Accepted to Western/COMP, should I continue interviewing at DMU and Touro-CA?

Sep 7, 2010
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I was very sure on going to Western, but would like to keep my options open. I live 30 minutes away from Western and really want to stay close to home.

I hear DMU is a great school, with a great reputation. But I'm iffy on spending more money and do I want to live in Iowa? I don't know...haven't been there. Any Californians like DMU's campus, location and weather?

Touro-CA has bad rep with rotation sites and I hear the campus wouldn't suit me from my friends. But I would like to keep my options open.

Any help will be greatly appreciated!
 

JeetKuneDo

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I was very sure on going to Western, but would like to keep my options open. I live 30 minutes away from Western and really want to stay close to home.

I hear DMU is a great school, with a great reputation. But I'm iffy on spending more money and do I want to live in Iowa? I don't know...haven't been there. Any Californians like DMU's campus, location and weather?

Touro-CA has bad rep with rotation sites and I hear the campus wouldn't suit me from my friends. But I would like to keep my options open.

Any help will be greatly appreciated!
Western is a great school. And it seems like you've already answered your own questions with the bolded. Congrats on Western. :thumbup:
 
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If your sure about Western, don't bother wasting your money. Its nice to keep your options open if you didn't get into your top choice but you did. You can still go to the interviews and check out the areas and just chill there haha
 

koan

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Touro-CA has bad rep with rotation sites and I hear the campus wouldn't suit me from my friends. But I would like to keep my options open.
I was pleasantly surprised by the Touro-CA campus. Having been inundated with negative stereotypes about the school from SDN, I almost didn't attend the interview. I already had an acceptance in hand at what I thought was my first choice (PNWU, so that I could stay in Washington) but decided to see for myself what the school was all about. My suggestion is to do the same... if you're as close at SoCal it wouldn't cost much.

Also, clinical education was my first concern. I have heard some complaints floating around about Touro-CA not giving enough support to students entering clinicals, lacking of sufficient sites near San Francisco, and potential for saturation based on the proximity of other schools. After talking with three current Touro-CA students, advisors at Touro-CA, a student at Western, two students at PNWU, and a member of the board of trustees at PNWU, I was more than confident that the clinical rotation opportunities through Touro were in fact just fine. If you are the type of student who wants to be led by the hand through your 3rd and 4th years, it may not be the right school. It just seems as though there is an echo chamber on SDN about Touro's "bad rep" which isn't necessarily based in fact.
 

Sinfest

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Congrats on your Western acceptance! IMO, it's far superior to Touro-CA, and since you live in CA I see no reason to visit DMU, unless you're looking to get out of the state.
 

Kalu123

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Congrats on the acceptance! I was also just accepted to Western (maybe we'll be classmates next year!). I can't say anything about DMU because I didn't apply there, but I did also get accepted to Touro-CA. Personally, I thought the campus was really cool. I thought Mare Island was very tranquil. I thought the abandoned buildings and navy base gave it character. It would be a great study environment.

However, on my interview day, someone asked for a list of specific hospitals that students rotate at and the dean never gave a solid answer. They may have good rotation sites, but I know for sure that Western's rotation sites are solid. They have a list of hospitals on their website; most of them have either AOA or ACGME residency positions. Not that you have to rotate at hospitals that have residency spots, but I think it might be helpful. I also live about 30 mins away from Western (if there isn't any traffic!) and I hope to practice medicine in Southern California one day. I think if that's your goal, then Western is a better option. Western has a great reputation at many Southern California hospitals.

It wouldn't hurt to go to those interviews (unless you're hurting for money). You may fall in love with another school, or it might reaffirm that Western is the right place for you. Personally, I'm set on Western. Southern California is the promised land.
 

SFO-IST

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As someone who just ponied up a $1,000 deposit for Western, I totally relate to the money situation. That being said, I would still go to the DMU interview for many reasons:

1) You may find that you like the area/school more.
2) It's good practice for later on in life like residency interviews. This is the ONE moment in your life when you'll get to clearly make a decision that will effect the ENTIRE outcome of the rest of your life. Seriously, when do we get to make such a clear distinctively impact-full decision?
3) If not, it will make you more sure of your top choice
4) It will deepen your understanding of other schools when you meet someone from that school later on in life.
5) It's a guilt free vacation... albeit to Iowa. :p

Best of luck with your decision and I hope we have fun next year!
 

