Champaign-Urbana (CU), home to the University of Illinois, is a perfect blend of small town and micro-urban environment. Its affordability and high quality of life make it an attractive place to spend a year - or a lifetime.
The scale of the cities makes it a great place to walk, bike, or bus. Even if you choose to live on the “edge of town,” your longest commute time by car would be about 15 minutes from your door to the College. The ease of getting around the cities gives you more time to do things other than studying!
CU is known for having something for everyone. Whether you have an interest in cultural opportunities, sporting events, outdoor recreation, or volunteerism, there is always something to do. Considered a tour destination for artists travelling between New Orleans and Chicago, CU is often treated to outstanding music and other events in a much more intimate setting than would be offered in a larger city.
From Illini basketball, to gymnastics, to volleyball, there are more games than you can keep up with – and plenty of opportunities to play, not just watch. If you enjoy outdoor recreation such as water sports or hiking, CU is 30 minutes from a national scenic river and park to the east, and about 20 minutes from a large county park to the west. Southern Illinois offers even more choices for outdoor enthusiasts.
The campus has exceptional recreational facilities within walking distance of the College of Medicine offering everything from yoga, to squash, to indoor soccer. Students often organize co-rec med school teams for both indoor and outdoor sports. Runners and cyclists will find that there are plenty of scenic places to run or ride.
In addition to the many community-based volunteer opportunities, there are several organizations run by medical students. In particular, Avicenna Community Health Center and HeRMES (two student-run free clinics for the underinsured) and Campana de Salud (a health fair and clinic targeted to the Latino community) offer excellent opportunities to learn and serve.
For more information about student life in the Champaign-Urbana area, this web page provides links to several resources:Student Life.