u_raptor

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Hey all. I'm the person who interviewed at 18 schools. I figured I might as well be useful with all the info I compiled from my interview day, so here it is condensed into short reviews of each school. These rankings are based on interview day + opportunities afforded by the school. AMA!
Hopefully future applicants may be able to utilize some of this info somehow.

Vanderbilt - 10/10
Overall Impression: By far my favorite interview day. Admissions staff was extremely nice, knew my file. Lunch was OK. 2 interviewers.
Curriculum: Has a 1 year preclinical, with a special research year in place of a traditional MS3. However, the research year can be used to do anything from research to a subinternship. Extremely personalized curriculum (professional, research, and ‘college mentor), with weekly college meetings, a portfolio coach, and a special research meeting to ensure you find a publishable lab. Pass/Fail Clinical as well.
Wellness: Students were EXTREMELY happy, small class size (90 students), with low stress, and utilizes the college system. Vanderbilt also has a great focus on student wellness (students go on a retreat within the first couple months). Probably the most chill students besides Yale. Nashville is also just amazing, with a lot to do and a cheap(er) COL.
Quality of Campus: Building is new-er, and renovations are being done on a second one at the time of my interview. Hospital is right next door. Current medical building is very nice looking.

Mayo - 10/10
Overall Impression: Friendly atmosphere that comes with a smaller city (if you can even call it a city). Lunch is provided via a coupon to get whatever you want from the hospital cafeteria (which was very nice). Was caught of guard by one of my two interviewers, who asked me extremely tough (but good) Qs when everyone said the interview would be laidback.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical, with special selective time woven in. This selective time can be used from anything to exploring rural medicine to robotics. However, there is no dedicated vacation time (such as the summer), just selective time that can be used for breaks instead of credits. Be aware of mandatory attendance. No white coat, only suits.
Wellness: All the students loved it. Only complaints I was able to find were small scheduling issues such as anatomy going over. The dress code is apparently only really followed the first few weeks + patient visits. Students have access to an AMAZING gym.
Quality of Campus: Hosptial is EXTREMELY nice, was like a hotel lobby with a guy playing piano type deal. Whole downtown is connected via underground tunnels they call the “subway” to help with the searing cold of winter. Actual medical building felt a tad claustrophobic, classrooms lacked windows and light. Hospital makes up though.


Perelman - 10/10
Overall Impressions: My other top 3 school after interview day. Admissions faculty was nice and helpful with trying to find my way through the maze that is the UPenn medical center. Comparatively felt a LOT like JHU. Also got to see parts of their curriculum during the I day, such as ultrasound and interviewing an actor patient. Had sandwiches for lunch. Student and faculty interview.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical. UPenn has a LOT of resources, with at least 4 free clinics, and a variety of research opportunities. Very good pediatrics (if one is interested in that).
Wellness: Students are VERY nice, and the areas around UPenn can be very cheap COL wise (compared to NYC or other big cities). Utilizes a houses system, although students say it is not utilized much. Class size is a bit larger (150), but they use small group meetings of 7-9 to make students feel closer. Lot of students bike to the buildings.
Quality of Campus: Building was absolutely beautiful, with a lot of glass and sunlight.

JHU - 10/10
Overall Impressions: One of my top 3 schools following interview day. Only thing I didn’t like was the admissions faculty. Coming from a state school, I already felt out of the social circle compared to ivy leagues. Within the first fewe minutes the admissions dean ahd asked where we went, and started clicking with a Yale interviewee over which house they went to, which definitely made me feel pushed out of the group. Don’t worry about the whole “fishbowl” thing, just don’t say anything egregious while waiting for interviews. Had sandwiches for lunch. Student and faculty interview.
Curriculum: 1.5 preclinical. Has a very structured class heirarchy that utilizes colleges (30 students), macromolecules (15 students) and molecules (5 students) with mentors, throughout the 4 years. Smaller class of 120, but feels even smaller through this.
Wellness: Most students say crime isn’t a terrible issue in the area, and the school offers a free lyft service within a certain range to help with that. Cheaper COL than big cities, but keep in mind the stigma against Baltimore.
Quality of Campus: Absolutely beautiful buildings. Lots of sunlight and glass. Got to tour the original building (where the idea of “rounds” was supposedly made up). A lot of medical history.

Sinai - 9/10
Overall Impression: Was a good school, that I actually hadn’t really heard of until secondaries that I am now glad that I applied. Interview day was friendly with a very NYC touch (admissions staff had some attitude, not in a mean way though). Also got to talk to the medical school dean, which was nice and felt more important that way. Overall, the school was also very socially focused, more so than other schools I interviewed at (except for one other). Also for everyone that gets II late in the cycle, I got a December II for a late January interview, with a deferment in February and now an acceptance :). Two faculty or student and faculty interview.
Curriculum: Curriculum is a bit more dated, with a full 2 year preclinical. However, Sinai also provides special “flex time” of protected half days, which are typically used for research or electives. This may be different from some schools, where students have told me they are almost always done by 12. The buildings sit right between a very rich area of NYC and a historicall impoverished area of NYC, and so students get to see a lot of diversity. The clinical years are graded on a curve (ex only a certain number get honors, high pass, etc).
Wellness: Students were pretty laid back from what I saw, and friendly.
Quality of Campus: The medical school building is actually part of the hospital buildings, and the lobby + medical area is very nice. Be aware there is no actual “medical school building” for those that may care about that. It is part of the hospital and not a university after all.

