May 24, 2013
30
4
Status
Pre-Medical
Hey, a bit of background info:
I've just graduated from UW Madison this winter, and am done with my interviews.
I have 4 acceptances from schools in the midwest, but the ones that really matter are UW and Northwestern. I also am on the waitlist for Hopkins, (and Vandy and Emory)
I had really hoped to leave Wisconsin for med school, but UW is offering me a full scholarship (I got a call from the dean, haven't received the official letter or details). I was getting pretty excited about moving to Chicago for NW, but this scholarship changes things.
My dream school is Hopkins, but I think my chances of getting off the waitlist are low at best.
I really don't know what I should at this point- It's been a few weeks since I looked at med school stuff. Finish all financial aid stuff and hope that NW gives me some kind of scholarship? Tell them about UW's offer? Just keep sending Hopkins updates, so they will consider me?
I am leaving the country for a few months and I wanted to have some kind of plan, but I'm feeling at a loss.
The SDN community has been very helpful to me in the past, so I thought I would make my first post to ask you guys. Thanks!
 
OP
bluebananaslug
May 24, 2013
30
4
Status
Pre-Medical
Thanks, Lambda Phage. If anyone has advice on how to do this, I would be happy to hear.
My thinking is that I should wait for NW to give a fin aid package before I try to bargain....
 
Jun 13, 2013
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199
Thanks, Lambda Phage. If anyone has advice on how to do this, I would be happy to hear.
My thinking is that I should wait for NW to give a fin aid package before I try to bargain....
Yes, wait until the financial aid package comes out before attempting to bargain (who knows, maybe they will give you a really generous scholarship offer as well?). When you get it and if it's not to your liking, just gently let them know about the full scholarship from UW and how even though you would love to attend NW, can't financially do so without more aid, etc.

If you want to get in to Hopkins, do send them updates if they accept them. Most movement for schools is after May, so you might want to wait until it is around that time, so you have a more substantial update. Letters of interest would also be good, too, around this time. Good luck!
 
OP
bluebananaslug
May 24, 2013
30
4
Status
Pre-Medical
Hi again, few months later. To give an update, I've been in communication with Northwestern, trying to use my UW scholarship as a bargaining chip. Unfortunately, this hasn't worked, and I'm still in the same situation I was in before.

I've attended 2nd Looks at both schools. UW's was good, but I really did love Northwestern's. One of the main draws for me is Chicago itself.
Is it worth it for me to give up a full scholarship to go to one of the most expensive med schools in the country, with basically no financial aid?

I'm interested in going into Pediatrics and working internationally in the field of global health disparities (e.g. MSF, or working in educational or training capacities with NGOs or government institutions). I'm more drawn to urban public health than rural/suburban.
I feel like getting out of med school without debt would give me the flexibility to branch out into a more non-traditional career after residency. Conversely, med school at Northwestern may give me better training in Peds (Lurie Children's), an opportunity to connect and engage with more high-profile names in Global Health (their Ctr for Global Health is pretty expansive), and experience with diverse patient populations and health disparities, including immigrant populations.
Based on my current savings and parental support, if I went to NW, I would come out with around 110 K in debt, and if I went to Madison, I wouldn't have any debt at all. I would actually have a positive balance as I saved a lot of money by going to UW for undergrad on scholarship. The difference in COA is around 200K for all four years.

What do you think? I'd really love any opinions or suggestions. Thanks!
 

The Milkman

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Jun 22, 2013
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Wow tough choice here...
110K is less than the average debt out of med school according the the MSAR, so in my eyes going to NW still wouldn't be a bad deal. I think that if money is not an issue, go with where you would enjoy yourself more. If you can't see yourself in Madison for another four years, then I'd say go to NW. What are you going to be more happy with 10-15 years down the road?
If I may as, too... Are scholarships handed out or did you have to apply/compete for them?
 
OP
bluebananaslug
May 24, 2013
30
4
Status
Pre-Medical
Hmm, I wouldn't be miserable at Madison, but I think I would be a lot happier in Chicago.
And to answer your other question, at UW, there were not special scholarship applications, a few are handed out amongst all applicants. There are also no specific applications for Feinberg
 

Flashfan

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May 22, 2010
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If you had said that you wanted to go into derm or plastics, then I wouldn't consider money. However, you are talking about peds and global health, which may be satisfying, but aren't big on financial gain. If you go to NW you will have to deal with the debt eventually. UW would give you the freedom to explore, take a job that you love without worrying about your debt. You would have the freedom to do research years, volunteer in other countries, etc.
 

thesauce

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I highly recommend you follow the money. $100k is a lot more when you're saddled with it than it looks like on paper right now.

