Medical Should I choose a free option or school that will cost $80k more?

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MusicDOc124

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I know this is going to vary so much from person to person, but is there a general rule of thumb for when debt becomes “crushing”? Is taking $80K in loans, while having a free and comparable option available, worth it?

You're right, it depends on the person. Is 80k a lot most students and residents, sure. Is it a lot for most attending? Probably manageable, but more annoying than annoying. Is it for Jeff Bezos or Bill gates? No, not at all.

Is this 80k total, or 80k/year?

If its 80k total, simply ask yourself if that would be crushing to you consider the average is like 200-250k I believe. Only you can answer that question.

If it's 80k/year, then go where it is free.

Now, if you have a comparable option, as you put it, that is free, then why is this question even being asked? The only time this question should be considered is if they're not comparable, but how much is the 80k truly worth in the difference in education and opportunity provided.
 

lord999

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There is usually no such thing is a no-strings "free" medical education. 80k total is well below the average medical school debt, but 320k would be a bit above. What is involved with the "free" education?
 

lord999

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The free education is a merit based scholarship that includes tuition, fees, and living expenses (rent, food, transportation).
So, if that is the case, the only question is what makes it worth taking any debt then? It does not seem to even be a decision here. If it is the UCLA Geffen as alluded to in another post, then there is absolutely no reason not to take it unless you have particular ambitions for something like research as UCLA is a fine school.
 

Goro

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In the end, one will make the same salary as an attending in, say, IM if one goes to Yale or ACOM. hence, unless one is boning for an academic research position, then go with the cheapest tuition. $80K debt is like carrying a Tesla on your back.
 
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