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Duke or Harvard, Please Help

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Mawell11, Apr 10, 2002.

  1. Mawell11

    Mawell11 Junior Member
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    Hello...as you can probably tell from the title, I've had the good fortune of being accepted to both Duke and Harvard. Though I know I am blessed to be in such a position, I'm way in over my head and so I have had a very difficult time making up my mind. Basically, Harvard is Harvard, but Duke is giving me a full scholarship. Since I'm not really sure what effect debt has on the future career of a doctor, I am not sure what to do. Additionally, since I'm from a small town in Texas, I really don't understand the bigger politics of being a Harvard alum, etc. I would appreciate any thoughts on these subjects from those in the know.

    Thanks
     
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  3. choker

    choker Senior Member
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    ask harvard to match the offer. if they dont come close, take duke.
     
  4. Coalboy

    Coalboy Senior Member
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    Turn down Duke so they can give me the scholarship. :) (Unless it's URM, as I wouldn't qualify)

    Seriously, a full scholarship would be hard to turn down. You'll probably have debt anyway (living expenses), but $30K a year certainly makes a dent.

    I don't know if it would work or not, but following Choker's advice certainly couldn't hurt. Go for it.
     
  5. Scooby Doo

    Scooby Doo IEatShavedPussyCats
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    Come here...

    No no..a little closer...

    yes...lean your ear closer to me...

    closer.....

    yes....

    **** SMACK!!!!!! ****

    Dude, go with the full ride! What are you crazy?

    Jeez..both are top 5 medical schools. There is nothing to distinguish between them. If it was like a top 50 school and Harvard, then it would be a little harder..but this is DUKE man!

    And tell harvard about it and ask them to match it or do something for you...if they really want you :)
     
  6. matthew0126

    matthew0126 Anaheim Angels
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    LOL, right on

    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Scooby Doo:
    <strong>Come here...

    No no..a little closer...

    yes...lean your ear closer to me...

    closer.....

    yes....

    **** SMACK!!!!!! ****

    Dude, go with the full ride! What are you crazy?

    Jeez..both are top 5 medical schools. There is nothing to distinguish between them. If it was like a top 50 school and Harvard, then it would be a little harder..but this is DUKE man!

    And tell harvard about it and ask them to match it or do something for you...if they really want you :) </strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">
     
  7. Sonya

    Sonya Senior Member
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    Hey Scooby,
    thanks for making me smile/ laugh.watch someone get smacked. great thing to wake me up in m iddle of the night.

    seriously though, there could be a lot of differences b/w duke and harvard. school atmosphere, how they treat students, curriculum, etc. i think it's worth researching. what do current med students think of it at each school?

    In terms of financially, it depends a lot of your situation.

    For now, i'd say duke. Be careful of places with a LOT of name, meaning they can do whatever they want, and you kindof have to accept it. after all, they let you in. and they're Harvard.

    I hope i'm making sense. Research more about the school, outside of their rankings. or look at rankings in w hat is important to you.

    Way to go on the admissions!

    Sonya
     
  8. rkr

    rkr Member
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    the quality of medical education you will get from either school is comparable...duke has an excellent name as well...i would go with duke if i have a better aid package from duke...in the final analysis how you are as a doctor will not be determined by the rank of the school...good luck and congratulations on being accepted to two great schools...
     
  9. omores

    omores sleep deprived
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    Congratulations!

    Personally, I'd look at the scholarship as a big sign from the fates that I should go to Duke (in fact, that's how I ended up here), but there are other things that have to feel right to you first.

    Both schools have plenty to offer in terms of name, research opportunities, etc. Duke treats its students very well; I suspect Harvard the same. Don't give too much credence to anyone's opinions about "the student body as a whole" at either school -- such a thing doesn't exist. At Duke, at Harvard, and everywhere else, you'll find students who are horribly uptight, and students who are ridiculously relaxed. You'll have classmates who have pursued other careers for years before arriving, as well as biology majors fresh out of college. Whatever school you attend, you'll find friends.

    The big difference is in terms of curriculum -- which works better with the way you like to learn? Does the idea of two years of problem based learning appeal to you, or is it too unstructured? Does Duke's 11-month information binge scare you too much? Do you want to be on the wards on Year 2, or are you content to wait until Year 3? Does the idea of a full year to do research, a humanties project, or pursue another degree sound like a grand plan? Or is it more freedom than you need?

    It's up to you.

    What a nice choice, though

    :) :D <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> :D :)
     
  10. TommyGunn04

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    Wow! I'd LOVE to be in your position! Of course, I'd instantly choose Duke, as I've known for quite some time that it's my first choice. But alas...I'm waitlisted! :(

    Anyway, I know it seems stupid to a lot of people to even CONSIDER not accepting a "free-ride," but I like to think about it this way: what's more important, reducing my debt, or increasing my happiness? If I was in your position, I'd try to think about where I honestly thought I'd be happiest. For me, that choice is surely Duke, but it wouldn't be the same for everyone.

