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NYU vs. Columbia

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by qui1027, Nov 28, 2005.

  1. qui1027

    qui1027 Member
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    I talked to my friends at both NYU and COlumbia..and the only difference that i keep on hearing from them is that NYU students seem to have a more balanced life while columbia kids are very stressed out with their work and research...besides the personal bias..anyone else know what makes one better than the other? better facilities? better international programs??

    i hear that NYU residency loves their grad students more so than columbia residency...is that true? I feel like after interviewing at several schools...all the curriculums start sounding the same...is it just me that every school is now having a combination of basic sciences and PBL? :sleep: thanks for the input..
     
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  3. Elastase

    Elastase StanfUrd bound!!!
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    Aren't they ranked completely different as far as research? Does that make them comparable?
     
  4. Punisher

    Punisher Senior Member
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    I interviewed at both schools and I found the main differences to be:

    Location - Columbia is in a worse area in Washington Heights but easily accessable by subway. NYU is in a much better area but farther away from the subway.

    Dorms - Kinda different but kinda similar. Both sorta ghetto but have different feeling to them.

    International medicine - Columbia seems to have a much bigger emphasis on this. NYU has opportunities but doesn't stress it as much to the interviewees.

    Reputation - Columbia ranks better than NYU in research and thus reputation.

    Training hospital - Columbia's main hospital is a private hospital so med students can't usually do as much. NYU has the famous Bellevue (public) which is great for training.

    Thats all I can think of for now. Hope it helps.
     
  5. SarahGM

    SarahGM Senior Member
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    A little clarification:

    Columbia's main hospital is New York-Presbyterian. I'm not sure why anyone has the impression that it's private. It's one of the largest and top ranked teaching university-associated teaching hospitals in the country, if not world.

    I don't want to pull a "my student body is more well-rounded than your student body," but Columbia has the largest medical school umbrella extracurricular organization, http://cpmcnet.columbia.edu/dept/ps/affairs/psclub/index.html , in the country. Check out the link. We have a championship rugby team, several amazing musical ensemble, an outdoors club (of which I am president!), a theater society, a wine tasting group, etc etc etc. Check out the club listing.
     
  6. ExtraCrispy

    ExtraCrispy Funky chicken
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    Punisher, this statement:

    "Training hospital - Columbia's main hospital is a private hospital so med students can't usually do as much. NYU has the famous Bellevue (public) which is great for training."

    ...is entirely incorrect. At Cornell, maybe this is the case ( lots of private patients), but the benefit of Columbia is that not only is it a tertiary care facility (referrals from all over for complicated pathology), but it serves as the main community hospital for Washington Heights, a low-income, culturally-rich community. As a result, students at Columbia have a chance to do EVERYTHING during the clinical years. There have been multiple occasions when I've rotated at other hospitals, and I've actually taught the interns how to perform certain bedside skills, since I'd had exposure during med school and they hadn't.

    I'm not going to sing the praises of Columbia vs. others, b/c what it all boils down to is where you feel you'd be happiest and receive solid training. But in terms of clinical education, I actually think this is where NYU and Columbia are most *similiar* - between Bellevue and NY Presby, you're getting the best possible clinical training in NYC.

    To the OP, I'd recommend a revisit at both, when the time comes. Feel free to PM me with any specific questions.
     
  7. Rendar5

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    If you want a difference, ask them how many courses they do at once and how intense or long each course is. Also ask about exam blocking. I know Columbia tends to have a lot of courses at once, but they're all really long courses. Don't know about NYU, but they might be the "only a couple but really fast w/ exam blocking" route. They're both great schools, so forget about rank.

    Other situation is that NYU's in a really good location and Columbia's in a really ****ty one. I will never ever live in Washington Heights again. it's so boring there. But remember, the blue and red lines are right next to campus.

    Columbia's one tier up, but that's also cause they've got more research going on, and some really good neurology and surgery connected w/ the school (so go thereduring residency if that's ur thing). So how important that is is up to you. NYU's considered same approximate level as Sinai and Einstein whereas Columbia gets grouped w/ Cornell. All have really great clinical experience cause of the hospitals u're associated w/, so you can't go wrong w/ whatever choice you make.
     
  8. PhotoMD

    PhotoMD Rad!
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    Columbia students are sexier.
     
  9. JayQuah

    JayQuah Connect Four Champion
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    way sexier.
    Also, Columbia has a more traditional approach to education during first two years...lots of lectures from bigwigs...where as NYU is taking a PBL approach.
     
  10. Punisher

    Punisher Senior Member
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    My bad... that is what I was told by some of the med students. I guess they don't know everything. :)
     
  11. worriedwell

    worriedwell Senior Member
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    Long time away from the forum, happened upon this thread, I have input.

