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Expensive 'ranked' vs. Cheap 'unranked'

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Sababa, Mar 30, 2002.

  1. Sababa

    Sababa Junior Member
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    For Illinois peeps, or anyone else with this dilemma..
    What do you think should be the main considerations in deciding to go to a highly ranked yet hugely expensive school vs. going to an unranked but much cheaper school that your parents could pay for. I'm in at Northwestern and UIC, and the difference in tuition is about $25,000 a year.
    I'm tempted to say thank you but no thank you to Northwestern, and going to UIC. The freedom of having no loans when finishing med school is very tempting. Are the doors that $25,000 opens worth it?
     
  2. Jalby

    Jalby I fight crime at day when Batman are sleeping.
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    Let's figure that Northwestern will cost you 150,000$ more by the time you pay it off (interest) And lets say you are working for 30 years making good money (conservative estimate. Prolly more like 40) So if by going to Northwestern, you feel that you can get yourself a job that pays 5K more each year, than it is worth it. I personally would choose Northwestern (good chance I'll end up there)
     
  3. mcwmark

    mcwmark Senior Member
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    If you are absolutely sure you want to enter a highly competitive specialty, you may want to consider the "name" school, as it will help marginally when it comes down to residency interviews. Of course, if you do well in school and Step I, it won't matter where you went to school.

    I, if I had the choice, would have gladly saved $25,000 a year--it's not a lot of money until you have to pay it back.
     
  4. NUgirl

    NUgirl Senior Member
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    I know a whole lot of people who go to NU med school and they absolutely love it and are happy with their decision to attend there. It's p/f for the first two years and classes are only from 8-10 every morning, which gives you a lot more independent studying time than at other schools. Personally I would choose NU because it's a better known school, hence it's easier to get top and competative residencies, and I liked the environment there better than at UIC (I visited both schools earlier this year). But if money were an object, then I would go to UIC because you would be getting a solid education there too. It all depends on what YOU want and are looking for. Good luck with your decision!
     
  5. INeedAdvice

    INeedAdvice Senior Member
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    They're both good schools, and I don't think one name is that much better than the other, so I'd go with the less expensive one.

    If, for instance, this were a question between Penn and one of those schools, I wouldn't hesitate to take Penn. In this instance, I think UIC's name and rep are almost as good as Northwestern's. <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" />

    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Sababa:
    <strong>For Illinois peeps, or anyone else with this dilemma..
    What do you think should be the main considerations in deciding to go to a highly ranked yet hugely expensive school vs. going to an unranked but much cheaper school that your parents could pay for. I'm in at Northwestern and UIC, and the difference in tuition is about $25,000 a year.
    I'm tempted to say thank you but no thank you to Northwestern, and going to UIC. The freedom of having no loans when finishing med school is very tempting. Are the doors that $25,000 opens worth it?</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">
     
  6. MedPuck

    MedPuck Made
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    UIC's name will not hurt you for good residency consideration. Their recent match lists easily rival those of Northwestern. I have spoken with several in and out-of-state residency directors and they unanimously feel that UIC students are very-well respected because of their vast clinical exposure, preparation and strong work ethic. Northwestern is obviously more well-known, however, as others have mentioned on this topic, attending UIC is not going to hinder your professional ambitions. The schools are very different so I would think hard about what it is you want (curriculum styles, student happiness ratings, opportunities etc...) and than take the all-important $$ into account.

    I work at Northwestern and every faculty member (division chiefs included) I have spoken with tells me I would be crazy to attend NUMS over UIC. It is mind-boggling to me because I figured they would be very biased toward NUMS. I take their advice and wisdom more seriously than other suggestions made by pre-meds like myself. Just food for thought and my two cents. Good luck!!
     
  7. gel1

    gel1 Senior Member
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    From what I have seen, the Total financial cost at UIC for in-state residents is $36,500 for the first year and $49,000 at NUMS (these figures include fees, room and board, and tuition). Where do you get that it is a $25,000 difference? Plus, U of I's tuition is about to jump 10% (from reports I have read about the state pulling out funding, anyway).

    I have been to both schools, and looked at their match lists online. As far as the match, most students at UIC stay in Illinois since they are residents here, which is fine. It is hard to compare to NUMS's list because theirs is more national (fewer ties to the state). I already let go of UIC's acceptance and am holding on to Northwestern's. At UIC, I hated the facilities, the atmosphere, the grades, the lack of class attendance, the lack of administrative support and the competition. Think hard about what you think your first two years will be like, and what you would like once you leave med school.
     
  8. GemPrincess

    GemPrincess Senior Member
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    gel1, that might be the tuition figure for out-of-state residents. i think sababa said he/she was in-state. anyway sababa, i work for 2 pediatricians, one went to NU and the other went to UIC. they are now both working for the same practice and making the same amount of money. (point #1, your future income may be the same regardless of where you go). their patients love them and we always hear what great doctors they are. (point #2, they both got a quality education at both schools). finally, the doc from NU says that looking back, she would have definetely chosen UIC over NU because of the HUGE loans she had once she got out. the doc from UIC however, is completely happy with her decision, she got a great residency at children's and is doing very well now. (point #3, UIC just may be a better buy for the money). i hope this helped a little. congrats on both though, and good luck!
     
