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I have been wondering this...For those who need to narrow down between a few choices, how do you choose where you are going to attend vet school? What are the main deciding factors for you? Money, specialties, geographic location, school ranking, special opportunities at the the school, or just a "feeling" you get when you are there? I would love to hear your thoughts on this.
 
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I only applied to 2 schools, so my choice is very either/or.

What I'm doing to decide is basically splitting up vet school into 5 aspects and placing them into a hierarchy of importance, then comparing the schools on those aspects. So, in order of importance:

PhD program: I'm going for DVM/PhD, so I need to be sure that the kind of research I want to do is (a) available and (b) high-quality. If equal, I'll pick based on the next category.

Vet school quality: For me, the vet school is just a little less important than the PhD program, only b/c vet education quality tends to be less variable than PhD education. I'm asking things like: are lab groups small, are the facilities new and well-cared for, does the hospital have a high caseload, do they specialize in the type of medicine I'm interested in, is the school highly ranked, etc. If all things are pretty close, then...

Finance: This is a biggie, but if there's a big enough difference in the above categories, I'm willing to pay more. It's basically self explanatory - which school's the better value? If they're about the same, then...

Housing/City: Which city is more fun? How's the bus system? How nice of an apartment can I get within my budget? Finally, I consider...

Touchy-feely: I don't have any friends OOS - should I stay near my friends? I just got engaged - should I stay in-state so I can live with my fiance? Does one school "feel nicer" than another?

You'd think with a system like this, I'd have it easy, right? Wrong! Unfortunately, Minnesota and Michigan are almost the same on most fronts except touchy-feely, and I don't know about the specifics of the most important category, research, at Minn yet. So boo, so much for having a system. Maybe applying it might help you, though.

The reason I ranked things the way that I did, particularly putting the touchy-feely at the bottom, is because I know that emotions and impressions change and can be fickle, and they aren't the best thing to base a decision on. I mean, I wouldn't go to a school I outright hate, but I don't consider transient emotional concerns to be worthy of overriding cold, hard facts about which school is objectively better for my goals.

Can you tell I'm not much of a "follow your heart" guy? :p
 

variegata

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I have been wondering this...For those who need to narrow down between a few choices, how do you choose where you are going to attend vet school? What are the main deciding factors for you? Money, specialties, geographic location, school ranking, special opportunities at the the school, or just a "feeling" you get when you are there? I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

I haven't made my decision yet, but I'm almost there. The decision's gonna be a combination of factors. I had 3 choices (2, now). I nixed Tufts, which was more expensive and didn't feel good when I visited for my interview.

So now it's between a school with expensive OOS tuition that I liked when I interviewed, and a school with cheap OOS tuition that I haven't yet visited. Location's not a big factor for me since both are in the Midwest. I honestly haven't even looked at rankings, nor do I plan to. Specialties and special opportunities, I'm looking at, but probably won't sway me much since I'm leaving myself open to all different species. Money is a big factor, and feeling will be too. I'm hoping it doesn't come down to cheaper school vs. school I like better, because if it does, I'll be agonizing a bit. The cheaper school would probably win out in that case, as long as my impression of that school isn't like my impression of Tufts.
 
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zeebra44

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I only applied to 2 schools, so my choice is very either/or.

What I'm doing to decide is basically splitting up vet school into 5 aspects and placing them into a hierarchy of importance, then comparing the schools on those aspects. So, in order of importance:

PhD program: I'm going for DVM/PhD, so I need to be sure that the kind of research I want to do is (a) available and (b) high-quality. If equal, I'll pick based on the next category.

Vet school quality: For me, the vet school is just a little less important than the PhD program, only b/c vet education quality tends to be less variable than PhD education. I'm asking things like: are lab groups small, are the facilities new and well-cared for, does the hospital have a high caseload, do they specialize in the type of medicine I'm interested in, is the school highly ranked, etc. If all things are pretty close, then...

