CSUMB Study Abroad

Since I am one of the first students who came to the CSUMB, I will try to “check out” all the important points. According to abbreviationfinder, CSUMB stands for California State University Monterey Bay.

The best thing to do is to start with the application process. This is relatively easy, as you can do most of the online work in addition to all the documents you need for studying in the USA (1-20, SEVIS, etc. ). All you have to do is write a short letter of motivation.

Once you have been accepted, you can immediately create an online profile for “MyCSUMB”. You will be sent an information letter in which all important steps are explained in detail. I recommend that you complete the profile as well as the course selection and the housing application right away.

Choosing a course is very straightforward, everything is done online and if you need access authorization for a particular course. you can simply write to the CSUMB International Office. They will then forward your request to the professor concerned. In addition, there is the possibility to change courses directly on site at the CSUMB in the first two university weeks. This gives you the opportunity to watch the courses ‘live’.

The housing application is also done online, but I had some problems as more students were admitted to the CSUMB in 2014 than ever before. It is possible to live “on campus “, but then you also have to buy a meal plan. The other option is the “East Campus”. This settlement is about 15-20 minutes by bike from the main campus. These are apartments that are shared by three people. The apartments are very large, unfortunately you have to provide all the furnishings yourself (bed linen, cutlery etc. ). There is only a bed, a desk and a table with chairs as well as a refrigerator and dishwasher. I shared the apartment with three other exchange students, but the letting to four people will be discontinued in the future find out where
I am staying on the day of my arrival), clarify whether you are living with Americans and whether they already have cutlery etc. in the apartment, then you don’t have to buy it separately.

When it comes to parties, the Residential Advisers (RAs) are very strict and most parties were dissolved very early on. If you live in an apartment on the upper floor, a maximum of 10 people can stay there at the same time. Parties must be registered in advance and may only take place at certain times. The CSUMB is therefore not a party university like the UCSB. But since most students and especially exchange students live on the East Campus, it still doesn’t get boring and you just have to party a little quieter.

I would recommend renting a bike, it costs $ 110 and you can use it for the whole semester. A couple of friends bought a bike from Wal Mart at the beginning and simply returned it at the end of their stay. That actually worked quite well. However, there are also buses that commute between the East Campus and the Main Campus. Traveling by bus does not cost you anything with your “Otter 10”. You can get everywhere by bus (even to San Jose), but everything takes relatively longer.

I ate most of the time in the dining commons. To do this, you load blocks onto your Otter 10. A block is deducted each time you visit the cafeteria. Converted, a trip to the cafeteria with the blocks costs you about 5 dollars, if you pay in cash you have to pay 8 dollars for lunch and 10 dollars in the evening. The cafeteria serves three meals a day, this is always an all-you-can-eat buffet, which is why most of the students put on weight. Next to the cafeteria there is the “Otter Express” – a small collection of fast food restaurants. I only ate here once because the cafeteria is better value for money. You can of course also cook yourself, as the apartments on the East Campus have a large kitchen. However, you have to buy pots etc. yourself.

Unfortunately, I can’t say much about the on-campus apartments. Here you usually share a room with two or three people. Without a kitchen!

If you are over 21 I would recommend moving to the East Campus. Of course, you can also look for an apartment in the area on your own. There are some helpful groups on “MyCSUMB” for this purpose. In general, I have to say that I enjoyed a very nice and cool time at CSUMB. Even if it is not a party university, there is a lot to see and experience there. The area around Big Sur is gorgeous; San José and San Francisco are not far away and Monterey itself is also a small beautiful city on the west coast.

Sometimes you have already noticed that the CSUMB is still in the growth process, as the International Office in particular still seems to be very unorganized. However, all employees and professors are extremely helpful and courteous. So don’t be put off if you get any important emails 2-3 times or if everything takes a little longer.

CSUMB Study Abroad