Feb 11, 2020
5
3
Status (Visible)
  1. Pre-Medical
Hello everyone,

I have been fortunate to receive acceptances to both Dartmouth and Miami and would appreciate any thoughts/insights into this decision, especially as all interviews have been virtual this cycle and its not possible to visit campus unfortunately.
Some minor background about me, I am a 23 year old male from CA, looking to pursue a competitive specialty (possibly IR), enjoy outdoors/sports but would probably rather be in urban environment (but not deal breaker). Would like to possibly match in the future in CA. Considering pursuing academic medicine in the future. I will be funding education myself through loans/financial aid, have not yet received financial aid packages, but do not anticipate getting anything significant.

Dartmouth
Pros

-Prestige/name recognition (pro for academic medicine/more competitive specialties?)
-Great match list for its perceived "mid-tier" ranking with great connections to west coast, especially as I might want to match back in CA
-1.5 year new pre-clinical curriculum, P/F grading
-Clerkships around the country- cool to experience care in various settings
-Small class size (92): more opportunities for interaction with professors/individualized research experiences
-Outdoors- easy access to hiking/skiing nearby
-Possibility of doing dual degree MD/MBA pathway at Tuck

Cons
- location (cold, rural, personally have lived in suburbs entire life)
- I've heard that a significant portion of students are non-trads/older and married; being single/23, not sure how well I would fit in socially
- lack of diversity in patient population
- higher average cost per year compared to Miami (~$90k compared to ~$75k)

Miami
Pros

- Location (warm, beach, unique culture)
- Jackson Memorial Hospital is amazing clinical site, lots of hands on experience as a medical student
- Very diverse environment and patient population, free clinics through DOCS
- NextGen MD curriculum: 1 year P/F pre-clinical curriculum, leaves large amount of time as MS3/4 for research/away rotations/other opportunities to boost residency app
- Larger class size (200), might be better social fit with most students being traditional/on younger side, students seemed to have a good work/life balance
- as a big sports fan, ability to go to UMiami/professional sporting events

Cons
- ranked lower than Dartmouth...should this matter with Step 1 going P/F and school reputation probably gaining greater weight for residency purposes?
- might have fewer research opportunities/ tougher to find with increased class size
- more expensive Cost of living than Hanover

At both virtual interview days, students seemed pretty laid back/chill, but I feel like it is tougher to gauge the overall environment/stress levels in a virtual setting.
If anyone else has navigated the decision between these schools/is choosing between them now, I would love to hear your thoughts!
Thank you for your help!
 

Ultravox Vienna

2+ Year Member
Apr 10, 2017
182
259
Status (Visible)
  1. Pre-Medical
From CA -> Miami for sure. More diverse, Jackson hospital, warm, better night life for singles

Hanover may not be as expensive to live in as Miami but it's still expensive af so keep that in mind
 
About the Ads

Deecee2DO

Medical Student
5+ Year Member
Mar 28, 2015
2,722
3,272
New Jersey
Status (Visible)
  1. Medical Student
Truly a tough decision. If it were me despite personally loving warm weather and the beach, I would go to Dartmouth. I understand ranking wise theyre similar tier wise but I truly think Dartmouth has the better name. Its only 4 years of your life and after that you can do residency anywhere in the country you want. Its also a change of pace from CA suburbs/weather. Miami may also be tough to concentrate remember you actually have to study in med school lol. Congrats on those two acceptances though theyre both great schools
 

mcatstudent1

7+ Year Member
Nov 7, 2011
98
71
This is a good problem to have imo. Both schools are phenomenal and neither will limit you in terms of receiving a great clinical education or matching into your desired specialty. Culture wise, it sounds like Miami will be a better fit. With step 1 Pass fail a one year preclinical is amazing! With the strong clinical and more time for research, this is a big asset. Also more time for aways! The only con I see to Miami is that with the large class sometimes a lot of students apply into the same competitive specialty and then you compete against each other and have to be strategic with aways. Residencies typically will interview only a few students from same med school likely too crop. Tuck MBA at Dartmouth is popular and great training, but maybe you won’t need an MBA. I would not worry about location/class size as med school is really busy and the class is likely selectively picked to maximize diversity and past experiences at Dartmouth . Location only matters here if you will definitely be unhappy in Hanover. Research likely great at both. Miami has really great optho (#1), ortho, surgical specialties and staying at the home institution may be your best bet for competitive specialties. Honestly I cannot see you going wrong with either, pick where you would be most happy and you will do well no matter where you go! Congrats, doc.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Feb 11, 2020
5
3
Status (Visible)
  1. Pre-Medical
Thank you for your responses everyone!
In terms of prestige/residency match success, I recently saw on the 2020 Residency Program Director's Survey that Dartmouth came in ranked at #30 while Miami was ranked #48...is this a large enough difference to consider as a factor, putting Dartmouth as a T30 school?
Also, would you consider the inherent $60k cost difference over 4 years (before financial aid) as a factor, or if I get more money from Miami (which its known for apparently), is there a price difference that I should consider?
Any other comments/suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
Sep 17, 2019
214
892
Status (Visible)
  1. Pre-Medical
That is not a huge ranking difference to me at all. Another consideration to look at is Residency programs at each of those schools. Miami has a lot of residency programs that are very highly regarded in a number of specialties. Depending on what your goals are, that might be something to consider if you want to have a good home program safety net for residency. The residency programs are fine at Dartmouth, but there are of course limitations due to the size and population of Hanover and the surrounding area. Dartmouth is great if you want rural or primary care, otherwise, you may not be able to see as much.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
Mar 4, 2020
46
58
Status (Visible)
  1. MD/PhD Student
Throw out the US News Rankings (our field hasn't already because of confirmation bias of those at the top, but that is changing rapidly, and will likely be revised soon):


US News factors it's rankings based on: 1.) incoming student scores; 2.) subjective director rankings that are from such a small cohort of unevenly distributed PD's/med school directors that statisticians would lose sleep over it (even if other med school director's opinions actually decided your future success like PD's), and 3) research funding that is purposefully gained/lied about constantly by dishonest institutions that don't face repercussions. None of these factors actually matter to your career progression, or to the field's advancement in any way.

There are much better measures of gauging a school's success in research. Here is an example of one, from an objective analysis of med graduates by Doximity (published in the official AAMC journal; they show the top 25 schools in Table 3):


It's not perfect, but it's way, way better. Both UM and Geisel are fantastic schools; Geisel will likely help you match better for research-focused specialties all-things-equal, but all things are NEVER equal. Your happiness and med school performance will greatly outweigh any name benefit. You can't make a bad choice here, regardless :)
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user

mcatstudent1

7+ Year Member
Nov 7, 2011
98
71
Ranking are irrelevant. Ranking vary by specialty. Ie optho is #2 in nation at Miami. Pick based on finances and fit. Worry less about anything else. Dartmouth does not have a primary care lean FYI most go into subspecialties true at most allopathic MD.
DO schools have a primary care lean.

Miami does have much bigger residencies if you wanted to stay. It’s competitive though lots of people want to go to Miami for residency.

Again you cannot go wrong here. Both are top tier. You might get more specialized attention at Dartmouth. I always felt like a number at my 150-200 per class Med school
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 user
About the Ads

Your message may be considered spam for the following reasons:

  1. Your new thread title is very short, and likely is unhelpful.
  2. Your reply is very short and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  3. Your reply is very long and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  4. It is very likely that it does not need any further discussion and thus bumping it serves no purpose.
  5. Your message is mostly quotes or spoilers.
  6. Your reply has occurred very quickly after a previous reply and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  7. This thread is locked.