Oct 15, 2019
44
26
Status
  1. Pre-Medical
ARCOM pros:
-visited campus for my interview and loved the environment and school
-the triple helix curriculum is solid from what I heard from the current students there
-has in-person classes (very important for me, plus they still have OMM in-person which most schools aren't doing anymore)
-faculty and administration seems very supportive of the student body
-my interviewers seemed interested in who I was as a person and very personable, which tells me that they truly care about who they accept and the type of class they want to create (LECOM was a robot interview with 5 MMI questions, nothing about me as a person)
-community support appears strong for the school
-good rotations and Mercy hospital will be newly completed and associated with the school when I start
-on-campus housing (also very low cost of living in Arkansas)
-love the outdoors, and ft. smith has a lot of outdoors stuff to do
-overall good gut feeling about ARCOM

ARCOM cons:
-higher tuition
-not very established
-dress code
-mandatory attendance if under 80%
-my SO would not like living in Arkansas as much as Florida

LECOM pros:
-lower tuition (big plus)
-more established
-living in florida for me would be better than in Arkansas (near the beach, good weather)
-PBL offers flexibility and allows me to learn in my own methods. Also good prep for thinking like a doctor
-SO would be happier here I believe

LECOM cons:
-no food/drink outside of the cafeteria
-required attendance
-dress code
-poor reputation regarding their clinical rotations
-poor reputation of the school in general. I know everyone doesn't feel that way, but with how prominent this is online semi-worries me

Honestly, every instinct tells me to attend ARCOM as I am confident in their program, faculty, and student body. However, I am planning to fly out to LECOM to visit the school before I make my decision. If I missed any important factors regarding these schools, however, let me know below.
 

MedDoc305

2+ Year Member
Dec 29, 2018
217
206
Status
  1. Medical Student
ARCOM pros:
-visited campus for my interview and loved the environment and school
-the triple helix curriculum is solid from what I heard from the current students there
-has in-person classes (very important for me, plus they still have OMM in-person which most schools aren't doing anymore)
-faculty and administration seems very supportive of the student body
-my interviewers seemed interested in who I was as a person and very personable, which tells me that they truly care about who they accept and the type of class they want to create (LECOM was a robot interview with 5 MMI questions, nothing about me as a person)
-community support appears strong for the school
-good rotations and Mercy hospital will be newly completed and associated with the school when I start
-on-campus housing (also very low cost of living in Arkansas)
-love the outdoors, and ft. smith has a lot of outdoors stuff to do
-overall good gut feeling about ARCOM

ARCOM cons:
-higher tuition
-not very established
-dress code
-mandatory attendance if under 80%
-my SO would not like living in Arkansas as much as Florida

LECOM pros:
-lower tuition (big plus)
-more established
-living in florida for me would be better than in Arkansas (near the beach, good weather)
-PBL offers flexibility and allows me to learn in my own methods. Also good prep for thinking like a doctor
-SO would be happier here I believe

LECOM cons:
-no food/drink outside of the cafeteria
-required attendance
-dress code
-poor reputation regarding their clinical rotations
-poor reputation of the school in general. I know everyone doesn't feel that way, but with how prominent this is online semi-worries me

Honestly, every instinct tells me to attend ARCOM as I am confident in their program, faculty, and student body. However, I am planning to fly out to LECOM to visit the school before I make my decision. If I missed any important factors regarding these schools, however, let me know below.
It seems to me you'd be happier, and hence more successful, going to ARCOM. The tuition difference is only around 10k? a year and that is mitigated by COL and rent in Bradenton is around $1100 for a one-bedroom. Also, LECOM is increasing their 3rd/4th year tuition by $3500 to secure more rotation spots, apparently (or at least they are for our class 2024). Due to COVID conditions, my experience so far of LECOM will be vastly different from yours (I love it). We had the option to choose between fully online first semester or in class. Anatomy is fully online regardless this year (which means just zooming in and not having to go to school which I love) and the lab (which to me is a time sink) is practically nonexistent. We just have lab zooms where we're shown a ton of cadaver pictures. OPP/CE practice is in person if you didn't choose fully online. LECOM, in general, is very strict and wants you to follow the rules and not make waves, but they will work with you if you have complaints (even better if you provide solutions). They are extremely responsive to the SGA committee. Not having drinks/food outside the cafeteria does suck but I'm barely in school as is and if I do study there I can just head down to the cafeteria real quick or study at the cafeteria itself. None of this changes the fact that you loved ARCOM though and I still believe you should go where you'd feel best. The weather is pretty great and tons to do in surrounding cities (Tampa, Sarasota, Orlando only a couple of hours away, etc).

Just wanted to add that the professors seem to care about the students and are generally very supportive. I can't speak for rotations as a first-year but most of the "poor reputation" online is pretty outdated.
 
