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HPSP benefits?

Discussion in 'Military Dentistry' started by shamrock2006, Apr 26, 2007.

  1. shamrock2006

    5+ Year Member

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    I'm going w/ the USAF. I know the big draw is the "no debt"..even though you can still have minimum debt if the stipend doesnt cover everything..but its extremely minimal. Anway, besides that...I've for some reason been really second guessing myself w/ going on the scholarship. Many have told me that you can easily pay off loans w/in 4 yrs...that ur also losing out on "building a clientele"...and that you are basically putting your life on hold. I'm just looking for anyones opinions regarding the benefits of doing this scholarship..besides the full-tuition paid. I've also heard that you dont necessarily get good clinical exposure w/ the military. Is that true? I've also been wondering about the AEGD program. Worth it or not? Would anyone say that, after coming out of the military..you are "worth" more than someone who doesnt have that experience..or even someone fresh out of school? Anything would be help..just lookin for some reassurance here. thanks!
     
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  3. Prior

    Prior Prior
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    it really depends on a couple of things.
    a) do you want to be in the military? if not, don't do it for the scholarship
    b) if yes for (a) how expensive is your school? there is no way without outside help these people are going to pay off private school debt in 4 years and still make what you will be making.
    The AF dentists I've spoken to (not recruiters) are really enjoying the practice of dentistry in the AF, I don't know about the other services.
    The bottom line is you are getting a free education with the opportunity to see parts of the country/world you otherwise may not. It will be enriching. You are going to improve your skills and come out a better dentist. You are also going to have the opportunity to specialize if you want to stay in. It's not all roses but neither is civilian dentistry. It will be what you make of it.
     
  4. shamrock2006

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    I do want to be in. My uncle is a surgeon in the USAF (a colonel now) and my father is also a Capt. in the reserves. the school i'm going to..after tuition, books, and fees, is about 50k per year..not including living. So financially its worth it. I'm just fearful of putting my life on hold for so long. What do you think about doing an AEGD? do you think its better to just do the 4 yrs and get all the CE you can..or do the AEGD and stay in for 5? Thanks a ton for the reply.
     
  5. MaxAnn

    10+ Year Member

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    I have to agree with Prior on this, especially what he wrote about debt.

    I really believe it is unrealistic to think that you will be able to pay off the debt of dental school without outside help unless your parents are already dentists and paying tuition for you. None of this even factors in undergraduate debt either, which can go anywhere from 10-40 grand on its own.

    Seriously, I would give the military decent consideration whether it was HPSP or loan repayment when school is over. Simply put, I know who I am, and there is no way that I would want to spend time worrying about how or when to pay those loans when I am finished with school.

    Just think about how many other things that loan repayment money could be going to: retirement savings, home purchase, college fund for children., etc.

    Life is too short to get bogged down in excessive debt especially when you don't have to do it.

    Just my two cents.
     
  6. shamrock2006

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    this all makes sense. I mean I've already committed to the USAF. So it's definitely a go for me. It's just odd to see/hear about these kids fresh out of dschool who are getting job offers that are starting them at like 120k++....plus, they do have a smaller advantage in that they are getting the chance to build up a clientele...whereas if you decide to come out of the military..you almost have to start from scratch. I dunno, I guess all this is coming from the fact that everyone I know has been telling me I've made a huge mistake by taking the HPSP route for dental school. That i'll be making more than enough to pay withing 6-8 yrs and still not have to sacrifice my lifestyle. Dont get me wrong my decision wasn't based on finances alone..even though the idea of no debt is what brought me in the door. Just after a while of people telling you that it's not a smart route to take eventually starts to mess with your head...ya know?
     
  7. Prior

    Prior Prior
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    sacrifice your lifestyle?
    You don't have a lifestyle, other than being a student. If you are saying your life will be different from theirs...uh..yeah. Everyone is going to have different experiences after school. If you are already worried about building up a clientele before you have started school then you may have some other stress related issues to deal with. Listen, relax! You made a decision to join the Air Force, while I am thrilled with my decision you have to be comfortable with yours. Neither me nor the people who are crapping on your decision should make you feel good or bad about your decision. Just be confident with your choice and tune out the naysayers.
     

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