Finding the Basics

Bloomington view
Have fun. Med school is difficult, but you don’t have to stop being yourself. Exercise, take time with your friends, or take up yoga. Whatever you do, don’t stop your outside interests. You might even want to start a new hobby while in Bloomington.
Hints about Bloomington
  • Take advantage of all that Bloomington has to offer (even though you will be busy with med school).

  • Get IU Basketball Tickets if you are a fan -they go on sale at the Assembly Hall ticket office the week before school starts -go early.

  • The farther you live from campus the cheaper the rent.

  • Take advantage of the beautiful scenery. Go to the Hoosier National Forest, Griffy Lake (canoe rental), Lake Monroe, Lake Lemon, or over to Nashville in the fall.

Community Living Guide

One of the first places to look for information on the community would be the Convention and Visitior’s Bureau website at Just pretend you’re in from out of town and not a med student staying for two years if you need to. Another great resource will be your second year classmates and even your faculty! One of the advantages of being at Bloomington for the first two years will be how approachable the faculty are, and remember, they are residents of the community too and eventually leave Jordan Hall to live real lives (or so we are told).

Other good general community resources include,
and BloomingPedia, like Wikipedia but just for Bloomington at


The major mall in town is College Mall, operated by Simon Malls. It is located on East 3rd Street and is in the major eastern commercial area of town. Attached to College Mall is a Target that is somewhere in between a regular and super target in that it has a limited grocery section.

By driving west on 3rd street past State Road 37 one can find the major western commercial area of town. A WalMart Supercenter and Sam’s Club can be found by taking State Road 37 south one exit to the 2nd street exit and going west- it’s huge and hard to miss.

Outlet shopping can be found in Edinburgh, IN by taking 3rd street east until it becomes State Road 46 and travelling to Columbus IN, then going north on I-65 until exit signs indicate the Edinburgh Shopping Outlets (it’s hard to miss the signs). Many students go here to help build their professional wardrobe at a discount.

College Mall (includes Target)
2894 E 3rd St
Bloomington, IN 47401
(812) 339-3054

3585 W State Road 45
Bloomington, IN 47403
(812) 333-0038

Edinburg Outlets
11622 N.E. Executive Drive
Edinburgh, IN


There are two Kerasotes Theater locations in Bloomington- One on West 3rd St next to State Road 37 and one on College Mall Road south of College Mall. An independent film series is run on and nearby campus called TheRyder with showings at places like Bear’s Place, the School of Fine Arts building, etc. There are also free films shown every Friday and Saturday night at the Whittenberger Auditorium in the Memorial Union - just show your student ID!


Some students choose to turn to nature for respite from studying. The city of Bloomington maintains a full list of public parks found at their website, and selecting “Parks and Recreation.” Facilities include parks, public pools, nature trails, and more.


The chamber of commerce website has a complete listing of Bloomington restaurants, but the basics are that large chain restaurants are centered around the east and west commercial districts and there are many local restaurants located near Kirkwood Ave/downtown, west of campus.

An option for those that like to order out is which has a listing of all delivery restaurant menus- you can even place orders online!

Popular places to eat on campus include the basement of the Herman B Wells Library, the Memorial Union, the food cart area in the atrium of Jordan Hall, any restaurant near Kirkwood avenue on the west side of campus, or any of the places to eat near the intersection of Jordan and 3rd st. Many students opt to pack a lunch and keep it in the freezer/fridge located in the medical student lounge in the basement of Jordan hall.


Your student ID will allow you to ride any campus or city bus for free- a list of routes and times can be found at

Student parking permits may be purchased at the Parking Services website although parking options can be limited for students not also working as staff via AI positions. Many medical students instead opt to park for free at the Bryan Park lot south of campus and walk north to Jordan Hall.

For the classes meeting at the hospital, many students opt to park in the parking lot of Kroger on 2nd street west of campus and walk the two blocks to the hospital. No one last year was ever towed or received a parking violation doing this to my knowledge. The hospital staff ask that you not use the residential parking spots around the hospital because when students have done that the residents cannot use their own parking spaces. No one last year ever suffered bodily harm from walking the two blocks to my knowledge.

