stillsmilin

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a school is requiring that applicants decide on their mstp offer now, but wont let applicants sign if they signed elsewhere. they clarified their offer by mentioning that most of the mstp's have formed a pact prohibiting applicants from accepting more than one offer. i know that amcas prohibits the same thing after may, but it's only february. this is a very pressured acceptance and it seems like a free-for-all, with schools setting up their own rules despite amcas. any insights into this process would be helpful. thanks!
 

BDavis

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stillsmilin said:
a school is requiring that applicants decide on their mstp offer now, but wont let applicants sign if they signed elsewhere. they clarified their offer by mentioning that most of the mstp's have formed a pact prohibiting applicants from accepting more than one offer. i know that amcas prohibits the same thing after may, but it's only february. this is a very pressured acceptance and it seems like a free-for-all, with schools setting up their own rules despite amcas. any insights into this process would be helpful. thanks!
When I was applying I never received this kind of pressure (~6 years ago). Some of the Southern schools were the quickest in making their funding decisions and were understanding when I stated that I was waiting on funding decisions from East and West Coast schools. However, I never accepted more than one offer at a time; instead I kept asking politely for extensions and most programs were understanding. Are the programs that are "making these pacts" NIH funded? I would just ask politely for an extension.
 

Mitro

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I'm pretty sure AMCAS rules apply. As far as most of the mstps forming a pact to get student to only hold one acceptance at a time - this has got to be BS. Many people are holding multiple acceptances and no one has once mentioned this to me. Most schools say that they'd like you to make a decision to hold a place in the class within two weeks and that if you change your mind, that you let them know in a timely manner. I wouldn't let this program back you into a corner and force you into making a hasty decision. If you think you might go there - accept the offer and just stand up for your right to make a final decision by May 15th. Anyway, it sound like you're in a bad situation, but it's a big decision - you shouldn't let them rush you.
 

Neuronix

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stillsmilin said:
a school is requiring that applicants decide on their mstp offer now, but wont let applicants sign if they signed elsewhere.
Wah? I don't remember "Signing" anything myself. They mean you're not allowed to hold multiple acceptances? Which school is this? Please do the lurkers and the future applicants a favor by naming names on this one. They're completely full of crap. Trust me, you wouldn't want to go to a school if the administration is playing games like that on the front end. You already know what kind of support you're going to get as a student!

Edit: :thumbup: To the next post.
 

Maebea

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stillsmilin said:
a school is requiring that applicants decide on their mstp offer now, but wont let applicants sign if they signed elsewhere. they clarified their offer by mentioning that most of the mstp's have formed a pact prohibiting applicants from accepting more than one offer. i know that amcas prohibits the same thing after may, but it's only february. this is a very pressured acceptance and it seems like a free-for-all, with schools setting up their own rules despite amcas. any insights into this process would be helpful. thanks!
This is an flat-out lie. There is no pact among MD-PhD programs to restrict the number of offers a student may accept. I know MD-PhD directors at dozens of institutions across the country, and no one has mentioned, much less agreed to, such an arrangement. I would not trust the program that told you this lie.

I find this particularly offensive because most MD-PhD programs are highly collegial, and are willing to share information about their programs with "competitors". Every year, MD-PhD program directors and administrators meet in Colorado to address universal concerns. Programs have disseminated information on their admissions activity, demographics of their student body, curricula, time to degree, residency & career choices of their alumni, etc. We share this information and help one another out because we are all committed to the goal of training the next generation of physician-scientists, and realize that future of academic medicine at our own instutions is inextricably linked to the training of physician-scientists by our competitors. Even the biggest programs, like Penn & WashU, cannot depend solely on their own MD-PhD programs to supply them with their future faculty candidates. They need Harvard, Ohio State, Duke, UCSD, etc., to produce outstanding MD-PhDs who will be qualified to compete for faculty positions at their institution. Yes, MD-PhD programs do compete with each other for students. However, it is mostly a friendly competition, the kind that ends in a handshake. There are no losers, because we are all working toward the same goal. (This is not to say that we approach this "competition" without emotion. We endure ecstasy and heartbreak every year as individuals accept or decline our offer of admission. For the most part, programs play "nice" and do not go out of their way to trash other institutions with baseless claims. I can accept a little trash talk, but blatant lying is another thing.)

You need to be seriously concerned about a program that is lying to you. It is obvious that they are not concerned with what is in your best interests, but only in their own good. What other lies have they told you? That they were ranked #1 by the NIH? Call up the other programs that have offered you a position and ask if they are part of the "Pact". If I am wrong about this, please post to this forum and I will issue an apology to all users of this forum and the school involved.

In the end, you will have to make your own choice about this program. There are probably a lot of good reasons to accept their offer, and you would probably receive outstanding training. But dealing with a slimeball for 7 or 8 years (or did he tell you that you would finish in 5 or 6 years) might wear pretty thin.

Good luck.
 

b&ierstiefel

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BDavis said:
When I was applying I never received this kind of pressure (~6 years ago). Some of the Southern schools were the quickest in making their funding decisions and were understanding when I stated that I was waiting on funding decisions from East and West Coast schools. However, I never accepted more than one offer at a time; instead I kept asking politely for extensions and most programs were understanding. Are the programs that are "making these pacts" NIH funded? I would just ask politely for an extension.
Yeah me neither...things have changed since back in the day don't ya think? :laugh:

In any case, like BDavis, I only held onto two acceptances at a time. I had a ranking list of which schools I would rather go to. At the end, I ended up holding onto acceptances to my #2 and #3 schools (rejected from my #1 choice). These programs were neck and neck so I decided to do second visits to both and made a decision soon thereafter.

And to Maebea, I say "AMEN!" :thumbup: