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kind of an interesting twist: 'prestige' md waitlist vs mstp elsewhere

Discussion in 'Physician Scientists' started by prasads, Mar 21, 2004.

  1. prasads

    prasads Junior Member
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    Hey,

    I was wondering if people could give me their thoughts on the following situation. I know there are posts below about md vs mstp acceptances, but this one involves an MD waitlist:

    The waitlist responses for MD programs typically come back between May 1 and mid August. However, while I've been waitlisted at a spectacular MD program (a place I might rather go), I 've also been accepted to a good MSTP. The MSTP has a summer rotation that starts in July, however, and it's exceedingly possible that I might hear from my waitlists after July. Are there rules against me accepting an MD offer at one of these schools even if I am notified after I've already begun the summer rotation at my MSTP? I've searched the AMA site, and they say that once matriculated at a school, one is not allowed to accept offers from other schools. Does matriculation include pre-summer lab rotation? Or is it effective when classes start?

    My decisions, or potential hopes seem to hinge on this tenuous technicality. Can someone help me out? Would it be wiser, if i am still interested in these MD programs, to opt not to do a presummer lab rotation?

    ...
     
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  3. Primate

    Primate Senior Member
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    I'm no lawyer (it's actually one of the few degrees I'm not pursuing :laugh: ), but I think that you'd be on shaky ground even accepting at one program and then pulling out to go to another. If you started a rotation and then left, it would be even more suspect. This is different than not giving a response, but (at least in the past) one had to commit by something like mid-May. Transferring has been discussed elsewhere, but that involves a different set of obligations than you're outlining. Gotta ask yourself if what you're contemplating passes the "sniff test."

    The real question seems to be whether or not you really want to do the combined degree, if a "good" MSTP isn't sufficient to make you happily drop a "prestige" MD. What do you want to be when you grow up? Know thyself, and the rest will follow.

    my tuppence
    P
     
  4. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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    I have to agree with Primate, I'd make a choice and see it through. The world of academia is too small to risk doing damage to your career before you've even started.
     
  5. ClassSwitch

    ClassSwitch Member
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    Prasads,

    There's also the option of going to the "prestigious" school and starting in the MD track, then switching into the MSTP program at the same institution. When I applied to med school, I was straight-MD all the way. However, after starting med school (at a "prestigious" place as they like to say), I decided to switch into the combined degree program, as did three other classmates. The only disadvantages to this approach are: (1) you run the risk of not getting accepted into the MSTP prorgam by your home institution, although depending on what school you're at and what the climate is like, it can be easier to switch in than to apply de novo; and (2) you lose out on 1-2 years of tuition reimbursement/stipend depending on when you transfer in. At this moment, three out of the four of us are either going to be starting residency this June/July (like me) or are already in residencies, and I can assure you that there is no difference in the competitiveness of the residency applications of those who transferred into the MSTP program vs. those who started as MS-Is.

    Feel free to PM me if you want to talk about this further, and best of luck to you.
     
  6. prasads

    prasads Junior Member
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    ClassSwitch thanks for your input - that was one of my main concerns. Otherwise,there seems to be some misunderstanding about how waitlists in general operate. Being in limbo (waitlisted) at a school necessitates that one have other plans/intentions about attending some school. Waitlists, by nature, only move after May 1 - It is impossible to accept an offer off a waitlist without "accepting at one program and then pulling out to go to another." I dont understand how this generates shaky ground. My point is that waitlists pose a greater problem to the MSTP kid because of the summer rotation.

    'Making a decision and decision and following it through' is not as straightforward as you might imagine because schools do waitlist students. I dont think this in any way comprimises the integrity of my intentions and certainly does not do any damage to anyone's career. Do you see my point about the waitlist? My question was: how flexible are MSTP programs in allowing for the possibility that students might be removed from waitlists elsewhere? Are there rules stipulated somewhere about what it allowed (putting aside what some might think is 'advisable'.)


    If someone can help please do!! I appreciate any input!
    thanks
    :cool: :cool:
     
  7. coldchemist

    coldchemist Biowulf
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    I don't know the answer to your question, but have you considered the possibility of skipping the summer rotation? I'm assuming, like most programs, the one you are considering does not require this rotation? If that's the case, it might be worth it to you to just hold off until all the chips are in.

    Probably the best idea is to just call the program and ask them what their policy is.
     
