Report from Students in Pittsburg

Local Report at Carnegie Mellon University

Name: Xiaoyang-Xu
1 First Impression of Pittsburgh Sightseeing spots nearby, security, climate, etc
(scene in CMU campus)
The first impression about pittsburgh was good. Pittsburgh is not a big city, it is beautiful and quiet. However, you have few options for sightseeing. One reason is that if you do not have a car, transportation would be a big problem. Another reason would be you would be quite busy when the semester started. So take your time for exploring when you first come or in holidays. Security is not a concern and climate is not bad as well.
2 About Carnegie Mellon University and the Information Networking InstituteFeature of the INI, significant lectures, student activities, etc
I love the INI building. I have spent most of my time there. It is a good place for study. For class, I would recommend take 15-XXX class in the fall or summer semester, so that you will have enough time for job hunting in fall.
(scene in INI building, a good place for study)
3 About the daily life The way to find an apartment, rental market value, living cost, foods, cafeterias, health insurance, medical care, activities in holidays, etc
For Chinese students, you can try to join some groups in Wechat, we have many groups for renting apartments or second-hand furnitures. The average rental value would be around $500 per month. The living cost depends on how you live your life. Because I am quite busy, I do not often cook . So the living cost would be a little bit higher. The medical insurance is very expensive. I waived my insurance in spring semester. Once again, it depends on your needs. I personally would recommend some cheap options(ISO insurance). There is always many interesting activities around, based on what you like, you can always find your interest. Personally, I spent a lot time in gym and basketball court. By the way, the new gym is really cool! Do some workout even if you are busy is my advice.
(Catheral of learning, a landmark for Upitt)
4 Transportation Public transportation between the apartment and the campus, transportation fee nearby, transportation fee in downtown, etc
Transportation is a problem is US if you do not have a car. You can definitely get a car and driver licenses in short time if you want. For me, I have a roommate who has a car. So I usually take advantage of it. If not, your option would be either bus or Uber. In general, transportation is not expensive.
(Basketball court in CMU)
5 Job hunting / Internship status
Internship is impossible because you do not the permission to get CPT. For job hunting, I am still working on it. I definitely recommend you guys start early and keep doing leetcode exercises as much as you can.
6 Other recommendations
Troubles in Pittsburgh, challenges, new findings, etc
I did not get into any troubles here. The biggest challenge would be the pressure from classes. You usually have many dues, many assignments in a week. Keep working on it and never be lazy would be my advice. New findings would be you would always find great people here and you could also always find new knowledge.

Local Report at Carnegie Mellon University

Name: Chen Xi
1 First Impression of Pittsburgh

Pretty cold in winter, but super good in Summer.

Carnegie History museum.

mount Washington in Pittsburgh.
2 About Carnegie Mellon University and the Information Networking Institute
Feature of the INI, significant lectures, student activities, etc

Open space area for student.

google Pittsburgh site visit.

Skiing.

bowling night.

summer project:

bowling night.
3 About the daily life
The way to find an apartment, rental market value, living cost, foods, cafeterias, health insurance, medical care, activities in holidays, etc
Apartment: alumnis , cmu cssa.
Foods: Chinese food near INI.
4 Transportation
Public transportation between the apartment and the campus, transportation fee nearby, transportation fee in downtown, etc

Bus: 6 minters.
5 Job hunting / Internship status
Summer project: computer science department.
Job hunting: finish one onsite interview one week ago.
Usually, start from September in TOC.
6 Other recommendations
Troubles in Pittsburgh, challenges, new findings, etc
1. Live in Shadyside or squirrel hill
2. If you want to find a engineer job, practice the algorithm right now!

Local Report at Carnegie Mellon University

Name: Mingming Hu
1 First Impression of Pittsburgh
Sightseeing spots nearby, security, climate, etc

It was winter when we arrived in Pittsburgh. As I was born in south of China, I have never seen such a heavy snow and never lived in such cold weather. So when you come to Pittsburgh, keep warm! And there are so many bridges in Pittsburgh, especially when you come to downtown. As a master, you will have a lot of work to do, so you might be too busy to go sightseeing.
In Great Pittsburgh Area, some points of interest are recommended, such as Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Carnegie Museum of Art, Point State Park, Three Rivers Stadium and Cathedral of Learning. Point State Park in winter
2 About Carnegie Mellon University and the Information Networking Institute
Feature of the INI, significant lectures, student activities, etc
CMU campus is an open campus, similar as other American university campus. Between classes, you have to rush from one building to another building.
INI building is located on Henry St and INI Student Center is on the second floor. The INI building is multi-functional. There you can study, have a meeting or group discussion, have your own locker, buy snack, brew tea or coffee, even have a shower. I think you will soon be fond of INI building.
There are lots of activities organized by GSA or INI, for example, welcome party, cruise tour, ski tour, BBQ party, Google sightseeing and so on. You can choose to join the events according to your interest.

