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Buffalo, NY

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On 3/25/2017 at 11:53 AM, Evangeline95 said:

Anyone going to UB this fall??? 

Yup, Biomedical engineering. Will be heading from Boston. Planning to visit there in a week or so to check out the city and interact with grad students and profs.

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On 3/24/2015 at 7:57 PM, hakandoga said:

Hello everyone,

I have been through all the pages and thanks for the info form all the users!

I am also accepted to the Phd program in Math department and I am thinking about accepting it.

Recently, I have started looking for the housing options, and I still can not make up my mind. Department is in the North Campus and everyone posted that it is really far(I will rely on public transport also). I will be a grad student but I like to go out and get a beer in the evening most of the time. Also I'd be happy about easy access to the transportation. So I am kinda sceptical about Elmwood and Allentown. 

I also understood that getting to North campus from South is kind of easier. So which areas would you recommend for a mathematician ((: in South campus area? As i said, I would be happy to go out and grab a beer from time to time with friends, so this is a quite important criterion for me ((:

One more question about getting to Buffalo, I will be flying to US since i am an international student. The last time I have been to US I had to go to south states, I went to JFK and took the bus Greyhound from New York. So what would be the most efficient and cheapest option to get to Buffalo? Going to JFK and taking another flight from there, taking the train or the bus? I'd appreciate any suggestion!

I would suggest Trailways bus, they have some great student deals if you wait to buy it in person if price is a concern. It will be a long drive though over 5 hours. Amtrak is the train but i think it might go to rochester rather than buffalo.

I currently live in New York but am still wait to hear back from Buffalo, congrats on your acceptance :)

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On 2/24/2018 at 3:16 AM, hp88 said:

@meghan_paleoclimate I got accepted into Buffalo for Fall 2018, PhD in PolSci. Can't wait for semester to start already.

P.S. The above post you replied to was from March 2015. :lol:

Haha yeah I noticed after and just left it, I was shocked when a notification came through about it! Hopefully I will get a notification from Buffalo too soon 

I'm still pro bus though!

Edited by meghan_paleoclimate

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On 2/25/2018 at 11:30 PM, meghan_paleoclimate said:

Haha yeah I noticed after and just left it, I was shocked when a notification came through about it! Hopefully I will get a notification from Buffalo too soon 

I'm still pro bus though!

Haha, yes. I left my browser tab on this page to see if anyone else will update on Buffalo, NY in this cycle, and happened to see your reply. :)

What program are you applying to at Buffalo?

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I should chime in on this topic. I am thinking about attending UB this fall as well. I got in the Management(Organization & Human Resources) PhD program. I am excited to see what Buffalo has to offer. 

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7 hours ago, square_708 said:

I should chime in on this topic. I am thinking about attending UB this fall as well. I got in the Management(Organization & Human Resources) PhD program. I am excited to see what Buffalo has to offer. 

Oh, nice! I previously did my Bachelors at the UB School of Management few years back before returning back to my home country for my Masters. Looks like I might be headed back to Buffalo this Fall again ;)

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If any of you have questions about the city and general area, feel free to reach out to me. I was born and raised in the city. Also, I did my undergraduate at SUNY College at Buffalo. Congrats to all!

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Hi folks! I'm actually very curious to hear everyone's insights on living in the on-campus apartments at UB. I am seriously thinking about Creekside Village West and wanted to know if anyone has lived here before and has thoughts/comments?

Edited by PsychQEH

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20 hours ago, PsychQEH said:

Hi folks! I'm actually very curious to hear everyone's insights on living in the on-campus apartments at UB. I am seriously thinking about Creekside Village West and wanted to know if anyone has lived here before and has thoughts/comments?

It is a long walk into UB North (about 20-25 min). During the summer/spring, the walk is not a problem and fairly pleasant. Winter and late-Fall is a completely different story. The wind and snow tend to make the walk miserable and some days impossible. If you are lucky, you can grab the bus and ride into campus, however, most students tend to do this during the winter months which makes the bus rides not a guarantee. Lastly, most undergraduates stay on North Campus and have begun to party on North, rather than going to South/City since the "Drunk Bus" was canceled a couple semesters ago. Fortunately, the university changed its mind and is starting to run the "Drunk Bus," again, which may make a difference in the coming semesters. In short, North is where the undergrads live and party which may make living in student accommodation a bit problematic for a graduate student. Although, it could be a great way to break the monotony of grad school life.

