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"Choose School X Because it's in a BETTER LOCATION"

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by quideam, Apr 21, 2004.

  1. quideam

    quideam Too tired to complain
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    This is my "i'm frustrated with such comments thread". People constantly compare x vs. y schools, and over and over again, i've seen people choosing schools in NYC that aren't as good as other schools because of location. As someone who lived in Brooklyn for five years and lives about 30 min. away from Manhattan now, this makes me incredibely frustrated.

    What is the obsession with NY??!?! Personally, after interviewing at Cornell, I decided to withdraw all of my other applications for NY schools BECAUSE of the location (other than AE, because I had already paid the $).

    Think about the living conditions if you go to NYU or Columbia or Cornell... you're living in a dorm for at least the first year! On top of that, you are living in a rather dirty, loud city with tons of things to do that are, for the most part, too expensive for you to do - plus too time consuming. Even something as simple as going out to a bar will easily cost you $20 or $30 bucks on a friday or saturday night.

    Okay, i'm done ranting.... threads where people pick NYU or MSSM over better schools BECAUSE of their NY location have just frustrated me to no end.

    Oh, and why does everyone assume that 'better location' means 'huge, loud, dirty city' for everyone? Personally, although i'm not a fan of suburbia, NY is far from my idea of a great place to live.

    Okay, that's it. I'm going back to work now :D
     
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  3. TRUE

    TRUE slacker extraordinaire
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    Simply becuase you don't like NYC doesn't mean others don't. For many people, the draw of NYC is incomparable. And while you live in dorms, that doesn't mean the dorms have to be crappy. MSSM has some of the nicest housing I've seen and rather cheap as well (500 a month). Should people pick one school over another based on location? It totally depends on them. There are plenty of people who might not be happy living in Gainsville, FL for 4 years for instance (myself included), and that was one of the factors that led me towards going with MSSM. There are people who use location as a factor in many, many life decisions and this is just one of them.
     
  4. missbonnie

    missbonnie floating
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    hey there

    it's just personal pref. Some ppl (like me) just really love living in NYC. I don't consider it dirty , etc either though. Truth is, it really helps if you like where you live .. after all, you're not going to spend 100% of your time at school or studying. For some ppl, like me, it's important to have a city to go out in and have access to things like culture and many other events that happen here.

    Besides, I live the fact that you can get almost anything delivered into the wee hrs of the AM, can get drunk and not have to drive home, etc, etc.

    Like you said, it's personal choice.

    b
     
  5. quideam

    quideam Too tired to complain
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    I agree with both of you - my problem isn't with people liking NYC, it's with people telling others to go to a NY school because it's in a "better location". It's just starting to really annoy me... that's all :). It IS a personal choice - and that's my point.
     
  6. TRUE

    TRUE slacker extraordinaire
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    I agree with this completely, and why I hate all the "School X vs. School Y" posts. No one makes decisions for you. You have to decide for yourself based on the characteristics that you value in each school. I find it rather silly to have to ask others for input on what YOU should do with your next four years of your life. People have to make up their own minds.
     
  7. CalBeE

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    People who are not familiar with NYC probably have certain illusions of what it would be like...certainly it's a vibrant place, but many probably didn't know what to expect.

    It's just like SDN-er telling others to goto a certain school because it's in Southern California...and honestly, I'm not a big fan of Southern Cali, and certainly it's not what some people imagine it to be.
     
  8. New York is the center of the universe.

    Why wouldn't you want to live there?>

    :confused:
     
  9. CalBeE

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    She said it: Dirtiness and loudness of the place ;)
    It's not surprising though. I grew up in an urban city like NYC, and I came to the point where I got tired of it...mostly because of the rudeness of people and materialistic attitude of people...but after living in California for 7 years...I kinda miss it now. :(
     
  10. Hmmm well illusions or no illusions I'm sure many people want to go to NY for the a) diversity/clinical experiences b) chance to live there without worrying about the high cost of living c) activities- clubs, bars, scenes for everyone etc. i mean unless you are into outdoor stuff (bleh).
     
  11. Materialistic? You are moving to [email protected]#@#

    :laugh:
     
  12. CalBeE

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    Beverly Hills, Bel Air are probably the more materialistic areas...but Westwood is no where near the materialistic areas I've experienced ;)
     
  13. gsx56

    gsx56 Member
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    Yeah, it's a personal choice. I'm not denying that. But, besides the fact that you are spending the next 4 years of your life someplace, location really is so important - not only for recreational purposes but also because places like NYC really have unique and enriched opportunities to explore medicine. For me it was a primary factor (if not THE). From a clinical standpoint, i think that the things you'll get to see and be exposed to in metropolitan places like NYC, Chic, Detroit, LA are bar-none.
     
