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Thread: Tips for Carbondale!!

  1. #1
    MDIN2009's Avatar
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    Tips for Carbondale!!

    Well this is the second thread in the "Tips" series, hopefully it will be as helpful to all of you as the "Tips for New Students at Windsor!!" thread has.

    Well first about Carbondale , IL : LINK MAP

    1. Address
    Royal USMLE Center
    2400 W Main Street
    Carbondale, IL 62901
    PH: 618-529-2424
    618-457-6600

    2. Get your grades from the Island as soon as you can.
    3. Your room should come with a TV, Fridge and Microwave.
    4. Come early at least 2-3 day to get a good room in the A building. If you come late than you will get a room in the B building. Which is not that bad but it not as nice as the rooms in the A building.
    5. This is a college town and has a Wal-Mart, most fast food and a Starbucks (in Kroger). So you can buy what you need.


    STUDYING


    • This is why you are in Carbondale....
    • You need to get your 1st review done here. This means watching all the Kaplan videos , reading Rapid Review by Goljan, BRS PHYSIO, HY Neuro and finally taking notes in First Aid (latest edition.) Take the seems of First Aid and make into a binder. Then add notes from cncepts that are not in it. Also if you can print Kaplan Med Essientials add it to your "USMLE Bible." If you are planning on taking Kaplan after Carbondale than you need to definitely have your first review done before you start the live lectures.
    • There are a lot of distractions in Carbondale mainly the other students. I compare them to those kids who went to High School on the 7 year plan. Stay in your room and get the job done...there is nothing worth doing or seeing in Carbondale. Avoid the negativity at all costs...
    • After Carbondale you should take NBME 1 online. This will tell you how your preparations are going. Then based on the score you receive you should make a study schedule. Here is my advice based on what you score on NBME1.


    • High (> 450 ) No need for a commercial review course in my opinion. FA+UW+Dr.G + NBMEs
    • Med (> 350) Kaplan Live - make sure you do one review of the kaplan books before you start the course. KL+ FA+UW+Dr.G + NBMEs
    • Low (< 350) You need to do a complete Basic Science review before you start any course. Then take Falcon. Its like a USMLE boot camp. FACLON+FA+UW+DR.G+NBME.
    • If you failed the USMLE than go to the Pass program. Passis designed on making connections you missed the first time around. The Pass Program is not enough for the first time test taker.


    • You Study schedule should have as many reviews as possible in a 5 month period. Best way to learn is first understand the material and then repetition.
    • Anything longer than 5 months and your life (family, friends...ect) start squeezing your study time.
    • Take all the NBMEs (AKA CBSSA 1-6) online (LINK) and get an accurate score report. Review the questions later by downloading them. Here is a Sample of the NBME score report and correlating USMLE score. LINK
    • Do not take Step 1 if you are not scoring over 430+ on the NBMEs or the USMLE World assessment.

    Technology
    • Laptop
    • Small Printer (real handy if you need to print )
    • External Hard Drive 350+ GB (USMLE review material)
    • Surge protector (APC Brand) yes even in the US. The guy living next to me had is fridge burn out due to a power surge.
    • A nice desk lamp is very useful to have.

    Cell Phone

    • AT&T has great coverage in Carbondale. The T-Mobile coverage in the hotel room is very bad.
    • If you are a Canadian get a 10$ pay as you go phone from AT&T and use it for the few months you are here. Or find a pay as you go plan that has free incoming calls.
    • Skype works only when the internet is working well.

    Books
    • First Aid (Depending on the version you have it may contain errors check this site to see LINK)


    • Kaplan series form E-bay or Craigs list.

    Food/Supplies

    • Just like the first time you went to college bring everything you need for your Dorm/Hotel room. The super wal-mart is not as cheap as the ones back home. I guess because this is a college town and everything is in demand.
    • Electric Hot water kettle
    • Foreman Grill
    • Electric Burner ( You can buy these items in your home town for less than you will pay here. So bring them if you can.)

