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gradgirl

South Bend, IN (Notre Dame)

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MissingVandyCandy: (As someone who wanted to go to Vandy for UG, I love that username, haha)

I was up there looking for apartments/houses with my fiance back in January (he got a job in the area). There probably are charming neighborhoods in South Bend but we didn't find them. We were so pressed for time, having only a weekend there in SB, that we were basically forced to limit ourselves to the generic, dreary apartment complexes. I would have preferred a house or loft much like what you describe but we just couldn't find anything like that on short notice. Either they were already rented out or the people who had Craigslist ads for houses didn't return our phone calls. Elkhart is supposed to be nice, though we didn't go all the way out there.

I would advise going up there in person, if you can. I was expecting your typical quaint Indiana small town, but there are some areas that are not-so-nice. (It was rather...interesting to drive through one of the neighborhoods near campus and recognize Vice Lords gang symbols graffitied on some of the houses...) Maybe a current student can chime in with specific locations?

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I'm not 100% sure, but I'm fairly certain that there is no such thing as a loft in South Bend and anything described as "charming" is certainly in short supply. South Bend itself is an economically depressed area, suffering (like much of the region) form the industry-wide decline of manufacturing.

I lived on campus during the academic year and can tell you that the Fischer on campus apartments are pretty nice, though considering that you have to share an apartment with a stranger (with your own bedroom of course), the 570ish rent isn't too hot, but does include utilities minus cable. The Ohara Grace on campus apartments aren't nearly as nice (ok, but no AC and you will have three roommates rather than one). Living on or very close to campus is key, especially during the Winter and on football weekends. Walking is really your only option on football Saturdays, as parking is insane, normal roads become one way only, and even the library becomes a drinking spot for alumni (somehow they got the code to the grad study room on the 10th floor in 2006). The other tip is that if you're looking off campus, try to get an apartment as early as possible, because the undergrads swallow up the best places VERY quickly and in some cases there are long waiting lists.

You will really want to limit where you look for housing to South Bend, Mishawaka, and maybe the outskirts of Granger. Anything farther than that becomes impractical and more expensive. There are some nicer mid-range apartments in Mishawaka and the only areas I would really avoid are the ones you can tell for yourself upon first glance. Some streets in poor areas have every other house boarded up due to abandonment.

In terms of buying a house, I've seen it done, though more with condos than actual houses. The problem is that property taxes have really spiked over the last few years and the economy is so bad, that foreclosures will likely cause home prices will likely decrease over your time there, so it's not "that" great an option.

If you have any other questions about the area, feel free.

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Hi everyone

I applied the Grad program 2009 fall, and still waiting for the result from Notre Dame

Could anyone tell me more about the Architecture program in ND, although I applied, I have no idea about the programs there. I only know its strong in historic architecture

I still dont know its reputation and the employment situation?

I applied cuz I like ND. Thank you all

Hope I could be admitted. :D:D:D

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Hi evry1

i got a phd admit with funding. i am an international student (from a 3rd world country..with a name eerily similar to the name of the state in which ND is located :) )

dept. fellowship says - " a taxable stipend of $23,000 for 12 months, plus a non-taxable tuition and fees scholarship. "

will this be enough to live by in southbend.?? i dnt have much money with me.

i heard its a republican belt --so how are the ppl towards asians?

BTW

how gud is this university for mechanical engineering?

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I don't know about their engineering program, but I can tell you that $23,000 is more than enough to live in South Bend. I lived there quite nicely 2 years ago on $18,600.

There are international student associations and I think there is a group of asian graduate students, many of whom live on campus. You might check the campus life part of the Notre Dame web site to see if there is someone you can talk to who would know more than anyone on this forum how South Bend is for international students.

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Hi Volcano,

Congratulations on your Notre Dame admit! I often travel to Chicago from northwestern Indiana. The drive to University of Chicago is easy and direct as the university is on the Indiana side of the city. However, if you want to go public transportation,the South Shore connects South Bend and the University of Chicago (Hyde Park) stop. Their website is http://www.nictd.com/ You will notice that the train only goes to South Bend a limited number of times a day. We used the SS line combined with the red line CTA (subway) Chicago to travel to Northwestern University so it can be done. Good luck!

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Yes, it is certainly possible to live in the middle-although probably not very practical for library research needs, etc. Chesterton, IN would be your best bet for the South Shore (Dune Park station to Hyde Park, Chicago) in that you avoid the train slow down in Michigan City. The drive to South Bend would probably be around 1 hour 15 minutes-very easy traffic going east. I would hope that maybe one of you would have a class free Monday or Friday on your schedule and could instead do an occasional 3 day weekend at U of C or Notre Dame.