  14. quideam

    quideam Too tired to complain
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    If seeing a large variety of pathology is important, then I would say that Newark or Camden are right up there with those places as well. However, I would choose, say, Chicago, over Newark because I prefer it.... point being, huge cities on the tip of everyone's tongue are not necessarily the only places to get a large variety of pathology. Basically any school located in an area with a sizable poor indigenous population will get you that experience.

    Again, the point of this thread isn't that location is not important - of course location is important! The point is that "great location" means different things to different people, and i'm just tired of folks telling people to choose a certain school because it's in a "better location" - because that is subjective.

    And Eraserhead.... I personally couldn't live without tons of outdoors activities, so there you go :D
     
  15. skypilot

    skypilot 2K Member
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    Yeah, choose Dartmouth so you can go skiing, kayaking, and mountain biking every day!

    ;)
     
  16. quideam

    quideam Too tired to complain
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    Believe me, it breaks my heart that I really couldn't go to Dartmouth. If location was the #1 thing for me, then I would definetely have gone there! I think it's a beautiful school....

    However, reputation of EM programs at my school is one of the most important factors for me, and Dartmouth doesn't even have an EM residency. Also, their pathology isn't all that diverse.....

    So, skypilot, although you were kidding around, it's certianly something that crossed my mind :) I have a friend doing MD/PhD there, and I'm jealous :D
     
  17. If you know what you want to do (EM), I'm all for choosing based on that. Although I chose my undergrad (Berkeley) because I thought I wanted to go into genetics research and never did a bit of that. I just have no idea at all what area of medicine I want to go into... and my daily activities are not leading me towards a firm decision yet... I really have to try everything out so for me its just a) rep b) location and c) cost and the exciting funny feeling in my tummy the school gives me.
     
  18. TheFlash

    TheFlash Playtime Is Over
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    Well, NYC is referred to as "the capitol of the world" for some very good reasons. I'd say more people like NYC than not... it's one of the most visited destinations on the planet. :thumbup: But true, everyone's version of a good location is different.
     
  19. The thing is I've only visited so I can't be sure its what I think it is, but I like SF and its really just a bigger, better, and more diverse version of SF... without the pretense that people are nice and friendly when they really aren't :)
     
  20. hakksar

    hakksar Senior Member
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    I agree that choosing a school based on areas that it is strong in is a good idea. However, it can be misleading. Often a school will not have a department (or independent department) in an area that you are interested in. For instance, often EM departments are part of surgery or internal medicine. This may or may not be a disadvantage. For instance, at CU the EM department is housed in the department of surgery, but there is a home EM career rotation at Denver Health (one of the top EM programs in the country) and CU matches multiple students to Denver Health every year (3 this year, 4 last year etc) in addition to students who match at other EM residencies. Thus, if you want to go into EM, CU might be a good choice despite not having an independent EM department. This can be true at other schools in other departments as well.
     
  21. southbelle

    southbelle Senior Member
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    good post quideam. I'm going to like having my own 1100 sq. ft one bedroom loft with new hardwood floors and all new appliances in medical school for the whopping price of $600 a month. People at new york schools are paying that much to live in dorm rooms and take community showers. I don't get it, but hey, you were dead right when you talked about how good locations mean different things to different students.

    Although how many schools are really better than NYU? Once you get past schools like Cornell and Yale(that #9-11 range), I would argue that no school has a more 'gunnerish' match list year in and year out than NYU. Vanderbilt, Emory, Pitt, Northwestern, and schools like that are ranked higher but this really is insignificant and doesn't show up in the match lists. (If that's your thing of course)
     
  22. TRUE

    TRUE slacker extraordinaire
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    Actually, we pay about 600 dollars as well and live in individual dorm rooms with hardwood floors, full kitchens, and we share a bathroom with one other person. If you're a guy, that's generally a non-issue ;)

    That's a pretty strange statement. Have you even looked at other school's matchlists? MSSM's list this year was as strong if not stronger than NYU's. You can view both on the "Official MSSM Class of 2008" thread.
     
  23. pekq

    pekq Gunner
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    Plenty of people turn down higher ranked schools to attend NYC schools. The trend of people asking NY schools vs higher ranked schools is just a reflection of that. Most people who bring up this question are actually leaning towards NYC schools but worry about the US News ranking.

    On another note, in what ways exactly does people going to nyc schools over UPitt make you upset quidearm? It's their personal decision and it's not negatively affecting you so you really didn't need to start a thread and whine about it.
     