Finance: This is a biggie, but if there's a big enough difference in the above categories, I'm willing to pay more. It's basically self explanatory - which school's the better value? If they're about the same, then...

Housing/City: Which city is more fun? How's the bus system? How nice of an apartment can I get within my budget? Finally, I consider...

Touchy-feely: I don't have any friends OOS - should I stay near my friends? I just got engaged - should I stay in-state so I can live with my fiance? Does one school "feel nicer" than another?

You'd think with a system like this, I'd have it easy, right? Wrong! Unfortunately, Minnesota and Michigan are almost the same on most fronts except touchy-feely, and I don't know about the specifics of the most important category, research, at Minn yet. So boo, so much for having a system. Maybe applying it might help you, though.

The reason I ranked things the way that I did, particularly putting the touchy-feely at the bottom, is because I know that emotions and impressions change and can be fickle, and they aren't the best thing to base a decision on. I mean, I wouldn't go to a school I outright hate, but I don't consider transient emotional concerns to be worthy of overriding cold, hard facts about which school is objectively better for my goals.

Can you tell I'm not much of a "follow your heart" guy? :p

I just want to say "bravo" on this awesome post. :bow:
 

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I am undecided between Missouri (OOS) and Va-Md (IS). They are pretty close in $ (+15ish for Missouri for year 1 and close cos) so I don't think that will be my deciding factor, although it would be if I had to pay +15 per year at MO!

In no particular order

--curriculum--2+2 (MO) vs tracking (VA)
--location--midwest vs mountains and coast in proximity
--location--far from family, friends vs super close to family, friends
--location--new and far bigger than I am used to vs very comfortable
--student opportunities--still figuring this out
--student support--still figuring this out
--specialties--still figuring this out but VA might have a bit of an edge
--caseload--
--I really don't like that MO only has 6 week summers
--I think that after 9 years in Blacksburg (VA), if I don't leave now, I never will
--responsibilities at home
--cost--bit more at MO vs VA

I am trying to leave "the warm and fuzzies" out of it as much as possible. The tour and info sessions at MO were so much better and made me feel much more welcome, but I don't necessarily think Va-Md is lacking in nice admins and professors, just that the tour/interview process did not display this.

I'm not sure how many of these are important. I'm going to the Va-Md open house soon and I'll get some of these questions answered and get a better feel of the place. It might just come down to whether I want to leave the area or not. To be clear to anyone considering VMRCVM--I love Blacksburg and the New River Valley. Blacksburg is a great place to live and there are plenty of things to do (if you have time after studying :)). I never really got a chance to go out on my own and leave home and I think that this may be my only shot.
 

that70sfan11

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Gilch, you and I are going through the exact same thing!! mine is just mizzou vs. oklahoma state.

like you, I like that my IS is close to friends and family. it would be much easier to move there than 7 hours away where I don't know anyone. both schools are great honestly. mizzou might be a little more updated but that's it.

but my biggest reason to go to mizzou would be that I have been in oklahoma my whole life and I'm a little bummed about staying here again for the next 4 years. (not that I don't love oklahoma, I just need a little adventure in my life!)

I really don't know what to do....
 
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Gilch, you and I are going through the exact same thing!! mine is just mizzou vs. oklahoma state.

like you, I like that my IS is close to friends and family. it would be much easier to move there than 7 hours away where I don't know anyone. both schools are great honestly. mizzou might be a little more updated but that's it.

but my biggest reason to go to mizzou would be that I have been in oklahoma my whole life and I'm a little bummed about staying here again for the next 4 years. (not that I don't love oklahoma, I just need a little adventure in my life!)

I really don't know what to do....

I'm all about adventure, so I say with all things equal, throw yourself into it and go OOS! Going into vet school is a major transition in your life, so you might as well take advantage of the opportunity to have an adventure, right?
 

