i, too, am a new member, so i guess we can have this conversation in a crowd :-) i'll take your questions in order.
no, most clinicals were at st. v, but we also went to the state mental health hospital in las vegas, the va in abq, unmh, and several community experiences like healthcare for the homeless, following a diabetes specialist, following a wound care specialist, a day of rounds with a hospice agency. a few students, though not me, went to presbyterian.
yes, i believe my clinical experience helped me find a job. i made that the focus of my resume, so it was unavoidable. however, it was not through connections made at clinicals that i landed a job.
as far as difficulty finding a job, i have been extremely fortunate. my prior career was hr/recruiting, so i had no problem just busting into offices and asking for work. i just graduated in august, took nclex at first available date and was granted my license on 9/1/11. i blanketed sf in resumes and knocked on doors like a stalker. i had 1 interview for a job i didn't want and didn't even get a courtesy phone call afterwards telling me i wasn't selected. after that, i tracked down the manager and director of the unit i really really really wanted to work at and, per my new boss, sheer tenacity got me the job. on the other hand, i have not heard of any of my other graduating class getting a job yet. many have not taken the nclex yet, and a few are really really close to working. summary: it's a mix, timing and tenacity help a lot!
the school schedule was not always consistent. classes are typically 2-2.5 days per week, clinicals 1 full day, and lab work is sporadic but almost every week. i treated it like a full time job and used my "regular business hours" outside of class/clinical to do school work. many people did work part time. i did not and i think that immense luxury afforded me the time/sanity to pull good grades and keep stress minimal.
yes, i live in sf. i actually live within walking distance of sfcc, but i lived here before applying for school :-)
fellow students?? coolest, smartest bunch of colleagues i've ever had. particularly in the accelerated program, there are only 12 of us (8 normally, but we had some exceptional circumstances for this class) and to be in the program you have to have a ba or bs already. so, the result is a batch of folks from very different backgrounds, but all starting a new career, professional, competitive, really dynamic folks. at graduation, one of the speakers read our list of accomplishments and it was breath-taking to hear what we've all done in our lives.
hope that helps. feel free to fire more questions at me. i start my job in less than 2 weeks, so i am free free free until then!!!