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IU vs UA vs CU

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IU vs UA vs CU

  • Indiana

    Votes: 9 39.1%
  • UA Tucson

    Votes: 3 13.0%
  • Colorado

    Votes: 11 47.8%

  • Total voters
    23

MDShallBe

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Hello all! I'm a new user to SDN, but I have been intermittently reading/lurking on SDN for the last few years. I have gained a lot of valuable information from this site and have been so grateful and fortunate this year to have received multiple acceptances. Never in my wildest dreams would I have ever imagined I would have this opportunity. I am a non-trad student from SoCal. I thought I knew exactly what school I would be attending this Fall, however, I recently received two unexpected acceptances within the last week, and now I am really not sure. Below are my pros and cons list for each school I am currently considering.

Indiana University:

Pros:
-Friendly environment/faculty, my interviewer was incredibly relaxed and spoke a lot about the friendliness environment at IU
-New integrative curriculum being put in place across all regional sites beginning in Fall (really liked the direction the curriculum is going)
-Excellent campus facilities from what I saw (at least in Indianapolis where I interviewed)
-Cost of living low throughout Indiana
-IU has several competitive residency/fellowship positions. (I'm somewhat interested in Emergency Med at this time, and IU has one of the best EM residency programs in the country)

Cons:
-Its Indiana
-Farthest of the 3 from SoCal
-Don't know what regional site I will be placed at, may not get top choice (Indy)
-Snow/Cold weather
-56k OOS tuition
-Students are spread out all over the state which may lead to disconnect between regional sites
-Middle-Lower Tier reputation/ranking
-H/HP/P/F grading
-300+ students in entering class spread amongst all sites (may not be as personable due to size)

University of Colorado:

Pros:
-Highest reputation/ranking of the 3
-Strong research
-Great facilities (Anshutz campus was amazing)
-Affiliations with highly ranked hospitals (Their childrens hospital is ranked in the top 5-6)
-Closer to home than Indiana
-Located near Denver, and access to Denver International Airport for trips home, etc
-Located near so many amazing mountains (grew up going to colorado for winter/outdoor activities, which I love)
-Only 1.5 yr didactic curriculum I believe, so earlier clinical exposure
-Lots of Non-Trads in their classes from what I saw on interview day
-I imagine CU also has a lot of competitive residency/fellowship positions (more than the other two?...Not sure)

Cons:
-63k OOS tuition
-Snow/cold weather, the weather is also very random at times from what I hear
-Cost of living higher
-H/P/F grading then H/HP/P/F for clinicals
-Required scholarly project
-Located in Aurora (Not actually Denver)

University of Arizona (Tucson):

Pros:
-Closest to home (could drive rather than always fly home)
-Warm weather (may be too hot sometimes though)
-P/F grading
-Students seemed laid back and not as stressed, friendly environment amongst faculty and students
-51k OOS tuition (Cheapest of the schools for OOS tution)
-Emphasis working with the local Tucson community
-Really liked their curriculum and the way the use team based/cased based instruction learning
-Option to learn medical spanish
-Low cost of living in Tucson

Cons:
-Lower tier reputation/ranking
-Tucson isn't as large of a city
-Desert/dry setting
-Probably not as many competitive residencies as the other two (not sure about that though)

Ultimately my professional goals are to one day return back to SoCal where all my family is for residency. I am so grateful that all these schools gave me a chance as an OOS applicant, and who knows, I may even stay for residency or ultimately practice in whatever state I end up moving to. I'm not sure at this time what type of specialty I am interested in pursuing, however, I don't have any expectations or goals of pursuing anything ultra competitive. I am thinking EM, however, I want to also keep my options as open as possible and go to a school that will provide me with a great learning environment and resources in case my desire to pursue something competitive changes once I start school. I really do like many aspects of every school and feel that I could be happy at any of them. I know the prevailing wisdom on SDN is to always go with the cheapest option, and I do agree most of the time. Just want to get other opinions on this and see if there is something I may be missing (beyond just the financial differences) when evaluating these schools. Or if say money wasnt a factor (due to possibly obtaining outside funding sources like NHSC, or HPSP or something), what school would be the best to achieve my long term goals? Thank you!!
 

MDShallBe

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Bump for any feedback. Any input or insight from the SDN community would be greatly appreciated!
 

DKMA

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I feel you on the getting into all these OOS schools but no IS. It sucks :/

I would go IU. It's in the middle on tuition cost, pretty close to CU's competitiveness. IU will also likely have a low COL.

If you don't want to do something competitive, definitely go Arizona. Arizona is not a bad choice in general as well.

How much more do you project CU to be overall? Like $60K more than Arizona and $50K more than IU?
 

MDShallBe

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@DKMA , thank you for the reply. Like you, I am extremely grateful to have received a lot of OOS love, but it definitely complicates things when trying to decide the best decision to make, especially when considering things like OOS tuition. I would estimate your projections for the difference in CU tuition and the other two schools are about accurate though. I know saving money is very important and is often advocated on SDN, however, I am also trying to make the best decision. I am not yet sure if I would want to do something super competitive, but I also don't want to limit myself and would like to go somewhere that would help keep every door open. I went to a large undergrad that was very big into networking and such, so I know the value of going to a school where making connections/relationships, etc, can be a positive thing in keeping doors open.
 

SwedgedOn

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If you are wanting to return to SoCal for residency ultimately, I would highly recommend going to either UA or CU. I found that during residency interviews, there is usually a regional bias of applicants and those who are interviewed. Through several of my classmates (I attend a medical school in the West), the word on the street is that CU has a dynamite EM program considered one of the top in the country. I haven't looked into this myself but wouldn't be surprised. If you are wishing to go into EM, I would highly consider CU for this reason, and for the reason that it is a reputable program in the West and would likely get you back to SoCal for residency if you so desire whether that is academic or community based residencies. Of course you have to meet the program halfway and do well in medical school :). You'll be in a mountain of debt either way you go, and an extra $7k a year over IU to attend a reputable program with a great EM division AND in the West, sounds like your ticket to your goal. Best of luck to you and congratulations
 

MDShallBe

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If you are wanting to return to SoCal for residency ultimately, I would highly recommend going to either UA or CU. I found that during residency interviews, there is usually a regional bias of applicants and those who are interviewed. Through several of my classmates (I attend a medical school in the West), the word on the street is that CU has a dynamite EM program considered one of the top in the country. I haven't looked into this myself but wouldn't be surprised. If you are wishing to go into EM, I would highly consider CU for this reason, and for the reason that it is a reputable program in the West and would likely get you back to SoCal for residency if you so desire whether that is academic or community based residencies. Of course you have to meet the program halfway and do well in medical school :). You'll be in a mountain of debt either way you go, and an extra $7k a year over IU to attend a reputable program with a great EM division AND in the West, sounds like your ticket to your goal. Best of luck to you and congratulations

@SwedgedOn. Thank you for the valuable insight. Those are all really good points. At the moment, I am heavily leaning towards either CU or UA since I think I am more of a west coast person at heart, even though I enjoyed my trip to Indy. I had always suspected there may be some regional biases when it comes to residency interviews/selection based on things I've seen online. Therefore, my initial inclination was to choose a school like UA, due its super close proximity to SoCal that would possibly allow me for a greater chance at obtaining a residency in Cali and/or for ease of audition rotations. However, I also know that CU is a much stronger program than UA and would likely open more doors in those regards, but I'm still trying to decide if the $12k difference in CU vs UA tuition + the higher COL of Denver vs Tucson is worth the extra "prestige."
 
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