Pritzker - 9/10
Overall Impressions: Great school, with a lot of oportunities. Possibly one of the friendliest interview days. Students would rotate through constantly to make sure we had people to talk to. Admissions faculty was also extremely friendly. Provided chicago deep dish for lunch. Our group didn’t get a tour, but instead had free time to walk around or sit in on classes. Three interviews - Student, faculty, and admissions staff.
Curriculum: 2 yr preclinical. Also was very structured for helping students find research (utilized what they called an “eharmony” letter research mentor match system). Being near an impoverished area, had a good diversity of patients and utilized free clinics.
Wellness: Students are very happy here, and the class is very small at 90 students. Alot of group events right from the start, and a special olympics-style competition with other UChicago schools.
QoC: I recommend visiting the glass domed library if one gets a chance, very cool. Didn’t get to tour for the most part, so I can’t comment beyond the medical school building and the library i checked out. Medical building seemed nice though, but lacking in sunlight a bit.

UVA - 8.5/10
Overall Impressions: Was one of my favorites in this score bracket. Loved charlottesville, which has a small town college feel to it. Admissions faculty was very nice, and it just felt like a right fit for me (even though they WL me RIP). I did come right as the hospital was dealing with some controversy in billing (which I suggest the curious look up). One of the best lunches I had, with a special interview and special events only dining hall being used that served a lot of very nice food. Two interviews, student and faculty or two faculty.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical, with a small group focus. 160 student class size, with a college system. Not too sure on research opportunities, has a free clinic. Have the option 3rd year of rotation at Inova Fairfax hospital if they so choose. Have a lot of good options, and good rural options as well if interested in that.
Wellness: Happy student body that seems to utilize the house system well. College town feel, UVA has a large emphasis on wellness.
QoC: Newly renovated building has a round rotunda style lecture hall (very cool) focused on small groups. Hospital is very nice, although everything is a tad bit of a walk compared to everything being condensed say in one building like Sinai.


Duke - 8/10
Overall Impressions: Great school. Admissions were friendly, and the curriculum is a huge draw here. Sandwiches for lunch, and is an MMI. Be aware of the LONG tour, especially if you come during the hot summer/fall seasons. You will be walking outside a lot. Smaller class size at about 120.
Curriculum: 1 year preclinical, with a research year in place of traditional MS3. As opposed to Vanderbilt, this does seem to be a strictly research oriented year. Obviously strong research opportunities, but I don’t recall any free clinics. Not very social issue oriented comparatively for those that want that (compared to say Sinai or BU).
Wellness: Students love it here, and Durham is EXTREMELY cheap. Some students say they even bought a house for the 4 years.
QoC: Beautiful buildings, Duke is a great college campus. Lots of classical architecture juxtaposed to modern medical buildings.




Dartmouth - 8/10
Overall Impressions: Loved the school’s small town feel. Community and environment was friendly, close, and the app trail is literally right at my footsteps. Dean was extreemly active in student wellness, and was easily a top choice to me. Ubers are hard to come by, extremely hard. 2 faculty interview for me.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical, and has several semester long courses on important topics newly added to the curriculum from what I recall. Didn’t have a college system iirc. You will need a car for rotations it seems like. They do have buses to help, but it is recommended to have a car it seems.
Wellness: Like I said, this was one of the happier schools I visited even beyond Vanderbilt or Yale. Everyone is close, and knows each other.
QoC: The actual medical building felt older (which makes sense), and had the more classic NE college look. The actual hospital was very nice, with glass, sunlight, and areas for the medical students to study or prepare.



NYU - 7/10
Overall Impressions: Keep free tuition in mind, but for the sake of the review I will not be including that in the rating. Was a nice school, but had some drawbacks imo. Interview day students very much had a “bro” culture around them, and the admissions wasn’t as friendly as some others. Sandwiches for lunch. MMI style interview.
Curriculum: 1.5 preclinicial, with world class sim centers. Has 3 different types of hospitals for exposure - VA, public safety net, and a private hospital. You will see a LOT of diversity in healthcare and patient populations. There are NO cadaveric dissections in the typical curriculum, only prosections. Has a college system called the “violet societies” that students do seem to utilize. Also has a 3 year MD program for those interested and absolutely know what they want to do.
Wellness: Students seemed happy, but like I said there was a bit of a bro culture about it. College system helps bring students closer together.
QoC: The hospitals can be very beautiful. Medical building itself didn’t seem like anything special. Has subsidized housing for students.


Case - 7/10
Overall Impressions: Very cool school, although a larger class size for me (215). Also was a bit drawnback by the 2 week intensive anatomy with 3D after, would rather take my time in it. Admissions was friendly. Student and faculty interview, sandwiches for lunch. Student host took me to a party lol.
Curriculum: 1.5 preclinical that is extremely case based focus with so called “IQ” sessions. Cleveland clinic is right next door, and students have a lot of opportunities to work in the system. Also have the option of a public hospital for rotations. Utilizes 3D dissection, but with a 2 week cadaveric intensive anatomy course beforehand.
Wellness: Everyone was happy and said they didn’t regret coming. Would be worried about getting close with the students though.
QoC: Holy Cow the newly built medical school building (which also houses dental, PA, etc) is STUNNING. Looks like something from a scifi medical show to be honest. TONS of glass, light, and white paint.