JeetKuneDo

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As someone who just ponied up a $1,000 deposit for Western, I totally relate to the money situation. That being said, I would still go to the DMU interview for many reasons:

1) You may find that you like the area/school more.
2) It's good practice for later on in life like residency interviews. This is the ONE moment in your life when you'll get to clearly make a decision that will effect the ENTIRE outcome of the rest of your life. Seriously, when do we get to make such a clear distinctively impact-full decision?
3) If not, it will make you more sure of your top choice
4) It will deepen your understanding of other schools when you meet someone from that school later on in life.
5) It's a guilt free vacation... albeit to Iowa. :p

Best of luck with your decision and I hope we have fun next year!
OP, I think you should go to those two interviews. Have some fun in SF and in Iowa. You earned it.
 
OP
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Flight is ~$450, hotel ~$100. I don't know if this vacation would be worth it. I honestly would LOVE to check Iowa out but I'm very concerned about spending that much money.
 
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Flight is ~$450, hotel ~$100. I don't know if this vacation would be worth it. I honestly would LOVE to check Iowa out but I'm very concerned about spending that much money.
This may only help a bit but DMU has an option to stay with current students. I did that and the students I stayed with were super nice. They picked me up from the airport and were kind enough to share food. Also, staying with students offered a great perspective of the school.
 

Thomas Hearns

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Flight is ~$450, hotel ~$100. I don't know if this vacation would be worth it. I honestly would LOVE to check Iowa out but I'm very concerned about spending that much money.
You'll be spending a lot more money on school (Western is 45k a year, DMU ~38k?)... if you can swing it, I'd check out DMU. You want to be spending your money at the right place. DMU is definitely worth checking out. Really nice. It may make you more sure in your decision to go to Western, or you may be surprised and end up at DMU. You won't regret checking it out, I can almost guarantee that.
 

drctother

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After interviewing at Western today, I can say that you must be crazy to not attend Western:p

That school blew me away today. I had very high expectations going in and they still exceeded them.

A)They are literally the most personable and friendly people I have ever met in my life at any school. This includes staff and current medical students. They really go out of their way to make things work for YOU individually. This seems to include all personal circumstances. They go out of their way to really explain whats it like as a student there, the curriculum (in real detail), and they make the interview as stress free as possible. I am a very stressed out person and for the first time in my life I can say I had zero stress in an interview. They were so friendly, I felt like I was having a conversation with my best friend. The interviewer used words like "oh sweet dude".

B)They seem VERY reputable in the SoCal area and beyond.
C) Early patient exposure. This is KEY to being the best you can be, in my opinion.
D) International rotations, if your into that (as I am)
E) Location, location, location. Ya LA can be ugly at times...but at the end of the day its California. Its sunny, warm, palm trees.....I could go on
F) I love the FACILITIES. The new building is beautiful and state of the art

me personally, I literally did not see one negative thing about the school. Sure you can complain about the schools direct location, but you are going to be studying a lot as its medical school. Sure you can say "its expensive". At the end of the day, if you dont want to pay an extra 40,000 to be HAPPY and a GOOD DOCTOR, well your loss. But, thats just my opinion on how I see this school now. I would turn down harvard to go to this school (if i stood a chance there)

Anyway Good luck with ur decision, I know if I had your decision...I would go Western without hesitation
 

Kalu123

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After interviewing at Western today, I can say that you must be crazy to not attend Western:p

That school blew me away today. I had very high expectations going in and they still exceeded them.

A)They are literally the most personable and friendly people I have ever met in my life at any school. This includes staff and current medical students. They really go out of their way to make things work for YOU individually. This seems to include all personal circumstances. They go out of their way to really explain whats it like as a student there, the curriculum (in real detail), and they make the interview as stress free as possible. I am a very stressed out person and for the first time in my life I can say I had zero stress in an interview. They were so friendly, I felt like I was having a conversation with my best friend. The interviewer used words like "oh sweet dude".

