Skip Navigation

The California State University

College Dreams Blog

College Dreams Blog

No matter who you are or how you’ve prepared for college, you’re bound to have a long list of questions. Our student ambassadors had college dreams just like you do and they worked hard to achieve them. Read their stories below and share your own with us on Facebook and Twitter!

Esta función no está disponible en español
Shannon Banks - photo

Maximize Your Time Abroad

Posted by Shannon Banks

While studying or interning abroad, remember to fully enjoy your time there. Between classes or during your days off, explore the city! Check out local coffee shops or eateries with your classmates where you can meet people.


During my stay in Costa Rica, I have experienced zip lining through national parks, explored beach cities, seen volcanoes, and took a tour of one of the many rivers here. Costa Rica has beautiful colonial architecture in the capital of San Jose, so just walking around town gave me a look into the city’s culture and history.


Don’t let school or work keep you from spending time in the city. You will discover that the highlight of your time abroad will include people you meet. So go study abroad and have fun!

Shannon Banks - photo

Study and Intern Abroad

Posted by Shannon Banks

In college, take advantage of the opportunity to go abroad, which is becoming increasingly important as employers look for people who have world knowledge and experience. You can study abroad during school breaks, for a semester or even for a full year. You also have the option to intern abroad, which is what I did.


I interned in Costa Rica with an organization called Vida Volunteer for the spring semester. I also received college credit for my internship from San Diego State University. I chose to intern abroad to strengthen my Spanish speaking skills. I lived with a host family, allowing me to be fully immersed in the culture and to develop a better understanding of the people and language.


Once you’re at the CSU campus of your choice, check to see what study abroad programs your school offers. You never know what kinds of opportunities are waiting for you if you decide to venture out into the world!



Annette - photo

How to Study and Succeed in College

Posted by Annette

Having strong study skills is extremely important for college success. In most college courses, your grades are usually based on midterms and final exams, so I recommend being as prepared as possible for those tests. Here are some of my study tips for incoming college students:


  1. Don’t cram: Don’t wait until the last hour before your exam to start studying. I suggest studying about a week before your exam for about 20-30 minutes at a time. This allows you to become more familiar with the material.
  2. Find a study buddy: I have found it very helpful when I study with fellow classmates. This could include working through a study guide together or quizzing each other with flashcards.
  3. Find an environment that works for you: I feel that I study the best when I am in a quiet setting, free from distractions. Try to find yourself an environment that allows you to be comfortable and stay focused!
  4. Don’t forget to sleep: I highly recommend being well rested before an exam day. Studying can be very exhausting and you want to be fully alert while taking your test. “All-nighters” are not fun for anyone!


I hope these tips help you stay focused and be prepared.



Follow Us


The California State University