CIC 1201

fence in winter

Google sightseeing

party in INI building
3 About the daily life
The way to find an apartment, rental market value, living cost, foods, cafeterias, health insurance, medical care, activities in holidays, etc

(bazaar on Murray Ave)
It is a little difficult to find an apartment in Pittsburgh in winter season, because houses or apartments are leased for one year from summer. I suggest you to sign a one-year lease when you come to Pittsburgh, since it is difficult for you to sign a half-year lease in summer. If you sign a one-year lease in summer, you have to pay a great deal of security deposit, as your I-20 is valid till end of the year.
One way to find an apartment in Pittsburgh is to search on web such as

https://offcampus.housing.cmu.edu/
https://pittsburgh.craigslist.org/
http://www.zillow.com/
http://www.trulia.com/

Another way to find an apartment is ask previous DDP students for help. Usually they will leave Pittsburgh on December and you can rent the house they once live. If you think health insurance from CMU is expensive, you can consider health insurance from ISO. I did not get sick overseas, I have no experience of going to hospital in US. If you live in Squirrel Hill area, you can go shopping on Murry Ave. There are lots of shops, markets on Murray Ave.
4 Transportation
Public transportation between the apartment and the campus, transportation fee nearby, transportation fee in downtown, etc
As students usually live near University, it will not take too much time to go to university. For example, if you live in Squirrel Hill area, you can take 61ABCD to go to university, if you live in North Oakland, you can take 71AC. As a student, you can take public bus free of charge with your student ID card.
By the way, there are other services provided by your student ID card
Please reference:

https://www.cmu.edu/idplus/services/index.html

Another two important public bus you should know:
28X bus from Pittsburgh airport to CMU(near CMU)
54 bus going to Lotus Chinese supermarket
For detail of public transit, you can use App “Transit” and “Busgazer”
5 Job hunting / Internship status
As International students are not allowed to work until they have studied for two semesters in US, at this moment (early September), I’m preparing for job hunting. And of course, I’ll absolutely take part in TOC beginning on September 19th.
And every week, as a CMU student, you will receive email about job hunting from Career & Professional Development Center. You can take part in all kinds of events held by CPDC about resume, interview and so on.
6 Other recommendations
Troubles in Pittsburgh, challenges, new findings, etc
I think if your English is good enough and you can communicate with others smoothly, it won’t be difficult for you to get accustomed to living in Pittsburgh, although you will not feel so convenient as in Japan.
If you have any problems, you can ask different departments for help.
For example, for international student affairs, you can resort to OIE,
for English learning, you can go to ICC,
for job hunting and interview, you can take lectures from CPDC and so on.

Local Report at Carnegie Mellon University

Name: Ximeng Wang
1 First Impression of Pittsburgh
Sightseeing spots nearby, security, climate, etc

Pittsburgh is a harsh place in winter.

But the sunshine becomes really strong in summer

Wild animals everywhere on campus
About Carnegie Mellon University and the Information Networking Institute
Feature of the INI, significant lectures, student activities, etc

INI provides a nice student space with great utilities

A great welcome party for new students on a cruise
3 About the daily life
The way to find an apartment, rental market value, living cost, foods, cafeterias, health insurance, medical care, activities in holidays, etc

The way to find an apartment, rental market value, living cost, foods, cafeterias, health insurance, medical care, activities in holidays, etc

Fruits are rich in US. This huge watermelon costs about 600 Yen.


Car races on the street nearby

4 Transportation
Public transportation between the apartment and the campus, transportation fee nearby, transportation fee in downtown, etc
It’s easy to catch a bus to get to school. There are 4 routes 61A ~ 61D going to the campus from my home, for every 5-10 minutes. The transportation fee is included in the tuition and with a student’s card we can ride any bus or metro.
5 Job hunting / Internship status
I’m currently hunting jobs actively. A big job fair will be held by the school in September, attracting nearly all the top companies.
6 Other recommendations
Troubles in Pittsburgh, challenges, new findings, etc

The weather can be a great challenge. Please make sure to fully prepare for the harsh winter, which lasts 5-6 months in Pittsburgh!

Local Report at Carnegie Mellon University

Name: Bo Wang
1 First Impression of Pittsburgh
Sightseeing spots nearby, security, climate, etc

(cmu building)

(pittsburgh sightseeing)

The first time you arrive at Pittsburgh, it would be at night, and it is very cold at that time. The winter is always covered with snow. But when spring comes, weather will become much better. Pittsburgh is the most secure city in the US, and if you have cars, you can drive to some sightseeing spots. Besides, INI will have skiing events.


(cmu building)
About Carnegie Mellon University and the Information Networking Institute
Feature of the INI, significant lectures, student activities, etc

(cruise dance)
(mellon music hall)

(cmu fairground)

CMU is beautiful, but the university nearby, the University of Pittsburgh is much beautiful. INI has a lot of events, such as the cruise and CMU will also hold some events for women. I will recommend 08722 the algorithm course, since the professor is very humous, and in the class, you might get an apple if you answer the question.

3 About the daily life
The way to find an apartment, rental market value, living cost, foods, cafeterias, health insurance, medical care, activities in holidays, etc

You can find the apartment on ‘cmu bbs’, ‘craiglist’ and ‘zillow’. And living cost might be about $1000+ one month, if you would like to share apartment with at least one roommate, rental may be $500/mo or be lower, and if you would like to live by your own, the rental might be $1000/mo. The summer needs air-condition, which may be of your own charge, the heat and water usually included in the rental, and the electricity is of your own charge. The insurance usually costs about $1500/semester


(Germany food)

4 Transportation
Public transportation between the apartment and the campus, transportation fee nearby, transportation fee in downtown, etc

Usually we take bus to go to school, and the transportation fee is included in the tuition, that is to say, we can take buses inside Pittsburgh, includes downtown.
5 Job hunting / Internship status
There is no internship in this program, and we can find job in the US, all the famous IT companies will come to CMU career fair, and we can apply for the job positions. And we should find job in about early November, since there is some process to do for companies to finish. In Japan, there is one opportunity for us to have internship in Rakuten. And you can work in Rakuten after graduation.
6 Other recommendations
Troubles in Pittsburgh, challenges, new findings, etc

Pittsburgh has beautiful scenery, but the workload in CMU is very heavy, and do your best to get best score in CMU. It is different from Kobe, although I think Japan is much more beautiful than Pittsburgh, I still love Pittsburgh since all students here are doing their best to achieve their dreams. This is very charming. Hope you will find something special to you in Pittsburgh.

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