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--I really don't like that MO only has 6 week summers

It's not always fun in clinics, but I'm sure glad I've been out of the lecture classroom since October of this year instead of not there yet like most schools. The 6 week summer allows you to do that and it gives you much more free block time later on where you can go where you like to do outside externships/preceptorships or even, yes, vacations. :laugh:
 

gilch

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oh yeah, I know where that extra 6+ months is coming from! :laugh:

I really do think I'd like the 2 years of clinicals, so I think that plus outways the - of the 6 week summers. It's just one of the many things I am thinking about!
 

GellaBella

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I think for me it comes down to three things that are extremely important to me:

1) My fiance. I only applied to schools where I thought he could get a good post-doc/biotech job. That put UPenn (for Philly and Princeton proximity) and Tufts (Boston - MIT, Harvard etc) at the top of my list.

2) Cost. I didn't really think about this before applying because my instate is Tufts which is expensive anyways. BUT if schools could offer me incentive to attend well that would certainly help make up my mind. Offsetting future debt is seriously important to me...especially since I will have so much of it.

3) Research. I want to be in a school that allows me to be involved in different types of research, grab a seminar when I can etc. Penn allows their vet students to go into any lab in the university (undergrad, medical school etc) which is really important to me. Tufts does have research on campus but additional opportunities would require travelling into Boston which while do-able is less than optimal.

Those were my BIG 3. And using that I have ended up with Penn :D
 
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First, Electrophile - your signature is gold! Love it! :D

And to answer the OP question:

I'm having a tough time myself with decisions. I've been accepted to three schools, UPenn (my IS), Wisconsin, and Missouri. The thought process and factors that I'm using to choose my program are:

1) MONEY. I've already pretty much ruled out Penn as a result (99.5% sure I will be declining). I strictly limited which schools I applied to by only sending applications to ones that were about as much or cheaper than Penn. Wisconsin's tuition and living expenses work out to about $12-$15,000 more over four years than Missouri. Considering that I'm already looking at a $150,000 loan, this might be a difference I find myself comfortable with once I take other factors into account. But we'll see.

2) S.O. and family. This isn't a factor I was really anticipating having to consider when I started this journey, but life surprises you. This spring, I'll have been with my boyfriend for a year and a half and our future is something that definitely complicates things. We've been in a long-distance relationship since last May and things are going great, so we feel ready for the challenge of next year. Missouri, unfortunately, is the furthest away from him AND my family (driving and flying). Also, it offers little to no options for him when he needs to pursue his MBA in two years; his company requires attending certain programs. Chicago and Madison offer options while Columbia does not.

3) Program and "fit". While the above two factors are the most important in my selection, I will definitely be considering the programs themselves (I feel both are pretty strong). For instance, I LOVE Missouri's 2+2 program and got a very favorable impression when I visited. I love the freedom and flexibility the schedule offers, especially in clinical rotations. Having the pathology lab so close to campus, the amazing hospital, and the extensive facilities were all fantastic. Downside - chained to Columbia for summers due to their short length and to gain residency. I have yet to visit Wisconsin, but I'm sure my overall impression of the school will play a big part in my final selection.

4) Everyday life. Another reason why I wasn't heartbroken to turn to Penn...living in West Philly isn't my idea of a good time. The small-town feel of Columbia was right up my alley. Cost of living is cheap and the area is easy to navigate, which are both perks. Again, once I visit Madison, my impression of what life would be like for four years will contribute to my choice.

Ultimately, this decision is a very difficult and very personal one. What is important for one person might not even register in another's decision process. Both head and heart need to be consulted and you are the one who will have to live with the consequences of your choice. Good luck to everyone! :)
 

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First, Electrophile - your signature is gold! Love it! :D

Thanks! ;)


2) S.O. and family. This isn't a factor I was really anticipating having to consider when I started this journey, but life surprises you. This spring, I'll have been with my boyfriend for a year and a half and our future is something that definitely complicates things. We've been in a long-distance relationship since last May and things are going great, so we feel ready for the challenge of next year. Missouri, unfortunately, is the furthest away from him AND my family (driving and flying). Also, it offers little to no options for him when he needs to pursue his MBA in two years; his company requires attending certain programs. Chicago and Madison offer options while Columbia does not.

