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Rst8
06-12-2005, 08:06 PM
Hey guys -
Just wanted to get the feel of all 3 isreali-american med schools. I've heard technion U is right next to the med. sea. Sackler - in a cosmopolitan city and Ben Gurion in a very cultural area. Can someone let me know more about it?

jgreisman
06-15-2005, 12:38 AM
Hi! I've travelled through Israel a number of times, and can tell you a little bit about each place.

Of the three schools, Technion is located the furthest North, in the Med. port city of Haifa. It is also quite mountainous/hilly (I'm from the prairies, so any kind of hill is a mountain to me!). There aren't really beaches in Haifa because of the port. However, the Bahai Gardens are located there, and they are beautiful. One of the advantages of living in Haifa is the proximity to the rest of Northern Israel (the Sea of Galilee, the Golan Heights, etc...), which is the most lush area of the country.

Sackler/Tel Aviv University is located in Tel Aviv, which is also on the Med. Sea, but to the South of Haifa (about 30 minutes by express train). I lived in Tel Aviv for 2 months last year, and I have to say that I wasn't too impressed. But you also have to take into account what area of the city you would be living in (I was near the central bus station, which is a little sketchy!). I believe that TAU is in the northern section of the city, which I think is nicer than where I was living.

There is a large stretch of beach in Tel Aviv, lots shopping and lots of night-life (there are malls and bars/clubs in Haifa too, but I'm not as familiar with them). Tel Aviv is a bustling metropolis and has the largest population of all the cities in Israel. It also has a very international/diverse population (foreign workers, new immigrants, etc.).

A definite pro to living in Tel Aviv is its centrality and the ability to travel around the country. There is access to the trains (which travel North/South along the Med. Sea -- Haifa also has access to the trains), it is very close to the Airport, and you can take a Sherut (shared taxi) or bus to many different cities (including Jerusalem, which does not have train access).

Ben-Gurion University is located in Beersheba, in the Negev Desert, which is in Southern Israel. I have not spent any length of time in Beersheba, but I have heard that it's pretty nice as far as desert cities go. :) Although I can't comment on the city, I can say that the Negev Desert is an amazing place! If you like travel and adventure, or to experience difference cultures (such as Bedouins), the Negev is a great place.

I forgot to mention that Beersheba is also accessible via train, although I don't think the trains run as fequently there.

Also, since it is in the South, it doesn't take as long to get to Eilat (which is a 5 hour bus ride from Tel Aviv or Jerusalem). Eilat is a great place to go scuba diving in the Red Sea, but is heavily touristed and somewhat expensive. You could also travel to the Sinai (Egypt) via the Taba border in Eilat, which I would definitely recommend if you have the time!!

I hope that gives you some sort of idea of the different locations of the schools, and what each has to offer. Obviously you can tell that I think Israel is a great place to travel... so I would suggest that if/when you are accepted to an Amer/Israeli med school you move out there a couple months before classes start so that you can travel around and get a feeling for the country and its people. :)

If you're interested in reading about what is going on in Israel (from an Israeli point of view) you can read online news sources such as The Jerusalem Post (http://www.jpost.com/) of Ha'aretz (http://www.haaretz.com/). If you're worried about some stuff you hear in the media regarding Israel, you should check out the media watchdog Honest Reporting (http://www.honestreporting.com). Don't worry, they're all in English. :)







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