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Frazzles

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  1. I attended the S&D review on June 15th; the test is scheduled for July 20th. There were 53 people at the review. People I spoke with had attended the open house in April, like myself, and the one in May. There may have been people from earlier open houses but I can't verify that. Apparently, there is another S&D review scheduled for June 22nd. There's a good amount of material to absorb. However, according to the instructors, there is no need to understand the concept behind the definitions for this test, which makes things a little easier. The instructor said in the old days, they only gave them 3 weeks to study before taking the test. He said if you didn't know it in 3 weeks, you wouldn't know it in 5 weeks. I took this point to heart. My goal is to memorize all the signals and all the definitions in 3 weeks and review the last 2 weeks. This goes against my usual study style which is to cram. Cramming is not going to work here, that's for certain. What the instructors said that I found most disturbing was the high percentage of no shows to the test and the the low percentage of people who actually pass the S&D test. The instructors mentioned that only 4 people passed the last test. This tells me you need to know the signals and definitions as well as you know your own name if you expect to pass this test. They said they want to start a phase 1 class in around 6 weeks. My guess is they're looking for a few more people from the 6/15 + 6/22 reviews to pass the test next month before starting up a phase 1 class.
  2. Sorry, I confused Phase 1 with the S&D. I didn't get an invite to the S&D.
  3. I went to the Open House in April, passed the tests and had the interview, I see that people from that Open House have been invited to Phase 1 training starting in May and another Open House is scheduled in May. Does this mean that those of us not invited to Phase 1 training from the April Open House should not expect to ever receive an invitation to Phase 1 training?
  4. Great blog, read every post from page 1, this is my first post. List # - low 3xx Received first PE letter mid-May but deferred. Received second PE letter end of October to report 11/2 for the 11/26 class. Completed PE and received email a few days later for the medical on 11/9. Reported for the medical and was put on medical hold - very disappointing. Came back on 11/16 with copies of required medical tests and a letter from my doctor and was removed from medical hold. Was hired for the 12/17 class as the 11/26 class had filled up. A couple of observations for those folks who will eventually go through this hiring process: 1. The 5th floor at 180 Livingston appears very chaotic - there are dozens of people there for a variety of reasons. But there is method to the madness. It works but requires a lot of patience on our part. I got in at 7:00 the first day and got out around 5:30. 2. The process is incredibly paper intensive - a complete lack of automation except for a couple of computerized medical questionnaires. You're writing a lot of the same info over and over repeatedly. Its just the way it is. 3. Don't wait for your PE letter (like I did) to get your required documents in order. Have your drivers license, social security card, high school diploma or transcript, and birth certificate or passport ready to go. Make sure nothing is expired and don't bring copies because they won't accept them. 4. If you do go on medical hold, try and get it resolved quickly. I was told to return as soon as possible because they will not hold your place in the class, just like they didn't hold mine. One last thing, for what its worth - I was told by an HR person on the 5th floor that they call 200 people to fill 40 spots in a Train Operator class. This is probably because, as mentioned by others, people reject the offer, can't get the required documents straightened out, fail the drug test or can't pass the medical. For those of you with higher list numbers, my feeling is you will eventually be called probably sooner than you think, as long as the TA has need and budget.

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