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1 hour ago, Tigla said:

It is a long walk into UB North (about 20-25 min). During the summer/spring, the walk is not a problem and fairly pleasant. Winter and late-Fall is a completely different story. The wind and snow tend to make the walk miserable and some days impossible. If you are lucky, you can grab the bus and ride into campus, however, most students tend to do this during the winter months which makes the bus rides not a guarantee. Lastly, most undergraduates stay on North Campus and have begun to party on North, rather than going to South/City since the "Drunk Bus" was canceled a couple semesters ago. Fortunately, the university changed its mind and is starting to run the "Drunk Bus," again, which may make a difference in the coming semesters. In short, North is where the undergrads live and party which may make living in student accommodation a bit problematic for a graduate student. Although, it could be a great way to break the monotony of grad school life.

Thank you for this info! Yes, I'm aware of the walk to and from campus, which is not something I have a problem with (I come from New England and went to a SUNY school for undergrad, so I'm HIGHLY aware of the windy campus). I also know that Creekside West is a graduate student community and Creekside East is more undergrad. Based on location of where the apartments are, they seem to be far enough from campus that the parties don't appear to be an issue. 

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36 minutes ago, PsychQEH said:

Thank you for this info! Yes, I'm aware of the walk to and from campus, which is not something I have a problem with (I come from New England and went to a SUNY school for undergrad, so I'm HIGHLY aware of the windy campus). I also know that Creekside West is a graduate student community and Creekside East is more undergrad. Based on location of where the apartments are, they seem to be far enough from campus that the parties don't appear to be an issue. 

It is great that you know the winter will be a pain! A lot of graduate students (mostly international) are surprised by it. As for the West/East divide, the university will tell you that, however, the UB North student living has been known to be a touch different than the advertised. I didn't mean to come off as negative and attacking towards North housing. My apologies if I did. Best of luck in your studies!

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On 3/5/2018 at 11:10 PM, PsychQEH said:

Hi folks! I'm actually very curious to hear everyone's insights on living in the on-campus apartments at UB. I am seriously thinking about Creekside Village West and wanted to know if anyone has lived here before and has thoughts/comments?

You can also consider Flickinger Court apartments along the Chestnut Ridge Rd as they have graduate housing too, with shutter bus to and fro UB North if I'm not wrong. When I did my undergraduate in Buffalo, I stayed off-campus in the Willow Ridge estates (also along Chestnut Ridge) and drove to school with my group of friends in the same major and program (pooled in for a car and carpool everyday). But I had some friends getting Flickinger Court housing as well.

Edited by hp88

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On 3/6/2018 at 8:54 AM, PsychQEH said:

Thank you for this info! Yes, I'm aware of the walk to and from campus, which is not something I have a problem with (I come from New England and went to a SUNY school for undergrad, so I'm HIGHLY aware of the windy campus). I also know that Creekside West is a graduate student community and Creekside East is more undergrad. Based on location of where the apartments are, they seem to be far enough from campus that the parties don't appear to be an issue. 

I lived in Creekside East last year (before they switched it to undergrad-only housing) and now live in Creekside West. Parties have not been an issue at all, though you might get stuck with a noisy roommate. Also, I'm not exactly sure what Tigla meant by the bus rides not being a guarantee. That might be true for students living in South Lake Village, but Creekside West is the first stop for the on-campus shuttles so there are always empty seats.

But in all honesty, I can't fully recommend living here. The living space is a little bit cramped, and you're stuck with a roommate with whom you may or may not gel. If you plan to spend most of your time on campus, that might not be an issue. But then it would be hard to justify the asking price (roughly $900/mo). For that price, you can get a 1 bedroom apartment of similar quality off-campus, in a location that's less isolated/suburban. Also, if you're fine living in a bigger space with multiple roommates, you could live extremely cheaply elsewhere. I've seen some rooms going for less than $300/mo.

