Would you like to study in San Diego, really learn something and enjoy some free time at the same time?
Then you are at the right place at UCSD. The study is quite demanding in terms of time, as it is very short semesters (trimesters). You have something to do from the first week on, and yet you still find enough time to go out and celebrate, enjoy the beach or go on short trips. You can get good grades with a little effort. Depending on what you are used to from the German University. Learn more about University of California San Diego on andyeducation.
If you are not interested in the learning effect, if it is not so important that the university has a good ranking and you just want to have fun and good grades, then you should go to San Diego State University (SDSU). There is pure party and the learning curve is rather low.
A la Carlifornication is in Pacific Beach, the somewhat chillier district of San Diego. And there we come to the (for me) only disadvantage of the UCSD: It is located in the UTC area, next to La Jolla. This area is quite a long way from the real city life that takes place in Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, Ocean Beach or Downtown.
According to my personal taste, Mission Beach / Mission Bay is the nicest place to live. From there it takes about 15-20 minutes by car to get to the university. Despite the fact that I didn’t have a car myself, I have to say that a car is a must. Fortunately, I had friends who had cars and who I was driving with all the time.
If you want to live close to the university, then I recommend you look around the apartment complex Costa Verde, because many students live there (which does not mean that there is something going on there!;)).
You can search for apartments on craigslist.com. This is probably the most popular internet market in the USA – you can really find everything you need there.
To the UCSD campus:
The UCSD campus is very nice, there are cozy corners to study, a large library (where you can take food and drinks (including a café, etc.) with you !!) and a bookstore with various UCSD clothes, all learning materials and even some useful items for the home and bathroom. There are also nice cafes and restaurants right on campus. Of course, a lot of fast food too.
Open, interested in the students, masterful and friendly in their subject – this is how I would describe the professors I had lessons with. They often have practical experience in their field. My professors have always meant the students very well and have really stood up for them. It’s a very personal contact that I miss all the more here in Germany.
You can definitely have enough fun in SD! There are leisure activities for every taste. The UCSD Extension Department also offers inexpensive excursions in larger student groups. And of course there is also Las Vegas – an absolute must!
There are also plenty of sports options: surfing, jogging on the beach, mountain biking in the mountains, hiking or snowboarding / skiing on the Big Bear (approx. 3-4 hours from San Diego).
The housing and food costs as well as the costs for the clubs are particularly high in San Diego. The housing costs depend on the district. La Jolla is probably the most expensive area and then you can go according to the rule: the further south, the cheaper. But I definitely wouldn’t go any further south than Ocean Beach. Then nothing is going on again. In the UTC area you have to calculate 700-1000 dollars for a room in a shared apartment. Then there are the additional costs. Pacific, Mission and Ocean Beach are significantly cheaper (but not the houses directly on the ocean). When it comes to groceries, you can shop for cheap at Trader Joes. This chain belongs to the German Aldi. If you want to buy high quality organic vegetables, then go to Whole Foods. There are really delicious things, but they also cost accordingly. ; ) I should also mention that the textbooks are very expensive. The best thing to do is to buy them from Amazon, because they are cheaper.
I hope that I could help you with this. If you have specific questions, you can also send me an email.