ASCIE Association of graduate Students in Computer and

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ASCIE: Association of graduate Students in Computer and Information science and
Engineering, University of Florida
Guide to Gainesville

Gainesville Utility Resources:                                   •

                                                                 Runway Shuttle (Airport Shuttle)
Gainesville Regional Utilities (GRU): Gainesville Regional       •
Utilities provides electric, gas, water, waste water and
telecommunications services in the urban area.
•     352-334-3434
                                                                 Wachovia bank has a branch on-campus at Reitz Union. Bank
                                                                 of America and Campus USA Credit Union also have branches
Bell South: BellSouth provides the area’s telephone
                                                                 near campus. All of these banks have ATM on campus.
infrastructure and is the leading telephone residential and
business service provider.
•    888-757-6500

Cox Communications: Cox Communications provides cable
television, phone and internet services the Gainesville area.    Libraries:
•    888-269-9693.
•                               Besides the various on-campus libraries, The Alachua county
                                                                 library, located at 401 East University Avenue (downtown) is
U.S. Postal Service: It is one of cheapest and the largest       a public library free to all students (for membership, go in
postal services in the US. Other major services are UPS and      person with gator ID and proof of residence).
FedEx. Their contact can be found on websites like Google        •
Maps or Yahoo Local
                                                                 Shopping Places:

Getting Around Gainesville:                                      General groceries: Winn Dixie, Publix, Kash n Karry

Roads: The city is divided into four quadrants: northwest,       The Oaks Mall is east of I-75 at Newberry Road, you’ll find
northeast, southwest, and southeast. The center of that          over 140 stores.
quadrant is downtown at the intersection of University Avenue    •
and Main Street. An easy way to remember east-west routes
is to remember the word "APRIL," since the letters in that       Butler Plaza east of I-75 at Archer Road, you’ll find Target,
word (except "I") represents a route that runs in an east-west   Wal-Mart, Lowe’s, OfficeMax and Best Buy. Butler Plaza is also
direction. Avenues "A", Place "P", Roads "R", Lanes "L".         home to many restaurants: T.G.I. Fridays, Texas Roadhouse,
Routes running north south are Streets, Ways, Drives, and        Olive Garden, The Outback, Ale House, Rafferty's, Hop's,
Terraces (SWDT).                                                 Checkers, Chili's and Taco Bell.
•                                             •
                                                                 Recreational Places to Visit in Gainesville
                                                                 There are many places for camping, cycling, canoeing,
Bus Service: RTS provides free bus service around campus
                                                                 kayaking, climbing, hiking, swimming, snorkeling, baseball,
and the city for students with a valid UF-ID. You can pickup
                                                                 basketball etc.
the schedule from the buses or from any of the UF libraries.
Cab Service: There are a number of cab services in
Gainesville many of which are on 24 hours. Their contact         Houses of Worship in Gainesville
information can be found on websites like Google Maps or         •
Yahoo local.                                                         religion

