How is Boston University for an MS
General information about Boston
Boston is a city on the east coast of the USA with approx. 650,000 inhabitants, of which 200,000, or a good third, are students. That reflects the atmosphere of the city well. Boston is a young city with lots of things to do, Bars and restaurants. Due to the history of the city, there are many old buildings, churches and squares next to modern skyscrapers. Just this one Mix of old and new gives Boston an incomparable charm. Furthermore, the city has several large and very well-kept parks that are used by many locals as meeting places. Since Boston is located directly on the sea, you can spend a great time on the beach in the warm summer months or go on a whale-watching tour from the old harbor to see humpback whales, minke whales or fin whales in the open sea.
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Living in boston
Life in Boston is very expensive. There were two options for me to find accommodation in Boston. On the one hand posed Boston University Rooms in their student dormitories to disposal. I decided against it for various reasons. First of all, the price of rent in the "dormitories" was very high, although as a student you have to share a room with one or two people and the bathroom is also shared with the floor. I also bothered that I had to eat in the dining hall every day. Although there was a kitchen, it was not equipped, so that everyone had to take care of their own pots, cutlery, plates, etc. Instead, I chose that ESL Townhouse in the beautiful neighborhood of Fenway. Here, too, I shared a room with a friend, but we had our own bathroom, kitchen and a small dining area. The apartments are older, but had their charm with their old, dark wooden floors. The location of the apartment was great. Fenway Park, the Boston Red Sox baseball stadium, is 100 yards away and there are several sports bars and restaurants around the stadium. It takes about 5 minutes to walk to two large supermarkets, 20 minutes to the university and also 20 minutes to the city center and the shopping street "Newbury Street" with numerous fashion stores. You get used to running very quickly, there in Boston everything is within walking distance is. If a route is too far or the weather does not cooperate, there are still a few bus routes that go right around the corner of the ESL Townhouse or the 'T', the light rail in Boston.
Not only is housing expensive in Boston. Shopping in the supermarket, food and drinks in bars and restaurants, and entrance fees for attractions also have a high price. Every student considering a semester abroad at the BU should be aware of this.
With 30,000 students, the BU is the fourth largest private university in the USA. It is located in the center of Boston and stretches two miles on Commonwealth Avenue. Accordingly, it is not a single campus, but rather a whole street full of university buildings, the center of which is the small “Marsh Chapel”. The university is in different Colleges with respective focuses and scientific areas divided. I myself studied in the half year on Metropolitan College, which mainly specializes in international as well as working students. Although this made it easy to make new friends among the internationals, it was hardly possible to come into contact with American students. It was also a shame that you didn't have a chance to attend courses at the Questrom School of Business, as it not only had an excellent reputation, but also offered interesting, challenging courses.
The university buildings were all modern. There were also several large libraries on campus for reading, studying, and printing, as well as numerous dining options and the Fitness and Recreation Center. This was really impressive. In addition to a modern, top-equipped fitness studio, there was also a swimming pool, basketball fields, squash and tennis fields, a running track and other rooms on 4 floors that were available for the many sports courses.
During the semester, the university organized various activities for all students or especially for international students. Examples are evenings with free ice cream, Halloween "Trick or Treat around the World" with various sweets from all over the world or a typical American Thanksgiving dinner. All activities are voluntary and the staff at the university have always made every effort to organize everything perfectly.
Business in a Changing Society (Prof. Halfond)
All in all an interesting course, but I had expected something different from the topic. It was mainly a business ethics course, personally I missed critical topics and possible future problems. The professor is super nice and can explain well. The grading is based on attendance, weekly (short) homework, two tests and a final paper and is very good in most cases.
Introduction to American Management, Culture and Institutions (Prof. Halfond)
An equally interesting, but not too demanding, course on the history, culture and politics of the USA. The grade is determined by two short papers (5-6 pages) as well as the attendance, it is very easy to get an A or A-.
Consumer Behavior (Prof. Santino)
In this course, an A is guaranteed for very little effort, but otherwise I cannot recommend the course as I learned absolutely nothing new. However, Mr. Santino is a personable and always helpful professor. Grading is based on submitted weekly homework, a written comparison of two advertisements, an individual case study, 2 exams and a final team project. What sounds like a lot at first sight, were each very small projects and were all rewarded with an A without exception.
Calculus I (Kezim)
Very good course, the professor can explain clearly, but has a pretty fast pace. However, with some previous knowledge, you can get along well. Prof. Kezim is a personable, funny and pleasant lecturer. The grade is determined by small tests, two half-time exams and the final exam.
Hatha Yoga for Beginners (Feldman)
To be further recommended, Mrs. Feldman introduces her students to the world of yoga week after week and I felt quite relaxed after each class. Overall, however, the course was too boring for me, which was more due to the sport itself than to the teacher.
- Haymarket: weekly market in Boston selling fruit, vegetables, meat and fish from local farmers for super affordable prices
- “Tavern in the Square” in Allston: every Thursday evening, many BU students meet in this bar, good prices and a cool location
- Borrow / buy books as early as possible via Amazon; the Barnes & Nobles bookstore on campus only had overpriced prices
All in all, I really enjoyed the semester abroad at Boston University and I would recommend the BU to everyone. Boston is an impressive and extraordinarily beautiful city with lots of green spaces and lots of water. The atmosphere at Boston University cannot be compared with that at German universities. The students are all proud of their university and show this through a strong community, which is particularly visible at special events such as the popular ice hockey games or rivalries with other American universities.
The courses at the university are all very labor-intensive, but in my opinion not as demanding as in Germany. The way of teaching reminded me of the German school system, as great importance was attached to attendance and participation in the courses.
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