Wake - 6.5/10
Overall Impressions: EXTREMELY friendly admissions staff, and we got to talk to a variety of faculty such as the dean of medical education, which really helped solidify they think we are important. Very friendly students as well. CHICKFILA FOR LUNCH (!!!), MMI style interview. Overall a definitively good school.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical, with a free clinic in the main lobby and what seems like decent research opportunities. One student did tell me that the research opportunities at Wake aren't as strong as some others. You will need a car. Also utilizes a houses program at least for a place to hang out (didn’t hear too much about it being utilized in the curriculum). Does have some case based learning, but isn’t as big a focus. Also has a summer research program. Clinical years are NOT graded on a curve (ex, everyone can get honors in a group if they all meet the criteria).
Wellness:Students are very happy here, and don’t really complain too much. Say they don’t regret their choice. The area is also very nice being in Winston Salem. Mountains and beaches are both within driving distance. It does seem liek students do run out of things to do in WS eventually, as it is a smaller city.
QoC: Beautiful building that grew on me, a refurbished cigarette factory. Lots of large glass panes, and a really cool layout that has basically a sunroof in the middle with walkways going around it.

BU - 6.5/10
Overall Impressions: Very nice school. Admissions staff were friendly and very frank about the costs of the school (was probably one of if not the most expensive school I interviewed at in terms of COA). Sandwiches for lunch, only one interviewer. Be aware there is one interviewer (naturally the one I got) that is very hard on research questions, but apparently is also very fair in grading. Be aware when you are coming to interview there is one segment of the street crowded by a lot of addicts, etc. BU is located near a more impoverished area, and as such they have a huge focus on helping this demographic. They were probably the most social issue oriented school I interviewed at.
Curriculum: Kinda outdated 2 year preclinical, although they have a lot of electives, such as intro to surgery, to help students get acquainted to specialties. Also have the option of rotating at off campus sites, such as in rural areas or other parts of Boston, for those interested. BU gets a LOT of ER traffic.
Wellness: Extremely chill, helpful students. Larger class size (180-200 or so), and no house system to help make it feel smaller.
QoC: Building seemed a little older, not as nice as some other schools I interviewed at. However, the hospital was pretty nice (and has a huge ER dept).


UNC - 6/10
Overall Impressions: Loved the small town feel, but had an extremely large interview group (although not as large as Baylor, there were at least 40 students in the morning group, with another group coming in the afternoon). This jaded me for some reason. Didn’t feel as intimate as say Vanderbilt. Lack of an actual medical building was also a turn off for me (although they are building one that should be ready by 2024 for future applicants). Admissions wasn’t the friendliest. 1 student interview along with an MMI. Sandwiches for lunch.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical. Large class had an advisory system for mentors, but wasn’t very harped on by the admissions or students. Currently working on making lectures more step focused. Has two free clinics, and strong research opportunities.
Wellness: Students were very friendly and relaxed, happy. Definitely seems like student wellness is important here.
QoC: Like I said, no actual medical school building. They did, however, have a very nice college town campus. Lots of brick and steel, and the other medical buildings were very nice (lots of sunlight, etc).

Yale - 5/10
Overall Impressions: Chill school, you WILL need to fit in to the type they are looking for to be succesful here, and I got the feeling they interview to find that type. Look at curriculum for more info. Otherwise, admissions had a “we are Yale so come” feel. Three interviews - quick admission staff interview, a full student and full faculty interview. Sandwiches for lunch.
Curriculum: EVERYTHING is pass fail, even clinic. There are no clinic shelf exams, and the schedule is extremely flexible. You must be able to hold yourself accountable, and keep up with it all. There is no internal ranking, AOA, etc. The school very much treats you like “you are an adult, you should be able to handle it, now go do it” type of attitude. Know yourself if you decide to come here.
Wellness: Most chill students I met. Seriously. The area doesn’t seem to be the best (it is New Haven afterall), but there are things to do. There are also food trucks everyday in the Yale Medical area for lunch, which were actually pretty good.
QoC: Was not a huge fan of the campus. While the UG has the classical architecture, the medical school building had a 90’s outdated brick and cement feel to it. I also saw human poop in the lobby of the research building at one point.

Baylor - 4/10
Overall Impressions: Was ok. Extremely large interview group (at least 70), that kinda turned me off after having interviews with small groups. Inteviewers didn’t seem as focused on me (one looked at phone at one point). Two interviews, facutly and student, and sandwiches for lunch.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical. Has both the Taub safety net hospital, along with a private hospital and strong research through the Medical center.
Wellness: Larger class size (about 200 iirc), bit has a college system to make it feel smaller, along with ‘squads’. Students are very active and freindly. Houston is very nice and cheap from what I saw, especially compared to northern cities.
QoC: Campus building could look a bit nicer (see: JHU). Overall was nice, but a little older feel. The medical center is pretty big, so a lot of walking.

Brody (ECU) - 4/10
Overall Impressions: Great campus and friendly atmosphere, EXTREMELY primary care focused. Admissions had a very southern friendly attitude. Sandwiches for lunch, 2 faculty interviews.
Curriculum: 2 year preclinical, GRADED curriculum (which honestly is what brought the score down the most). Has some research opportunities, and is a level 3 hospital, so you see everything. It is a rural area, so keep in mind that is the main focus of the hospital.
Wellness: Students were a lot more stressed here than elsewhere, which I can 100% attribute to the graded curriculum. Brody does seem to be trying to work on fixing burnout/stress, but I think the curriculum inherently causes this. While they were stressed, they were very friendly in helping interviewees with questions and figuring things out.
QoC: Great building, although since it is rural there isn’t much to do in the area besides sleep, eat, and work. Students didn’t really complain about the area though, and I for one kinda prefer that type of area.