What kind of options does he need? My husband is finishing up his MBA at Mizzou in a few months and apparently their business school is REALLY good! He went there for undergrad as well (his degree was in marketing, MBA in information systems management). If your boyfriend has any questions, feel free to PM me and I'll ask him or see their site:

http://business.missouri.edu/1537/default.aspx


3) Program and "fit". While the above two factors are the most important in my selection, I will definitely be considering the programs themselves (I feel both are pretty strong). For instance, I LOVE Missouri's 2+2 program and got a very favorable impression when I visited. I love the freedom and flexibility the schedule offers, especially in clinical rotations. Having the pathology lab so close to campus, the amazing hospital, and the extensive facilities were all fantastic. Downside - chained to Columbia for summers due to their short length and to gain residency. I have yet to visit Wisconsin, but I'm sure my overall impression of the school will play a big part in my final selection.

Yeah, having pretty much everything right there is quite helpful. I've lived in Columbia for 10 years now. It's really not bad at all, I promise! :D It's a pretty diverse city of about 100,000 with lots to do and close enough to Kansas City and St. Louis for easy day trips if you are so inclined. We have excellent trails and outdoor rec, an awesome farmer's market, all the typical shopping, three movie theaters (including a really fun indie/art house one, if you're so inclined).

4) Everyday life. Another reason why I wasn't heartbroken to turn to Penn...living in West Philly isn't my idea of a good time. The small-town feel of Columbia was right up my alley. Cost of living is cheap and the area is easy to navigate, which are both perks. Again, once I visit Madison, my impression of what life would be like for four years will contribute to my choice.

Yeah, you won't get any cheaper than living in Columbia. If you want to rent, with the glut of apartments, you can pretty easily find a 1 or 2 bedroom apartment or even duplex for ~$400-500 a month if you want to live by yourself or a 3-4 bedroom duplex or house for ~$200 a month if you want roommates. Me and my husband bought a nice little 3 bedroom house in a quiet neighborhood on a 1/3 acre lot for 117K if that's up your alley as well.
 
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Thanks for all the great feedback everyone! It is nice to hear other peoples perspectives on this as it is a huge investment in time and money.

The most important things to me are

1. Research opportunities in the area I did my PhD research in and a culture that fosters students getting involved in research.

2. First and second year students being involved in at least some clinical work.

3. The atmosphere of the school ie the upperclassmen seem to like the professors, quality of classes, teaching styles, etc.

4. Money....self explanatory. This would include logistics of moving, job for sig. other, etc.

I am still waiting to hear from one school, so when that happens then I am just going to sit down and really think out each opportunity and go from there.

Thanks again everyone!
 
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Thanks for all of the helpful replies, everyone! I'm amidst choosing between Penn (IS) and Cornell (OOS) and have been fervently avoiding sitting down and scrawling out a pro-cons list of sorts. I know that I'm SO SO SO lucky to have a decision to make but I'm kicking myself at every turn while mulling this over in my head. Once procrastination loosens its death grip on me and my decision process I shall be making a more useful post to this thread (and yes, this will be sooner than April 14).
 

StartingoverVet

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Less than a month till decision time so I thought I would post my not making a decision process. For the record, I have not heard from UCDavis yet but for the sake of argument assume I am accepted (if not, at least I can use one coin flip).

I have 4 factors I consider and rank the schools 1,2 & 3. Penn & UCDavis always flip between first and last and Tufts is always in the middle. Too funny.

Factor 1: Housing/Location.
#1) Davis nice college town, good places to live nearby.
#2) Tufts...Grafton... can get a nice house but campus is really nowhere. Weather will be a big adjustment from L.A.
#3) Penn.. Philly is a good city but I've lived there before and it is not the safest place and it is not cheap. Weather will be a big adjustment from L.A.