If you don't mind living with a roommate, you can easily afford the asking price, and you won't have a car in Buffalo, I would say go for it. Otherwise, I would recommend looking elsewhere.

Edited by coreyasdf

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12 hours ago, coreyasdf said:

I lived in Creekside East last year (before they switched it to undergrad-only housing) and now live in Creekside West. Parties have not been an issue at all, though you might get stuck with a noisy roommate. Also, I'm not exactly sure what Tigla meant by the bus rides not being a guarantee. That might be true for students living in South Lake Village, but Creekside West is the first stop for the on-campus shuttles so there are always empty seats.

But in all honesty, I can't fully recommend living here. The living space is a little bit cramped, and you're stuck with a roommate with whom you may or may not gel. If you plan to spend most of your time on campus, that might not be an issue. But then it would be hard to justify the asking price (roughly $900/mo). For that price, you can get a 1 bedroom apartment of similar quality off-campus, in a location that's less isolated/suburban. Also, if you're fine living in a bigger space with multiple roommates, you could live extremely cheaply elsewhere. I've seen some rooms going for less than $300/mo.

If you don't mind living with a roommate, you can easily afford the asking price, and you won't have a car in Buffalo, I would say go for it. Otherwise, I would recommend looking elsewhere.

Thank you so much for this helpful info! I've been looking into renting a room elsewhere and I have found prices to be so much cheaper. I am thinking that this would be better option for me. 

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Hey guys, I will be attending SUNY Buffalo this Fall for my PhD in Chemistry... I'm an international student from Brazil and as far as I know, the winter in Buffalo will be a major problem for someone who is used to live in a tropical country. As the chemistry department is located on the North campus, I would like to live close by it so I won't have to suffer a lot during the winter, any suggestions on good neighborhoods? And what is the best place/website to look for rooms to rent? I would prefer to live with another one or two students (in a private room).

Also, my assistantship is approx. $26k per year... Have you any idea on how much state and federal taxes will I have to pay for this amount? Also, is it possible to live decently in the city with only the assistantship?

 

Sorry for all of these questions, but I am feeling a little bit lost :)

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Hello there @raul.carmo. I did my undergraduate at SUNY Buffalo, so I may be able to help you out here. And you are definitely right, the frigid winters can catch you off guard if you are not prepared for it. Be ready to wear snow/hiking boots, and warm jacket almost everyday during your studies (except for summer). An average meal in Buffalo can vary for $5 to $20, depending on what you want to eat. You can order Pizza from Papa John's all day for crazy cheap, or choose to cook for an entire week in the freezer, or even eat out everyday in school. There are major supermarkets in the area that those shuttle buses mentioned below will potentially bring you to, so you can do your groceries. (Wegmans, Traders Joe, Tops, Walmart, etc.) You can get good deals if you choose to buy ingredients and cook by yourself at home. Surviving with your assistantship is definitely possible, I have had friends who survive on less.

Regarding housing, you have a couple of options actually.  The North Campus at Buffalo is a rather safe place to live in on or off, the only difference is the cost and method of transportation to school.

Ideally, you have 3 options. Live on campus, Live off campus, and Rent your own house/apartment. Each with its pros and cons.

If you choose to live on-campus, these are the options for you to live as a Graduate Student:
http://www.buffalo.edu/campusliving/find-your-home/where-can-i-live.html

You can choose between: Creekside Village West Apartments, Flickinger Court Apartments, Flint Village Apartments, Hadley Village Apartments, South Lake Village Apartments, Ellicott Complex Residence Halls, South Campus Residence Halls (not applicable to you since you're going to North Campus for school.)