  24. We've picked out schools and our minds are still racing so we need to bitch about something :D
     
  25. Yeah, MSSM has great housing! I'm jealous :D At Cornell for those interested, there are small single room dorms where you share a bathroom with (correct me if I am wrong) only one other student. It connects both rooms... The housing is subsidized and only about 350 a month. The starting in the second year you move on to something better. The kitchen in the dorms, however, is shared by the whole floor I believe.
     
  26. musiclink213

    musiclink213 My room is a mess
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    i've lived in brooklyn all my life, about 20 mins. from manhattan. i love it. and it would be hard to imagine living anywhere else. i love being able to go out and get what i need from the store, knowing that there is some sort of transportation always running, as opposed to other places where trains and such supposedly stop running after 1 am or something. i love being able to go to a broadway show whenever i feel like it. i love seeing hte diversity of the city. i'm not saying other places don't have comparable stuff, but each city has it's own vibe, and i like new york's vibe, as do many other people.

    plus, if you know hte right things, you can do nyc for cheap. i've seen countless broadway shows in the front row for only $20 a ticket.
     
  27. quideam

    quideam Too tired to complain
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    As i've said before, i'm not offended, upset, or even concerned if people want to choose a school in NYC over any other school. Really.

    I'm upset simply that people tell others to choose a NYC school over some other school because it's in a "better location". It's just pissing me off because I see that over and over again, and I feel like that perpetuates the idea that NYC=best location ever, when that's really a personal choice.

    Here's an analogy about why this frustrates me:

    Suppose that someone started a thread asking for advice on buying shoes. Pair A is slightly cheaper, looks nicer, and feels more comfortable. Pair B is a little more expensive and maybe doesn't quite match their needs, but would still be just fine. One other difference is that Pair A is from some random department store, while Pair B is a famous designer label. Now, suppose that tons of people reply that, well, Pair A and B are fairly comprable, but B is a designer shoe, and this is always much better, so they should get the designer shoe. That is what frustrates me - who says that designer is better?

    Anyway, The only reason I started this thread was to complain about the lack of open-mindedness about location that *some* people seem to have on SDN.
     
  28. Do you shop at Ross? :laugh: :laugh: JK :)
     
  29. quideam

    quideam Too tired to complain
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    LOL :laugh: :laugh:
     
  30. Its OK my mom bought my clothes from K-mart and sometimes Sears. Oh, and Payless Shoe Source. The playground kids were brutal!
     
  31. quideam

    quideam Too tired to complain
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    Oh no, not Sears!!!! My dad swears by that store - I don't think he owns a single pair of jeans that's from anywhere other than Sears. Sad, so sad... :D
     
  32. PublicEnemy

    PublicEnemy Senior Member
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    People are asking for opinions and they're getting them.
    When someone posts an X vs Y post, they're trying to get more info about the schools, some new facts or new perspectives to help them make their own decision. People just chime in with their own thoughts or experiences. Location is often a big factor in the decision process. Obviously the final decision is an individual one arrived at after careful thought and consideration of the entire picture (for most people). But here on these message boards, why shouldn't people provide their honest opinions? Even if what they're saying is subjective commentary about location. People want to hear these opinions. Thats why they posted the thread to begin with, for help before making their decision.

    I think its also good to see that people are choosing schools they truly want to go despite the chance to go to a perceived "better" school or schools that have a higher ranking.

    Lastly, I think a big reason people choose NYC schools is just for the simple reason that so many of them are excellent schools and when thats in conjunction with location, it makes decisions easier. I don't think someone is any way shape or form taking a huge step down or throwing away opportunities by choosing MSSM or NYU over a "better" school or a slightly higher ranked school.
     
  33. pekq

    pekq Gunner
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    Point taken though I do wonder if you are being defensive about Pittsburgh.

    As for shopping for cloth, **** shirts and jeans. :D

    As a side note, walmart is faltering in Japan because their product is cheap. Japanese would rather pay more for less apparently. :p
     
  34. quideam

    quideam Too tired to complain
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    Defensive about Pitt? Um, no.... I got into a NY school and turned it down, remember?
     
  35. scootad.

    scootad. Senior Member
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    perhaps all these people considering NYU/MSSM over higher ranked schools are making you question your own decision?

    remember ranking is heavily weighted to NIH $$ which is not what most people think is contributing most to their medical education. Additionally if you analyze the rankings & trends not much separates 15-30 and every year schools swap positions especially in this 15-30 interval.
     
  36. southbelle

    southbelle Senior Member
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    I was thinkign more of NYU on the $600 a month and a communal bathroom though. But still, even at MSSM you have dorms. How many sq ft? maybe 450? I need more room.