Driving License: It can be obtained from Florida Department      City and State Resources:
of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. International driving      •
license and other National Licenses are also valid within        •
•    352-955-2111
                                                                 Health Care:
                                                                 After moving into your new apartment, make sure you locate
Inter City/Airport Shuttles: Bus service and shuttle service     and understand the route to the nearest emergency center.
is available to nearby cities and airports.                      Most of the hospitals have 24 hours emergency clinics.
Greyhound Buses                                                  • : North FL Regional
•    352-376-5252                                                • : UF Student Health Center
•                                           • : Shands Health Care
Signature Shuttle
FAQs                                                              What is the graduate student lounge?
                                                                  It is a common area accessible to all CISE graduate students
UF-CISE Computing Facilities:                                     with a code (3154*). The room number is E468 located on
                                                                  the 4th floor. It has a microwave, two refrigerators and a few
What is a Gatorlink account and where can I get it?               couches and chairs.
All enrolled UF students can create a Gatorlink account online,
at the CIRCA labs or at The UF Computing Help Desk in CSE         How do I get access to the department labs during
E214 (2nd floor) or CSE E520 (5th floor). You need to have        weekends? Can I get keys to the main door?
your UF Gator1 card for identification. A GatorLink account       Only students that are assigned an office space (generally
provides a e-mail address, where official        TAs, RAs) can get the keys to the main door. However, CSE
university communications are sent. GatorLink also offers         114 is open 24 hours (swipe access), and so the door on the
access to a variety of campus computing services at no cost,      first floor is always open.
in addition to fee-based services. Free GatorLink services
include email and web space. For details, refer to: GatorLink     Financial Facilities:
                                                                  What are the banks close to campus?
What is a CISE account? How can I get it?
                                                                  There is Campus Credit Union that is quite close to campus
All eligible students can get a CISE account which gives you
                                                                  (on SW 5th Avenue), Bank of America on University Avenue
access to the computers in the public labs of the CISE
                                                                  and Wachovia in the Reitz Union.
department. It also provides access to an email account, disk
space and web space. Once you register for courses in CISE,
                                                                  Will I get a credit card / check book immediately?
you can create your own account by logging in to one of the
                                                                  Generally, when you open an account, you get temporary
sun terminals in the CSE 114 lab. Remember to check for
                                                                  checks to use till you get your checkbook in the mail. Many
swipe access for E114 (problems: email
                                                                  banks also give you a credit card with a small limit generally
                                                                  under $500. This credit card, along with paying your other
                                                                  bills such as rent, utilities, phone, etc. on time, helps you in
What are the labs in CISE?
                                                                  building a good credit history which can then be used for
Public Lab: E114 (windows, sun): 24 x 7. Reservable: E113,
                                                                  getting other credit cards.
E116 (linux), E115 (windows)
                                                                  What are the modes of fee payment?
                                                                  Fees can be paid through cash, check or credit card or EFT
What is the print quota?
                                                                  (online payment through checking account). The credit card
•  There are 2 types of printers (Public – E114 and
                                                                  payment facility incurs a surcharge.
   Restricted – all other printers)
•  Students have a print quota per month which can be
                                                                  Are there any ATMs on campus?
   checked by the command ‘pquota’ on unix
                                                                  Yes, there is a Wachovia ATM at the hub and a Bank of
•  Quota p.m: 100 (Public printer), 150 (restricted printer)
                                                                  America and Campus Credit Union ATM in the Reitz Union.
Is buying a laptop necessary?
                                                                  What is direct deposit? How do I set it up, if I have an
It is not essential because there are adequate computing
facilities in the department. But it always helps to have your
                                                                  Direct deposit implies that you don’t get your payment check
own system to work at, especially on days you cannot go to
                                                                  mailed to you; rather it is directly deposited in your bank
                                                                  account. Generally, you just need to provide your bank
                                                                  account number to the main office and that will help you get
Where can I find used desktops or computer
                                                                  it set up.
Besides craigslist (, UF Surplus
                                                                  What are my student health insurance options?
( is another good source of getting
                                                                  There are three insurance companies that provide plans
cheap computer stuff.
                                                                  approved by UF, namely, Scarborough Inc., PSI, and ICS.
                                                                  From spring 2007, UF has started paying insurance for all TAs
CISE Department Facilities:                                       and RAs through GatorGradCare Plan. If you have an
                                                                  assistantship, you must register for the GatorGrad to receive
Locations?                                                        the benefits.
•   TA Offices: E309
•   Department office, Coffee Club, Mailboxes: E301               How do I deposit money on my Gator1 card?
•   CISE Grad Office (Student Services Center): E401              Go to and use your credit card to
•   Graduate student lounge: E468 (3154*)                         deposit money on the Gator1 card. If you do not have a credit
•   Seminars: E305 / E404 / E440                                  card yet, you can go to the UF Bookstore ID center and
                                                                  deposit money on your card using cash/check.
I have a fee waiver granted, but my ISIS account
shows that there is some payment due (or) I am not                When and how do I file my taxes? Are there any
getting my paychecks on time. What do I do?                       workshops to assist me?
Email to                                     Taxes are filed usually in March each year, although the
                                                                  deadline is 15th April. The sooner you file your taxes, the
How can I get a locker / mailbox?                                 sooner you get the return. Yes, the Law school holds many
•  Lockers – only for TAs (course material storage)               workshops to assist students with their taxes. Also, for
•  Mailbox – RAs and TAs can get mailboxes at E301                international students, the International Center holds these
                                                                  workshops in Spring each year.
What is the CISE Coffee Club?
The department office maintains a coffee club by honor            What is credit history, why do I need it, how do I build
system. You can sign up for it at E-301. Coffee costs from        it?
~50 cents a cup and a monthly bill is issued.
Credit history is a record of all of your payments made to          nights too, from Fall 2006) in the Reitz Union from 6:30pm-
utilities, health and car insurance, and credit card companies,     2am (
as well as the rent/mortgage payments. Usually, the records
indicate payments made for the last 5 years. Credit history         What are ‘leisure courses’? How can I register for
may be needed when renting from some property                       them?
management companies, or getting a good credit line for a           Leisure courses are conducted for students to learn new skills
major credit card, leasing cars, or during loan applications for    / develop new hobbies. A variety of courses are offered
education or any other purposes. If your are an International       (music, quilting, bartending, martial arts, tennis, etc). To
student, you have no credit history to begin with and so you        register,                       go                        to:
may notice some credit card companies may turn down your            (
applications early on. As you live here for a year or two, you
start building credit history. One of your first credit cards is    What are Student Legal Services (SLS)?
issued by your bank. Make those payments on time. Always            SLS is a professional legal office that provides free legal
remember to pay your GRU, telephone bills, your credit card         assistance            to             the           students
bills, your rent, etc. on time. Every single late payment is        (
recorded, remember to keep track of all due payments, and
never default on any of them. You can get your free credit          What is the Student Health Care Center (SHCC)?
report     from    a   bunch    of   places,   one    of   them     SHCC provides subsidized health care to students                                    (