GT - 3/10
Overall Impressions: Was not a fan, and did not vibe with the school at all. Admissions seemed disinterested in the presentations they showed us, only got to talk to 4 students (this interview was directly after Chicago where I talked with maybe 50% of one of their class by the end of it). Students weren’t too interested in the school. 203 student class size. One interview (student for me). Got to have a nice lunch at one of their hotel/buffets though.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical. One free clinic, HOYAS, that as of my interview was not running anymore. Seemed kinda disorganized for finding research, but matched a lot into surgical specialties.
Wellness: Faculty had a very “come here bc we are Gtown” feel. Students seemed stressed.
QoC: Claustrophobic buildings with lack of sunlight. Lobby is beautiful (marble, columns) etc, but rest of the school seemed the opposite. Library was a concrete basement.
 
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FutureSurgical

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So happy you got to interview at all these amazing schools. I know you interviewed at UTHSC. What did you think of it there? ;)
 
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u_raptor

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So happy you got to interview at all these amazing schools. I know you interviewed at UTHSC. What did you think of it there? ;)
That was actually one of the ones I withdrew from, as by that point my travel costs were too much :(
 
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@u_raptor thanks for sharing.

Since your II success was even super impressive for SDN, For future students, what about your application do you think made it so successful?
...Did you have gap years?
...Did you have elite experience like D1 athlete, military and still demonstrate academeic/mcat high success?
...Did you have URM or demonstrated hardship?
...Did you have specific super impressive ECs or Research?
...other attribute?

Managing others' future expectations—- despite uRaptor’s II and multiple Acceptances success, even the most competitive students have to recognize the likely checkered II and out outcomes that occur. (ie u_Raptor’s 31/44 II, 3/18 As).
 
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u_raptor

Victim of the Mayo bamboozle
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@u_raptor thanks for sharing.

Since your II success was even super impressive for SDN, For future students, what about your application do you think made it so successful?
...Did you have gap years?
...Did you have elite experience like D1 athlete, military and still demonstrate academeic/mcat high success?
...Did you have URM or demonstrated hardship?
...Did you have specific super impressive ECs or Research?
...other attribute?

Managing others' future expectations—- despite uRaptor’s II and multiple Acceptances success, even the most competitive students have to recognize the likely checkered II and out outcomes that occur. (ie u_Raptor’s 31/44 II, 3/18 As).
I'd be happy to answer these, I really hope all this info can help future apps.

So: I am as trad as it gets, no gap year, straight through. I am from a state school (so future apps, there is hope for us!!). I don't have any "elite" experiences like athletics or military. I am Hispanic, but I put both Hisp and white on my app for reasons. I haven't demonstrated any hardships.

I honestly think my stats are what helped me so much. In terms of EC I was mostly pretty cookie cutter (hospital volunteering, tutoring, club leadership positions, free clinic, research). There are a couple outliers though: I went on a month stint to Peru to help a free clinic there (through an organization centered specifically on Peru, that built that clinic). My research was a bit hybrid, I did some brain cancer research (with poster), which I got a summer grant for. But I also did research work on alligators + toxicology. Outside of that, my ECs are pretty standard.

In terms of my post I outcomes, I really think I interview terribly. TO ALL FUTURE APPS - prep as MUCH as you can for interviews. Practice with people (not your family)!! Not just yourself!!!
 
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..

Congratulations uraptor on all your IIs and fantastic acceptances! Clearly I don’t really have any questions but it was fun to read your evaluations!
 
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u_raptor

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Wow, thanks for this master post, I would have loved to have been able to read this before my interview!!

Rankings are all subjective of course but I thought I’d add abit from my experience..

-UPenn: Didn’t have a tour at all. On our sheet they just recommended we “walk around and explore the campus on our free time.” Which no one did, because we didn’t know where to go.

-Sinai: Good interview day. Did they play that super cringey Hamilton (I think?) parody video by the med students? None of us interviewers knew what to say when it was done...

-Yale: Human feces? Really?!?:eek:
Bizarrely, this was the only school that didn’t let us in anatomy lab under any circumstance (even with cadavers covered). The very next school I interviewed at let us tour anatomy as students were literally dissecting the face/head of their cadaver.

-NYU: Did not like this day. The faculty presenting on the school was obsessed with focusing on NYU’s rank increase and flat out said it has been their mission to raise money for tuition/ focus on rank improval. The students I talked to were blatantly disapproving of how funds were not allocated to need based (Few are disadvantaged students here? Heard this anecdotally but did not fact check) and they said everyone here knows the school was simply trying to buy out the most competitive students. The whole day gave me a negative vibe. That said, I do realize how incredibly appealing free tuition is.

-Pritzker: loved the sense of closeness and community emulated by the student body! Expected with such a small class size.

Congratulations uraptor on all your IIs and fantastic acceptances! Clearly I don’t really have any questions but it was fun to read your evaluations!
LOL completely serious on the feces. And yes, Sinai played the video hahahaha
 

u_raptor

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Bruh... you do realize you only get to attend one right? All that wasted money.

F
As you can see by my II->A rate, I suck at interviews, so it might have been the only way I ended up with an A to go to all these :laugh:
 
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mmchick

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Congrats on all the interviews, outstanding validation for what I'm sure was metal-grinding, hard work that got you those. I didn't interview at BUSM, but having lived in Boston for a couple years, I can definitely confirm that BMC-area struggles significantly with addiction patients and it might appear to be more impoverished as there's a huge homeless shelter near the entrance to those hospitals. That being said, MA has pretty socialized and high standard lower income healthcare systems in place, so a lot of the hospitals in the area will have this sort of feel (Tufts Medical Center, MGH, etc.) with, what I'm sure, is quite the sophisticated system in place to adequately address those sort of problems.