Factor 2: My wife is going to be getting a phd in comp lit or French lit so needs a quality program nearby.
#1) Penn. Has a great program and it will be Close.
#2) Tufts. Harvard and Brown can both be <1hr away depending on where we live but still a long commute.
#3) UCDavis. Berkeley the only real option and over 1hr away.


Factor 3: Cost
#1) Davis is IS school. But tuition rising there the fastest so the gap will narrow. 30k this yr.
#2) Tufts. At least it is less than 40k
#3) Penn. If you have to ask you can't afford it.

Factor 4: Fit of the program for me. This is most highly subjective but here it goes....
#1) Penn. Felt most comfortable here. Like the diversity. Like the professional atmosphere and the tradition. Plus I went to Penn undergrad so I am pretty comfortable with the university. The hospital is really busy and there seem like lots of opportunities.
#2) Tufts. A little quirkier people but I liked the program and they seem to be the most flexible about letting you pursue your interests (if you have any) Great small animal reputation.
#3) UCDavis. Partly I got the least feel for the school during my visit but also have surprisingly heard negative things about the preparation for their vets coming out into small animal clinical environment. Seems spectacular on research and great on food animal but neither of those are likely to apply to me.

There your have it.
Penn #1 votes: 2
#3 votes:2

Davis #1 votes: 2
#3 votes:2

Tufts #2 votes: 4 (always the bridesmaid, never the bride).

Left to consider:
*Starting to look more closely at housing options right now. Could be deciding factor.
*If Davis accepts me or not (if alternate... I am not waiting). Will visit them again if its a yes.

I'll let you all know when I decide.
 

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Just my opinion, StartingoverVet, but if you want to go out into small animal clinical medicine I don't really think that any of those programs is objectively better than any other for that purpose.

Individual preference in environment and atmosphere is obviously a whole other beast, and totally subjective. Something only you can answer, obviously. ;)

Just out of curiosity, what negativity have you heard about UCDavis and SA clinical preparation? From being here for awhile I have the opposite perception...small animal's great, large animal not so much.
 

eventualeventer

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LA not so much? I'm surprised, since Davis has something like the 2nd largest equine caseload in the country, although I don't know how their food animal program compares to other schools. I actually applied there in part because a friend who did her equine internal medicine residency there (within the last 10 years) told me that the 4th year students she worked with were really well prepared to go into practice, much more so than how she judged herself to be upon graduating from VMRCVM.

Additionally, this idea at UC Davis of providing discounts to people who can't afford surgery in order to bring in more teaching cases is not something you see everywhere -- at the EMC/VA Tech, prices are as high if not higher than private practices in the area and they are just now moving towards allowing payment plans (as opposed to requiring a 50% of estimate deposit upon admission and the balance upon picking up the horse), let alone actually *subsidizing* cases to increase teaching opportunities. VA Tech is hurting financially and I'm not criticizing them for their policies, just pointing out that UC Davis seems to go out of their way to maximize LA teaching cases compared to other schools.
 

nyanko

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LA not so much? I'm surprised, since Davis has something like the 2nd largest equine caseload in the country, although I don't know how their food animal program compares to other schools.

Oh, when I said large animal I meant food/production animal. I think the equine program is good. :)
 

StartingoverVet

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Just out of curiosity, what negativity have you heard about UCDavis and SA clinical preparation? From being here for awhile I have the opposite perception...small animal's great, large animal not so much.

A number of people have said that they feel that UCDavis grads don't seem as prepared as other schools in handling procedures. They felt like they don't get enough hands on experience.

And from 2 senior vets (both of whom I highly respect) they felt that UCDavis (relative to other schools') grads act like they know everything and are closed minded about doing things differently and learning new methods. Interestingly enough Penn also has a reputation as know-it-alls but not for being resistant to continued learning.

It is pretty rare to hear almost anything negative about any schools grads so it was a little surprising to me. Obviously I have a very small sample size, so while not significant statistically (for you researchers out there), it certainly gives me something to think about.