The room rates can be found here:
http://www.buffalo.edu/campusliving/apply-for-housing/rates.html

Taking Flint Village Apartments as a gauge, the 1bed/1bath option for 9 months comes up to be $10,160, which is about ~$1129/month. (Flint is a great place to stay at, I had many friends who lived there during their studies.) Benefits of on-campus housing include proximity to school, and convenient shuttle bus to your class or lab. You can read up on more benefits here: http://www.buffalo.edu/campusliving/find-your-home/see-whats-included.html

If you choose to live off-campus, read up here first: http://www.buffalo.edu/campusliving/find-your-home/living-off-campus.html
Then you have two broad possibilities:

1.) American Campus: https://www.americancampus.com/student-apartments/ny/buffalo

American Campus offers off-campus housing at 3 locations around SUNY North Campus which is convenient for students as well. 

- University Village at Sweethome: https://www.americancampus.com/student-apartments/ny/buffalo/university-village-at-sweethome

- Villas on Rensch: https://www.americancampus.com/student-apartments/ny/buffalo/villas-on-rensch

- Villas at Chestnut: https://www.americancampus.com/student-apartments/ny/buffalo/villas-at-chestnut-ridge

With the exception of Rensch, the other two have options for individual 1bed/1bath options, ranging from $1059/mth at Chestnut, $1069/mth at Sweethome. If you do not mind having room mates, you can opt for the 4bed/4bath options at all 3 places, where you will share common areas and have your own bed and bath. Price start at $659/mth at Sweethome, to $809/mth at Rensch. They are pretty decent, and have plenty of facilities which you can use too. You can read more in their respective websites above. I had friends who lived on all 3 of these places, and they are all reasonably priced and has shuttle bus to SUNY Buffalo North Campus as well.

2.) Private Rentals: Craigslist, MJPeterson, etc.

These private rental apartments/ houses are off campus as well, and can be found on rental sites or generally by searching for Buffalo NY Rentals. They are not recommended unless you are contemplating getting a car to travel around. As private rentals do not come with shuttle bus or any access to transportation (public transportation is very scarce in Buffalo), you are better off considering the other options mentioned above if you are not intending to purchase a car.

Finally, regarding taxes, information can be found here:

http://www.buffalo.edu/administrative-services/for-faculty-staff/international-emps-students.host.html/content/shared/www/administrative-services/public/bits-of-info/international/tabs-for-international-taxes/international-students.host.html/content/shared/www/administrative-services/public/bits-of-info/international/employment-for-international-students.host.html/content/shared/www/administrative-services/public/ub-forms/tax/it2104-new-york-state-withholding-allowance-certificate.detail.html

I believe, if I did not read incorrectly, the taxes at NY might be as high as 14% if I'm not wrong, depending on your combination of funding packages (fellowships, assistantships, etc).

I hope it helps you out!

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Wow, thanks @Positivist for this awesome answer! It is so clarifying... Last week I randomly started a conversation with a former professor from my Master's institution and he coincidently went to UB for a post-doc last year, so he also gave me some good advice on how to live in Buffalo. I was worried that taxes would cut my stipend in a way that it would become difficult for me to pay living expenses each month, but you and my professor gave me a new perspective on this, now I am relieved.

My professor told me that is easier to live without a car nearby the south campus than by the north campus because the first is closer to bus stations, market, stores, and walden gallery. He also told that north campus apartments are more expensive than the southern ones, but are located in a safer neighborhood, but I don't think violence is much of a problem in Buffalo (I come from Brazil so anywhere I go in the US will be safe for my standards haha). As I probably won't get a car during my first semester or year, I would like to live somewhere with easy access to points of interest (markets, stores, hospitals, bus/train stations etc)... Do you agree with him? It is true that the South Campus is more "connected" to these points than the North Campus?

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No problem at all @raul.carmo. Glad I could help.