B)They seem VERY reputable in the SoCal area and beyond.
C) Early patient exposure. This is KEY to being the best you can be, in my opinion.
D) International rotations, if your into that (as I am)
E) Location, location, location. Ya LA can be ugly at times...but at the end of the day its California. Its sunny, warm, palm trees.....I could go on
F) I love the FACILITIES. The new building is beautiful and state of the art

me personally, I literally did not see one negative thing about the school. Sure you can complain about the schools direct location, but you are going to be studying a lot as its medical school. Sure you can say "its expensive". At the end of the day, if you dont want to pay an extra 40,000 to be HAPPY and a GOOD DOCTOR, well your loss. But, thats just my opinion on how I see this school now. I would turn down harvard to go to this school (if i stood a chance there)

Anyway Good luck with ur decision, I know if I had your decision...I would go Western without hesitation
Along with quality of rotations, this point is a deal-breaker for me when deciding which school to attend. It seems like many DO schools don't provide 1st and 2nd year students with much clinical experience. Many will say that they offer extensive early clinical exposure, and what they are really talking about is standardized patients (actors). But Western actually lets students see patients at community clinics during preclinical years. I think at the Montclair Clinic, you can start seeing patients at the end of first year...and I can't wait!
 
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CopToEM

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It's not worth it. Western invested in their "home town boy" and since money is a consideration you would be crazy to go to an interview just for the experience.

On the other hand, if you want to pay me $500 I will get on Skype with you and ask you a bunch of pressing questions about your abilities as an applicant!
 

Sam212

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Go to DMU interview, much better school than either Western or Touro
 
OP
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And can anyone post up or link to some pictures of Touro-CA's campus? Thanks!
 

drctother

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Go to DMU interview, much better school than either Western or Touro
Ya amuse us. I dont see in anyway how a school in Iowa...yes Iowa....could be that much better than Western. I would put them on par at most. Many of the top hospitals in the US are located in the Cali. Iowa on the other hand....

Oh I could list 30 reasons why, but i really could care less at this point. I will make sure to send you photos of the sun and beachs though:laugh:
 

tkim

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Western grad. DMU has a solid reputation, and has been around for over a hundred years. If you have the money and the interest, go. There's a tuition+COL difference, that, if you find you prefer DMU, will more than make up for the travel expenses. If you find you still like Western after visiting DMU, then it's absolute confirmation that Western is your best choice.

But, if you can't afford it, don't go.
 
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Can some Western students chime in with new light on the attendance and dress code policies and the shift in curriculum that caused a debacle during last year's threads?

I would GREATLY appreciate an input on this. And perhaps such input can go on the official Western 2010-2011 thread so others can view it, too.
 
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Ya amuse us. I dont see in anyway how a school in Iowa...yes Iowa....could be that much better than Western. I would put them on par at most. Many of the top hospitals in the US are located in the Cali. Iowa on the other hand....

Oh I could list 30 reasons why, but i really could care less at this point. I will make sure to send you photos of the sun and beachs though:laugh:
When it comes to location, I feel like its more about where the schools have rotations in the 3rd and 4th years. Yes, a lot of 3rd year rotations are in Iowa but you do have a few other places to go and 4th year I believe is very open. If you don't mind the cold, definitely check out DMU.

IMO it is more about quality of education rather than location. (Not to discount Western in any way but that is just what I think).
 

drctother

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When it comes to location, I feel like its more about where the schools have rotations in the 3rd and 4th years. Yes, a lot of 3rd year rotations are in Iowa but you do have a few other places to go and 4th year I believe is very open. If you don't mind the cold, definitely check out DMU.

IMO it is more about quality of education rather than location. (Not to discount Western in any way but that is just what I think).
I couldnt agree more. For sure. What I was getting at, in my opinion, is that the quality of rotations is very similar at DMU and Western....so you have to start looking at other factors. If an important factor is location, Western wins by a landslide.

Unless I am misinformed, Im pretty sure none of the top hospitals in the US are in Iowa. Maybe Iowa has some GOOD hospitals, but not ones that make top 50 or anything. Again, this is my opinion. At the end of the day, both schools would produce a great doctor potentially. But if you wanna be a "top doctor" (ie prestigious) I think Western would make it easier, as there is so many top rated hospitals in Cali. If prestige means nothing to you, as it does me, than either is fine
 

reezer4

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I'd like to throw in my two cents here, having visited Western Pomona, interviewed at Western Lebanon, NOVA, and DMU.