    Transportation / Airline
    • Bring a car if you can. Or make friends with someone who has one. It's almost impossible to walk to the other side of town in the winter months.
    • If you plan on flying in - the closest full service airport is STL st.Louis.
    • To get from St.L most people use BARTS. It costs 55$ each way and is about 1 hr and 45 mins to Carbondale. I used it and it was an enjoyable experience.
    • Try to get one of those airline credit cards that give you 20K miles for signing up like Chase. That way you can get your round trip to STL for free. But, do it a couple of months ahead of time.
    • There is public transportation in Carbondale. You have to call a day in advance to get the best rate. LINK

    Groceries
    • Places to get Groceries…
    • Kroger
    • Walmart
    • and many others

    Shipping Address

    • If you need to order something on the internet to you , here is the shipping address.


    • Royal USMLE Center
      2400 W Main Street
      Carbondale, IL 62901

    TIPS

    • If you are driving down bring a nice office chair. The chairs here are not that comfortable.
    • Also they change your sheets every week. But, you have to bring you own towels and bath mats.
    • Be nice to the house keeping staff and they will hook you up when you need something.


    Please add your tips to the list. Also if I stated something wrong please accept my apology in advance.
    Last edited by MDIN2009; 04-16-2009 at 11:02 AM.
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  2. #121
    columbus is offline Junior Member 523 points
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    I have a quick question about these rotations. Looks like we have to pay to get good rotations. Is there a possibility to increase the "ante" and shoot for the best rotations. In other words can we pay our way for THE BEST ROTATIONS, eg. Emory allows 12 week rotation if you pay $3000.00, aggreed it is a steep price, but It Is EMORY, for Gods sake!

  3. #122
    medicineitis is offline Junior Member 517 points
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    Any improvements in housing situation?

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    PnS11 is offline Senior Member 6123 points
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    No........

  5. #124
    ntls is offline Junior Member 516 points
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    Not a big picture question but I'm curious, without a kitchen er, what do you guys do for meals? I know you can store snacks and stuff in the fridge but do you have pretty much no choice but to eat out all the time? That kinda sucks too if there aren't any actual places to eat within walking distance minus 'those' two.

  6. #125
    PnS11 is offline Senior Member 6123 points
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    Just buy a hot plate and some pots from the WalMart. It'll be easier than even bringing them down with you. There might be a shuttle that goes to the WalMart, if not, there is a cab. Just bring a bunch of frozen stuff and it should be good for quick meals on the go.

    You can request either a second mini fridge in your room or a deep freezer. But I believe deep freezer stock is limited.

  7. #126
    WUSOMacho Man is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Hello everyone,

    I recommend that you exercise caution in this community.

    You can read articles on the two incidents for yourselves:
    chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-carbondale-fires-police-chief-20140819-story.html

    justiceformolly.org

    Because SIU is the largest contributor to the local economy, the police act in accordance with the school to ensure the community does not receive any bad press, and thus, are quick to downplay any events/tragedies that could place focus on Carbondale. Word of advice, don't be an idiot, respect the rules of the road, respect the police. If you are a minority, reading the article on Pravin Varughese should highlight the injustices against him and his family, because of that, do not willfully find yourself in the company of strangers by yourselves.
    Last edited by WUSOMacho Man; 08-21-2014 at 06:56 PM.

  8. #127
    PnS11 is offline Senior Member 6123 points
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    "In Carbondale several years ago, a windsor student was shot and killed by police officers after he lead them on a police chase."

    No way you just typed that with a straight face to use as an example of an upstanding citizen that was dealt an "injustice."

    About Pravin, that's another story. But the Nigerian shot and killed on the high speed chase had mental issues and had failed Windsor multiple times. Ashamedly, that information was publicized in many articles. Retakes. He also charged the police after his car flipped over on the interstate with a machete.


    You should probably take that example out since it adds nothing to your case.


    Students, don't be this guy either: Hit-and-run driver sentenced to five years in prison

    Our very own Windsor student.

  9. #128
    Arches is offline Junior Member 512 points
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    Is it possible now to live outside of the $700/month motel housing now or are these ***** still making you pay that amount no matter what? One of my friends wanted to live somewhere else so he was wondering.

  10. #129
    PnS11 is offline Senior Member 6123 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2900 View Post
    Is it possible now to live outside of the $700/month motel housing now or are these ***** still making you pay that amount no matter what? One of my friends wanted to live somewhere else so he was wondering.
    So write a bad check for the whole semester's tuition and rent. He'll give you your room keys and move your stuff in. When the check bounces, just ignore him when he asks for the money. If he comes to your door, just pretend no one is home. Do it for four months and not only did you live rent free in MD5, but he lost $20 because the check bounced too.

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