Most of the people who I have heard these things from have been in the industry a looong time so it is doubtful it is just 1 or 2 bad apples that have formed their opinions.

Personally, I have NEVER encountered a UCDavis grad in private practice (that I know of) in L.A. and I have had unfortunately a lot of need to see vets. I find that amazing but irrelevant to my decision. Nothing I am relaying is based on personal experience.

In the end it is hard for me to evaluate. Maybe it is a norcal-socal thing? I wouldn't tell anyone that I think they are wrong about Davis being great. I just don't know enough to say one way or the other.

Final point, I really agree with you that in the end, all 3 of the programs will be fine. I am splitting hairs at this point, which makes the decision difficult for me. I wish it were more obvious that one school was the best for me or one factor was much more important to me than the others.

I tried to make my wife decide which place was best for her but she is having none of that! She's not ready to pick a Phd program yet so she dumped the decision back on me:smuggrin:.
 

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StartingOverVet- Eek! that is some crazy decision making. I won't say my opinion since I am biased lol but they are all great schools, good luck picking one!
 
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BlacKAT33

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startingovervet-i guess i will say one lil thing because it isnt so biased since this is how i applied to my schools. After figuring out all the vet schools i could apply to with my pre-reqs, i narrowed it down to the 6 schools that my bf could apply for an MBA for close by/good program. we agreed that if we both got into the same schools we would pick the one that fits best for him too. I felt like he is so amazing to follow me around the country to complete my dream, so i should be compromising and go somewhere where he likes the program and he doesn't have to commute far.

I guess your wife doesn't seem to care where you guys go...but i would still consider what she would feel like if she wanted to pursue her PhD and u went to UCD. Either she commutes really far, gets a second place so she doesn't commute, or doesnt go for the PhD anymore.

But of course this is just opinion, all the schools are great! ignore me if you disagree lol
 

eventualeventer

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Oh, when I said large animal I meant food/production animal. I think the equine program is good. :)

Heh, just shows how tightly wound I am these days that I went off on a 20-minute typing/editing frenzy over something so small. :cool:
 
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One of the Doctors at the hospital where I work was a Davis '03 Grad. She is super amazing and one of the most professional doctors I have worked with. And said that she felt pretty prepared after leaving Davis. :)
 
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My choice of schools is limited due to being Canadian and I don't think I have competative enough grades to apply to international schools. So I'll be applying to my Canadian school and two or three Caribbean schools (still wondering if Ross is worth applying to because of all the negative things I heard about it and the doctors that come out of it?)

Going to the Canadian school would be nice because it's cheap, but I get the impression that it's very competative and I worry that I won't fit in. I went to an orentation at the agriculture college for pre-vet and a lot of the people who were interested gave off the impression that they were better than everyone because they were accepted to this well-known program that the vet school gets half of their students from! I don't know if this is a legit fear or not, but I've had a difficult time in high school and university because of people like I described putting me down all the time. St. George's is my #1 choice. I feel that a lot of students there may have gone through the same things that I have, and St. George's seems to put a lot of emphasis on getting to know your classmates through intermurals, weekly tutoring sessions and stuff like that.

Like I said, I don't know if it's a legit fear, but in high school I had zero friends. In grade 10, I hung out with the people who took advanced classes with me. Because I wasn't making as super high marks like them, one of my friends told all of the internet that I was going to fail at life and that I deserved to be kicked out of the advanced program. Because I didn't have a social group to hang with, I was depressed and had no drive to go to school. The only reason my grades didn't suffer was because advanced classes scale marks. Right now I'm going through something similar... no where near as bad, but I'm getting frusterated that I haven't found my niche! When I go to vet school, I want to be able to feel like I'm apart of the school... and having a group of friends to study with would be awesome... I do my best studying sometimes when I can bounce concepts off a friend! I can't go through four years of vet school without a social group... I wouldn't survive.
 

