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Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by bibliophile712, Apr 24, 2007.
I think these HSers need a little more perspective.
Seriously. Brown? Oh the humiliation. The OP should go commit hara-kiri right now before his/her shame is discovered by all.
As a pre med at Princeton right now....
GO TO BROWN PLME!!!
ARE YOU NUTS?
You have a guaranteed acceptance into med school. WHY THE HELL WOULD YOU PASS THAT UP?
Princeton is good, but your grades will certainly suffer here. (aka, average GPA at Princeton = 3.4 while the average GPA at Yale = 3.7)
I know I love to say "come to Princeton," but GO TO BROWN.
What is up with this infestation of annoying high school students. They are crawling all over SDN and I am getting itchy. Go to the Prom and leave the rest of us alone for at least 4 years....GROW UP and then come back and ask sensible questions.
i had to fend off who the hell knows how many vastly more qualified applicants to get one of Brown's 30ish med school spots, and people like you go and be like, oh whatever will i do, its not #1 in the rankings, gosh darn.
seriously...your priorities are all screwed up. going to Princeton will not seal you for a midwest school...unless you are a total idiot/douche and cannot prove your worth to medical schools(in that case you will not get in anywhere). Likewise, do not attend Brown because you believe you will match into Harvard...that is flat out stupid, and sdn needs to invent a virtual slap for comments like that
are there any factors you are not considering???? please, don't make me choke
first, lift your hand, and bring it quickly to your face repeatedly
secondly, get a grip, and try for a second, to imagine being friends for 4 years with some people at either school, and walking around that campus for 4 years, and taking classes and all the things that normal college students do
finally, if you do nothing else...STOP THINKING ABOUT PRESTIGE...the only people who care about it in college are the ones who touch themselves at night while they gloat over their alma mater
as a recent princeton grad who majored in english i'd say go to princeton. the english department is amazing, comp lit is even better. i actually liked princeton better than provincetown, but those decisions are exactly what you said they are, subjective. princeton students are absolutely a unique breed and definitely inspire either love or hate. but overall, i'd say that they're some of the most amazing people i've ever met. that said, being pre-med at princeton isn't easy. i'm going into the process not entirely sure if i'm going to get in and have definitely found myself wondering if i should have gone with an early acceptance program. however, i loved my princeton experience: my friends, professors, thesis.
in the end, i think that you're better off making your decision by the factors that you're afraid of judging: environment, classmates, etc. you'll be so much happier, if you go where you feel you'll belong. science is science, you're going to learn the same orgo no matter where you go and brown's english department isn't too shabby.
go with your gut and don't worry about harvard residencies. once you start your first year of college you'll realize that it's such a dynamic experience
so you won't be able to predict where you'll be or what you'll want at the end of year 1 much less 8 years from now. study hard, have fun, enjoy college. freshman year of life sucks.
Here's some data regarding applying as a premed from Princeton.
im a dick?????
i worked so hard to get into med school just so a high school kid with no understanding of the sweat blood and tears we premeds put in can go and diss a school offhand
im sorry, but i could have told you to just **** off and leave, or just ignored this thread, especially considering how naive you are concerning prestige and rankings. Yes, a well known school is well known for a reason - but if you are comparing princeton and brown's undergrad rankings you are wasting your time. period. You were at least semi on the right track when you considered Princeton's english department, which is mind blowing. But to try to pick a school based on your uninformed ideas of likely being forced into a home state med school because you attend Princeton, or matching into Harvard from Brown PLME, are just wrong, dead wrong.
i dont even know why im taking the time - after all, im supposedly a gunner???? dunno where that one came from...
and yes, id like to see sdn leave behind prestige and start discussing some real issues, like quality of life and opportunities in med school, so yeah, im on sdn telling people to ignore prestige. so suck it up - you're choosing between brown plme and princeton and you're calling brown a mediocre/lower ranked school...and then you get offended when people call you immature
Wow, testy 'lil underage varmint, ain't he?
Truly, you are unconscionably oppressed.
Don't worry about it, moomix. I'm sure Junior will eventually get his desserts.