Personally, I feel like it'd be great urban/marginalized patient population exposure and, as bias as I am, Boston is a wonderful place to live. Most parts of the city are very relaxed, up and coming, and beautifully blend the feel of a small town in a big city. Compared to somewhere like NYC, it's a manageable bite to chew, especially if you haven't lived in a city before, and still makes you feel like there is so much left to be explored despite quickly becoming at ease with the place as a whole. I'm leaving myself to attend an OOS program in the fall, but am extremely sad to leave Bean Town and all its wonderful nuances. Boston will likely continue to be high on my list on places to permanently live in once my life shifts back in that direction again.

Last note, I did run into BUSM students at some point who had nothing but positive/amazing things to say about the school with quite persuasive, thorough pitches. They seemed pretty down to earth and invited me to their July 4th cookout so can't go wrong with that kind of laidback pop.

Good luck with your decision, sounds like you got a few good ones to pit against one another!
 
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As you can see by my II->A rate, I suck at interviews, so it might have been the only way I ended up with an A to go to all these :laugh:
Any waitlists?
Sinai traditionally (for many years) has been much better ranked thank BU.
Post above is right, HUge difference between NYC and Boston. However, Sinai in the Bronx does give more a campus feel from what I understand and more manageable city feel. Brace for winters if coming from the South.
Not considering your third Acceptance?
 
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u_raptor

Victim of the Mayo bamboozle
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Any waitlists?
Sinai traditionally (for many years) has been much better ranked thank BU.
Post above is right, HUge difference between NYC and Boston. However, Sinai in the Bronx does give more a campus feel from what I understand and more manageable city feel. Brace for winters if coming from the South.
Not considering your third Acceptance?
Current WL: Vanderbilt, Mayo, Penn, Dmouth, UNC, UVA, Case (withdrew), Gtown (withdrew)

I am still considering Wake, but I would need significant FA to choose them over current options considering both the schools and social situations
 
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meronebib

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Any waitlists?
Sinai traditionally (for many years) has been much better ranked thank BU.
Post above is right, HUge difference between NYC and Boston. However, Sinai in the Bronx does give more a campus feel from what I understand and more manageable city feel. Brace for winters if coming from the South.
Not considering your third Acceptance?
Sinai is right in the center of Manhattan. I also don’t think its reputation is much better ranked than BU; Sinai’s PD ranking doesn’t correlate well with its US News ranking.
 
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Sinai is right in the center of Manhattan. I also don’t think its reputation is much better ranked than BU; Sinai’s PD ranking doesn’t correlate well with its US News ranking.
My bad. I confused Mount Sinai’s location with Albert Einstein location.
But all three will have similarly crappy winter weather! ;-)

Regarding PD ranking, they are both 35. 2020 PD medical school rankings
However, as mentioned, historically Icaan Mount Sinai has a longer higher rating.

USNWR, historically has Sinai about 10 spots ahead of BU.
PD rankings:
Snapshot 1
More data
 

blurb_123

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Sinai is right in the center of Manhattan. I also don’t think its reputation is much better ranked than BU; Sinai’s PD ranking doesn’t correlate well with its US News ranking.

PD rankings have a pretty limited sample size. Sinai has a pretty impressive match. There definitely is a prestige difference. I’m not saying it’s huge, but when you have a Sinai student match MGH for interventional radiology, you know you can match anywhere from that program.
 
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Hey all. I'm the person who interviewed at 18 schools. I figured I might as well be useful with all the info I compiled from my interview day, so here it is condensed into short reviews of each school. These rankings are based on interview day + opportunities afforded by the school. AMA!
Hopefully future applicants may be able to utilize some of this info somehow.

Vanderbilt - 10/10
Overall Impression: By far my favorite interview day. Admissions staff was extremely nice, knew my file. Lunch was OK. 2 interviewers.
Curriculum: Has a 1 year preclinical, with a special research year in place of a traditional MS3. However, the research year can be used to do anything from research to a subinternship. Extremely personalized curriculum (professional, research, and ‘college mentor), with weekly college meetings, a portfolio coach, and a special research meeting to ensure you find a publishable lab. Pass/Fail Clinical as well.
Wellness: Students were EXTREMELY happy, small class size (90 students), with low stress, and utilizes the college system. Vanderbilt also has a great focus on student wellness (students go on a retreat within the first couple months). Probably the most chill students besides Yale. Nashville is also just amazing, with a lot to do and a cheap(er) COL.
Quality of Campus: Building is new-er, and renovations are being done on a second one at the time of my interview. Hospital is right next door. Current medical building is very nice looking.

Mayo - 10/10
Overall Impression: Friendly atmosphere that comes with a smaller city (if you can even call it a city). Lunch is provided via a coupon to get whatever you want from the hospital cafeteria (which was very nice). Was caught of guard by one of my two interviewers, who asked me extremely tough (but good) Qs when everyone said the interview would be laidback.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical, with special selective time woven in. This selective time can be used from anything to exploring rural medicine to robotics. However, there is no dedicated vacation time (such as the summer), just selective time that can be used for breaks instead of credits. Be aware of mandatory attendance. No white coat, only suits.
Wellness: All the students loved it. Only complaints I was able to find were small scheduling issues such as anatomy going over. The dress code is apparently only really followed the first few weeks + patient visits. Students have access to an AMAZING gym.
Quality of Campus: Hosptial is EXTREMELY nice, was like a hotel lobby with a guy playing piano type deal. Whole downtown is connected via underground tunnels they call the “subway” to help with the searing cold of winter. Actual medical building felt a tad claustrophobic, classrooms lacked windows and light. Hospital makes up though.


