University: University of California Riverside
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: Business Administration, Marketing
Study type: semester abroad
Planning your stay abroad requires time and patience. MicroEdu was a huge help in the preparation. The first hurdle was finding the right university, as I needed certain (master’s) courses to be credited to my home university. However, once that was done, things went relatively quickly. Only the application for the visa still costs time and nerves: Filling out the online forms and visiting the consulate are annoying and time-consuming, but by no means an insurmountable hurdle. Visit iamaccepted.com to get information about Hawaii Pacific University study abroad program.
I cannot recommend the option I chose for living more highly. UCR offers three options for international students: the International Residence Center (IRC), the International Village (IV) and homestay. I lived on IRC. The IRC is located directly in the Extension Center, the building in which the courses for foreign students are offered. The only positive thing I can say about this accommodation is that it is centrally located. Only about a 5-minute walk from the campus and right in the Extension Center. But that was it with the positive points. I stayed at IRC with two other exchange students in a room that was about 20m2. The beds were bunk beds; each had a small desk. The bathroom was shared. There is no kitchen or cooking facilities, just a small fridge. Apparently there are microwaves in the basement, but I haven’t tried them. The furniture as well as the bathroom are very spartan and in extremely bad condition. Walking barefoot across the filthy carpet is like attempting suicide. If you like zero privacy, shabby furniture and dirty rooms, IRC is the place for you. However, I strongly advise against it. Even if the option seems relatively cheap at first glance, it is not worth the money. Walking barefoot across the filthy carpet is like attempting suicide. If you like zero privacy, shabby furniture and dirty rooms, IRC is the place for you. However, I strongly advise against it. Even if the option seems relatively cheap at first glance, it is not worth the money. Walking barefoot across the filthy carpet is like attempting suicide. If you like zero privacy, shabby furniture and dirty rooms, IRC is the place for you. However, I strongly advise against it. Even if the option seems relatively cheap at first glance, it is not worth the money.
The second housing option offered by the UCR is a little better, but not really good either. The IV is a complex of apartments consisting of a living room, a small kitchen and single or shared rooms. The apartments are not bad but way overpriced. It should also be noted that, contrary to what is assumed, the kitchen is not fully equipped, i.e. cutlery, plates etc. have to be bought.
The third option is living with host families. Some of my German fellow students chose this option. However, they moved out after a maximum of two weeks and looked for other accommodation. The families were all very nice and helpful, but mostly lived away from the university, which meant that the exchange students were constantly dependent on the host parents driving them to the university by car. Going out in the evening or doing anything else spontaneously was not possible.
In my opinion, if you have some time and patience, you should avoid the housing options of the UCR and start looking for accommodation privately. The apartment complex Grand Marc was highly recommended. The complex is about 10 minutes walk from the university, has a beautiful pool, a private cinema room and a billiard room. The apartments, which usually consist of four single rooms, a kitchen and a living room, are furnished and equipped in a modern way. To get such an apartment, you should look at craigslist.org, mostly American students rent out their room for a quarter. The Sterling is also a beautiful residential complex. Also located near the university and modernly furnished, but in my opinion not quite as nice as the apartments in Grand Marc.
- University and courses
Experience has shown that the course selection is well organized at the UCR. Before I left, I was able to send a list of the courses I wanted to the UCR International Representative. I then got all these courses. On the day of the introduction, we exchange students received our finished timetable. From what I heard, most of the students got the courses they wanted, only a few had to take care of choosing the course on site. The courses I chose were very good. As an exchange student you have the choice between extension courses and campus courses. The extension courses are courses for exchange students and Americans who are already working. These courses take place in the evening and, in my opinion, are less demanding than the campus courses. The campus courses are normal courses or lectures, which the American students also take. Even if the campus courses usually mean a lot more work, in retrospect I would only take campus courses. You just learn more and study with American students and not just with foreigners.
If you need marketing courses, I can only recommend the lectures of Dr. recommend Jasso. The workload is high and the exams are not without problems, but the professor is awesome: a really good lecturer and great entertainer. The lectures were fun and educational.
The time at the UCR was absolutely great and worth every single cent. The charm of the city of Riverside is limited – something else is nice – but that doesn’t bother. Aside from the uni, Riverside offers some good night out options – a pretty cool karaoke bar, a decent pub or two, a movie theater and the odd “club” or two, and makes the perfect base for exploring California’s nicer towns and attractions to learn.