A dream school's a dream school, and college is an important formative period in your life. If I were you, I'd go to Princeton, do well there, and let the future take care of itself. Plenty of kids from Princeton end up in East Coast med schools, regardless of their state of residency. Why do you lack the self-confidence to believe that, with hard work, you might turn out to be one of them? I'm from the Midwest, went to an East Coast college, and had virtually equal luck applying to Midwest schools as I did applying to East Coast schools. Your state school excepted, Midwest med schools are *not* going to be significantly easier to get into just because you come from the Midwest.
Brown's wonderful, too, but don't give up on a dream just because you're afraid you can't get into East Coast schools coming from Princeton.
If you go to a college that you already think of as mediocre, you're setting yourself up for a bitter next four years.
P.S. Don't forget to check out that link Gabujabu gave you: it says that more than 90% of Princeton applicants end up getting into med school somewhere. Consistently. So, if you believe you have the industriousness and luck to avoid falling into that bottom 10%, I think there's no overwhelming reason to play it super-safe and cling to the guaranteed acceptance just because it's a guaranteed acceptance. The hoops you must jump through (MCAT, the struggle to keep a high GPA, etc.) are hoops that tons of your classmates will be jumping through also, and I don't think they cause enough misery to justify turning down a dream school
i smell troll droppings... I find it hard to believe that someone as boorish as the OP would get into Princeton and PLME. Then again, some of the people I know who went to Princeton were bloody fools.
i'd go to princeton. dominate. then go to princeton med school.
Ha, I'll second that motion.
Um, ya, there is not that much grade inflation at Yale...anyways.
To the OP, I don't think you should commit yourself to Brown for 7-8 years, namely b/c you may just change your mind about the whole medicine deal or you may decide that you need time off (not sure if you could do that with Brown's PLME program). Princeton and Brown in terms of prestige are pretty much on the same level (with P'ton slightly edging out Brown) in the Northeast. Though if you like Brown better overall, then just go there.
Honestly I'm surprised by most people's answers. Hmm. In the Northeast Brown doesn't even come close to Princeton in terms of prestige - I don't know how you could really compare them. Of course it goes without saying that both are amazing schools, but not all Ivies are created equal. The Princeton name will help you in med school admissions, despite the huge debate that rages on about the importance of which undergrad you attended.
Don't let the low GPA's and pre-med horror stories scare you. Who cares anyway? Princeton's pre-med classes are hard, but not ungodly. Jeez. Eight years in Providence, RI is a long, long time. I know because I live there now, and it's dull. The weather sucks, there are no cheap sandwich places, no food establishment is open later than 11 pm, and the bar scene on Thayer street is abysmal. Four years at Princeton is, well, fleeting. Yes, I did run into a few tools, but they're everywhere. At the very least, wouldn't you want to go to college somewhere and have the option of going someplace else after a while?
I was in a very similar position to the OP years ago. I was thinking medicine, but majored in English. I actually started pre-med, dropped pre-med, worked for a while, did a post-bacc, and am applying this summer. I've made a lot of stupid decisions in my life, but college, at least, was a blast.
Most Important: Know what makes you happy. Know thy self.
Brown and Princeton both very special places. Your opportunities are golden if you go to either and work hard. Still need to earn it as school name not enough. But they will both open doors if you pursue them.
Brown PLME: Elite, elite program. Perhaps most competitive undergrad program in nation. I know good number of PLME's who turned down Harvard.
Happy PLME who turned down Harvard: Made most of unique liberal arts education offered by PLME. Had balanced college life. Went abroad, read history and poetry every day, became more humanistic doctor, etc. Education itself meant more than prestige.
Sad PLME who turned down Harvard: In the end, what mattered most was prestige. Just couldn't get over "turning down Harvard." Thought about it every day for 4 years. Miserable.
Princeton of course is a specatular place in itself. If it's been your dream school, you might want to go for it. Life is too short and you've worked too hard to miss out on your dream.
You are not limited by Brown PLME. Every year a handful of students "apply out" to top ranked med schools. They end up at Harvard, Hopkins, UCSF, Columbia, etc. Some go to law school and end up at Harvard and Yale Law. But don't go to Brown PLME just to use Brown Med as a safety school. They really frown upon it. And one more time, life is too short to delay gratification. YOu don't want to spend 4 years at Brown trying to justify turning down Princeton with the hope of somehow washing away your regret by getting into Harvard Med in 4 years. That's just too much pressure to be under.
In the end, if you are good, you are good. You are obviously good for getting into Brown and Princeton. Continue to work hard at either school and you'll keep on being successful.