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Scarcelyheard- that is so sad. Kids (high school and some in college who haven't matured) can be cruel. Please know it has nothing to do with you and everything to do with the *******es you've been unfortunate enough to encounter in life. You can and will find friends whether it's in Canada or the carribbean. Congrats on not giving up. It's hard enough without a good support system. You can do this!
 
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My choice of schools is limited due to being Canadian and I don't think I have competative enough grades to apply to international schools. So I'll be applying to my Canadian school and two or three Caribbean schools (still wondering if Ross is worth applying to because of all the negative things I heard about it and the doctors that come out of it?)

Going to the Canadian school would be nice because it's cheap, but I get the impression that it's very competative and I worry that I won't fit in. I went to an orentation at the agriculture college for pre-vet and a lot of the people who were interested gave off the impression that they were better than everyone because they were accepted to this well-known program that the vet school gets half of their students from! I don't know if this is a legit fear or not, but I've had a difficult time in high school and university because of people like I described putting me down all the time. St. George's is my #1 choice. I feel that a lot of students there may have gone through the same things that I have, and St. George's seems to put a lot of emphasis on getting to know your classmates through intermurals, weekly tutoring sessions and stuff like that.

Like I said, I don't know if it's a legit fear, but in high school I had zero friends. In grade 10, I hung out with the people who took advanced classes with me. Because I wasn't making as super high marks like them, one of my friends told all of the internet that I was going to fail at life and that I deserved to be kicked out of the advanced program. Because I didn't have a social group to hang with, I was depressed and had no drive to go to school. The only reason my grades didn't suffer was because advanced classes scale marks. Right now I'm going through something similar... no where near as bad, but I'm getting frusterated that I haven't found my niche! When I go to vet school, I want to be able to feel like I'm apart of the school... and having a group of friends to study with would be awesome... I do my best studying sometimes when I can bounce concepts off a friend! I can't go through four years of vet school without a social group... I wouldn't survive.

That's just plain awful. Get in there, who cares where, get your degree, and show those b****** a thing or two. People are (hopefully!) going to be a lot more adult in vet school, and St. George's sounds like a good fit for you if they encourage collaboration as much as you say.

My sister had awful friends in high school who constantly put her down and told her that she'd never accomplish anything. Judging by the end result, it would seem that they realized early that she had more potential than they did, and were trying to sabotage her results. Good luck with the application cycle, and I'm rooting for you!
 
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Get in there, who cares where, get your degree, and show those b****** a thing or two.

That's the outlook I'm trying to have.

You're right... hopefully people are more adult in vet school. Like I said, I'm just trying to find my niche... whether it be at vet school, grad school, or something completely different. I just want to be happy :)
 

zxz130

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Hey guys, not to steal the thread, but would things like reputation and ranking of school matter in terms of being competitive for internships or residencies. I know a lot of people say vet school rankings are very unreliable and I think that's definitely true for going into private practice. Anyone with more knowledge on this subject?

Asking because I loved KSU and it seemed like a very good fit for my learning style but afraid because of the prestige factor. Probably just me being stupid but I can't help it :oops:.
 

twelvetigers

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So it's been said pretty recently that internships and residencies are all about NETWORKING. Take your summers to get out in the field and it won't matter where those three letters after your name actually came from.
 

Pomona2006

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I have been wondering this...For those who need to narrow down between a few choices, how do you choose where you are going to attend vet school? What are the main deciding factors for you? Money, specialties, geographic location, school ranking, special opportunities at the the school, or just a "feeling" you get when you are there? I would love to hear your thoughts on this.

My opinion: http://sharonostermann.blog.com/2010/01/16/deciding-where-to-go/
 
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Hey guys, not to steal the thread, but would things like reputation and ranking of school matter in terms of being competitive for internships or residencies. I know a lot of people say vet school rankings are very unreliable and I think that's definitely true for going into private practice. Anyone with more knowledge on this subject?

Asking because I loved KSU and it seemed like a very good fit for my learning style but afraid because of the prestige factor. Probably just me being stupid but I can't help it :oops:.

