The CSUEB campus is higher than Hayward itself, so from above you have a wonderful view over the Bay Area and on good days even as far as San Francisco. The campus is designed very green and has a manageable size. Unless you have purchased a university meal plan, the cafeteria only offers all-you-can-eat meals (around $ 10). Unfortunately, you cannot treat yourself to a small meal for $ 5-6 during the lunch break, but can only take advantage of this all-you-can-eat offer. It helps that there is a food court (including Panda-Express, Subway, Taco Bell) and a small kiosk on the campus. The CSUEB library is a bit old, but is completely sufficient for students who like to go to the library to study. Most of the buildings also have study corners or seating that can be used for group work.
One can definitely say that the level is not comparable to the German university level. I personally have two 4000 courses (Consumer Behavior & Establishing New Enterprises) and an MBA course (Data Analysis and Decision Modeling for Managers) and can report that the learning content is not as in-depth as in Germany. Most of the exams are in MC format. Some exam questions are even taken one-to-one from the sample questions. I find the regulation with midterm, the final exam and other services such as assignments, group work and presentations better than in Germany. This means that you continuously deal with the material so that you don’t have a very stressful exam phase and, at least for me, get stuck more than with classic bulimia learning. The group work with the Americans was sometimes nerve-wracking, as they like to do everything at the last (really last!) Push. You have to get used to this setting first. All in all, however, every deadline was met. See more student reviews of universities in North America on andyeducation.
I found the study conditions at CSUEB very positive. On the one hand, this mainly has to do with the smaller classes (approx. 20-45 students). This enables more interactive learning and develops a more personal connection to fellow students and the professor. The lecturer also replies quickly to questions via e-mail and is particularly helpful for exchange students. The ALP office, which you can of course always contact, will help you with general matters. Especially at the beginning, the ALP offers some events (wine tasting, trip to SF, etc.), which makes it easier for you to get used to it and to make contact with other exchange students.
With its location in the Bay Area, the CSUEB offers ideal opportunities to do something away from the university. In Hayward itself there is not much to offer besides a cinema and a few bars, but you are within 15 minutes in Oakland and in about 30 minutes in San Francisco or San Jose.
In my opinion, San Francisco is the most beautiful city on the entire west coast and there is so much to do. From a bike tour of the Golden Gate Bridge to nightlife, SF was well worth every single visit!
Oakland has to live with some prejudices and certainly one or the other unsightly area that is better to avoid at night. However, the Hafen-Bar-District is very nicely designed and worth a detour. San Jose in the southeast is the largest city in the entire Bay Area and attracts with a young and modern nightlife.
Especially for sports enthusiasts, the Bay offers an enormously diverse range. From American football (49ers, Raiders and college football) and baseball (Giants, Athletics) to basketball (GSW) and ice hockey (San Jose Sharks) – there is something for everyone and I can say that the San Francisco games 49ers, the San Francisco Giants and the Golden State Warriors were unforgettable experiences.
At just over $ 4,000, the costs of the CSUEB are still relatively cheap compared to other American universities. Among other things, that was a big argument for me to go to the CSUEB because you can significantly increase your travel or leisure budget with another $ 2000 that you save on tuition fees.
Five of us rented an apartment in the City View Apartments. Two people shared a room and the fifth person slept in the living room. That sounds very daunting at first, but due to the high rental costs it is commonplace in the City Views. In addition, the apartments there are generously designed so that the living situation is completely in order for a limited period of time. Nevertheless, you have to reckon with monthly rental costs of around $ 600 per person if you rent the apartment for a short period of time (<6 months) and strive for a similar living situation as mentioned above.
If you intend to do other things in California, such as driving to the national parks or flying / driving to Vegas, you should expect around 10,000 € for a quarter (tuition fees included).
All in all, I can draw a very positive conclusion for myself and look back on an unforgettable time ! I got to know interesting people from different countries and made so many new friends. With its location in the Bay Area, the CSUEB offers a great area to live in. The easy level at the university gives you enough time for other activities or for traveling. About every second weekend we went on a 2-3 day trip to different places (Yosemite National Park, Sequoia National Park, Los Angeles, etc.), so that in addition to the Bay Area, you can collect many impressions of California.
The CSUEB should be an option for everyone who wants to get to know America, American culture and the people there and who want to improve their language skills.