WesternU was my top choice when I submitted my primary, so I visited the Pomona campus during preview day to make sure I liked the area and facilities. I was pretty disappointed with the area. Pomona was really dry, desolate, and hot. Having gone to UW for undergrad, the school was shockingly small- an old strip mall converted into a med school... I felt like the school was more of a commuter campus than the community feel I was looking for (just my opinion). Although I was impressed by the curriculum and reputation.

So, I chose Lebanon as my first choice over Pomona on the secondary application and wound up interviewing there first. I was blown away by the tours of the local area (Corvallis and Albany), the friendliness of everyone, the in depth discussion of curriculum, the openness of the staff to answer any and all questions, the small class size, the proximity of the Samaritan hospital (literally a walk across the street), and the support of the Lebanon community toward opening a new school (the Chamber of Commerce is buying the entire first 4 classes of students their leather doctor bags).

I interviewed at NOVA next and really liked the school from the outside. I liked the facilities: the simulations labs and beautiful campus. I thought I would like that there's undergrad there, but the DO school is pretty cut off from them. I felt like the interview day wasn't very informative... I found myself having to ask a lot of questions in order to pry out information. Also, the interview was very simple, not a single challenging question. I found myself wondering why they even interviewed me at all. I was also turned off by the huge class size. They did a lot of talking about small group studying and such... so they make it work, but I like more one-on-one time with teachers. I liked Florida a lot, and took the chance to see the area, very comfortable, and great weather of course. I just couldn't see myself moving across the US for NOVA.

Last week I interviewed at DMU and I have to say I found myself realizing I was going to have a tough decision to make between Western Lebanon and DMU. The facilities are by far the best I have seen. They have an entire simulated surgical suite, a pregnant mom simulation, and tons of student space for studying and research. With my own background in research, the 30 minute talk given by a PhD Microbiologist on the importance of research and the opportunities with their summer research program, I was almost sold. I was also really impressed with the opportunities to get money to pay off loans. They have work study opportunities for their students and all kinds of scholarships- plus the tuition is lower than NOVA or Western, and the cost of living in Iowa is pretty low as well. The students were pretty friendly, but I had this feeling that the class wasn't very tight and that was disappointing. I know the class size is large... 230... but I think there should be all kinds of ways to get to know each other and students hanging out like friends and colleagues... I didn't see much evidence of that, and got an eye-roll from two students I asked about the cohesiveness of the class. Seemed weird to me. The interview was challenging. I was interviewed by a scientist, a plastic surgeon and a student. I was impressed that they took the time to really weed through my app and ask important questions about how I came to my decision to pursue DO and whether I could handle the material, etc.

DMU's facilities were the best of the three for sure (although I can't really say for WEstern Lebanon given I couldn't tour the bldg yet, it's not even open!). But I have settled on Western for location, class cohesiveness, reputation, and curriculum.

Hope some of that info helps, I definitely don't regret checking out the other schools- it was totally awesome experience to interview in basically other cultures. I just recently got an interview at UNECOM, can anyone comment on the value of interviewing there and seeing the area?
 
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Hope some of that info helps, I definitely don't regret checking out the other schools- it was totally awesome experience to interview in basically other cultures. I just recently got an interview at UNECOM, can anyone comment on the value of interviewing there and seeing the area?[/QUOTE]

I interviewed at UNE in October. There is a lot of feedback in the school specific so look there for other opinions but this is mine. The area is absolutely beautiful. The campus is right where the Saco river dumps into the ocean. The campus was pretty nice but to me it had more of an undergrad feel. Med students don't have their own building. They share the building with undergrads which is something the students there didn't seem to like. Undergrad dorms are also really close to the building.

The interview day was very short. We didn't get to see any of their specific labs or anything. Mostly just walked around the med/ug building and the campus in general. The day consisted of a presentation by someone with powerpoint, then interviews and since the group was small we waited for everyone to be done, went on the tour and then it was over. To say the least I wasn't incredibly impressed.

