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davis vs. pitt vs. dartmouth

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by FebrileLowO2Sat, May 9, 2007.

  1. FebrileLowO2Sat

    FebrileLowO2Sat 5+ Year Member

    Sep 5, 2006
    i've been thinking about this decision for 2 months and with less that 1 week to go, i need the help of SDN. Here's the dillema:

    pitt is unquestionably excellend in so many ways but during 2nd look weekend, i just didn't get a great vibe. i felt the students were clicky and i even felt uncomfortable with the exclusivity of minority students (SNMA) even though i am a minority.

    dartmouth is beautiful in so many ways (beautiful NH, beautiful new hospital, and beautiful community of students). but hanover is so small. 6 months of winter. cabin fever, anyone? and an entirely homogeneous patient population (white).

    davis, well, i got a great vibe. best vibe of all, probably. great new education building, great student clinics. but the match list doesn't compare (so many matches into kaiser hospitals) and sacramento, well, isn't all that cool (though close to SF and tahoe).

    bottom line question: am I banking too much on the vibe i got after a couple of days on campus during 2nd look weekends and interviews? my mind says pitt, my heart says davis, dartmouth is half way in between. any recommendations? thanks for all the help!
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  3. gsmithers68

    gsmithers68 2+ Year Member

    Nov 29, 2006
    First off this is a hard decision. good luck with it... I would look at fin aid as a big factor and then also where you are from... is family an issue? what about curriculum? look into these factors and see if you can tease out which school is best fit for you.
  4. nicholonious

    nicholonious Street Performer 7+ Year Member

    Mar 15, 2004
    Palo Alto, CA
    Go Davis. I have only good things to say. School of medicine genetics lab research. Researched at UCDMC Emergency Department. Been a Teacher Assistant in UG Neurobio class. Went to Undergrad at Davis. Place is GREAT.
  5. ExKitty Doctor

    ExKitty Doctor Junior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jul 13, 2006
    California Dreamin'
    Boy that is a very hard decision.. I would say that if Pitt gave you such a bad vibe - cross it off your list. That feeling should not be dismissed and isn't likely to reverse to positivity with added exposure. I would just weigh the pros and cons of Dartmouth vs Davis. Med school is an experience unto itself, part of your youth that youll never get back. However, you want to go somewhere that will open up as many doors for your future as possible. If you feel that Davis would limit your opportunities (remember too that if you want to match in CA, Davis is advantageous from that perspective), to a degree not worth a potentially happier med school experience, then go with Dartmouth. You might try making a pro con list and weighing the various factors.
    Its a tough decision, good luck!!:luck:
  6. EndSong

    EndSong Senior Member 5+ Year Member

    Jul 4, 2005
    That's weird. I was also at Pitt second look and I also felt the school was very clique-y. It was bad when I heard some students talk bad about other students. That being said though I actually found a clique I fit in with very, very well while I was there, but that's after attending multiple gatherings and mixing with different crowds.
  7. FebrileLowO2Sat

    FebrileLowO2Sat 5+ Year Member

    Sep 5, 2006
    Many thanks for the feedback. Anyone out there have any other thoughts? I've decided to withdraw from Pitt and it's now down to Davis and Dartmouth. Financially, there's not dignificant difference between the schools as I've received equivalent financial aid. Thanks for sharing!
  8. Old ortho

    Old ortho 2+ Year Member

    Mar 11, 2007
    Dartmouth has a slightly better matching than Davis, if that makes any difference to you.
  9. sagemedecon

    sagemedecon 2+ Year Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    I'm facing a very similar situation. Swap Davis for Irvine and Pitt for Pritzker. I still haven't gotten a good answer to what influence the homogenous patient population has on the training of a med student - I'm inclined to think it is more important for residency. I am pretty convinced that the teaching in the first two years at Dartmouth is the best of those three schools (both your and my options).
  10. MicroBugs

    MicroBugs Member 10+ Year Member

    Jun 5, 2006
    Norfolk, VA
    You have to go with your gut. Where will you be happier. I don't know much about Davis, but there probably isn't a huge difference in the curriculum. Stick with the instinct of the place that will be best for you, which includes the surrounding community. Personally, I love small towns surrounded only by mountains, and would definitely thrive there. I'm learning that's definitely not for everyone though!
    Please let us know what you decide, either way. Some of us are still holding out hope to spend the next four years in a certain small town!;)
  11. physicsnerd42

    physicsnerd42 Member 10+ Year Member

    Feb 25, 2006
    I'm a first year MD/PhD at Dartmouth.

    1. The homogenous patient population (I'm told) makes little difference for a few reasons: It really does matter more for residency. Around Hanover, the population is a little less homogenous than you might think (because students and employees of Dartmouth and DHMC make up a large portion of the population). Also, while many diseases are more prevalent in certain subpopulations than others, since DHMC gets over a million patient visits per year (and since it's the only tertiary care hospital for quite some distance in any direction), we get quite a few cool cases up here. In addition, you can (and will) do rotations at other sites. The last point is that Dartmouth is working on partnerships with hospitals in a few large cities so that the med students will have more options for hospitals (and cities) in which to complete their core clerkships.

    2. Cabin fever isn't really that big of a deal. People here love the outdoors, and not just in the summer. There's a reason the school owns a skiway.... Also, no matter where you go, you're going to spend most of your time studying. Until coming here, I had always lived in a city, but I love it here anyway. There's something to be said for beautiful surroundings, a lack of traffic, and a lack of crime....

    3. The students and professors here are amazing. DHMC is the anti-malignant hospital (even on surgery clerkships, I'm told). Also, my classmates always help each other out. People here really aren't competitive (except with themselves) and are always e-mailing out study guides to the class. Professors and students are also always offering to help out those who are struggling in classes.

    4. Our Step I score for the current 3rd years was pretty respectable (226 with 100% pass rate).

    5. People don't have trouble when it comes to the match. Just check out our match lists from the last few years.
  12. blackadder

    blackadder my old office view 10+ Year Member

    Oct 27, 2006
    dude, pick dartmouth. i'd eat my head to go there.
  13. Doctor~Detroit

    Doctor~Detroit this poll sux!!! 2+ Year Member

    May 9, 2006
    . . . and commissive statements involving self-cannabalism is supposed to make us trust your advice?
  14. blackadder

    blackadder my old office view 10+ Year Member

    Oct 27, 2006
    well govna, i suppose you have a point. i could have said "go where you feel you'll be happier" or "go to the place that is cheaper" or spouted off another cliche truism that finds its way to threads like this 5 quadrillion times a day.

    ...but i decided to up the ante and bring cannabalism to the table (it was a toss up between that and plushies/furries).

    oh, and here's an update for the OP: not only would I still eat my own head to go to dartmouth, but I'd also eat detroit's left foot.:smuggrin:

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