Grocery Stores

The major grocery stores in the area are Kroger and Marsh- both have locations on the east and west side commercial districts. The closest to campus would be the east side, with Marsh on East 3rd street and Kroger on College Mall Road south of College Mall. An O’Malia’s is also located on College Mall Road across from College Mall. There are a few international grocers located around town, one of the more notable being Sahara Mart on the corner of 2nd and Walnut Ave. Bloomingfoods is a grocery co-op that carries more organic and vegetarian options that can be found on East 3rd street near College Mall.

Religious Services

A fairly comprehensive listing of religious services can be found at the IDS website located at

Also orthodox services are held at All Saints Orthodox Christian Church

Jewish students can get information about religious services from the Hillel center,

Muslim students can find information about worship services via the Islamic Center of Bloomington


Mail to be delivered can be dropped off at the medical science office if a mailbox is not convenient to a student.

There are two post offices near campus, one within walking distance of Jordan hall and one closer to the east side of town.

3210 E 10th St -- (812) 331-4552
206 E 4th St -- (812) 334-4030

For shipping packages and the like, there is a UPS store located in the Memorial Union, directly inside the doors next to the circle drive.


Why pay for furniture when you can get it for free? Try for the Bloomington Craigslist directory- you can find some pieces of furniture for cheap or even free if you transport it. The IDS and the Herald-Times also run classifieds but they pale in comparison to what Craigslist has to offer.

Phone Service

For local phone service- AT&T - Call 1-800-742-8771 or check their website at and selecting resident. Phone service can also be acquired through Comcast as a packaged deal with cable and internet access.

However, if a student has a cell phone they may find local phone service to be a poor use of money. If you are not sure, consider signing up for it for a short time and keep track of how many legitimate calls are received/placed vs unsolicited phone calls


Please contact landladies/lords or property management services before getting utilities activated. There may be special directions specific to the property that you might need to know about. Also find out what utilities are covered in your lease so as not to pay for things covered in rent.

Electric -- Duke -- 1-800-521-2232 -- 1-800-521-2232

Gas -- Vectren -- 1-800-227-1376

Water -- City of Bloomington Utilities -- 812-349-3930

Cable -- Comcast -- 1-888-375-4888

Students should ask the owner of their property as to the policy of trash removal. Students responsible for their own trash removal should ask owners the day of trash collection by the city. All trash must have a “trash tag.” These are yellow stickers that cost $2 at a grocery store (Just ask the cashier for however many “trash tags” you need). The rule is one tag per container or large bag. If your neighborhood has recycling collected, this will happen every other trash pickup day. If not, but you would still like to recycle, there is a recycling/reuse center located at 3400 South Walnut where you may drop off separated materials.

Internet is a separate beast- Boradband access can be purchased through Comcast and DSL service can be purchased through AT&T (though you must also pay for local phone service). Students that have computers with functioning dial-up modems (fewer and fewer newer machines) can also use the IU modem pool, more information at

While it is not required that you have internet access at your residence, it will make school a lot easier considering that email is the primary form of communication and many classes will have internet-dependent components, like Virtual Microscope slides, course materials on ANGEL, coordination of group work, etc.


A popular option for students is the Indiana University Credit Union, located in the Memorial Union inside the circle drive. This bank is the only bank with an ATM inside of the Herman B Wells Library. There are bank locations around Bloomington and even in Indianapolis, so that when moving for 3rd year you can keep the same account.

Old National
W 3rd St
(812) 330-2670 3305

Fifth Third
200 S Washington St
(812) 339-1131

2642 E 3rd St
(812) 331-4410

Monroe Bank
210 E Kirkwood Ave
(800) 319-2664

People’s State Bank
200 E Kirkwood Ave
(812) 333-2228

635 N Barnhill Dr | Indianapolis, IN 46202 | Ph: (317) 274-1965 | Fax: (317) 274-4309