UCSF questions for BeckyG & Vader

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by postbacchus, Mar 8, 2002.

  1. postbacchus

    postbacchus Senior Member

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    To BeckyG & Vader, the oh-so-helpful ones,

    I had a couple of geeky questions for you guys and I was hoping you could answer them. I figured the other UCSF folks might also be interested, so that's why I'm posting and not emailing directly. Here goes:

    1. Do you really need DSL and/or a cable modem at home for the new curriculum? Or are the high-speed connections on campus enough?

    2. Do you know which is better/cheaper - DSL or cable - for internet access?

    3. Do you know which high speed provider has been best for you and/or your classmates? I've heard PacBell.

    4. I'm thinking of getting a cell phone only instead of a home phone. Do you know which cell company has the best service up in SF? Verizon? AT&T? Sprint?

    Thanks for your help!

    PB
     
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  3. Vader

    Vader Dark Lord of the Sith
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    No such thing as a geeky question--there are only geeky answers (or geeks who answer them). :)

    For the new curriculum, it is really nice to have broadband access from home. Dialing up is kind of a pain and during peak hours you will have to try many times in order to connect. MedRocket, which is our online curriculum, has a calendar, discussion board, assignment list, powerpoint and overheads from lectures, videos, PDFs, multimedia, and other goodies you will want to download.

    The high speed connections on campus are great, but I like doing things from home, so I got DSL. Earthlink is my provider and it's been pretty reliable so far, although it took forever to actually get the self-install kit because they had some miscommunication with their third-party provider. Anyway, I'd recommend getting either DSL or cable--there is really no significant difference right now. In the area in which I live, cable wasn't available, so that kind of made the decision for me. I've heard from classmates that PacBell DSL is pretty good. Be sure to look for promotions (i.e. 1st month free, free installation, lower rate for 1st 3 months, etc). The nice thing is that DSL is budgeted into the financial aid package, so it's affordable.

    As for cell phones, I have AT&T right now, which works great in SF. Both great reception and accesibility. I've heard Verizon is good. I wouldn't get Sprint (horrible connections, busy service area, etc) and I've heard no-so-good things about Cingular too. Of course, you may want to shop around here too for some good deals.

    Hope this is helpful! :D
     
  4. lady in red

    lady in red Senior Member

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    Hey postbacchus
    UCSF has a message board (on the accepted site), where people have posted similiar questions, also the ones about new curriculum, books, etc-- i did too. might want to check it, but its still pretty new.
    So, are you getting just the cell phone and DSL--no regular phone line? I'll probably do the same thing.
    Did you see that list of req. books?
     
  5. Vader

    Vader Dark Lord of the Sith
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    One thing to add: you probably don't want to go without a home phone line. First, you'll need it if you get DSL. Second, you can get on the lifeline/low income plan, which is only around $9/month. Third, if you need to dial up from home, you would need to have a line. Worth it, if you ask me... :D
     
  6. postbacchus

    postbacchus Senior Member

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    Thanks, as always you guys. Thanks, lady! I did find the forums. Here's the link for other accepted students:

    <a href="http://missinglink.ucsf.edu/forum/default.asp" target="_blank">http://missinglink.ucsf.edu/forum/default.asp</a>

    It looks surprisingly like studentdoctor.net. I wonder which came first...

    PB
     
  7. YBee

    YBee Member

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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Vader:
    <strong> The nice thing is that DSL is budgeted into the financial aid package, so it's affordable.

    </strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">From the budget that I saw, utilities were budgeted at $125 which is ridiculously low for San Francisco - that's my electric bill!! (I have electric heat and live in an old very poorly insulated building - both common for SF.) Is DSL configured into some other line item in the budget?
     
  8. Vader

    Vader Dark Lord of the Sith
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by YBee:
    <strong> </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Vader:
    <strong> The nice thing is that DSL is budgeted into the financial aid package, so it's affordable.

    </strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">From the budget that I saw, utilities were budgeted at $125 which is ridiculously low for San Francisco - that's my electric bill!! (I have electric heat and live in an old very poorly insulated building - both common for SF.) Is DSL configured into some other line item in the budget?</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">From the UCSF web site:

    Additional Housing Allowance
    Students who live on or off-campus and pay more for rent and utilities than the standard housing allowance, may request a budget increase of up to $200 per month to offset their higher housing expenses. Students must document that their rent plus utilities (excluding phone), exceed $890 per month.

    RE: DSL/Broadband High-Speed Internet Access

    Loan assistance is available as part of your Utilities package to cover high-speed Internet access.
     
  9. BeckyG

    BeckyG Senior Member

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    I agree with all Vader said. I have DSL through PacBell and it's been great. I greatly prefer looking things up at home; the computer labs are fine but can be noisy, which is a problem if you're trying to do a self-assessmnet online, etc. I would definitely want a home telephone line, but it's up to you. I have Sprint PCS for my cell phone and it seems to work well throughout the city. As for costs of DSL, you can get a loan up to $3,000 to cover the cost of a computer and DSL expenses (this is in addition to other financial aid). I am not sure how many people actually used it, but it is available. Hope this is helpful!

    -- Becky
     
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