Since it is optional to complete a semester abroad in the 5th semester of my International Business course, I really wanted to use this and realize my wish to study in the USA. I received information about MicroEDU from a relative who was also abroad via MicroEDU and got in touch with them. The MicroEDU team answered all of my emails immediately, informed me in detail about the study abroad and everything that was in store for me and advised me and of course always helped if something was unclear. Without MicroEDU, the entire application process would definitely have been more complex.
I can only advise everyone to take care of the visa and all the formalities as soon as possible, as these sometimes take a lot of time. I applied for my visa in Frankfurt, which went relatively smoothly. However, I have heard from other students that problems can arise if, for example, the documents are not complete.
Reside and live
For the first few days in Long Beach, I lived in a hotel near the university, because unfortunately I was not familiar with the internet sites for looking for an apartment beforehand. Within just a few days I found a nice room near the university via www.craigslist.com, which was a miracle for the enormous distances there.
I would definitely recommend everyone to get information in advance via craigslist.com or similar sites and to look at rooms and, if possible, to contact other students in order to go looking for a flat together. Read more student reviews on Toppharmacyschools.
Living in Long Beach itself is relatively expensive, which one should be prepared for. A room of your own in a good location can easily cost around $ 750 and up! It is therefore often common for students to share a room with two or three people in order not to break the budget. The food prices, especially for healthy food (fruit, vegetables, whole grain products, good bread, cheese) are alarmingly expensive, so plan a lot of money!
Studied in Long Beach
California State University Long Beach is a beautiful university with a magnificent campus. There are palm trees and well-tended green spaces everywhere and the sun shines every day. The university has a huge sports facility, a swimming pool and in the huge building of the Student Union everything is offered to relax from the stress of learning.
The range of courses there is very broad. In our business department, we offered many marketing, management, accounting and finance courses. However, it has to be said that as international, non-matriculated students who have taken part through the ALI’s language program, we have had a very difficult time with the course registration. So the first 3-4 weeks were super stressful, because we really had to fight for the courses and beg the professionals afterwards to be admitted. The problem was that almost all courses were completely overcrowded and enrolled students have priority. With a lot of luck and after the ALI also switched on, it worked and I got into all of the courses I wanted.
(Note from MicroEDU.com: Since the spring semester 2009, it is no longer possible to take courses in the fields of business administration and economics.)
I really liked the lectures and the teaching system at CSULB. Thanks to guest speakers, who our professors often invited, and through the contribution of personal experience, there was a much greater practical relevance overall.
The effort for the respective courses is overwhelming. Unlike in Germany, there is a presentation, quiz, essay or test in one of the courses almost every week, so that you are busy throughout the semester. But if you divide your working hours well, there will still be enough time for leisure activities.
The responsible for us ALI (American Language Institute) around Satoko & Co, supported and looked after us as well as possible at the beginning and also during our stay.
Free time in Long Beach
I really liked the city of Long Beach. There is a lot to do there, especially in the evening on 2nd Street or downtown.
Long Beach itself is in a great location. Los Angeles is around 50 minutes away by car or metro, and to the south Long Beach borders immediately on Orange County with its wonderful beaches such as Huntington Beach, Newport or Laguna Beach. A car is essential there. Make sure to get one if you plan to stay longer in Southern California or join forces with other people who have a car, because nothing works without a car! The bus connections in Long Beach and Los Angeles are relatively good for the conditions there, but by no means comparable to those in Germany!
Excursions to Santa Monica, Malibu, Disneyland, San Francisco, San Diego, Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon or the Hollywood studios are a must! Don’t miss a live Dodgers baseball game or Lakers game;)
My study abroad in California was the best experience ever !! I experienced so much and met so many interesting people that it was worth all the cost and effort! Despite initial difficulties and inconveniences in terms of looking for a room, getting used to and taking courses, I spent a unique time there and enjoyed it every day. I can really only recommend a stay abroad to everyone!