You generally aren't going to make a ton of worthwhile connections as a med student, but you can build the connections at Northwestern even when attending Madison (through research in the Summer after first year, etc). Also, peds isn't a competitive specialty so you shouldn't have trouble matching at Northwestern from Madison. You would be equally well-served at either school it you decide to switch specialties so that's a wash in my mind.
 
Last edited:

Goro

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Jun 10, 2010
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U WI, all the way. To quote the sage gyngyn: "“Dream schools are like dream girls: better in the abstract than reality”."

Hey, a bit of background info:
I've just graduated from UW Madison this winter, and am done with my interviews.
I have 4 acceptances from schools in the midwest, but the ones that really matter are UW and Northwestern. I also am on the waitlist for Hopkins, (and Vandy and Emory)
I had really hoped to leave Wisconsin for med school, but UW is offering me a full scholarship (I got a call from the dean, haven't received the official letter or details). I was getting pretty excited about moving to Chicago for NW, but this scholarship changes things.
My dream school is Hopkins, but I think my chances of getting off the waitlist are low at best.
I really don't know what I should at this point- It's been a few weeks since I looked at med school stuff. Finish all financial aid stuff and hope that NW gives me some kind of scholarship? Tell them about UW's offer? Just keep sending Hopkins updates, so they will consider me?
I am leaving the country for a few months and I wanted to have some kind of plan, but I'm feeling at a loss.
The SDN community has been very helpful to me in the past, so I thought I would make my first post to ask you guys. Thanks!
 
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mmmcdowe

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Moving to ssd
 
OP
bluebananaslug
May 24, 2013
30
4
Status
Pre-Medical
Hey, all, I realize it's been a while!
On the 14th, I said yes to UW and dropped NW, felt pretty good about it. But then, on the 16th, I got off the waitlist at Vanderbilt! I've thought about it a lot, and really want to say yes to Vandy, and according to their admissions office, I have to make my decision today.
My dilemma is that Hopkins is still the dream, and I'm still on the waitlist there. If I accept a spot at Vandy now, will I still stay on Hopkins' waitlist? Apparently, it doesn't start moving till June.
So even if I confirm Vanderbilt now, could I theoretically be offered a spot at JHU in June and then decline Vandy in order to go to JHU?

(now that I got off one waitlist, I'm feeling a glimmer of hope about getting off JHU's too!)
Kind of freaking out right now, any response would be appreciated! :)
 

alpinism

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Nov 6, 2011
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Hey, all, I realize it's been a while!
On the 14th, I said yes to UW and dropped NW, felt pretty good about it. But then, on the 16th, I got off the waitlist at Vanderbilt! I've thought about it a lot, and really want to say yes to Vandy, and according to their admissions office, I have to make my decision today.
My dilemma is that Hopkins is still the dream, and I'm still on the waitlist there. If I accept a spot at Vandy now, will I still stay on Hopkins' waitlist? Apparently, it doesn't start moving till June.
So even if I confirm Vanderbilt now, could I theoretically be offered a spot at JHU in June and then decline Vandy in order to go to JHU?

(now that I got off one waitlist, I'm feeling a glimmer of hope about getting off JHU's too!)
Kind of freaking out right now, any response would be appreciated! :)
Yes. Accepting an offer at 1 school has no effect on other waitlists.
 

yoyohomieg5432

5+ Year Member
Jan 29, 2013
455
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Hey, all, I realize it's been a while!
On the 14th, I said yes to UW and dropped NW, felt pretty good about it. But then, on the 16th, I got off the waitlist at Vanderbilt! I've thought about it a lot, and really want to say yes to Vandy, and according to their admissions office, I have to make my decision today.
My dilemma is that Hopkins is still the dream, and I'm still on the waitlist there. If I accept a spot at Vandy now, will I still stay on Hopkins' waitlist? Apparently, it doesn't start moving till June.
So even if I confirm Vanderbilt now, could I theoretically be offered a spot at JHU in June and then decline Vandy in order to go to JHU?

(now that I got off one waitlist, I'm feeling a glimmer of hope about getting off JHU's too!)
Kind of freaking out right now, any response would be appreciated! :)
yes! accept at Vandy, you still stay on the waitlist at JHU. Then down the road if JHU accepts you, you are able to turn down your seat at Vandy and go to JHU.

congrats :)
 

Amba

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May 21, 2011
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Hi from a fellow UW-Madison alum. Congrats on Vandy and good luck with the waitlist at JHU!