  8. pathdr2b

    pathdr2b Membership Revoked
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    If you dont' see the integrity "issues" involved with starting an MSTP program just to abandon it for Hopkins or Harvard or whatever without extenuating circumstances when you know you're driven by the prestige of a school, then I'd say you've got a lot to learn about life.

    This "delimma" is one of the reasons I've decided NOT to apply MD/PhD because I would also make this choice. But my integrity and honesty forces me to NOT to apply MD/PhD in the first place.
     
  9. prasads

    prasads Junior Member
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    Whoa there!!

    I didn't mean anything personal in that last post; sorry if u took it the wrong way p2b!!

    I don't even understand why MSTP kids in general are so filled with virtue about what theyre doing! It's not such a big deal, this program. People seem to spit more talk about the structure, motivations and logistics etc. than about the actual research...

    Relax, I know the process is stressful, but in the end i think we should adhere to reasoning along the lines of coldchemist. thins comes down to your chips, and how you want to play them. The spurious considerations about remaining transparent and honest in ur passion shouldnt have prevented u from pursuing ur mstp dreams- it's all just air i think.

    goodluck anyway on what u decide. im sure ull be happy in no time.:cool: :D
     
  10. pathdr2b

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    No problem man, no problem:) See this is what I love about the MD/PhD folks, they can always disagree without the insults, name calling popular in other threads.

    I should also clarify that I'm not interested in MSTP, my interest is in MD/PhD and the two are not the same. However, people around the boards sometimes want to do and say what's popular instead of going with how they feel even if it means taking a little criticism along the way. I just think that no matter what you do or say you owe it to yourself to just "keep it real".

    Bottom line is that one day we're all going to be fine clinicians/ scientists one day, so it's all good!:clap:

    Peace!:cool:
     
  11. hockebob

    hockebob Member
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    prasads,

    The following is quoted from "Recommendations Concerning Medical School Acceptance Procedures for First-Year Entering Students" on the AMCAS website:

    - By May 15 of the year of matriculation, an applicant who has received offers of admission from more than one school should choose the one school that he or she prefers and withdraw from all other schools to which he or she has been accepted.

    - Subsequent to June 1, a school of medicine seeking to admit an applicant already known to be accepted by another school for that entering class should advise that school of its intent. Because of the administrative problems involved in filling a place vacated just prior to the commencement of the academic year, schools should communicate fully with each other with respect to anticipated late roster changes in order to keep misunderstandings at a minimum.

    - After an applicant has enrolled in a U.S. school of medicine or begun a brief orientation program contiguous to enrollment, no further acceptances should be offered to that individual. Once enrolled in a school, students have an obligation to withdraw their applications promptly from all other schools. Enrollment is defined as being officially registered as a member of the first-year entering class at a school.

    You can interpret this as you like, but I see it affecting your particular situation in this way:

    You can accept the MD/PhD offer and hope to get off the MD-only waitlist, but if you start the summer rotation then, realistically, you're locked into that program.

    However, if, after you accept the MD/PhD offer, you contact the MD-only school and tell them your situation, maybe they would let you know where you are on the waitlist or how likely it is that you will be pulled off.

    The important thing is that you're goin' somewhere, right? Congrats!

    Best wishes,
    -Aaron
     
  12. noy

    noy Senioritis Member
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    Woah - this is scary. When the Med schools and MSTP programs admit people, often as early as october/november, they ask you to 'reserve' a spot within a few weeks - and then treat you as if you are an enrolled student with a spot in your name - but revisits and decisions are not made till April.

    What happens to those holding a spot since october, can schools see this in March and then hold off on issuing a decision?

    I would hate to be denied a spot at program X in March because I filled out the card for program Y in January without reading the fine print...

    Or can schools look now, see someone holding several spots, and withdraw offers? This 'enrollment' bit threw me for a loop.
     
  13. prasads

    prasads Junior Member
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    Thanks hocknebob for so eloquently and precisely defining enrollment. It seems funny, but that was exactly what I was looking for. Ya I think I'll contact the school if they havent contacted me by mid May, and then perhaps forgo the summer rotation if I need to (thats how excited i am about this prospect!).

    thanks for all your help dudes!

    noy, as for what u said: The ama says:

    "Enrollment is defined as being officially registered as a member of the first-year entering class at a school."

    So until you go online and register, or fill out that paper and submit it to the registrar, or begin the first day of that lab rotation, you are not yet enrolled. Which means, you can still change your hand without losing your cards.

    goodluck!
     

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