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Yes, Chicago is in the Central time zone and South Bend is in the Eastern time zone, so it will always be one hour earlier in Chicago.

It's actually less confusing now than it was a few years ago, when Indiana was one of the few states that did not observe daylight savings time.

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Guys I saw that the city of Portage is also a good solution for leaving between Chicago and Notre Dame. Especially if you have a car of your own it is about 1 hour drive from each of the two universities. Am I right or is it impossible to try to live in Portage and study at Notre Dame and Chicago?

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I can't speak to your particular program(s), but depending on your work ethic and study habits, you will want to spend as little time commuting as possible. Grad students, particularly those who require campus resources to do their work, keep odd (and long) hours. You will not want to make a long drive when exhausted. Similarly, weather gets pretty rough in the Winter and if you are not used to driving in heavy snow, it can get pretty ugly. There will be times when it is so cold and nasty that you will not want to leave your home at all, let alone for a long drive to campus. You may also end up getting stuck in South Bend during the worst storms, though I'm sure you will have friends with whom you could stay.

I'm not saying that the weather is horrible, but I'm a fairly brave driver and there were times that I refused to use my car. Fortunately, I lived on campus and always walked to class.

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Undrafted free agent is correct, northwestern Indiana has wild winter weather because of lake effect snow. My husband and I were caught in zero visibility snowstorms (absolutely terrifying) more than once this past winter. Lake effect snow can be erratic in location and can produce several inches of snow per hour. In January we had accumulating snow every day for two weeks and got a foot of unpredicted snow one evening. As a first year graduate student, I would definitely not entertain the thought of driving an hour+ each way to class in this climate. As a point of time reference, my husband drives from La Porte to Portage daily to work and it takes about 45+ minutes. Notre Dame University is another 45 minutes from our home.

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skeeterjo and UndraftedFreeAgent thank you very much for the information. As I have mentioned in a previous post we are not planning to live together in the first one or maybe two years of our studies. Instead we hope that we will do it well in the quals and the courses that are necessary in the first four semesters (I am doing a Ph.D. in Physics and my girl in Engineering) and after finishing all the necessary exams and courses, including quals, I hope that it will be possible to live in the mid-way. And I mean that this will be the case when the only think that we will have to do will be our research leading to our thesis. I do not think that this is impossible if you make a good work in your department and if you manage your time perfectly. In the meanwhile it is always easy I think (or hope) to move in each other's place in the weekends.

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I'm interested in a few things about Notre Dame. As far as the weather is concerned.. if anyone can speak to this, is the weather comparable to Upstate/Central NY lake effect snow? I've been there, done that, and I can deal with it. Or is it substantially worse?

Any equestrians here? I'm looking to board my horse if I attend and I want to find a nice, reputable barn. I'm checking out the one that the equestrian team uses, but I'd like to hear from anyone who rides or has horses in the area.

Also, I have a moderate car payment $300 a month including my insurance payment... will this be do-able on a stipend of $20,000-30,000 a year with housing as well? I'm trying my darnedest to pay it off before this Fall, but I'm not positive that will happen.

As far as housing goes, does anybody know of pet friendly housing in the area? I'm willing to have a roommate, but I want to bring my two cats and as far as I could see all the grad housing options don't allow pets in dorms. I may look into buying a house, I imagine it is fairly easy to find roommates.. anybody have experience with this?

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I'm interested in a few things about Notre Dame. As far as the weather is concerned.. if anyone can speak to this, is the weather comparable to Upstate/Central NY lake effect snow? I've been there, done that, and I can deal with it. Or is it substantially worse?

Any equestrians here? I'm looking to board my horse if I attend and I want to find a nice, reputable barn. I'm checking out the one that the equestrian team uses, but I'd like to hear from anyone who rides or has horses in the area.

Also, I have a moderate car payment $300 a month including my insurance payment... will this be do-able on a stipend of $20,000-30,000 a year with housing as well? I'm trying my darnedest to pay it off before this Fall, but I'm not positive that will happen.

As far as housing goes, does anybody know of pet friendly housing in the area? I'm willing to have a roommate, but I want to bring my two cats and as far as I could see all the grad housing options don't allow pets in dorms. I may look into buying a house, I imagine it is fairly easy to find roommates.. anybody have experience with this?

