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Any UVa students out there?

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by whoanelly, Apr 6, 2002.

  1. whoanelly

    whoanelly Member
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    I'm trying to decide between UVa and a couple of other schools that are pass/fail. I like UVa, but am concerned about how tough the grading is and if the fact that grades are given makes people ultra-competitive. Can you share your experience there in terms of grading and how you like the school in general? How good is he clinical experience? I notice that the school has good residency match stats. I appreciate any insight that you can provide. Thanks!
     
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  3. indigo23

    indigo23 Junior Member
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    This is from a friend who is a M1 at UVA:

    Hi there. Congrats on having a few schools to choose from--that's great. <img border="0" alt="[Clappy]" title="" src="graemlins/clappy.gif" /> I too was initially put off by the prospect of having more grades :rolleyes: in med school, but it turned out not be a huge deal for me personally. For some of my classmates who are more grade conscious, it's definitely an issue. But really, I don't know if it's too different from an honors/high pass etc system. There are a few people in my class who are pretty competitive, but on the whole everyone is cooperative, ie I'd ask anyone studying with me in the library a question before an exam. People definitely study in groups and send out study aids that they have developed. Basically, if you were stressed out about grades in college, that's not going really going to change. I'd just tell you to relax and try to learn as much of the material as you can and find ways to make it interesting and meaningful to you. I like that my class is a good mix of traditional and non-traditional students. I was initially wary of moving to Charlottesville, but really like living there a lot now. It's slower paced than what I'm used to, but there's neat places to go to and farmer's markets to shop at and places to hike or to swim. The other nice thing is that there's tons of other grad/professional students in town when you need the escape. I've really liked some of our basic science professors a lot and have found that :D they are often great advocates for med students :D . If you want to know more about UVA, my e-mail address is [email protected] Best of luck with your decision! :) :)
     
  4. whoanelly

    whoanelly Member
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    Thanks so much. Portland (Oregon) is the smallest place I've ever lived and I really worry about missing city life. Besides the outdoors stuff, are there clubs? Is there any entertainment? Is there ever time to go into DC? Sounds like you made the adjustment--where have you lived before med school?
     
  5. indigo23

    indigo23 Junior Member
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    No problem. I grew up in DC and lived outside of Philadelphia for college and in Chicago for a year. There aren't too many clubs per se in Charlottesville, there's one gay club and other places that have club nights. :cool: I really love dancing so that is one thing that I miss. :( Most of the med school parties involve more drinking than dancing... Other events--there is an annual movie fest and annual book festival in C-ville. Also, there are a bunch of events like lectures and movies at the undergrad campus. A lot of people go to DC fairly often to go clubbing. It's a little more than a two hour drive. I also get into Richmond sometimes which has more clubs and restaurants than C-ville; it's about a 1 hour drive. There's a fair amount of live music in Charlottesville; there are some really nice places for that. Of course, there's always the bar scene too and mixers with the other professional schools. Hope this helps. :D

    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by whoanelly:
    <strong>Thanks so much. Portland (Oregon) is the smallest place I've ever lived and I really worry about missing city life. Besides the outdoors stuff, are there clubs? Is there any entertainment? Is there ever time to go into DC? Sounds like you made the adjustment--where have you lived before med school?</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">
     
  6. BlueDevil7

    BlueDevil7 Member
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    I was also choosing between a few schools and I'm really happy that I've decided to go to UVA next year. Like you, I was very concerned that the grading system would make students competitive or gunners or something like that but it's actually not like that at all. I have several friends there who swore that they don't talk about their grades, said it's not competitive, and said that tons of people send out mnemonics and other helpful study tools before tests. I went down for a three day weekend to check it out for myself and everyone I met was friendly, non-competitive, and had balanced enough lives that they took me out to bars, movies, etc. instead of studying. As far as the clinical training goes, it's true that med students play more of a shadowing role in the first two years but the last two years provide excellent experiences in the clinics. About 85-95% of graduates each year get one of their top three residency choices and people are applying to very competitive spots. Also, for what it's worth, UVA is ranked 22 this year for Residency Directors' opinions of UVA grads. As you can tell, I was really impressed with the school and if you have a chance to visit again or talk to students, it's worth it to dispel the competitive image.
    -Jacob
     
  7. whoanelly

    whoanelly Member
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    Thanks--you've both been very helpful. BLUEDEVIL7, I assume you just went back for a weekend on your own because I haven't received any information about a second look weekend. I wonder if they will have one. Do you mind saying what other schools you were considering? What was the primary factor that helped you pick UVA over the others? Up until now, have you lived in big cities? Sorry to be a pest, but you know what a struggle these decisions can be!
     