That is why you must go with WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY. That is priceless. There are never any guarantees in life. But the peace of mind of being true to your dreams will last your whole life. Do not turn down Princeton if it is your dream.
But if you like Brown undergrad, then you are absolutely not locked in. Brown PLME's are just like any other undergrad. Most Brown students don't even know who is PLME and who isn't. PLME is just Brown undergrad, which many students would kill for (13% admit rate this year) with the big bonus on top of guaranteed admission to Brown Medical School down the road. You are still free to apply to other medical schools, law schools, Rhodes Scholarships, etc.
Brown and Princeton are very different undergrad environments. Visit both and spend as much time as possible. Listen to your gut. Where do you fit in? Where do you feel excited, thrilled, and in love with the campus?
But again, DO NOT go to Brown PLME trying to use Brown Med as a safety school. That means you are truly wishing for Princeton inside. And you will be unhappy spending 4 years day dreaming about Princeton every day and that dream of yours you passed up.
There are never any guarantees in life. But what is guaranteed if you pass up your dream is wondering the rest of your life "what if" and that is torture. If you work hard at Princeton you will also be successful.
letitgo is right on the money (though providence aint that bad). Definitely do princeton, especially if its your dream school.
Dude, I don't even think there's much of a difference in med school admissions b/w Princeton and a nonranked state school, muchless between Princeton and any other Top 20 undergrad. The biggest reason for the acceptance rates of different undergrads to med school is the quality of the student body.
If the OP feels that Princeton would be the better fit, then he should go to Princeton. But it's ludicrous to be splitting hairs over prestige. Considering the premed attrition rate, there is a large chance (greater than 50%) that he won't even make it to med school right out of undergrad if he gives up this guaranteed opportunity. Look at what happened to you: dropped out of premed, had to do post-bac. By giving up Brown PLME, he is forfeiting a very lucrative safety net.
There are a billion threads on SDN about whether or not the prestige of one's undergrad institution matters. I used to read those threads until I realized that no one on either side had any conclusive evidence to support their point of view. If the OP likes Princeton better and there's even a little bit of a small chance that the Princeton name might help him out, why shouldn't he take whatever tiny advantages he is lucky enough to lay hands on?
I would venture to guess that most Princeton students (including the post-bac guy who responded above) who contribute to the 50% attrition rate do so because they lose interest in medicine, not because they don't have the aptitude to do medicine. If the OP ends up being one of these 50% of premeds who lose interest in medicine, then he will experience this loss of interest regardless of whether he goes to Brown or Princeton. Moreover, if he *did* lose interest in medicine, it would suck for him to be stuck at a college that he only chose because it guaranteed he would get accepted to medical school. That is why I think the statistic that matters most is the "More than 90% of Princeton applicants get into some med school," not the 50% attrition rate. ~90% odds aren't bad, and I don't think the OP should play it too safe if that means sacrificing some of his happiness at this crucial stage in his life.
oops. (mistake post)
Read my post again. If fit is the important factor here, then the OP should go to Princeton. However, if his fixation on the perceived difference in prestige is the factor, then he is making a huge mistake. I think it's generally unhealthy anyway to tie your "happiness" to the prestige of your school. (not that there's a huge difference between Princeton and Brown)
And I disagree with you that most students drop out of premed because they lose interest. Either that or a lot of people tend to "lose interest" after getting a 2.9.
From reading the OP's post again, it appears his biggest hangup is having to attend a "mediocore" med school and a "lower ranked" undergrad. He says he likes Brown's research opps, student body, and location better. I don't see anything that would warrant passing up PLME for Princeton.
I agree. It's definitely fit that's most important. I decided to go to neither for regular undergrad, but prestige wasn't at all why....I wanted more structure than Brown's undergrad had, and I really didn't gel with the Princeton students (at least back when I was picking a college, Princeton was somewhat still the last outpost of the rich, pretentious white guy...but since the OP considers places like Brown mediocre and substandard, maybe that'd be a good choice for him ).