    These two schools have distinctly different styles of teaching, are in extremely different locations, etc. If either of these things is very imporatant to you, it might be prudent to use them to help make your decision. For instance, I don't care all that much if a school emphasizes PBL, but I DO really care that patient contact is emphasized from day 1, and that lecture-time is minimized, etc. I don't want to spend my first 2 years cooped up in a classroom memorizing things that I'll soon forget, or that will soon become obsolete. For me, all these things point to Duke.

    Anyway, basically what I'm saying is that your happiness should be the most important factor in this decision. From what I hear, most people pay off their debt in about 10 years anyway, and it's really no big deal. So my advice is: if you're able to figure out where you think you'd be happiest, go there! Try to figure out what the most important differences between the schools are, and think about which approach/location/etc. you'd prefer. Good luck! And if you end up deciding not to go to Duke, can I have your spot? <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> :D haha! <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" />
     
  11. Legend

    Legend Super Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by TommyGunn04:
    <strong>Wow! I'd LOVE to be in your position! Of course, I'd instantly choose Duke, as I've known for quite some time that it's my first choice. But alas...I'm waitlisted! :(

    Anyway, I know it seems stupid to a lot of people to even CONSIDER not accepting a "free-ride," but I like to think about it this way: what's more important, reducing my debt, or increasing my happiness? If I was in your position, I'd try to think about where I honestly thought I'd be happiest. For me, that choice is surely Duke, but it wouldn't be the same for everyone.

    These two schools have distinctly different styles of teaching, are in extremely different locations, etc. If either of these things is very imporatant to you, it might be prudent to use them to help make your decision. For instance, I don't care all that much if a school emphasizes PBL, but I DO really care that patient contact is emphasized from day 1, and that lecture-time is minimized, etc. I don't want to spend my first 2 years cooped up in a classroom memorizing things that I'll soon forget, or that will soon become obsolete. For me, all these things point to Duke.

    Anyway, basically what I'm saying is that your happiness should be the most important factor in this decision. From what I hear, most people pay off their debt in about 10 years anyway, and it's really no big deal. So my advice is: if you're able to figure out where you think you'd be happiest, go there! Try to figure out what the most important differences between the schools are, and think about which approach/location/etc. you'd prefer. Good luck! And if you end up deciding not to go to Duke, can I have your spot? <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> :D haha! <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" /> </strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Low Debt = Happiness <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
     
  12. Original

    Original Ogori-Magongo Warrior
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">
    <strong>Come here...

    **** SMACK!!!!!! ****

    </strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">
     
  13. Original

    Original Ogori-Magongo Warrior
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    lol <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" /> .

    More seriously, don't be overly swayed by the full-ride. I don't think it's at all obvious which school you should attend. some 10 yrs down the line you'll possibly have cleared any disadvantage of debt; and you'll still be a Harvard MD. Think about it some.
     
  14. Cdc28p

    Cdc28p Senior Member
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    Do you really want to stay in Durham for 4 or possibly more years? I would go out of my mind. That's why I didn't even apply to Duke...

    Congrats though! It's fantastic to have this nice dilemma.
     
  15. j99

    j99 Member
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    I turned down Harvard for law school to take a full ride at UVA law. Maybe it is just me, but I sleep better at night knowing I won't have $2500/mo debt service payments when I get out of school (whenever that day actually comes). Plus I realized how much of a southerner I am when I first visited Harvard. I felt like I was on a different planet.... and it was so cold....

    At any rate, I have been very happy with my decision, though it was a tough one. But were I making the decision with respect to med schools, it would be a no-brainer for me. Medical education is so much more of a fungible commodity than law school education. You can't go wrong going to Duke, in my opinion. (wow, as a unc grad I can't believe I just said that!) If you still have trouble deciding, take an extra visit back to both schools, and go with your gut feeling.
     
  16. Cdc28p

    Cdc28p Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by j99:
    <strong>I turned down Harvard for law school to take a full ride at UVA law. Maybe it is just me, but I sleep better at night knowing I won't have $2500/mo debt service payments when I get out of school (whenever that day actually comes). Plus I realized how much of a southerner I am when I first visited Harvard. I felt like I was on a different planet.... and it was so cold....</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Cold? Haha... isn't Boston great? Fall and spring are too short; summer is too hot, and winter is too long. But I remember that the catalogue of the Kennedy School of Government claims that there are four advantages to this kind of weather:

    1. It makes students study more.
    2. It makes you appreciate spring even more.
    3. It makes skiiing possible.
    4. As the Puritans would have said, it builds character!