    And your statement on the match lists isn't really in dispute with mine. When did I insult MSSM's match list? I agree it's usually pretty similar to NYU's(and by comparison Pitt, emory, etc). I was disagreeing with an earlier statement that people were picking NY schools(namely MSSM and NYU) over better schools. I'm saying that there aren't a lot of schools that are truly better than those in any meaningful sense.
     
  37. TRUE

    TRUE slacker extraordinaire
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    Not sure on the square footage. I don't know why you have this negative "dorm" impression. The MSSM "dorm" is just an apartment building basically with suite style-living. This isn't your typical first year college residence hall.
     
  38. prmd4555

    prmd4555 Member
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    I think the theme here is that good location is not an absolute description but personal preference. I have lived in a big city for 4 years and I just went, very skeptically to visit a school in a small city. It was great. Everyone was so friendly, the cost of living was wonderful, cheap bars, parks everywhere. I felt so calm and happy.
    I got back home to big city life and people were mean and rude, the transportation system is crumbling, traffic, mice, roaches, endless noise and its so overpriced.
    I guess living in a big city just to live in a big city is senseless. Do it bc you love it. Also, realize that med school is hard and will take a lot of your time, you will have some time to enjoy the city, but it will be a very limited amount.
     
  39. quideam

    quideam Too tired to complain
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    I can see how you might think that, but believe me, I'm very happy with Pitt. I don't like NY - the only reason I would even consider going to school there is to be closer to my b/f. Once again, I have nothing against NY - just against people who think you should go to NY over better schools elsewhere just because it's in NY - and tell other people this. It's just annoying, that's all.
     
  40. darkcity998

    darkcity998 Senior Member
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    Location matters to most people because of safety concerns for women, recreational purposes, patient/immigrant population, easy/fast transportation, etc. But one thing sticks out for sure, students may also would want to feel comfortable in a city where people don't do double-takes if you're a minority.

    NY is great, but not for everyone. Coming from someone born and raised here, there is always something new to do! It'll take a whole lifetime to get a true feeling of living in NYC. You would have to spend time in the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island and all the neighborhoods of Manhattan. People who visit NYC tend to stay in certain neighborhoods and don't do that.

    $30 for bars yes, but for most swanky bars yes. Try going during happy hour. Crowds, hustling and bustling yes, but you also get to meet the very hardworking nature of New Yorkers. Ask for directions from someone and you'll likely see a different side to NYers. All these different cultures in NY share that one value - to work hard and to fulfill the American dream. Crowds yes, but considering the population size of NYC, it is actually one of the safer cities according to FBI crime statistics. So of course, location matters plenty when you get into a NYC school. Live it up and let others enjoy a stimulating environment if they decide to do so! :thumbup: (It is definitely beautiful to see the NYC skyline on the LIE during sunset)
     
  41. pekq

    pekq Gunner
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    I recommend people go to NYC schools because I don't believe slightly higher ranked schools actually offer anything that these NYC schools do not offer. What's important is where you will be happier at and it seems those people would be happier in NYC.

    I heard a sizeable number of students skip directly to NYU and MSSM after Cornell and Columbia rejection. Perhaps that expalins NYU and MSSM's strong matches.
     
  42. UseUrHeadFred

    UseUrHeadFred Oh no! It's a Wumpus!
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    As many have said, I think this depends totally upon what you enjoy. Since there's very little personal time in school and during residency, the hobbies you participate in must be available on short notice.

    For example, I'm an amateur astronomer. If I lived in New York City, it would severely compromise (if not outright destroy) my ability to enjoy this hobby. On the other hand, I'm a huge hockey fan. So, totally rural locations may not be ideal. Other people have familiies and have to consider where they want their kids to go to school.

    In my opinion, a person should choose their location based not only on the quality of the program, but on how the area suits their particular personality and situation.
     
  43. ZephyrX

    ZephyrX Member
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    The only 2 things that should be important when choosing a school because of location are : Is the location urban or rural and what is the culture in the area. I don't need to expain the first one. Some people thrive in small towns while other sufficate. The second one obviously has to do with what a student can expect. As a gay foreigner it would be much harder for me to live in a small Southern town as opposed to big urban centers in the Northeast, Midwestern or Pacific parts of the United States.

    I had already noticed a trend on this website for people knocking off great schools because they are located in mid-sized cities or anywhere outside of California and the Northeast. Although i wanted to say something i thought that i shouldn't because i would get the same reaction like 70Mph did when he posted the Stress thread.

    The fact of the matter is that you guys should choose by institution first. Go where you feel more comfortable in terms of the school and then in enviromental factors.

