I am studying international business in Nuremberg and have automatically committed to a semester abroad from my fifth semester onwards. Due to the limited number of partner universities at my home university in Nuremberg, I was looking for a suitable university abroad for a long time. MicroEDU and the entire team supported me very well, so that a suitable university in the USA was found after a short collaboration. The California State University San Marcos has from the beginning a made modern and good impression on me and is geographically close to the citySan Diego, California.
The organization of the accommodation was uncomplicated and quick. I found accommodation in ” theQuad “, the university dormitory nearby. The residence resembles a modern hotel complex, with a pool, fitness area, leisure room and other facilities. The apartments are mostly very spacious and also in mint condition. I went there with five American guys, all of which were in the first semester (Chaos: D). Fortunately, we got along well from the start. My roommates have become real friends over the months and the fact that only English was spoken “at home” has significantly improved my language skills. Another positive aspect is the proximity to the university. This is only about 500 meters on foot from the dormitory, so that you save yourself the annoying rush-hour traffic in the car or long bus journeys.
Short for CSUSM by abbreviationfinder, the California State University San Marcos is a very familiar university by American standards. This means that the campus is large, but you can still find your way around very well after a few days. The entire area is very clean, so you can feel comfortable between palm trees and beautifully landscaped gardens. The library should also be mentioned positively, as high-quality IT equipment is available here in addition to books. The food court offers a variety of different fast food chains. Unfortunately there is no cafeteria here or anything else. Therefore, eating on campus is usually very expensive. A Starbucks is of course also available. A real highlight for me was the sun terrace, as I was able to take my breaks here regularly and the sunsets were particularly beautiful to watch from here.
The course selection at CSUSM was very simple for me. Even though I have already read about the wild price crashing here, fortunately this was not the case for me. I was able to take my previously chosen courses as normal. So I was spared uncertainty and panic. Based on the level of difficulty, the courses in the USA seemed comparatively easy to me. I had chosen advanced courses, which in turn corresponded to the German level in terms of time, if not even took a little more time. Weekly homework and chores are a constant reminder that you are here to study, not to lie by the pool 24/7.
If you have specific questions, I have proven:
- International business
- Organizational Behavior
- Leadership in a Global Context
- In the Executive’s Chair
You definitely won’t get bored in San Marcos. Personally, I’ve been to the beach a lot. Beach volleyball, surfing or just sunbathing were part of my everyday life in California during the few months. I was also part of the soccer team at Cal State San Marcos. This is not the official college team, but a kind of student team that competed against other universities. On the one hand, it was easy to make new contacts here. On the other hand, away games gave you cool impressions from other universities.
Of course, day trips are also a must. I can especially recommend Balboa Park in San Diego. The park is particularly worth seeing in the evening because of the numerous fairy lights. Food truck festivals are also held here on some weekends.
Let local students give you tips on excursion destinations, as they usually know the most beautiful and spectacular places. I have also often used Instagram posts and experience reports from the web as a guide. The Griffith Observatory or the Hollywood Hills in Los Angeles are of course real classics that shouldn’t be missed.
Looking back on my stay abroad, only the cost aspect is negative for me. The apartment in the dormitory “theQUad” cost me almost $ 1000 a month (note: there is also a slightly older dormitory that, as far as I know, costs a little less). Due to the location of San Marcos, I had rented a car for half the time. Coupled with the high expenses for groceries and meals, my monthly costs were very high.
I personally love summer and sun, so the constantly warm temperatures under palm trees were paradise for me. The fact that it has not rained for three months at a time reinforces this aspect. I was also very surprised by the openness of the people. I enjoyed getting to know people every day and thus making new friends.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank the entire MicroEDU team, which was always at my side with any questions I had during the semester abroad. I felt well supported at all times. And I can tell you that I do not regret a single decision regarding the semester abroad in San Marcos and that I would therefore go back to California to study abroad at any time.