I can only speak to the last item you posted... as far as pet-friendly housing, there definitely are some apartment complexes you can look into that take pets - Indian Lakes is the one big one that DOES NOT take pets, but others like Regency Club, Candlewood, Remington Court, Runaway Bay, etc. do (these are all in Mishawaka, which is east of South Bend and about a 10-15 minute (max) drive to campus).

In terms of buying homes, there are some good programs for low-income homebuyers in the area (and seeing as we're grad students, we fit the bill!), and housing prices are relatively cheap. Look into the REWARD and 80/20 program through the Community Homebuyers Corporation if you are interested in purchasing a home (Nancy at 574-235-5848 will get you the initial application). If you meet the qualifications and complete the requirements for the REWARD program, you can earn a $1000 grant to put toward closing costs. And depending on your income at ND, the 80/20 program will pay off up to 20% of your mortgage (after meeting the requirements like making on-time payments and attending housing classes). A number of first years in my current program are going through / have gone through this process.

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I'm interested in a few things about Notre Dame. As far as the weather is concerned.. if anyone can speak to this, is the weather comparable to Upstate/Central NY lake effect snow? I've been there, done that, and I can deal with it. Or is it substantially worse?

Any equestrians here? I'm looking to board my horse if I attend and I want to find a nice, reputable barn. I'm checking out the one that the equestrian team uses, but I'd like to hear from anyone who rides or has horses in the area.

Also, I have a moderate car payment $300 a month including my insurance payment... will this be do-able on a stipend of $20,000-30,000 a year with housing as well? I'm trying my darnedest to pay it off before this Fall, but I'm not positive that will happen.

As far as housing goes, does anybody know of pet friendly housing in the area? I'm willing to have a roommate, but I want to bring my two cats and as far as I could see all the grad housing options don't allow pets in dorms. I may look into buying a house, I imagine it is fairly easy to find roommates.. anybody have experience with this?

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I'm interested in a few things about Notre Dame. As far as the weather is concerned.. if anyone can speak to this, is the weather comparable to Upstate/Central NY lake effect snow? I've been there, done that, and I can deal with it. Or is it substantially worse?

Any equestrians here? I'm looking to board my horse if I attend and I want to find a nice, reputable barn. I'm checking out the one that the equestrian team uses, but I'd like to hear from anyone who rides or has horses in the area.

Also, I have a moderate car payment $300 a month including my insurance payment... will this be do-able on a stipend of $20,000-30,000 a year with housing as well? I'm trying my darnedest to pay it off before this Fall, but I'm not positive that will happen.

As far as housing goes, does anybody know of pet friendly housing in the area? I'm willing to have a roommate, but I want to bring my two cats and as far as I could see all the grad housing options don't allow pets in dorms. I may look into buying a house, I imagine it is fairly easy to find roommates.. anybody have experience with this?

Hi! If you are able to tolerate Upstate New York snow, you will not have a problem with South Bend snow. We generally get less lake effect snow than New York. This year most of the lake effect snow has been in the county to the west (La Porte county). As you probably know, lake effect snow is generally unpredictable and varies greatly from year to year. I would not worry about this factor.

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I am an international student and it looks like I will be starting my grad studies at Notre Dame this fall. I was wondering if it's possible to get by without a car in South Bend?

Thanks for your help!

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I am an international student and it looks like I will be starting my grad studies at Notre Dame this fall. I was wondering if it's possible to get by without a car in South Bend?

Thanks for your help!

While having a car makes life easier here (I'm currently doing my master's and about to leave), it's totally possible to get around using the public transportation (buses). If you don't have a car though I'd reccommend living on campus though, you'll be walking to distance to classes and dining halls and close (short bus ride) to a grocery store. You can easily catch a bus to get anywhere downtown or to the mall in the neighboring city.

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As far as money goes, I currently live in South Bend on $32,000 a year and support a family of 5 (3 kids). We also just bought a house in a very nice neighborhood (incidentally quite close to campus) for $100K, making our housing payment far less expensive than any rent we could find for anything 3 bedroom. It would be quite possible to live on less as a single student, in my opinion.

Weather can be so different from year-to-year, but this winter sees particularly mild. Some snow on the ground nearly every day, but not a lot.

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Punkybugsy,

Why do you show/ride? I grew up an hour west (LaPorte), but showed in the SB area a lot. I unfortunately showed stock horses, though, so if you event or do hunter/jumper or dressage, I can't be of much help!

Edited by gsams

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Like trlux, I don't drive, so I'm planning to live on campus for at least the first year. However, the prospect of being stuck on campus five or six years without a car sounds utterly dire, so how do you actually go about learning how to drive in South Bend?

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