    New York and San Francisco are great cities. Although not the "IT" places anymore they offer things that are rare to find elsewhere in the US. However, medical students are not able to enjoy those things. Unless your parents have a lot of money or you are willing to dig yourself in too much debt, those things are out of reach. Sure New York has a new trendy restaurant poping up each month. Sure is great to eat at WD-50 surrounded by people dressed in the latest Yamamoto couture. But the problem is that YOU at this point in your life won't be able to afford these things.

    If you are looking for diversity every major metropolitan area has it. Atlanta does, Chicago does , heck even St. Louis and Raleigh Durham do too if you know where to look.

    Cities like New York, San Francisco and LA come at a huge cost (Boston, Chicago, Atlanta, etc are more managable and St. Louis, Baltimore and Raleigh Durham are bargains), which if you really look down into it is not justified. When you start medical school your available time will be cut much shorter than most of you expect. You will have a life but you won't be able to do most of the things you used to.

    Do you really believe that the harsh weather of Boston is going to make things any different for you? You are either going to be in a library or in a hospital.

    I chose not to go to New York for undergraduate studies because i didn't want to live in a dorm for more than 6-12 months. I chose the same thing for medical school. I like my less than 1,500 a month apartment. I like having a decent space, in a decent building. My partner and i have been discussing about places for our residency and even then we are uncertain if we wish to move to New York (on an 80 h/w schedule how much of it are we going to see and enjoy?).

    Even if your money allow it, your schedule won't. Medicine is a profession of sacrifice. Your objective right now should be how to become the best healthcare professional. How are you going to be a physician for the rest of your life, when you are not even willing to sacrifice parts of your lifestyle for 4 years? When you are done with school, New York and LA are going to be there waiting for you. Only that time around, you will be able to enjoy everything they have to offer.

    And before someone says to me : " I live in New York and Broadway tickets are a bargain", go ahead and ask some local medical students how many Broadway productions, concerts, athletic events have they seen in the past 1 year.

    And before i am labeled as a hypocrite, i do live in the Northeast and in a big city. It was my #1 choice school that accepted me but i never factored location as to which school i wanted to attend.
     
  44. hakksar

    hakksar Senior Member
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    I disagree, other considerations related to location are important as well. Things such as climate (I hate muggy hot places so the entire southeast is out), location of family and friends, opportunities for significant other/spouse, and landscape (I grew up near the rocky mountains . . . I would really miss them if I left). Location matters a lot and picking a school without considering it would be foolish.
     
  45. ZephyrX

    ZephyrX Member
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    Yes family should be important. No question over that. It is also understandable that career options for spouses is extremely important also.
    The weather won't affect you much though. Landscape and weather will end up not having any impact on you though. As a good friend once said to another one who was trying to decide betwen Stanford and Harvard medical schools " In Harvard you will rot in a Boston library and in Stanford you will rot in a Palo Alto library".
     
  46. hakksar

    hakksar Senior Member
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    Weather will not affect you much!!!! Whatever, I suppose the reason why there is a higher depression rate in Alaska and the northwest is because sad people choose to live there and has nothing to do with the lack of sunshine. Or maybe the reason why there is more violence on a hot summer day is because violent people randomly choose those days. Climate matters a lot. Landscape matters a lot too. I guess the reason why Colorado is gaining massive amounts of people is because there are sooooo many jobs here and we want people to come here soooo much (not quite, we hate the massive growth in our state). I guess it has nothing to do with it being a beautiful state.
     
  47. ZephyrX

    ZephyrX Member
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    If climate affects your temper so much then i suggest you seriously reconsider a career in medicine. We are talking about a profession here where mistakes are to be kept at an absolute minimum. You are going to be working in a hospital. If a few snowflakes and a few clouds get you so down that it has an impact on your productivity then how on earth are you going to deal with a 2 year old with cancer or a 16 year old that was just diagnosed with HIV?
     
  48. hakksar

    hakksar Senior Member
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    Ouch, well that hurts. However, I think I am more prepared than most for a career in medicine. I don't know if 10 years EMS experience, 3 years of research experience, or suffering both severe injuries to myself and family have prepared me for having a 16 year old patient with HIV (oh wait, I have had countless 16 year old patients with HIV and worse, I forgot). My point was that people should not put themselves into situations they will not enjoy for no reason. Climate and surroundings matter to some people. I do not see why it is a bad thing to go to a medical school in a location you will be more comfortable at. I guess for those that live in miserable climates in ugly locations this might not be important, but do not be so arrogant to judge people who consider this in their choice of schools as inferior
     
  49. SarahGM

    SarahGM Senior Member
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    Amen. It's not.
     

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