  8. BlueDevil7

    BlueDevil7 Member
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    Yeah, I definitely know how agonizing these decisions can be. I was deciding between Tulane, Vermont, St. Louis, Finch, NY Med, MCV and UVA. I grew up just outside San Francisco, went to college in Durham and currently live in D.C. Although Charlottesville doesn't have any good clubs, it has all the other benefits of a big city (good bars, restaurants, etc.) while still being beautiful and safe. The reasons I chose UVA were its national reputation, its amazing match list, its dedication to primary care, its flexibility during fourth year (there is a required one month neurology rotation but the other 11 months are free for your choice of subinternships, rotations around the country or the world, etc.) I also liked that the Grounds are beautiful, the city is fun and pretty with lots of outdoorsy things available, and everything is within walking distance (7 gyms, classes, hospital, undergrad and other grad campuses, the Corner, etc.) The cost of living is pretty cheap in C'ville and the out of state tuition is such that I will save about $20K over the other schools I was considering. The students there are really awesome and fun, the professors really care about the students and are constantly making changes to improve the curriculum and make students' lives easier, the library is new, huge, and awesome. There's really good hiking, whitewater rafting and kayaking around and Richmond and D.C. are close by. I could go on and on!
     
  9. souljah1

    souljah1 Attending
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    I don't know much about UVA except that one of the coolest premed peers that I know is on his way to UVA. I've heard good things about their student body and Ryan will only add to it. I am glad he is heading down there, but was hoping that he and I would be classmates. Great progressive and compassionate guy. Anyway, for all those who are on their way to UVA, look for Ryan. Tell him his friend from dirty jerz says hello.
     
  10. elle

    elle Senior Member
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    I tried to reply to this post last week, but my response didn't go through - hopefully this time will work!

    Anyway, there is a lot of great information on this thread and I will probably end up repeating some of it. :) I'm just an applicant, but I've been gathering lots of information these past few months. I have been so impressed with UVA and it seems like a terrific school in a great location. Charlottesville isn't the big city, but it's not that far from DC and even closer to Richmond, and seems like a really nice place to call home. I've always lived in the suburbs, and think Charlottesville will be a really neat change of pace.

    I don't think UVA has a formal revisit weekend, but it is easy to arrange a visit yourself. You can e-mail the student host coordinators (their contact info came with the interview invite) and they'll set you up with a student host to stay with so you can go to classes and meet people and all that good stuff. I totally recommend it, because it's just a great chance to pick up vibes and get a sense of if you'd be comfortable there.

    whoanelly, good luck with your decision! The doctors I've spoken with have all enthusiastically recommended UVA, and the students I spoke with when visiting were not very concerned about the letter grades or competition.
    If you don't have a chance to revisit or have any other questions about choosing between schools, definitely post them. This website has been very helpful and if possible, I'd definitely like to return the favor. :)
     
  11. FullO'Beans

    FullO'Beans Junior Member
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    I went to undergrad at UVA and currently do research in the medical school. I love my Alma Mater, though I plan on attending MCV.
    Now about your question. First, I would say that many of these people may be "preaching to the choir." There are unsatisfied students at UVA. The most common complaint is the competitive atmosphere. I would say that that is less of a quality related to grading as opposed to just a UVA characteristic in general (especially in the sciences -- less so in the humanities and law). From what I have heard and seen, the spirit of the med school is very competitive.
    Needless to say, UVA is an excellent medical school to attend, but not if you prefer less competitive environments. I wish you the best of luck in your decision.

    [email protected]
     
  12. whoanelly

    whoanelly Member
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    Interesting. is that why you're not going there? On the website where students in med school rank their own school in terms of competitiveness, UVA ranks comparatively low (non-competitive). I think it was 3.8 on a scale on which "4" is the most cooperative and "1" is the most competitive.
    I started another thread about the competitiveness of letter grades and it seems that, whatever the grading system, you are going to be ranked and therein lies the seeds of competitiveness. I appreciate your input as well as that of everyone else who has answered my questions.
     
  13. elle

    elle Senior Member
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    Hi,
    I was just wondering if any incoming UVA students have received an orientation packet from the admissions office. I remember there was an email saying they would be sent out April 15th, so I figured if other people have been getting information I should probably make sure my address is correct and stuff... I just don't want to call and bother the office (I figure they're pretty busy!) if the information hasn't been sent.

    Thanks! :)
     
  14. Weeble

    Weeble Senior Member
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    Hi Elle,

    Just wanted to let you know that they are sending out the orientation packages. Just recieved mine today! The people in the office are usually very nice, I wouldn't worry about calling them to doublecheck your address. :)
     
  15. regul

    regul New Member

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    I'm not sure where this guy gets the idea that UVA has a "competitive" atmosphere; I'm a 2nd year here and the spirit is anything but. Yes, the grading system makes things a little intense, but everyone is in it together. There's a lot of sharing of study guides, group studying, and the like. There are some gunners, but they're benign and not out to get anyone. I just want to let everyone know that UVA is definitely NOT competitive in the sense that has been suggested earlier. Yes, it's a lot of work and probably more intense than if UVA was entirely P/F, but it's all self-imposed. BTW, UVa's getting a new dean next year and it is very likely that the preclinical years will go P/F, hopefully for the class of 2007.
     

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