You make good points. The OP should indeed question his motivations and make sure that his reasons for believing he will be happier at Princeton will hold up for at least the next 4 years. If they don't, he shouldn't go there. But if he thinks the kids at Brown are more "mediocre," then he'll end up feeling bitter and isolated throughout his undergrad years. I knew someone who went to Brown who felt that none of his classmates shared his enthusiasm for extremely-high-level physics and stuff like that and felt rather wistful and lonely-ish for four years; it's sad to be surrounded by people who you think don't understand the things you love the most. On the other hand, I know other people who were really happy at Brown, so the OP should figure out what kind of person he is and what makes him happy. My main point is that he shouldn't choose Brown only because it's a safety net for getting into an East Coast college, which seems by far to be his primary concern. Princeton's been this kid's dream school for "a long time" and he loves the English department there; not having a safety net is not a big enough minus to warrant giving this up, in my opinion, especially since I don't think he'll have significantly more difficulty getting into East Coast med schools than Midwest med schools. (Midwest med schools are no piece of cake, even for Midwesterners.)
As for the losing-interest-vs.-not-being-good-enough issue, you may be right, but my response was based partly on the fact that I'm sick of doctors (and doctors' boastful mothers) who believe that everyone in the world would be a doctor if they could, and the only reason that anyone would choose a career outside medicine is because they aren't "smart enough" to handle medicine. I knew plenty of kids in college who were plenty "smart enough" for medicine but ultimately chose to go into other fields that interested them more. I imagine that the kids at Princeton are likely to be this way.
as someone who took 7 years longer to get to med school than he anticipated, i had my share of doubts about whether i should have gone somewhere else (i.e., that had a guaranteed-admission 7- or 8-yr program). in fact, i applied to a bunch of those when i was in h.s.: Michigan, NYU (the year they didn't take anyone), BU (interviewed), Rochester, Brown.
at the end of the day, though, i don't regret the decision to have gone to Princeton. i was an immature 16-yr-old also torn by acceptances to music conservatories, schools, and departments like Eastman (has an loose affiliation with Rochester), Oberlin, NYU (Tisch School of the Arts), and Michigan. in the end, though, i knew what doors are opened to people graduating from Princeton, so i went with that. i made my mistakes academically and otherwise while there for 4 years, but i grew up, and i learned some valuable life lessons. and to this day, where i've perceived myself to be borderline or underqualified for jobs or positions, Princeton did give me that edge. there aren't many schools out there that have the brand-name value and alumni network that Princeton has, however fair or unfair you think that is.
go to Princeton, strike the right balance in your life, and you'll do well and not even worry when it's time to apply to med school. i don't have all that much good to say about their premed office, but their stat whoring doesn't lie. we do quite well getting people to med school.
[thought i would disclose some inherent bias: i have done alumni interviews for Princeton applicants the past couple years.]
If your biggest concern is the prestige of the med school you attend (as opposed to the prestige of the college you attend), i'd say go to brown. being premed at princeton is really hard and we don't do that great in med school admissions. i realize that 90% getting into med school is a high number, but it's misleading. my friends and i did not do nearly as well as we expected...we just don't get it. call the premeds i know from pton and myself whiny, but most of us thought it was unncessarily hard without a compensating reward when it came to admissions.
on the flip side i should mention that i loved princeton and would never go anywhere else instead for my undergrad education. you just have to realize it's not the best place to be premed...but it's a great place for a million other reasons. the above is only for those who are mainly concerned w/ prestige of med school.
If you are a cool kid that has a life outside of book and school...go to brown. Are you kidding me... you can have fun for four years! To not have to worry about grades...and just be a college kid, why would anyone in thier right mind turn that down. To be a bookworm for four years, spend countless hours during the weekends and vacations studying, MCAT, application costs, perhaps do jobs/research that we hate just because schools like to see that...
Your going to AN IVY LEAGUE school and getting the same for medical school. Brown is going to be up in the 20's and 10's with the way they are going.
What the heck is wrong with you? But do what makes you happy, its a ****ty road doing things the long way but if you want to take chances all for a school that in 5 years that maybe ranked a few spaces higher on a list...go right ahead. You are going to work hard dont get me wrong @ Brown, but its laid back.... Its like a gift from god...and you are going to turn it down.
I'm sorry I just dont understand how you can be such a number ***** @ such a young age...go to brown...dont be a loser!
I am currently at Brown, and everyone I know in the PLME program loves it. It's a fabulous program, and I have yet to meet anyone in the program that is dissatisfied with it. (I am sure there are people, but I have no idea where they're hiding). But you will spend 8 yrs here, which is a long time so think about your decision carefully. However, most people love the city of Providence and the PLME program allows for a lot of independent study and personal pursuits outside of classwork.