You can PM if you have any specific questions. I also interviewed at AZCOM, DMU and Nova.
 

reezer4

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[/QUOTE] I interviewed at UNE in October. There is a lot of feedback in the school specific so look there for other opinions but this is mine. The area is absolutely beautiful. The campus is right where the Saco river dumps into the ocean. The campus was pretty nice but to me it had more of an undergrad feel. Med students don't have their own building. They share the building with undergrads which is something the students there didn't seem to like. Undergrad dorms are also really close to the building.

The interview day was very short. We didn't get to see any of their specific labs or anything. Mostly just walked around the med/ug building and the campus in general. The day consisted of a presentation by someone with powerpoint, then interviews and since the group was small we waited for everyone to be done, went on the tour and then it was over. To say the least I wasn't incredibly impressed.

You can PM if you have any specific questions. I also interviewed at AZCOM, DMU and Nova.[/QUOTE]

Cool, thanks for the info! I was already thinking of bagging that interview. It's just so far away and would cost a lot for me to fly from the west coast. Also, I am kind of tired of traveling, although I am sure the interview would be good experience, and I would love to see Maine.

What did you think of DMU, NOVA, and AZCOM? And more importantly, which one have you decided on?
 

MattBradler

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As a current first year at Western U/Comp, I can say without a doubt pick another school. A couple of my friends got their COMLEX 1 and USMLE board scores back a couple months ago, one of them failed, the other barely passed. From my experience, the school doesn't seem to prepare us enough for these tests and it will really hurt us in the long run when applying to residencies. The curriculum is also changing to this cased-based crap and I'm not sure its helping anyone learn better. One thing that I really don't like about Western is that they are too strict, I know a guy who actually got kicked out for simply not following protocol at one of his rotation sites. By the way, the rotation sites aren't as good as touro-ca because tucom has more connections with better hospitals with better reputations. My friend at western wasn't allowed to do anything but watch at one of his rotation sites...

As posted above, Pomona is a very unsafe, impoverished neighborhood. I am scared to walk at night around the school. I always think some black guy or hispanic will try to rob me, and these creepy statues don't make it better.
 

Sinfest

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I have to agree about the statues :laugh:
 

SFO-IST

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..... I always think some black guy or hispanic will try to rob me, and these creepy statues don't make it better.
I'm sure the above racism (or the new account) gives it away, but this guy is likely not a real Western student. In addition to being a racist, I'm disappointed in the lack of imagination in this smear. Really, all you could come up with was this bizarre story of inexplicably failing out due to some "accidental" breach of protocol during rotations?

Someone please find me a facepalm jpeg.

Oh that and - of all things - a jab at Western's rotation sites. Rotation sites are one of Western's many strong areas. I encourage everyone to take a really close look at Western's rotation sites. I did and I was so impressed with what I saw that I withdrew my other acceptances and cancelled my remaining interviews.
 

DbDan

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He also copy/pasted the same message in 4 threads with the only difference being that Touro-Ca/Nova/AZCOM apparently all warrant the "stronger ties". Ignore the troll.
 

MattBradler

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Don't reply unless you really know what you're talking about. Yea someone did get kicked out for that, but not just for that, he also yelled at his classmates and showed a negative attitude toward many other people.
Regarding the rotation sites, it depends on where you want to rotate and how often you like taking shelf tests.
It's funny how you quickly think someone who knows more about a school is a troll...
 

tkim

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As a current first year at Western U/Comp, I can say without a doubt pick another school. A couple of my friends got their COMLEX 1 and USMLE board scores back a couple months ago, one of them failed, the other barely passed. From my experience, the school doesn't seem to prepare us enough for these tests and it will really hurt us in the long run when applying to residencies. The curriculum is also changing to this cased-based crap and I'm not sure its helping anyone learn better. One thing that I really don't like about Western is that they are too strict, I know a guy who actually got kicked out for simply not following protocol at one of his rotation sites. By the way, the rotation sites aren't as good as touro-ca because tucom has more connections with better hospitals with better reputations. My friend at western wasn't allowed to do anything but watch at one of his rotation sites...

As posted above, Pomona is a very unsafe, impoverished neighborhood. I am scared to walk at night around the school. I always think some black guy or hispanic will try to rob me, and these creepy statues don't make it better.
I hope that isn't your real name. Western admin reads this site.

As for the school preparing you for the COMLEX/USMLE - that's your responsibility. Plenty of people from Western do very well on the exams.