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Important Point about Med School and money

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by rk123, May 8, 2002.

  1. rk123

    rk123 Junior Member

    Apr 10, 2001
    Denver, CO, USA

    I have read many posts about loans and medical school and the way I explain it to people is, I feel (although very biased), a very practical way to think about it. This is somewhat lengthy but bear with me.

    The student I had talked to had a full ride at the #11 ranked school vs. full price at the #7 school (using US News ONLY to show that they are basically in the same tier). Now he felt that he liked the #7 school better, like the city better, etc. The final price difference was about ~125K over the four years.

    Original amount: 125K
    Now add the total interest: 25-30K (over ~25yrs)
    Total: 155k

    Now . . .

    52 weeks per year x 4 years = 208

    Now to put that amount of money in perspective, this student could go on a $1,000 vacation EVERY OTHER WEEKEND FOR ALL FOUR YEARS OF MEDICAL SCHOOL and still have &gt;$50,000 in the bank <img border="0" alt="[Wowie]" title="" src="graemlins/wowie.gif" />

    Heck, he could study really hard the first year and go on a $1,000 trip EVERY SINGLE weekend for the last three years.

    Even if your situation is not as drastic, do the math and see how much better the cheaper medical school looks now. Even if the other school has a much better reputation, this is a tough pill to swallow.

    I know you can't really borrow the money to go on the vacations, but you and your family can spend that money when you finish. Imagine you and your significant other enjoying yourselves on a $1,000 vacation even once a month (or drive a Ferrari, no seriously, you can lease a Ferrari for ~$1200 a month) and still save money.

    Disclaimer: I know that these numbers may be slightly off, but you get the point.
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  3. Vin Scully

    Vin Scully Member 7+ Year Member

    Apr 30, 2002
    You make an interesting point, but as someone who recently turned down a full ride I would have to say that there are other things to consider. The next 4 years are going to be hard, its important to be someplace where you feel comfortable in the enviornment and like you fellow classmates. I agonized over the decision, but in the end decided that the only reason I liked the one school was because of money, the rest of it didn't feel right for me. I just figured the decision was too important to make based completely on money. Granted I'm now headed to a state school so its not an enormous difference, but still...
  4. gel1

    gel1 Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Apr 11, 2001
    Thanks, Vin Scully!

    I couldn't have said it better myself. Not only do I agree that money isn't everything, I also think the US News is a load of crap. Pre-meds will outwardly agree and then when making their own decision, they give the rankings so much value! In the end, a lot of people have called me an idiot for turning down a full ride to a "top-ten" to pay $140K for a school I feel offers a better education but is lower down in rep. But money will never ever be the most important consideration for me. Life is too short.
  5. ValleyGal

    ValleyGal Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Feb 10, 2002
    Agreed with gel -- I would gladly shell out the extra money to go to a place that I felt was a better school and that I would be happier at. Having gone to a school at one point in my life at which I was miserable, I saw that not only are you emotionally wrecked, but you do not succeed academically either. I promise that the money will be paid back and if you are happy it is worth it.
  6. tBw

    tBw totally deluded 7+ Year Member

    Oct 6, 2001
    infront of an iMac
    Obviously it's a personal choice and system of checks and balances for each individual. I am NOT going to pretend a scholarship wouldn't affect my decision. It would. However, how much is 4 years of your life worth to you? If it were a choice of 4 years of *knowing* you would likely be happy, versus 4 years of misery (eg you are a big city/coastal person and you have the choice of 4 years in LA versus podunk Kentucky (apologies to any Kentuckians out there...obviously it's equally true many people would have the happiness/misery balance the other way round...) on full ride....).

    I generally think the money isn't that big of an issue. If you die in 4 years, the debt goes away and at least you were happy for those 4 years. If you live 40 years, then you earn enough to pay off the debt anyway, and at least you were happy for the 4 years of med school. Money would be a factor for me, but it wouldn't be the deciding factor. Having said that, I don't think I'm applying to anywhere I wouldn't like to go.....
  7. Blazed

    Blazed Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Mar 12, 2002
    Give me a fullride and I am going. ****, even if the school is in Poedunk. 150K is a hell of a lot of money to pay back. I for one understand, having to help pay off my college loans, which was not half as much. When the time comes to start paying off those loans, people who were offered free rides might start to regret their decision. Unless you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth, 150K will take a long time to pay back. Damn, it is like paying off a mortgage. Even with all this said eventually it is up to the person, if he/she doesn't mind more power to you..
  8. Green912

    Green912 10+ Year Member

    Jun 11, 2001
    I'd take the full ride. $155,000 saved can make up for a whole lot when deciding which school to go to. Borrowing the money is always the easy part. It's years down the road when you're paying hundreds of dollars per month that you wonder if school X would really have been that bad. Of course to each his own. All that matters is that you're happy with your decision. :D

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