                                                                    What is the Career Resource Center (CRC)?
UF Facilities                                                       CRC guides students about employment opportunities and
                                                                    conducts a career fair twice a year for campus placements
What is myUFl?
Central login for UF-related resources – Timesheets, gator
                                                                    What are the dining facilities around campus?
tickets, CRC etc.
                                                                    •  At Reitz Union :
                                                                       (Food Court, Freshens, Home Zone, Java City, Noodle
Is the bus service to campus free for students?
                                                                       Bar, Subway, Taco Bell, The Orange and Brew, Wendy’s,
RTS is the local bus service and it is free for all students with
a Gator1 ID card.
                                                                    •  Other places on campus: Shands, little hall express, the
                                                                       hub, browards dining
How do I register courses?
                                                                    •  University Ave : Pita Pit, Chipotle, Starbucks, Steamers
Using – Remember to get your holds
(Insurance, financial, immunization etc) cleared first. Register
                                                                    What are Hare-Krishna Lunches?
                                                                    Krishna Lunch serves fresh vegetarian lunches, on Campus in
How do I get around campus?
                                                                    front of Library West during regular semesters in between
Arm yourself with a campus map. Maps are available online or
                                                                    11:30 am and 1.30 pm for $3 per person.
for free at the library or Reitz Union. You can also take the
Campus Circulators which run connecting the different parts
                                                                    What is
of the campus. If you think you are lost, a bus driver will
                                                           is a delivery service through which you can
always help you find your way to your destination. Never
                                                                    order food from any of the participating restaurants. The cool
hesitate to ask.
                                                                    thing about it is that every member from your party can order
                                                                    food from a different restaurant, and you get it delivered to
What are the UF library facilities?
                                                                    your door. There is some service charge for this convenience
UF has over 10 libraries, related to different areas. The
Marston Science Library, located opposite CISE provides
access to e-journals through automatic login from any
                                                                    What are personal safety measures provided for
machine on the UF network or off campus through VPN
                                                                    •   SNAP provides nightly escorts anywhere on campus to
                                                                        persons on request till 3 am. Students may request a
What are the recreational facilities available free to
                                                                        walking escort or a ride with SNAP via telephone at 392-
                                                                        SNAP                                         (392-7627)
The Division of Recreational Sports provides many facilities
for on-campus recreation, namely, 3 fitness facilities, 9 fields,
                                                                    •   University Police department (UPD) provides a lot of
2 pools, 6 outdoor court facilities and a gym.
                                                                        safety tips:

