My semester abroad at the Universidad Regiomontana in Monterrey in 2016 came about through MicroEDU. The application process was simple and straightforward. When I saw that MicroEDU also arranged semesters abroad in Mexico, it was immediately clear to me that I wanted to take this opportunity.
Abbreviated as UR by abbreviationfinder, the Universidad Regiomontana is a private university in the center of Monterrey. I took master’s courses in international business administration and a Spanish course there. The courses differ from Germany in that they focus on practice, there are compulsory attendance and regular tests. The professors also expect you to actively participate in the classroom. The university also offers a course on the history and culture of Mexico for exchange students, which I was unable to take due to an overlap with another course. I found all of the courses I took to be very interesting. It was refreshing that seeing international business studies from a more practical angle. It was not uncommon for lively discussions about a wide variety of teaching topics to arise during the lecture. I perceived the relationship between professor and student as closer and more informal than in Germany. If you should not be able to attend the lecture because of a trip, for example, you could always speak to the respective professor and find a solution. Overall, the lectures were more school-based than in Germany. Nevertheless, I was able to take some things with me there for my later life. Above all, the sometimes different points of view of the Mexican students helped me to look at things from different perspectives.
I lived in the Zona Tec district. Most of the other exchange students also lived in this district. Zona Tec is characterized by the fact that many students live there, the location is ideal and the rents are moderate. If it is possible, I would recommend everyone to move into a shared flat, as it’s so easy to get to know other people. Well-known student residences are for example Villa Tec or Torres Tec. However, it is also possible to find an apartment via the Internet without any problems. If you speak Spanish, it is advisable to google for accommodation offers in Spanish. Since the university assigns a buddy to every exchange student, he or she will also help you find an apartment.
Since it usually takes a few days to find an apartment, you should book a hotel or hostel for the first few days.
The free time:
I spent most of my free time in Mexico with Mexicans and other exchange students. They often go out to eat together, meet for coffee, or go to the university’s gym together. I also played on the university’s soccer team. On the weekends you can also go to San Pedro. This is a neighboring city of Monterrey. There are many clubs and bars there. The area is also very safe. If you have a longer time, you can of course explore Mexico. I’ve been to Mexico City, Cancun, Los Cabos and Playa del Carmen myself. However, there are many more potential travel destinations, such as Guadalajara, Tulum, Acapulco, Veracruz, Oaxaca or the USA.
This is the topic that probably everyone who is planning a semester abroad in Mexico deals with. In general, you should be careful and watch a lot, especially at the beginning. I also advise using an Uber instead of a taxi, as these are safer and more convenient. Some of my fellow students were robbed during their semester abroad. But I haven’t heard of any worse incidents. Use your common sense and you will have a great time.
I can recommend a semester abroad at the Universidad Regiomontana to anyone who wants to get to know Latin America and improve their Spanish. Precisely because life differs from that in Germany, this offers a great opportunity to develop personally and to see a business degree from a different perspective.
If you have any questions, feel free to write me an email.