Hard, More Expensive School V.S Easier, Less Expensive School

Dec 6, 2013
9
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
Hey guys, I hope you can help me out with something.

Here is my dilemma.

I am a senior in high school and am just about ready to leave for college. Since I want to live at home and commute I have two choices: Loyola University Chicago or North Park University.

I have scholarships to both and in the end my tuition at Loyola will be around $15,000 a year where my tuition to North Park University will be around $5,000 a year.

North Park is less well known, if well known at all, but will be easier for me to hold a higher GPA in. Loyola is more well known, but will be harder for me to hold a high GPA in. The way I see it, I want the highest GPA possible while still getting a good enough education to do well on the MCAT.

North Park is also close to my house, so where I would be driving an hour to get to school if I were to go to Loyola, I would only be driving forty-five to get to North Park. (both in traffic).

Loyola also has an honors program and North Park does not. The honors program might help disgusting me on an application but will be harder for me to hold a high GPA in.

North Park has smaller class sizes and a brand new science building. I'm sure Loyola also has top notch facilities, but their class sizes will be larger and I will not be able to establish the same connection with my professors as I would be at North Park.

All in all, Norht Park seems like a clear winner, the only thing that is stopping me from going there is my ego. Just as a figure of comparison, North Park's lower and upper quartile ACT is 20-25 whereas Loyola's is 25-29.

I'm strictly interested in which one will be better since my only concern is getting into medical school. I'm sure I will enjoy my time at both the same and will be happy at both.

Thank you guys, I'm new to the forum and appreciate all of you advice.

Virgo
 
Last edited:

that redhead

7+ Year Member
Feb 26, 2010
10,360
8,365
It doesn't sound like much of a dilemma. You'll be glad to have saved the $10,000 a year at the very least at the end of school when you're looking at debt figures for further education. People from all walks of life (and schools of many different levels of prestige) get into professional schools - go where you will be happiest and thus most likely to succeed.
 
Feb 15, 2013
967
7
Status
Pre-Medical
Had a similar dilemma last year. Chose the cheaper school, and I think you should as well. In the end, no matter how much is said, it is very simple when you think about it long and hard. It's a tough decision, but less debt > prestige every time, at least in my opinion.

As long as you do what's needed (high GPA, focus on classes) and follow your passions (do extracurriculars you are interested in, volunteer too) you will be in a good position no matter where you went to school.
 
Feb 15, 2013
967
7
Status
Pre-Medical
Forgot to mention - there will be MANY times where you doubt your decision, and times even after where you think you made the wrong decision.. But stay true to yourself, i mean if your family has some money to contribute or you do yourself, sure take that extra 10 grand. But to the average person, my opinion will always be less debt > prestige.
 

PapaGuava

The Real PG
Moderator
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7+ Year Member
May 10, 2012
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It doesn't sound like much of a dilemma. You'll be glad to have saved the $10,000 a year at the very least at the end of school when you're looking at debt figures for further education. People from all walks of life (and schools of many different levels of prestige) get into professional schools - go where you will be happiest and thus most likely to succeed.
Attend where you will be happiest and do your best, each situation is different. In my situation, I chose to attend a school that had a little higher in tuition because it was private, but nothing overwhelming. I love the school because it was somewhere i truly wanted to attend and I knew I'd be the most happiest/successful there.

I wish you luck with everything! I know these types of things are odd situations.
 

BioBeaver

Rah Virginia Mil.
May 21, 2013
402
40
IN -> VA
Status
Pre-Medical
Heck man, go to North Park, DOMINATE, and take advantage of being a big fish in a small pond! You'll have great professor connections, research opportunities, and a higher GPA for a lower price tag.
 
OP
Mr_Virgo
Dec 6, 2013
9
0
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
Thanks guys. So would it be safe to say that the "prestige" or rank of the school doesn't matter in my situation? What BioBeaver said about dominating the classes sounds great, I just want to make sure there isn't anything I am not taking into consideration before I commit to North Park. I want to make the right choice.
 

BioBeaver

Rah Virginia Mil.
May 21, 2013
402
40
IN -> VA
Status
Pre-Medical
Thanks guys. So would it be safe to say that the "prestige" or rank of the school doesn't matter in my situation? What BioBeaver said about dominating the classes sounds great, I just want to make sure there isn't anything I am not taking into consideration before I commit to North Park. I want to make the right choice.
I don't think the prestige of your school means anything. Some people go to community college for two years and then transfer into small state schools and still get into med school. As long as you think North Park can give you a decent base not only for the MCAT, but for medical school as well, it's the clear favorite. But if you think you won't learn anything at North Park, I wouldn't go there.....
 

MarylandMatt

Veni Vidi Vici
Jan 29, 2012
219
85
Maryland
Status
Pre-Health (Field Undecided)
Prestige matters a little but only for the top, top, schools. No difference in those schools. It would have to be like comparing North Park to UChicago or Harvard, Yale, etc for the prestige to matter.
 

Screwtape

10+ Year Member
Aug 25, 2008
889
758
Midwest, USA
Status
Dentist
Go to North Park. Don't mean to burst your bubble, but I don't think many people consider Loyola anything special, especially when considering the money. So save the money and get your ego back when you get into Pritzker ;).