Wednesday, December 15, 2010

(Not)On the road - 9: The Homefront - You. See. El. A

Last installment of the series
Part 7(Harvard, Boston) is here and part 8(WashU, St. Louis) is here.

So as you can see from the title, not really a on the road post. Well technically, I was on the road. For 12 minutes, which is about the time it takes to walk from my apartment to the admissions office at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. That's quite a mouthful. You'd think a guy donating hundreds of millions of dollars to have the naming rights to a medical school would be kind enough to call it by something short and sweet. Like Dreamworks school of medicine.

The medical school, for those not in the know, is located in one of the nicest parts of Los Angeles in an area called Westwood. The famed beaches of Santa Monica and Malibu are not very far, which in LA parlance could mean anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours. Bel-Air hugs one part of the larger UCLA campus, and Beverly Hills is a stone's throw away (if you are Michael Vick). Pretty safe neighborhood and unless you do something incredibly stupid, you can walk around freely even at odd hours of the night. I have done it, with no problems (the waking around, not the doing something stupid, obviously). If you are into that sort of thing, you can spot multiple celebrities from multiple fields. A lot of my friends brag about seeing the Chicago Bulls or Adam Sandler in the gym playing basketball.

Now it is no secret that the med school building is nowhere as fancy as some of the others across the country. It is located in some cramped corridors of the ancient Center for Health Sciences building, sharing space with the dental school. To compensate for this, the spanking new Ronald Reagen UCLA medical center opened up just across the street a couple of years ago.

This much, I knew. What I didn't know was the med school has a first-class top-notch A-grade student lounge that looks like a boring arboretum from the outside. This swank piece of work boasts multiple flat screen TVs, a Wii console and ping-pong tables. Our tour guides touted its exclusivity and its opulence quite a bit during the tour. The library is equipped with an exclusive study lounge as well. The school has the added benefit of being surrounded by multiple research buildings. Keep your friends close, your research closer - as the famous saying goes.

All in all, a damn fine med school.

Anyway, that's the end of the on the road posts. Hope you (and I mean my one and a half readers) enjoyed them. As the looney tunes used to say: That's all folks!