Oct 15, 2019
44
26
Status
  1. Pre-Medical
It seems to me you'd be happier, and hence more successful, going to ARCOM. The tuition difference is only around 10k? a year and that is mitigated by COL and rent in Bradenton is around $1100 for a one-bedroom. Also, LECOM is increasing their 3rd/4th year tuition by $3500 to secure more rotation spots, apparently (or at least they are for our class 2024). Due to COVID conditions, my experience so far of LECOM will be vastly different from yours (I love it). We had the option to choose between fully online first semester or in class. Anatomy is fully online regardless this year (which means just zooming in and not having to go to school which I love) and the lab (which to me is a time sink) is practically nonexistent. We just have lab zooms where we're shown a ton of cadaver pictures. OPP/CE practice is in person if you didn't choose fully online. LECOM, in general, is very strict and wants you to follow the rules and not make waves, but they will work with you if you have complaints (even better if you provide solutions). They are extremely responsive to the SGA committee. Not having drinks/food outside the cafeteria does suck but I'm barely in school as is and if I do study there I can just head down to the cafeteria real quick or study at the cafeteria itself. None of this changes the fact that you loved ARCOM though and I still believe you should go where you'd feel best. The weather is pretty great and tons to do in surrounding cities (Tampa, Sarasota, Orlando only a couple hours away, etc)
Thanks for your response! I'm happy you're a student at LECOM (and that you like it there) because I was struggling to find/think of much about the school itself. My biggest draw to LECOM was that my SO would much rather prefer living in Florida and I want her to be happy as well. How is PBL for you? And are they supplemented with lectures by the professors?
 
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MedDoc305

2+ Year Member
Dec 29, 2018
217
206
Status
  1. Medical Student
Thanks for your response! I'm happy you're a student at LECOM (and that you like it there) because I was struggling to find/think of much about the school itself. My biggest draw to LECOM was that my SO would much rather prefer living in Florida and I want her to be happy as well. How is PBL for you? And are they supplemented with lectures by the professors?
The new preclinical director decided to give us a taste of PBL (we don't actually start PBL until 10/26) earlier this semester and honestly it works for me. For the most part, it's 3 days a week (Mon, Wed, Friday) 2 hours a day. Those 2 hours are quite painful (I think they get better 2nd year once everyone has a stronger foundation) but after that, you're free the rest of the day to study/do what you want. There are no lectures for PBL. You are given cases that you go through with your team members and you guys decide the chapters that are "important" to read for each one. The chapters pile up and you take an exam on all the chapters (around 200 questions). An exam ranges from like 30-45 chapters. I'm pretty sure there are 2 exams (45% each exam) for a PBL semester. A document has been created by previous years students on how to best tackle PBL at LECOM where you'd succeed in class while also prepping for boards.
 
Oct 15, 2019
44
26
Status
  1. Pre-Medical
The new preclinical director decided to give us a taste of PBL (we don't actually start PBL until 10/26) earlier this semester and honestly it works for me. For the most part, it's 3 days a week (Mon, Wed, Friday) 2 hours a day. Those 2 hours are quite painful (I think they get better 2nd year once everyone has a stronger foundation) but after that, you're free the rest of the day to study/do what you want. There are no lectures for PBL. You are given cases that you go through with your team members and you guys decide the chapters that are "important" to read for each one. The chapters pile up and you take an exam on all the chapters (around 200 questions). An exam ranges from like 30-45 chapters. I'm pretty sure there are 2 exams (45% each exam) for a PBL semester. A document has been created by previous years students on how to best tackle PBL at LECOM where you'd succeed in class while also prepping for boards.
Only 6 hours a week of actual "in class" time sounds awesome. Were you worried about the critiques of LECOM before you started there?
 

MedDoc305

2+ Year Member
Dec 29, 2018
217
206
Status
  1. Medical Student
Only 6 hours a week of actual "in class" time sounds awesome. Were you worried about the critiques of LECOM before you started there?

Well its 6 hours for PBL. You also have to account for OPP and CE which are an hour or two on Tuesdays/Thursdays but yeah its pretty chill when it comes to time wasted in school lol. So I actually did the masters at LECOM first and got to know a ton of the faculty and how they run things so I felt much more reassured after that. My biggest fears were the online rumors of no research and the 3rd-year rotations. So far for the past few years, there haven't been any issues with rotations (as far as I've heard) and there is a good amount of "bench" research and sporadic clinical research at the school itself. I've yet to deep dive into finding out where most students do their clinical research but somehow they do so I'm not too worried.
 