By the way you can't go wrong either way. But I will say that your life will probably be a lot less stressful through undergrad attending the PLME program, so it depends on what your looking for. Also, the prestige factor between attending PLME or Princeton won't make a difference in the long-run (I know it seems like it will, but looking back at the college admissions process myself I realized how overemphasized it can be), it's really going to depend on what you do with your time as an undergraduate student and what type of undergraduate experience your looking for.
Good luck with your decision.
So you're a HS senior now, how do you know you'll still want to be a doctor in 4 years from now? That would be one factor to consider that you may change your mind.
I haven't read all the replies, but from what I can see, you should go to Princeton. If prestige is such a big factor in your mind, and you go to Brown, you will regret it while you're there, even if it would be the better choice in the long run (which, really, who knows?).
Ok, I made a similar decision coming out of HS (Northwestern HPME vs Yale). I chose Yale and haven't regretted my decision. The truth is that college is extremely formative, and you should go to the undergraduate institution that provides you the best fit and also where you feel the most at home. Thus, if you liked Brown better, maybe it's more for you. Princeton does have a reputation for being the most preppy of the Ivies, so keep that in mind! Ultimately, I came to Yale because I felt the most at home here, and that has been crucial during my time in college.
You're obviously pretty bright, and I doubt that you'll have problems getting into med school if you work reasonably hard. Thus, I would say base your decision Brown or Princeton based on the undergraduate experience. Don't limit your options with the PLME program. If you go to Brown, obviously enroll in it (and keep a 3.0...), but always keep the option of taking the MCAT and going elsewhere open. You may decide that you want to be at another med school in the Midwest or even the West/East Coasts. And for the love of God don't go to P-ton because it's more prestigious -- If it doesn't feel right for you, there's no reason to pay a crapload of money for tuition if you're not going to be happy.
So I echo much of the advice already given. Go to the college where you feel most at home. You're probably smart enough to get into a great medical school, so don't worry about getting in in the future as long as you're willing to work for it. Go to the school that's the best fit for you (perhaps Brown, eh?) and have a great time and grow as a person. Just my 2 cents.
I know both of these schools well. The atmosphere at Princeton is opposite that of Brown's. Everything on the campus is perfect, landscaping, etc. and that is a major priority to them. Yes, they have an amazing faculty but I think they also have a very stuffy population of too many future I-bankers. On the other hand the Brown atmosphere is much more diverse. A down to Princeton I think is the lack of a med school compared to the other IVY league schools. The opportunities for volunteering, shadowing, med research, etc. are going to be fewer. I think some lose interest in pre-med there without those opportunities. At Brown, you have the chance to see if you like it. Going to med school in the same place is tough though. I think Dartmouth is also a possibility still though. These a just a few pros and cons. If you can get the SATs, grades to get into Princeton anbd that Brown program I'm sure you a fairly good tester. If you stick with pre-med and give it your all, i would guess you will also do well on your MCATs and can get in to many later. I would highly recommend not worrying about Harvard later but rather trying to figure out where you would fit in the best. They are totally opposite in feeling. You have two great choices and I don't think you can go wrong. My gut from what you have said is the Brown might be a better fit.
If you are positive medicine is what you want...go to Brown. Just to add to the sentiments of some other Ivy League premeds, I feel certain classes are unnecessarily difficult at certain top 5 undergrads and in the end it can keep you out of med school. You are obviously bright, but there are tons of high school valedictorians at Princeton that become mediocre when other factors are introduced that you have not yet experienced. Everyone at Princeton and brown are intelligent enough to get into med school, but everyone who wants to will not get in. Go for the sure thing....dont make it harder on yourself if you are more passionate for medicine. good luck
I agree, well said!
Umm -- go to Brown PLME, work hard, take the MCATs if you feel like it and then apply out, if you feel like it. The PLME program will not hunt you to the ends of the earth if you later decide you don't want to stay there. They may not be happy, but hey -- its been done, and its all about maximising your option.
My 2 cents ...
PLME no question about it.
Brown, you lucky duck.
I didn't know princeton had a med school.
Go to brown and take it easy.
But of course.
Um people why are you still commenting?
The OP made his choice (whatever that was) over a month ago.