Perelman - 10/10
Overall Impressions: My other top 3 school after interview day. Admissions faculty was nice and helpful with trying to find my way through the maze that is the UPenn medical center. Comparatively felt a LOT like JHU. Also got to see parts of their curriculum during the I day, such as ultrasound and interviewing an actor patient. Had sandwiches for lunch. Student and faculty interview.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical. UPenn has a LOT of resources, with at least 4 free clinics, and a variety of research opportunities. Very good pediatrics (if one is interested in that).
Wellness: Students are VERY nice, and the areas around UPenn can be very cheap COL wise (compared to NYC or other big cities). Utilizes a houses system, although students say it is not utilized much. Class size is a bit larger (150), but they use small group meetings of 7-9 to make students feel closer. Lot of students bike to the buildings.
Quality of Campus: Building was absolutely beautiful, with a lot of glass and sunlight.

JHU - 10/10
Overall Impressions: One of my top 3 schools following interview day. Only thing I didn’t like was the admissions faculty. Coming from a state school, I already felt out of the social circle compared to ivy leagues. Within the first fewe minutes the admissions dean ahd asked where we went, and started clicking with a Yale interviewee over which house they went to, which definitely made me feel pushed out of the group. Don’t worry about the whole “fishbowl” thing, just don’t say anything egregious while waiting for interviews. Had sandwiches for lunch. Student and faculty interview.
Curriculum: 1.5 preclinical. Has a very structured class heirarchy that utilizes colleges (30 students), macromolecules (15 students) and molecules (5 students) with mentors, throughout the 4 years. Smaller class of 120, but feels even smaller through this.
Wellness: Most students say crime isn’t a terrible issue in the area, and the school offers a free lyft service within a certain range to help with that. Cheaper COL than big cities, but keep in mind the stigma against Baltimore.
Quality of Campus: Absolutely beautiful buildings. Lots of sunlight and glass. Got to tour the original building (where the idea of “rounds” was supposedly made up). A lot of medical history.

Sinai - 9/10
Overall Impression: Was a good school, that I actually hadn’t really heard of until secondaries that I am now glad that I applied. Interview day was friendly with a very NYC touch (admissions staff had some attitude, not in a mean way though). Also got to talk to the medical school dean, which was nice and felt more important that way. Overall, the school was also very socially focused, more so than other schools I interviewed at (except for one other). Also for everyone that gets II late in the cycle, I got a December II for a late January interview, with a deferment in February and now an acceptance :). Two faculty or student and faculty interview.
Curriculum: Curriculum is a bit more dated, with a full 2 year preclinical. However, Sinai also provides special “flex time” of protected half days, which are typically used for research or electives. This may be different from some schools, where students have told me they are almost always done by 12. The buildings sit right between a very rich area of NYC and a historicall impoverished area of NYC, and so students get to see a lot of diversity. The clinical years are graded on a curve (ex only a certain number get honors, high pass, etc).
Wellness: Students were pretty laid back from what I saw, and friendly.
Quality of Campus: The medical school building is actually part of the hospital buildings, and the lobby + medical area is very nice. Be aware there is no actual “medical school building” for those that may care about that. It is part of the hospital and not a university after all.

Pritzker - 9/10
Overall Impressions: Great school, with a lot of oportunities. Possibly one of the friendliest interview days. Students would rotate through constantly to make sure we had people to talk to. Admissions faculty was also extremely friendly. Provided chicago deep dish for lunch. Our group didn’t get a tour, but instead had free time to walk around or sit in on classes. Three interviews - Student, faculty, and admissions staff.
Curriculum: 2 yr preclinical. Also was very structured for helping students find research (utilized what they called an “eharmony” letter research mentor match system). Being near an impoverished area, had a good diversity of patients and utilized free clinics.
Wellness: Students are very happy here, and the class is very small at 90 students. Alot of group events right from the start, and a special olympics-style competition with other UChicago schools.
QoC: I recommend visiting the glass domed library if one gets a chance, very cool. Didn’t get to tour for the most part, so I can’t comment beyond the medical school building and the library i checked out. Medical building seemed nice though, but lacking in sunlight a bit.

UVA - 8.5/10
Overall Impressions: Was one of my favorites in this score bracket. Loved charlottesville, which has a small town college feel to it. Admissions faculty was very nice, and it just felt like a right fit for me (even though they WL me RIP). I did come right as the hospital was dealing with some controversy in billing (which I suggest the curious look up). One of the best lunches I had, with a special interview and special events only dining hall being used that served a lot of very nice food. Two interviews, student and faculty or two faculty.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical, with a small group focus. 160 student class size, with a college system. Not too sure on research opportunities, has a free clinic. Have the option 3rd year of rotation at Inova Fairfax hospital if they so choose. Have a lot of good options, and good rural options as well if interested in that.
Wellness: Happy student body that seems to utilize the house system well. College town feel, UVA has a large emphasis on wellness.
QoC: Newly renovated building has a round rotunda style lecture hall (very cool) focused on small groups. Hospital is very nice, although everything is a tad bit of a walk compared to everything being condensed say in one building like Sinai.