  9. Sababa

    Sababa Junior Member
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    Thanks for the replies. I agree that NUMS looks like a much more fun place to attend medical school. Obviously you get much more pampered, but you do pay for it. Probably the biggest difference in going to UIC is working much harder to compete in a non-pass/fail system.
    I'm surprised about what you guys said about the slight to non-existent difference the name makes when it comes to residency. I thought that it really did matter, and while NU isn't a Penn it is top 20. From what I've been told the name matters if you want to go into academic medicine, but that it doesn't as much if you become a private clinician.

    Say the end goal is going into Dermatology or Ophthamology and getting a residency at a nice hospital in a nice city. Assuming you perform equally at both schools- top third of class, same Step I score- it makes no difference which school you attended?

    gel1 is right, I made a mistake on the tuition. At UIC it's ~9.5 per semester, so $19,000 per year. At NU I think it's $33,000. That's a diff of $14,000 per year, not $25,000.

    MedPuck- where exactly do you work? I work on the 14th floor of Tarry in the Div. of Pulmonary and Critical Care.
     
  10. MedPuck

    MedPuck Made
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    Sababa, UIC is graded pass/fail/honors. This may have been a recent change, but they do not have an A-F grading system. Check your PM.
     
  11. ValleyGal

    ValleyGal Senior Member
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    Look, the money for both seems to be the same, and you will pay it off in the end. From your posts you seem to be very worried about turning down a name school such as NU for the state school.
    So, here in all of my brilliance is my answer:
    GO TO NORTHWESTERN!!!
    That was pretty simple. It will give you opportunities that your state school will not, so don't worry about the cost difference and enjoy your time there!
     
  12. ginseng

    ginseng Member
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    I say go to the cheaper school. But then again I'm in a different situation. I got into the University of California schools, like UCSF and UCLA, which are top ten schools, but really dirt cheap.
     
  13. ginseng

    ginseng Member
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    I say go to the cheaper school. But then again I'm in a different situation. I got into the University of California schools, like UCSF and UCLA, which are top ten schools, but really dirt cheap. I also had the option of moving to the East Coast and paying a ton of money, but no thanks.
     
  14. dragon kid

    dragon kid Junior Member
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    Personally, I think medical school is about the location and whether you see yourself at that school. Money concerns should be the least of your worries. I would go to NW if I were you. currently, I am in a similar situation as you, going to my state school UF or going to Mount Sinai. And I have decided to go to MSSM cause I like the place better than any other school I have interviewed at.

    good luck with everything :) :cool:
     
  15. gel1

    gel1 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 Sababa:
    <strong>Say the end goal is going into Dermatology or Ophthamology and getting a residency at a nice hospital in a nice city. Assuming you perform equally at both schools- top third of class, same Step I score- it makes no difference which school you attended?</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Here are the links to the match lists, in case you haven't seen them:

    UIC: <a href="http://www.uic.edu/depts/mcam/osa/osanews/Transient_news_supplements/2002MatchResultsbySpecialty.htm" target="_blank">http://www.uic.edu/depts/mcam/osa/osanews/Transient_news_supplements/2002M atchResultsbySpecialty.htm</a>

    NUMS: <a href="http://www.infoplex.nwu.edu/class/alumni/match/2002match.html" target="_blank">http://www.infoplex.nwu.edu/class/alumni/match/2002match.html</a> I personally would think that getting into Derm or Optho might be easier coming from NUMS, just because they are more nationally known and more will have gone before you. UIC's one derm match stayed at UIC. Of NUMS 3 derm matches, 2 were PGY-2 at NUMS and UMich. For optho at NUMS, I saw Baylor, and WashU. For Rads, I saw UCSF. My point is mainly that at NUMS you can not only get your competitive residency, but you can get it at top academic hospitals. Of course the number of students matching per class will vary.
     
  16. ValleyGal

    ValleyGal Senior Member
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    Merely for the sake of argument, and while I would still say to go to Northwestern, if you want to compete for the top residencies you must be in the top of your class, wherever you might attend school. Thus, if you are willing to work your butt off and be a high achiever, there is no reason that you couldn't get a great placement coming from you state school. But if you want a great residency coming from a private school, you STILL have to do well. Its not like you can sit around watching tv and eating chips every day just because you go to a better school.

    Personally, I am currently going to my state school next year unless the waitlist gods shine down upon me. I will have to be in the top of my class to get a great placement, but they send multiple people to Hopkins every year, so they must be doing something right. But given the opportunity, I would go to a higher ranked private school in a second.
     
  17. chef

    chef 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 gel1:
    <strong>
     
  18. MedPuck

    MedPuck Made
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    Valleygirl, what opportunities would NUMS give you that UIC does not?? I have ties to each and have researched them intensely and I have not come to the same conclusion. Are you basing your argument on name alone? Let me know if there is something I have missed.
     
  19. ValleyGal

    ValleyGal Senior Member
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    I am basing that on name alone, and repuation amoung institutions nationwide. If you go to the east or west coasts that are not as familiar with the midwest schools as you are, then they will automatically put more base with Northwestern because they have heard of it and know that it is good. This is completely irrespective of the quality of education that you will get at each school, IMHO
     
  20. THE instiGATOR

    THE instiGATOR Cow Tipper
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    I'd go to Northwestern.
     

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