.
On weekends you can explore the whole region around San Francisco and many other interesting cities.
There are enough leisure opportunities. Of course, the weather is wonderfully warm until mid-November, so you can enjoy student life much better.
I haven’t really had any very bad experiences. The cost of accommodation (and meal plan) rose sharply shortly before the start of the semester. The possibility of finding something off campus should also be considered.
I really liked the American education system. The more personal lessons in small classes and the constant submission of papers keep you busy and have personally helped me a lot to achieve good results there. This helped me a lot in Germany because I have all courses credited to me here.
Since I was relatively free to choose courses from my university, I decided to focus on finance. In view of the fact that it is a relatively insignificant university, it is at least AACSB accredited and has a relatively wide range of finance courses to offer.
I attended the following courses during my stay at the university:
- FIN 3400 Fundamentals of Real Estate Management 4 Units
- FIN 4310 Investment Analysis 4 units
- FIN 4375 International Business Finance 4 units
- FIN 4315 Derivatives Markets 4 Units