Duke - 8/10
Overall Impressions: Great school. Admissions were friendly, and the curriculum is a huge draw here. Sandwiches for lunch, and is an MMI. Be aware of the LONG tour, especially if you come during the hot summer/fall seasons. You will be walking outside a lot. Smaller class size at about 120.
Curriculum: 1 year preclinical, with a research year in place of traditional MS3. As opposed to Vanderbilt, this does seem to be a strictly research oriented year. Obviously strong research opportunities, but I don’t recall any free clinics. Not very social issue oriented comparatively for those that want that (compared to say Sinai or BU).
Wellness: Students love it here, and Durham is EXTREMELY cheap. Some students say they even bought a house for the 4 years.
QoC: Beautiful buildings, Duke is a great college campus. Lots of classical architecture juxtaposed to modern medical buildings.




Dartmouth - 8/10
Overall Impressions: Loved the school’s small town feel. Community and environment was friendly, close, and the app trail is literally right at my footsteps. Dean was extreemly active in student wellness, and was easily a top choice to me. Ubers are hard to come by, extremely hard. 2 faculty interview for me.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical, and has several semester long courses on important topics newly added to the curriculum from what I recall. Didn’t have a college system iirc. You will need a car for rotations it seems like. They do have buses to help, but it is recommended to have a car it seems.
Wellness: Like I said, this was one of the happier schools I visited even beyond Vanderbilt or Yale. Everyone is close, and knows each other.
QoC: The actual medical building felt older (which makes sense), and had the more classic NE college look. The actual hospital was very nice, with glass, sunlight, and areas for the medical students to study or prepare.



NYU - 7/10
Overall Impressions: Keep free tuition in mind, but for the sake of the review I will not be including that in the rating. Was a nice school, but had some drawbacks imo. Interview day students very much had a “bro” culture around them, and the admissions wasn’t as friendly as some others. Sandwiches for lunch. MMI style interview.
Curriculum: 1.5 preclinicial, with world class sim centers. Has 3 different types of hospitals for exposure - VA, public safety net, and a private hospital. You will see a LOT of diversity in healthcare and patient populations. There are NO cadaveric dissections in the typical curriculum, only prosections. Has a college system called the “violet societies” that students do seem to utilize. Also has a 3 year MD program for those interested and absolutely know what they want to do.
Wellness: Students seemed happy, but like I said there was a bit of a bro culture about it. College system helps bring students closer together.
QoC: The hospitals can be very beautiful. Medical building itself didn’t seem like anything special. Has subsidized housing for students.


Case - 7/10
Overall Impressions: Very cool school, although a larger class size for me (215). Also was a bit drawnback by the 2 week intensive anatomy with 3D after, would rather take my time in it. Admissions was friendly. Student and faculty interview, sandwiches for lunch. Student host took me to a party lol.
Curriculum: 1.5 preclinical that is extremely case based focus with so called “IQ” sessions. Cleveland clinic is right next door, and students have a lot of opportunities to work in the system. Also have the option of a public hospital for rotations. Utilizes 3D dissection, but with a 2 week cadaveric intensive anatomy course beforehand.
Wellness: Everyone was happy and said they didn’t regret coming. Would be worried about getting close with the students though.
QoC: Holy Cow the newly built medical school building (which also houses dental, PA, etc) is STUNNING. Looks like something from a scifi medical show to be honest. TONS of glass, light, and white paint.

Wake - 6.5/10
Overall Impressions: EXTREMELY friendly admissions staff, and we got to talk to a variety of faculty such as the dean of medical education, which really helped solidify they think we are important. Very friendly students as well. CHICKFILA FOR LUNCH (!!!), MMI style interview. Overall a definitively good school.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical, with a free clinic in the main lobby and what seems like decent research opportunities. One student did tell me that the research opportunities at Wake aren't as strong as some others. You will need a car. Also utilizes a houses program at least for a place to hang out (didn’t hear too much about it being utilized in the curriculum). Does have some case based learning, but isn’t as big a focus. Also has a summer research program. Clinical years are NOT graded on a curve (ex, everyone can get honors in a group if they all meet the criteria).
Wellness:Students are very happy here, and don’t really complain too much. Say they don’t regret their choice. The area is also very nice being in Winston Salem. Mountains and beaches are both within driving distance. It does seem liek students do run out of things to do in WS eventually, as it is a smaller city.
QoC: Beautiful building that grew on me, a refurbished cigarette factory. Lots of large glass panes, and a really cool layout that has basically a sunroof in the middle with walkways going around it.

BU - 6.5/10
Overall Impressions: Very nice school. Admissions staff were friendly and very frank about the costs of the school (was probably one of if not the most expensive school I interviewed at in terms of COA). Sandwiches for lunch, only one interviewer. Be aware there is one interviewer (naturally the one I got) that is very hard on research questions, but apparently is also very fair in grading. Be aware when you are coming to interview there is one segment of the street crowded by a lot of addicts, etc. BU is located near a more impoverished area, and as such they have a huge focus on helping this demographic. They were probably the most social issue oriented school I interviewed at.
Curriculum: Kinda outdated 2 year preclinical, although they have a lot of electives, such as intro to surgery, to help students get acquainted to specialties. Also have the option of rotating at off campus sites, such as in rural areas or other parts of Boston, for those interested. BU gets a LOT of ER traffic.
Wellness: Extremely chill, helpful students. Larger class size (180-200 or so), and no house system to help make it feel smaller.
QoC: Building seemed a little older, not as nice as some other schools I interviewed at. However, the hospital was pretty nice (and has a huge ER dept).


