The University of Minnesota is a very large university and definitely offers you the chance to experience real American college life .
The campus stretches across both banks of the Mississippi and apart from the great view, it also has a lot to offer academically. I graduated from the Carlson School of Management and I have to say that studying there was very interesting! The range of courses was much larger than I was used to from Germany, the courses had a pleasant number of participants and the professors were really accessible! You immediately noticed that they enjoy their job and that they really take care of the students’ problems. Overall, I noticed that the supervision of foreign students in particular is really great ! But more on that later, let’s start from the beginning.
Preparing for studies
After doing a lot of research on the Internet, I chose the University of Minnesota, which convinced me above all with its program at the Carlson School of Management. Since my university has no cooperation with the UMN, I applied directly to the university as a freemover . The program that you will be placed in through thembaprograms is called GoMinnesota. This program has its own supervisor, who will be at your side with all questions both before departure, on site and after your return. It made the whole organization of the study abroad really easy!
The UMN tuition fees were paid online using the Flywire service, which can be used free of charge and offers a relatively good exchange rate. A deposit had to be paid around July, the remaining fees I paid in September after my arrival.
The first days in Minnesota
Immediately after your arrival, if you want, you will be picked up from the airport by the “Gopher Chauffeur” and brought to your accommodation . Before the university really begins, you can take part in the GoMinnesota welcome program and make your first contacts. In many information events, everything organizational will be explained to you, you will receive tips on supermarkets, excursions in the area, the Minnesota winter and the icy temperatures and much more! The whole thing is rounded off by some excursions in and around Minneapolis, in which you can explore the area in advance. A really successful start!
Course of studies
The course selection at the University of Minnesota takes place in the weeks prior to the study. Together with an advisor, you can put together your own schedule here. It is really helpful to work through the range of courses in advance and bring a list of courses that you would like to take with you. In this way, I was able to take all courses that really interested me.
So I took courses in International Business, Logistics and Business Communication at UMN and even learned Norwegian ! Overall, I can say that I was impressed by the practical focus of the university and of the entire American study system and that this is definitely a very good addition to my previous studies. Unfortunately, in some places I lacked a little theoretical background, as I have the feeling that many topics were only dealt with very superficially. From Germany I am used to delving much deeper into problems and, above all, to look at their background. Overall, I can still say that the study was in the USA helped me a lot to find a direction for my master’s degree and to focus on focal points. So a complete success!
The twin cities
The place of study, the Twin Cities, really offers you everything your heart desires. There is definitely the American big city feeling here with tall buildings and large highways, but the city is still not too overcrowded. Everything is very spacious and the public transport is really well developed, contrary to American standards! There is a fairly large tram and bus system that can take you to all the main places.
The cities also have a lot to offer in terms of sights. The Mall of America (the largest mall in all of North America), Minnehaha Falls , the State Capitol and Cathedral in St. Paul, or almost any of the 10,000+ lakes in Minnesota are definitely worth a visit! And Chicago is not far away and definitely a great destination for a weekend break.
I had a really great time in Minnesota and I don’t regret choosing UMN for a second!