Where do I park on campus? How do I obtain the                      Housing Facilities:
parking decal?
You can purchase a parking decal to park at designated areas        Do I live on-campus or off-campus?
on campus during restricted hours (7:30 am to 4:30 pm), but         On-campus housing is typically hard to get, although you get
it     does     not     guarantee     a     parking     spot.       utilities and cable, internet included with it, which is a good
( There’s also         plus. You apply for on-campus housing which puts your name
anytime (but rather expensive parking) available in the Reitz       on the list. They will communicate with you once they find
Union underground parking lot. Parking in most areas is free        accommodation for you. You typically have two weeks to
after 4:30 p.m.                                                     accept or deny. The important thing to remember is that they
                                                                    don’t do this only at the start of every semester. So, you may
What are ‘Gatornights’? When/Where is it? Is it free for            get a notification about an available apartment in October,
all UF students?                                                    but by that time you may have already found a place to live
Gatornights is a program offering a free movie, popcorn, soda       and signed a lease. So, it’s a little tricky. Off campus is not
and activities to all UF students with a valid Gator1 card.         tricky in that sense but you usually have to pay for your
Gator Nights takes place almost every Friday night (Saturday
utilities, cable and internet separately from your rent. The key   owns one come with you. Feel free to take the car to a
is finding an apartment on a good bus route.                       mechanic to see if there’s any immediate work that needs to
                                                                   be done, and this may help you negotiate on the price.
What is the typical rent for an apartment?
Typically, you would pay around USD 400-600 per month for
a 1-bedroom apartment and about $500-800 p.m. for a 2-
bedroom apartment. Rent varies based on a lot of things such
as facilities, location, bus service, etc.

Is water and electricity included in the rent?
Generally water is included but not electricity.

Where can I buy inexpensive furniture?
From other students or from thrift stores (There is one on
13th St South of 16th Ave) or Goodwill opposite Kangaroo gas
station on SW 34th street.

What are the contract/ lease terms for an apartment?
These are legally binding documents stating that you’ll pay
your rent etc. on time for the duration of lease/ contract. This
may also include additional conditions. Be sure to read it
carefully. Also, you can make use of the free Student Legal
Services and have them review a lease before you sign it.

How do I find an apartment?
• In addition, there are usually many signs posted
   everywhere on campus from people looking for a
   roommate or a sublease.

How do I find roommates?
•  UFIC Bulletin board (
•  Craigslist, friends, mailing lists
•  “Apartment Hunters” on SW 13th and Univ. Avenue also
   does roommate matching. There are many signs posted
   on campus from people looking for roommates. If you
   have an apartment and are looking for a roommate, you
   can post these signs outlining what facilities the
   apartment/room has.

Jobs and Internships

What is OPS? What is FTE? How much can I work part
F1 Visa students are allowed to On-Campus only. OPS
positions are part time job on-campus positions. You can find
jobs online on (pretty effective website). FTE is
Full Time Equivalent (that amounts to 40hrs of work per
week). Full time students can work not more than 0.5 FTE
i.e., 20hrs per week. We advise you to be patient in your on
campus job search, sooner or later almost everyone makes it
to a decent on campus job.

Where do I look for internships and jobs besides Career
Resource Center?
CRC is a great resource for career info in all aspects though
one can apply online to a lot of great companies.


How do I get a good used car?
Generally, used cars are sold very fast in Gainesville, many
students are always eager to get their hands on them. There
are some car dealers on Main Street, like Wage Raulerson,
Gatorland Toyota, etc. that can give you a good deal. More
frequently, people use the Saturday’s Gainesville Sun to
locate private owners who can give them a good deal.
Whenever you go to look at a car, have someone who already

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