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Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by gabeybaby, Jan 3, 2009.
Can someone elaborate/explain what the BS/MD program is?
6-8 year program in which you get both a BS and an MD. Basically, you're guaranteed into the school's med school as long as you maintain a certain GPA (and MCAT).
HS seniors apply for admission. Exceptionally high (perfect or near perfect) SAT scores are the norm.
after 2-4 years of undergraduate study (depends on the program), the student advances to the medical school. Some, but not all, schools require the MCAT. A minimum gpa must be maintained during undergrad.
Some students will decline admission to the med school when the time comes and "apply out" usually with the idea that they can "do better" than their affiliated med school.
that's some name for someone that's looking to join the most respected profession in the country.
LOL he got you there!
There are a few tradeoffs here - while it's nice to have a guaranteed spot at a school, it also doesn't hurt to be exposed to different places during your education, which have their own facilities, research, settings, alumni networks, etc. Also, while it's certainly nice to save the money on your tuition, having an undergraduate degree in something separate from medicine can be both interesting and perhaps useful later on, so that's something to consider with the 6 or 7 year program. Good luck.
for the win!
I would say that another drawback is that students in the BS/MD program will attempt to maintain the minimum requirements of that program. For example, I think HPME (for Northwestern) requires a 3.5 undergrad GPA and if they apply to any other med school besides the Feinberg School of Medicine, they will lose their guaranteed spot. Granted that this is a top 15 med school, there really isn't much of an incentive for a student in the program to try and get a 4.0 and apply to other med schools (such as Harvard or JHU) because he or she would lose his or her guaranteed spot. Also, since most of the students accepted into the programs are very intelligent, maintaining this GPA will require very little work, so in my opinion, these students will have a hard time adjusting to the extreme work ethic of students in med school (especially since Northwestern's med school will have very strong students who have studied countless hours in their respective undergrad institutions).
Feinberg is not a top 15 medical school.
I respectfully disagree. I think it depends on the person entirely. In the program at my school, at least half of the people apply to other medical schools as well (its nonbinding). Some people just try to make the cut off, but most people really try hard because they are motivated and want to do their best. So just because you go into a combined degree program doesn't mean you'll slack off.
Read my post again. I said 'some' individuals are like this. I know that it depends on the indivdual, and I'm not typecasting everyone into one group. I'm just writing my observations on a few individuals whom I know to take this mentality and I know these few don't represent everyone.
HPME students don't lose their guaranteed spot if they apply out, unless this has changed recently. I doubt that since it's not really the philosophy of the program to do that. Also, Northwestern has for the past 8 years (at least) been consistently ranked around #21 in the US news and world report rankings
i opted out of bs/md programs for a top university, and although late at night when studying for a killer test i regretted the decision, i would completely do it over again if i had the chance. my understanding is that most of these programs exist to lock in top students that may end up going to the higher-ranked medical programs if they went through the traditional premed route. here's what led to my decision:
1) i had a ton of opportunities at my university and the *freedom to choose* what i wanted to do academically and extracurricularly. i think at some bs/md programs, you are somewhat limited in what choices you have academically at least.
2) i wanted a 'normal' college experience. that's something you just wouldn't get in the 6- or 7-year programs i was considering. you want to have the social opportunities to make real good friends over 4 years without having to leave them. you can celebrate big events, like 21 and graduation, with everyone else and get to know a great community of people. you can do that at a bs/md program, however, you have more time to spend as a college student - enjoy it (even if you have to do so with pre-med activities)
3) i wanted the opportunity to either decide later on md/phd or whether or not to apply to some of the top programs in the country. i think there is only one ba/md program in the usnews top 15 (before you jump on me about usnews, i'm just using it as some sort of reference). in hindsight, now that i have received interviews at most of the top 15 schools i applied to and an acceptance to one, choosing against the ba/md program may have been the right decision for me.
however, i would just advise to consider your own situation when making the decision. having an acceptance to a medical school is something most people don't get, so consider that. many of my friends who have gone through the program have had a ton of fun studying abroad and traveling the world while in the few years of undergrad as they didn't have to go through the rigorous premed stress process. and assuredly in the end they'll make good doctors, so that's all that matters i suppose.