    To give you background on who I am, I am an NYU med grad, interviewed at Columbia and knew some people at Columbia and considered Columbia for residency (my number two choice) but I got into my number one so I'm not there and I can't admit to personally spending signficant time there. I've talked thoroughly to a couple of big academics who evaluate these things (because I'm interested in an academic career). I'm now an intern at an Ivy hospital that is very competitive and very stellar (I got lucky and I worked hard). I was probably in the top 25-35% of my class. Around middle of the pack first two years but did well during clincal years.

    In terms of NYU vs. Columbia as a med school, the generic statement among Academic Doctors is that Columbia is top dog in New York, bottom line. If you want an academic career, if all else is equal or not important to you as an individual, then Columbia should be your choice. By the way, most academcis I've talked to don't really lump the academics at Cornell in the same category as Columbia, but rather think of Cornell more in tune with NYU and Sinai. Maybe its a Manhattan bias, but you don't hear about Einstein being lumped in as the same caliber academics broadly as these other four, but whatever (unless your talking about their renal division or their pediatrics, which are big time).

    But broadly speaking, don't get overly caught up in rankings, as the difference in caliber of medical schools in this case really only lies if you aren't a good student and you are at the bottom of your class, but I assure you, if you are that bad, even at Columbia, you won't get a good residency.

    NYU is definitely in a great part of the city, easy access to the East Village and downtown in general, while Columbia is a trek downtown (but moderately close to upper west, which is cool, but not as cool as downtown) And don't get too caught up in these Columbia folks talking about their diverse class, by all accounts, the people I met there and knew there were gifted people and had impressive resumes, but this rugby issue and music stuff is so overblown, give me a break. That seems to be all they talk about. NYU has or had at the time, the highest dues (money) paid as part of tuition to student activites of any medical school in the country. We had an extensive international program to Costa Rica that many people went to, and tons of people went to multiple conferences, wilderness medicine electives in the middle of nowhere for a month, electives in Tibet to do craniofacial surgery, etc. It was just a matter of showing interest. Not to mention we had some ridiculous parties at ridiculous clubs and lounges in the city (total top shelf, celeb hangout type places, but I digress) The student body at NYU was definitely not as diverse or impressive on paper en mass as the Columbia student body, as will come with the fact that every premed is obsessed with rankings and every med school is obsessed with resume stuffers, so the result is obvious. But in general, it was a young and fun group of people who studied hard and played hard.

    However, if you are an average to above average medical student at NYU, the sky is the limit for your career. I literally know med students in my class who were not AOA, who had the residency director at Mass General call them personally several times encouraging them to go there. (I'm using mass general as the gold standard of residencies, which it isn't always, but that leaves an impression on you prestige seeking types...not excluding myself.)

    If you just liked NYU more than Columbia, go there and have no doubts. I know of at least 10 people in my class who chose NYU over Columbia (I couldn't believe it, because I was one of those premeds obsessed with rankings and I would have gone to Columbia if I got in, but I did not). They cited that they just felt more comfortable at NYU or they liked the location or student body better or they had a particular interest in a particular program or that they LOVED THE IDEA of working at Bellevue. As much as the above Columbia students like to compare NY-presby to Bellevue, this is one feather in their cap that NYU has that you really can't deny. Bellevue is the oldest and largest public hospital in the United States and it is the place where the **** hits the fan and you are there to be covered in **** as a medical student. Talk about international health, its all right there in Bellevue, no contest. Of course, NY-Presby is far superior to Bellevue in many things and it is a very hands on rich in clinical stuff hospital and it has much better specialized surgical care, but its not Bellevue.

    Bottom line, you make your experience in med school meaningful and your future bright by being proactive about the direction of your career, seek out things and you'd be surprised at how much interesting stuff and important stuff you will be exposed to. Don't just study, because success in your career will also be determined by your experiences and connections, as the grades are a big blur unless you are really at the top or the bottom.

    In general, Columbia has a more academic millieu to it and highly specialized things and research is broadly richer at that place, so its a tough place to turn down and its really one of the top handful of academic places around, but if you are into student body, extracurricular stuff, location, international health, or great clinical training, Columbia is not the better choice, it may be equal or comparable, but its probably just a matter of where you felt most comfortable and you are not hurting yourself by choosing NYU, I promise.

    Sorry if this offends anybody just hoping to get into a med school, the general lesson here is that any med school offers you a million opportunities to succeed, some are just more in your face than others.
     
  12. calvinandhobbes

    calvinandhobbes Senior Member
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    bellevue. no comparison.
     
  13. MousseKnuckle

    MousseKnuckle Junior Member
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    I would pick NYU just for the remote chance that you get to do a PAP smear on one of the OLSEN twins in the student health clinic! :smuggrin:

    I would also go with NYU as lower manhattan is so much more exciting than upper manhattan, but really you can't lose either way.

    In terms of urban med schools the elite ones are for sure UCSF, UCLA, NYU and Columbia. You win with any of those. Just pick your weather
     
  14. jjmack

    jjmack Senior Member
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    I'd remove NYU and replace it with Cornell. To the OP if you are interested in research, especially neuroscience it's a no brainer Columbia.
     

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