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8YearsLate

Sub Canus lupus familiaris
2+ Year Member
Aug 28, 2017
323
315
Earth
Status
  1. Pre-Medical
No real comment on a decision (I think both are great options) but keep in mind that LECOM means $30,000 less in debt (that is a down payment on a house plus some). Also, I'm not sure where the "negative reputation" thing comes from - don't go by what you hear on SDN - go by what clinical workforce in that area says. I've spent time in and around the school and other than a somewhat...insensitive?....staff (probably out of necessity given how many apps they get) I haven't seen or heard anything negative related to the school. Honestly between these 2 I think it would come down to the staff. ARCOM's faculty and staff literally radiated love IMO so that would make me want to go there, as I love this kind of supportive environment, but the pragmatist in me tends to weigh things like finances and location more heavily.
 

Drsecondchance

2+ Year Member
Dec 8, 2018
383
500
I would choose ARCOM. While it is a bit more expensive, I can't imagine trying to teach myself everything rather than have a professor there to guide me. I am an auditory learner and trying to learn solely and completely by reading the textbook sounds like unadulterated hell to me. The support at ARCOM is amazing and while they say lectures are mandatory, I've had multiple students there tell me they don't really care if you go, even if your grade is below 80%, as long as you don't miss other mandatory things. Arkansas is beautiful and I believe your SO would acclimate, even if it isn't Florida. Long story short: ARCOM is a more supportive school with state of the art equipment, a faculty that cares deeply about your success, and a close knit community. You won't fall through the cracks there, even if you struggle. ARCOM all the way.
 
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Reactions: 1 user
Jan 26, 2019
61
35
Status
  1. Pre-Medical
The new preclinical director decided to give us a taste of PBL (we don't actually start PBL until 10/26) earlier this semester and honestly it works for me. For the most part, it's 3 days a week (Mon, Wed, Friday) 2 hours a day. Those 2 hours are quite painful (I think they get better 2nd year once everyone has a stronger foundation) but after that, you're free the rest of the day to study/do what you want. There are no lectures for PBL. You are given cases that you go through with your team members and you guys decide the chapters that are "important" to read for each one. The chapters pile up and you take an exam on all the chapters (around 200 questions). An exam ranges from like 30-45 chapters. I'm pretty sure there are 2 exams (45% each exam) for a PBL semester. A document has been created by previous years students on how to best tackle PBL at LECOM where you'd succeed in class while also prepping for boards.
Would you mind PM'ing that document if it's not too troublesome?
 
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Reactions: 1 user

MedDoc305

2+ Year Member
Dec 29, 2018
217
206
Status
  1. Medical Student
ARCOM pros:
-visited campus for my interview and loved the environment and school
-the triple helix curriculum is solid from what I heard from the current students there
-has in-person classes (very important for me, plus they still have OMM in-person which most schools aren't doing anymore)
-faculty and administration seems very supportive of the student body
-my interviewers seemed interested in who I was as a person and very personable, which tells me that they truly care about who they accept and the type of class they want to create (LECOM was a robot interview with 5 MMI questions, nothing about me as a person)
-community support appears strong for the school
-good rotations and Mercy hospital will be newly completed and associated with the school when I start
-on-campus housing (also very low cost of living in Arkansas)
-love the outdoors, and ft. smith has a lot of outdoors stuff to do
-overall good gut feeling about ARCOM

ARCOM cons:
-higher tuition
-not very established
-dress code
-mandatory attendance if under 80%
-my SO would not like living in Arkansas as much as Florida

LECOM pros:
-lower tuition (big plus)
-more established
-living in florida for me would be better than in Arkansas (near the beach, good weather)
-PBL offers flexibility and allows me to learn in my own methods. Also good prep for thinking like a doctor
-SO would be happier here I believe

LECOM cons:
-no food/drink outside of the cafeteria
-required attendance
-dress code
-poor reputation regarding their clinical rotations
-poor reputation of the school in general. I know everyone doesn't feel that way, but with how prominent this is online semi-worries me

Honestly, every instinct tells me to attend ARCOM as I am confident in their program, faculty, and student body. However, I am planning to fly out to LECOM to visit the school before I make my decision. If I missed any important factors regarding these schools, however, let me know below.
I just wanted to follow up now that Cooper tagged me in a post.

we just finished our final exam for PBL and let me just say LECOM itself is not an issue and neither is the curriculum (it will prepare you just like other schools will). However, if given the option of taking a systems based curriculum I would do it in a heart beat. PBL, at least the way LECOM does it, is unnecessarily difficult and is very hard to follow along with board material. I say this as someone who is getting a 4.0 this semester and is able to put in minimal effort (crammed 30 chapters in 4-5 days, not advised lol). Make your life easier and choose a systems based/lecture based curriculum school with minimal mandatory attendance where using board resources and anki is enough.
 
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