    :D
     
  17. TommyGunn04

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    which would you prefer, the Bostoners' accent or the Southern drawl? <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" /> <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" /> "You go da Haah-vid? I gotta re-pahk my cah." or "Y'all go to Duke? How's yer mom-n-em'?" <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" /> <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" />
     
  18. TommyGunn04

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    So, Maxwell...what's the verdict? Have you come to a decision yet?
     
  19. lola

    lola Bovine Member
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    Don't just go to Harvard because of the name! I went there for grad school mainly for that reason, and somewhat regret it. It really was not the best school for me, but I had a hard time turning it down. If you like Duke's program better, I would say go there. They are both equal in the quality of education you will get and nearly equal in reputation. Plus, Duke is giving you a scholarship!
     
  20. ValleyGal

    ValleyGal Senior Member
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    Harvard!!!! that was a really easy decision.
     
  21. matthew0126

    matthew0126 Anaheim Angels
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    LOL

    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by TommyGunn04:
    <strong>which would you prefer, the Bostoners' accent or the Southern drawl? <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" /> <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" /> "You go da Haah-vid? I gotta re-pahk my cah." or "Y'all go to Duke? How's yer mom-n-em'?" <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" /> <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" /> </strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">
     
  22. Bradleyp

    Bradleyp Senior Member
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    What a horrible horrible decision to make!! I thought I had it bad just trying to get accepted.
     
  23. Coalboy

    Coalboy Senior Member
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    So Mawell11,

    What's the decision? May 15 is just around the corner (like you needed reminding). :)
     
  24. Athena112

    Athena112 Junior Member
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    Can you really ask a med school to match a financial aid offer from another school? Has anyone tried to do this? Did it work?
     
  25. Dr. Corday

    Dr. Corday Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Athena112:
    <strong>Can you really ask a med school to match a financial aid offer from another school? Has anyone tried to do this? Did it work?</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">I haven't done it personally, but I've heard it works. My emory interview host had been given a half tuition scholarship b/c she bargained with the school in this manner. I don't think it's fair, but that's the way it goes.
     
  26. Coalboy

    Coalboy Senior Member
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    Dr. Corday,

    Have you decided where you're going to be in the fall? Last I remember, you were trying to decide b/w Duke and somewhere else as well.
     
  27. mma

    mma Senior Member
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    To reply to Athena's post: many schools do bargain, but Harvard, as I was told several times, does not because "Harvard has other things to offer."

    It depends, I guess, on the ego of the school. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />

    mma
     
  28. MedicinePunkin

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    I would take up the Duke offer!!!!!
     
  29. The Fly

    The Fly Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Athena112:
    <strong>Can you really ask a med school to match a financial aid offer from another school? Has anyone tried to do this? Did it work?</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">As Corday says, this DEFINITELY happens !!

    Regarding the Duke vs. HMS dilemma -- Never underestimate the power of being WANTED -- clearly Duke wants you to be there! :)

    If HMS can't give you an offer that levels the playing field (and they won't...because it's HAHHHHVARD, I'd go with Duke -- honestly, the HMS degree won't open up that many more doors for you than Duke will -- its not like the choice is a full ride at a mediocre school vs. Harvard -- they're both TOP schools!

    But, if you're (quietly) one of those sorts of people that needs reaffirmation via names and prestige, then you might want to head towards Boston. . . <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />
     
  30. TommyGunn04

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    Dr. Corday and Maxwell11, where did you end up deciding to go?
     
  31. relatively prime

    relatively prime post happy member
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    Dude, do you know how cold it gets in Boston!?! :D
     
  32. Coalboy

    Coalboy Senior Member
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    According to one of the posts on the Allo forum, Maxwell is going to Duke. Dr. Corday seems to be MIA for the past couple of weeks, so I have no idea what she has decided.
     
  33. TommyGunn04

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    Ah, silly me! I forgot that Maxwell started that whole thread about Duke housing! Hey Coalboy, what's your avitar? I can't really tell what it is; it looks sorta like a glowing horse! <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" />
     
  34. Coalboy

    Coalboy Senior Member
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    Oh, my avatar...
    There's a long story to that. :)

    It's one of these sculptures I made out of those gummy art erasers when I was a senior in high school. It was kind of a horse-thing with a hat.

    <a href="http://mywebpages.comcast.net/nick.carruthers/CLAY05_Full.JPG" target="_blank">Full Sized (altered)</a>

    <a href="http://mywebpages.comcast.net/nick.carruthers/CLAY06.JPG" target="_blank">Original Picture</a>
     

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