New dental student seeking help to choose his school for future residency

Discussion in 'Dental Residents and Practicing Dentists' started by DDS13, Dec 20, 2008.

  1. DDS13

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    hey guys,

    I just got into a couple of dental schools, and am trying to choose from them. I am planning to specialize after graduation. I want to see what is important for that step? most importantly is school name important?

    For example, I have gotten into a brand new dental school "Western University of Health Sciences", and a couple of other ones in the east-coast and mideast and I wanna see if I go to western, would it be a disadvantage on my application. Basically, i have no idea about this.

    please help me out

    thanks
     
  2. ItsGavinC

    Dentist Moderator Emeritus 15+ Year Member

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    School name can help in some cases, but it isn't as important as your own personal accomplishments such as class rank and Part I board scores. It doesn't matter if you were trained by monkeys if those two items are excellent (somewhat of an exaggeration but not much).

    I attended a new dental school, was in the inaugural class, and don't feel like it was a detriment. It's a decision only you can make.
     
  3. DentalQT

    DentalQT UMDNJ '09
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    Depends on what you want to do. If you got into Columbia they are known for making specialists and pride themselves on that. Of course you can go anywhere and still specialize.
     
  4. thedudeabides6

    thedudeabides6 Junior Member
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    go where you want to go. what school you go to matters very little. if you know you want to specialize, you are going to have to work your butt off and have a good class rank, and do well on boards. with that said, go to where you will be the happiest (or some people choose based on $), and you can specialize anywhere.
     
  5. texas_dds

    texas_dds Senior Member
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    what are your other choices? I agree that your performance relative to your class is ultimately most important, but research matters - and somewhere you can do both is what I would look for. Also consider where you want to live for 4 years - try something new and exciting! You will not regret it.
    Best of Luck.
     
  6. alphaDDS

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    Considering that board scores are Pass/Fail now... and also considering that many schools don't have class ranks or even GPA's, I think school name (esteem among the dental community, not necessarily your buddies) is very important for specialty programs. Also extremely important are extracurriculars and LETTERS OF RECOMMENDATION.
     
  7. DDS13

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    thank u so much guys.

    well, my other choices are buffalo and NYU. But, i really want to stay in CA, at the same time my goal is specializing after graduation, so that is why im worried. what do u guys think?
     
  8. texas_dds

    texas_dds Senior Member
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    where in cal?
     
  9. DDS13

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    southern cali, near la
     
  10. texas_dds

    texas_dds Senior Member
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    which CA school(s)?
     
  11. thedudeabides6

    thedudeabides6 Junior Member
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    dude, read his post. Western University.
     
  12. texas_dds

    texas_dds Senior Member
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    dude i have never heard of such a place. from the name it sounds like somewhere in the midwest.
    from this list, i would pick buffalo. (cheaper and WAY smaller class size than NYU)
     
  13. thedudeabides6

    thedudeabides6 Junior Member
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    its a new school with their inagural class this year. i believe it is in pomona, california, but someone correct me if i'm wrong.
     
  14. charlestweed

    Dentist Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

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    That’s correct. Western University is located 30 miles East of USC, 30 miles West of Loma Linda Univ., and only a few miles from my practice:).
     
  15. gryffindor

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    They need more dentists in Southern California? Seriously? Opening another dental school in an already saturated market, someone is making money on this operation somewhere and it's not going to be the grads taking out the loans to go there.
     
  16. charlestweed

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    I wonder how the school gonna find patients for their dental students. A lot of my referring GPs in Pomona area have been complaining about not having enough patients for their practices. Most of the patients (80+ percent) in this area have Denti-Cal. Due to the current budget deficit problem in CA, I think the funding for dental care will be cut significantly in the near future. Well, the school still has two years to find patients since the students won't start treating patients until their 3rd year. I believe the class size is very small…. about 50 students.
     
  17. texas_dds

    texas_dds Senior Member
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    what about faculty? every other school is already low on #s.
    i caution anyone wanting to specialize from stepping into this kind of situation - there may be zero opportunity for quality research experience. among other things.
     
  18. gryffindor

    Dentist 10+ Year Member

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    Apparently this school is affiliated with an exisiting DO school so I would think that the ambitious student determined to do some research will be able to seek out an opportunity, even if it isn't dental related.

    I would be more concerned about getting an adequate clinical experience given the reasons charlestweed mentioned. I think when the schools in Arizona and Las Vegas opened as well as Nova, those were completely different situations since there were no dental schools in those states or in that part of the state so there would be a population base the school could serve. This school is opening in Southern California, one of the most saturated areas in dentistry in the US. No matter how many underserved patients a community has, if the patients don't pay or the state doesn't pay for them, it will be hard for the school to financially survive.

    Now all I need to hear of is a dental school actually opening in Utah and I'll be convinced the profession has its priorities completely backwards.
     
    #18 gryffindor, Dec 29, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2008
  19. sks2286

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    Too many Utah kids at the majority of my interviews. Im not familar with the situation in Utah with dentists but I could see how they would need a dental school.
     
  20. Guy Smiley

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    No you couldn't. Dental schools are typically opened because a state has a lack of dentists and they need more dentists in the state. Utah does not have any shortage of dentists. I've met dentists who have moved out of Utah because they couldn't make a living.
     
  21. gryffindor

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    Yeah, I was implying that Utah, much like Southern California, is super saturated with dentists and the last thing they need is a dental school although I hear on SDN from time to time about rumors of opening one there. If one can open in Southern California, then who knows which so-called underserved area is next.
     
  22. DDS13

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    well, Its very hard to make this decision, im trying to convince myself that cali schools will be better than NYU even if it is new. they told us at western that they will have the latest technology with a brand new building. i dont know. help
     
  23. Dukie

    Dukie Senior Member
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    If you really want to be in California, go to school there, do your best to standout, and apply from there. Who knows, you may change your mind one year in and decide you want to do general practice. You should go where you will be happiest and it sounds like that would be in CA. Best of luck!
     
  24. texas_dds

    texas_dds Senior Member
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    what did they say about having faculty to support you as students?
     
  25. DDS13

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    well, they said that they are recruiting the new faculties and they seem very optimistic and it has an optimistic vibe
     
  26. Guy Smiley

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    I'd say be wary of that. If they don't have them in place, there's no guarentee they'll be able to get enough good experienced faculty members. Remember, there is already a nationwide shortage of qualified faculty members as you weigh your options.
     
  27. aphistis

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    That's what I was thinking. At least they didn't do anything really dumb like open the new school in the middle of the single most dentally congested region in the entire country, instead of the dozens of places where it might actually make a positive impact on the profession. :rolleyes:
     
  28. texas_dds

    texas_dds Senior Member
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    over my years as a student, some of my most meaningful interactions have been with dedicated basic science and clinical faculty. these people are incredibly short in number, and increasingly so. please call and ask the admissions office "can I have a list of faculty and what courses they teach?" this information should be available, and if its not, i would proceed with caution. (also ask if they are or in the process of being accredited by the ADA - required for your degree to count.)
    there is a nationwide shortage of dental faculty, and throwing together a quality institution is not something that happens overnight. Californian dental educators already have multiple choices for teaching positions, so a new school would have to offer significant compensation to be competitive I would think.
     

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