Well, it is indeed true that South Campus is more accessible to more places of interest. As the South does have proximity to the bus terminals that you can take Greyhound buses to NYC or many other places. Greyhound Schedule here: http://bustracker.greyhound.com/stops/150249/Buffalo_NY

But, the South Campus is close to downtown living, there are plenty of bars, pubs, and party houses around the area. Along with that comes the issue of crimes and disturbances that are caused to people living there. You can refer to CrimeReports for information of crimes reported at the areas:

https://www.crimereports.com/home/#!/dashboard?lat=42.955291792981775&lng=-78.84681701660156&zoom=12&incident_types=Assault%2CAssault%20with%20Deadly%20Weapon%2CBreaking%20%26%20Entering%2CDisorder%2CDrugs%2CHomicide%2CKidnapping%2CLiquor%2COther%20Sexual%20Offense%2CProperty%20Crime%2CProperty%20Crime%20Commercial%2CProperty%20Crime%20Residential%2CQuality%20of%20Life%2CRobbery%2CSexual%20Assault%2CSexual%20Offense%2CTheft%2CTheft%20from%20Vehicle%2CTheft%20of%20Vehicle&start_date=2018-03-13&end_date=2018-03-27&days=sunday%2Cmonday%2Ctuesday%2Cwednesday%2Cthursday%2Cfriday%2Csaturday&start_time=0&end_time=23&include_sex_offenders=false&current_tab=map&shapeIds=

You can see that the North Campus (the purple region above, near Maple Rd on the map), is almost, entirely quiet. The further you go South, it gets pretty intense with lots of activities.

There is also the famous "drunk bus" back in my time as well to bring students from North to and fro South for partying. Interesting to read about here:
http://www.ubspectrum.com/article/2017/08/ub-reacts-to-the-drunk-bus-elimination

Most of the public buses are not very reliable as they do not come on fixed schedules. You are better off relying on UB Stampede Shuttle Buses to get around to places you want to go. The destinations these buses varies, and include shopping, schools, and other places.

To travel around Buffalo campuses and surrounding places (markets, stores, etc), refer here for UB Stampede Shuttle Bus service schedules:
https://www.buffalo.edu/parking/getting-around-UB/bus.html

You can see that the shuttle bus schedules for: Fun Run Galleria (Walden Galleria), and Mall and Market Shuttle (market and stores), both originate from North and South. So regardless where you stay, you will be most likely relying on the UB Stampede Shuttle Buses to get around, and it will not make much difference if you live in the North or the South to access those places of interest. I did not stay in the South myself, but I did need to visit quite a few times during my studies as I had some courses there as well. I lived off campus on North Campus, but I had a car to drive around, so it was convenient for me. But if I were you, I would prefer to live at North Campus if I had to go to school there. Just my two cents. :)

Edited by Positivist

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I will be heading to UB in the fall and I won't have a car. I have narrowed my search to north campus (where my classes will be), south campus or somewhere in between close to the shuttle bus.

I have been struggling to find something, either too pricey or a little shady (I'm especially paranoid as I won't be able to visit). Any tips ? I'm looking for around 400-500 a month because my stipend is pretty low.

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12 hours ago, Charlie Moon said:

I will be heading to UB in the fall and I won't have a car. I have narrowed my search to north campus (where my classes will be), south campus or somewhere in between close to the shuttle bus.

I have been struggling to find something, either too pricey or a little shady (I'm especially paranoid as I won't be able to visit). Any tips ? I'm looking for around 400-500 a month because my stipend is pretty low.

Hi Charlie Moon, do you mind having room mates? If you do not mind having room mates, it might be useful to find off campus housing (that might be near to shuttle bus stations that can bring you to school). There are a few UB Facebook groups you can join to look for such options. (You will need to have a UB email associated with your Facebook account to access those)

Here are some examples:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/263497677085862/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/223180237784273/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/222079761227654/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/223202237782073/

Students will usually post looking for roommates for off-campus or on-campus housing, or even subleasing, you can try those groups and see if it suits you.

Edited by Positivist

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13 hours ago, Charlie Moon said:

Thank you, I guess I will have to wait until I get my email then. could you advise me on the best month to start looking ?

I would suggest sometime in Summer, (May-July), where students are mostly moving into new housing, or are looking for room mates to move into new housing as well. But you should start looking out the moment you have your email and join those Facebook groups.

Edited by Positivist

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Is there any international student here that is familiar with GeoBlue health insurance? I would like to know more about the plan, the coverage, if it's easy to arrange doctor appointments and exams, about urgent care etc.

Health is one of my biggest concerns since I will be by myself in the US, so that's why I want to choose a good insurance, even it's not the one recommended by UB.

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