Bachelor of Commerce
Bachelor of Commerce

As a 3rd year Commerce student, I did my exchange at WHU Otto Beisheim School of Management in Vallendar, Germany. It is one of Germany’s most prestigious and highly ranked private business schools in its Bachelor and Masters programs. It places an emphasis on the entrepreneurial side of business administration, which seems to work, as many of its alumni go on to begin their own start-ups. Most of the courses only go for half a semester (or quarter), so a full study load requires 7 or 8 subjects to be taken.

The school is very small (only 1000 students), but they work very hard to get the exchange students integrated by holding dinners, parties, wine tasting tours and even a road trip to Oktoberfest in Munich.

There is no on-campus accommodation at WHU, but since the town is so small, most student accommodation is very close. I stayed in the Hohrerstrasse Apartments, which were about 5 minutes’ walk from campus, and had plenty of other exchange students staying there. They offer single or shared apartments, costing around 350-400 euro per month.

The Germans at this school have all learnt English from a young age, so most are fluent. In addition to this, 80% of all classes at WHU are taught in English, so you can get by without knowing a single word of German.

5 Tips:

  • Travelling. The town of Vallendar is located perfectly if you like to travel. During my stay I did road trips to Cologne, Luxembourg, Amsterdam, Munich and Hamburg, which are all within 5 hours drive. Also, Frankfurt Hahn airport is located about 1 hour away, which is one of many Ryanair flight destinations. With this airline, you can get to pretty much any country in Europe for incredibly cheap prices (if you book in advance).
  • Euromasters: If you are there in second semester (Fall Semester), you will have the opportunity to be part of the Euromasters experience. WHU hosts several other business schools from around Europe for 3 days of sports and parties. This was one of the highlights of my exchange.
  • Accommodation: Apply for your accommodation as soon as applications are open. As Vallendar is a small town, there is only limited accommodation and some students have to stay in the neighbouring towns. Some of the other exchange students were in this situation, and found it a little more difficult to get to events/parties/etc.
  • Get help with your subject selection. WHU assigns you an ‘Academic Buddy’; a student from WHU who will help you integrate, introduce you to people, take you to parties, etc. Ask your buddy for help with subject selection, as some of the subjects can be very difficult, and this is not ideal for an exchange student.
  • Go to the Italian restaurant on the Rhine for lunch. This place is hidden away from the town, but when you find it, you will enjoy 5 euro student lunch specials and a nice view of the Rhine river.

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