UNC - 6/10
Overall Impressions: Loved the small town feel, but had an extremely large interview group (although not as large as Baylor, there were at least 40 students in the morning group, with another group coming in the afternoon). This jaded me for some reason. Didn’t feel as intimate as say Vanderbilt. Lack of an actual medical building was also a turn off for me (although they are building one that should be ready by 2024 for future applicants). Admissions wasn’t the friendliest. 1 student interview along with an MMI. Sandwiches for lunch.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical. Large class had an advisory system for mentors, but wasn’t very harped on by the admissions or students. Currently working on making lectures more step focused. Has two free clinics, and strong research opportunities.
Wellness: Students were very friendly and relaxed, happy. Definitely seems like student wellness is important here.
QoC: Like I said, no actual medical school building. They did, however, have a very nice college town campus. Lots of brick and steel, and the other medical buildings were very nice (lots of sunlight, etc).

Yale - 5/10
Overall Impressions: Chill school, you WILL need to fit in to the type they are looking for to be succesful here, and I got the feeling they interview to find that type. Look at curriculum for more info. Otherwise, admissions had a “we are Yale so come” feel. Three interviews - quick admission staff interview, a full student and full faculty interview. Sandwiches for lunch.
Curriculum: EVERYTHING is pass fail, even clinic. There are no clinic shelf exams, and the schedule is extremely flexible. You must be able to hold yourself accountable, and keep up with it all. There is no internal ranking, AOA, etc. The school very much treats you like “you are an adult, you should be able to handle it, now go do it” type of attitude. Know yourself if you decide to come here.
Wellness: Most chill students I met. Seriously. The area doesn’t seem to be the best (it is New Haven afterall), but there are things to do. There are also food trucks everyday in the Yale Medical area for lunch, which were actually pretty good.
QoC: Was not a huge fan of the campus. While the UG has the classical architecture, the medical school building had a 90’s outdated brick and cement feel to it. I also saw human poop in the lobby of the research building at one point.

Baylor - 4/10
Overall Impressions: Was ok. Extremely large interview group (at least 70), that kinda turned me off after having interviews with small groups. Inteviewers didn’t seem as focused on me (one looked at phone at one point). Two interviews, facutly and student, and sandwiches for lunch.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical. Has both the Taub safety net hospital, along with a private hospital and strong research through the Medical center.
Wellness: Larger class size (about 200 iirc), bit has a college system to make it feel smaller, along with ‘squads’. Students are very active and freindly. Houston is very nice and cheap from what I saw, especially compared to northern cities.
QoC: Campus building could look a bit nicer (see: JHU). Overall was nice, but a little older feel. The medical center is pretty big, so a lot of walking.

Brody (ECU) - 4/10
Overall Impressions: Great campus and friendly atmosphere, EXTREMELY primary care focused. Admissions had a very southern friendly attitude. Sandwiches for lunch, 2 faculty interviews.
Curriculum: 2 year preclinical, GRADED curriculum (which honestly is what brought the score down the most). Has some research opportunities, and is a level 3 hospital, so you see everything. It is a rural area, so keep in mind that is the main focus of the hospital.
Wellness: Students were a lot more stressed here than elsewhere, which I can 100% attribute to the graded curriculum. Brody does seem to be trying to work on fixing burnout/stress, but I think the curriculum inherently causes this. While they were stressed, they were very friendly in helping interviewees with questions and figuring things out.
QoC: Great building, although since it is rural there isn’t much to do in the area besides sleep, eat, and work. Students didn’t really complain about the area though, and I for one kinda prefer that type of area.

GT - 3/10
Overall Impressions: Was not a fan, and did not vibe with the school at all. Admissions seemed disinterested in the presentations they showed us, only got to talk to 4 students (this interview was directly after Chicago where I talked with maybe 50% of one of their class by the end of it). Students weren’t too interested in the school. 203 student class size. One interview (student for me). Got to have a nice lunch at one of their hotel/buffets though.
Curriculum: 1.5 year preclinical. One free clinic, HOYAS, that as of my interview was not running anymore. Seemed kinda disorganized for finding research, but matched a lot into surgical specialties.
Wellness: Faculty had a very “come here bc we are Gtown” feel. Students seemed stressed.
QoC: Claustrophobic buildings with lack of sunlight. Lobby is beautiful (marble, columns) etc, but rest of the school seemed the opposite. Library was a concrete basement.
This has got to be one of the best posts ever!!:love:

Please tell -- why would you be worried about getting close to Case students????
 
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u_raptor

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This has got to be one of the best posts ever!!:love:

Please tell -- why would you be worried about getting close to Case students????

:laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
By close I meant that the class is bigger so it would be hard for the class to be tight knit compared to say Vandy, mayo, or for a similar size school maybe wake. They do have a house program, but like duke it doesn't seem to be super active beyond a having a mentor (by comparison, vandy and JHU have active house/college programs where there are a lot of events to get involved).
 
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:laugh: :laugh: :laugh:
By close I meant that the class is bigger so it would be hard for the class to be tight knit compared to say Vandy, mayo, or for a similar size school maybe wake. They do have a house program, but like duke it doesn't seem to be super active beyond a having a mentor (by comparison, vandy and JHU have active house/college programs where there are a lot of events to get involved).
My bad!!! I'm so stupid, I would have thought more people means more opportunity to make a connection!!! :)
 
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u_raptor

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My bad!!! I'm so stupid, I would have thought more people means more opportunity to make a connection!!! :)
LOL not stupid!! I should've clarified!

In a sense it does! But I guess it depends what you look for in a school. For instance I want a really close group class (for ex I prefer small class sizes, strong house/college programs, mentor groups, case based small group learning etc). Large groups have bonuses too - like more people to meet. But I don't personally want to go somewhere where in year 4 I meet someone in my class I never met before :laugh:
 
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