I agree w/ twelvetigers - the one applying for the residency is really you, not the school, and the rankings are for the purposes of the students trying to pick, not the schools ranking each other. So really, your own experience, performance and connections are going to play a much larger role than your school's position on that list - a KSU student who does research or clinic placements during both of her summer vacations and gets high marks all through school should be just about as competitive as a similar student from Cornell, and she'd definitely beat out a mediocre one who didn't have that experience.
 

livvie

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Do residencies give preference to in-state students? ie. if I wanted to do my residency at a specific school, would I have a better chance of getting into that residency if I attended that school for my DVM?

Decisions, decisions :(

I think I'm more stressed out about deciding where to go than I was when applying in the first place.....
 

BlacKAT33

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Do residencies give preference to in-state students? ie. if I wanted to do my residency at a specific school, would I have a better chance of getting into that residency if I attended that school for my DVM?

Decisions, decisions :(

I think I'm more stressed out about deciding where to go than I was when applying in the first place.....

Hmm...def need a vet student to answer this, but i heard somewhere about if you want to do [residency?] at one school, don't go there for vet school. Because you can't go to the same school??? someone please clarify, but I know I heard this about something, i just don't know if it was about residencies
 

Angelo84

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Hmm...def need a vet student to answer this, but i heard somewhere about if you want to do [residency?] at one school, don't go there for vet school. Because you can't go to the same school??? someone please clarify, but I know I heard this about something, i just don't know if it was about residencies


There is a general thought that you shouldn't do vet school, internship and residency all at the same place. You want to get out and about and see other people's viewpoints. Many people go away for their internship and then return to where they went to vet school for residency (or go elsewhere for residency). But all that is not cut and dried and I am sure that someone has done all three pieces at the same place.
 
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#1) Davis is IS school. But tuition rising there the fastest so the gap will narrow. 30k this yr.
#2) Tufts. At least it is less than 40k
#3) Penn. If you have to ask you can't afford it.

I thought OOS tuition for Tufts and Penn were about the same? No?
 

StartingoverVet

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I thought OOS tuition for Tufts and Penn were about the same? No?

They were pretty close. 2009-10 just under 40k for Tufts and just over 40k for Penn. less than 1k apart.

Penn is raising more in 2010 42,398. (Penn IS staying the same and OOS being raised to cover the shortfall from the state cutting funding. So not fair). I recall seeing a number for Tufts next year but can't find it.
 
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They were pretty close. 2009-10 just under 40k for Tufts and just over 40k for Penn. less than 1k apart.

Penn is raising more in 2010 42,398. (Penn IS staying the same and OOS being raised to cover the shortfall from the state cutting funding. So not fair). I recall seeing a number for Tufts next year but can't find it.

Wow, it seems like everyone is raising the cost of their tuition! I hope it doesn't contiue to increase all 4 years that we are there. Too bad we can't "lock in" our tuition rate. Or can we?
 
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Pre-pay for 4 years?
:laugh: Maybe not pre-pay, can't we just lock in the rate like a loan or rent-controlled housing? I guess that's something else to consider when choosing a school. Not only the tuition, but the fact that the tuition is going to increase. Meh.
 
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Alright, back to what I promised a few days ago: A play-by-play on my current decision saga. I’m choosing between Penn (IS) and Cornell (OOS) and am having a terrible time with it. A little background: I’m one year out of undergrad, I have spent this past year working at a hospital outside of Philadelphia, and my family lives about an hour north of Philadelphia. I grew up in a tiny rural suburb and spent my college years in a true college town in a generally rural area. My SO and I have been long distance since I graduated last May, but he too will be deciding between grad programs at Penn and Cornell. The clincher: Since I can remember wanting to be a vet, I have wanted to go to Penn to learn about equine medicine (and eventually surgery) at New Bolton.

So, onto the schools (warning, punctuation is sporadic and random at best, and tense flip flops. This is pretty much a stream of thoughts that I have built up over the past 3 weeks…)

Penn
1. Finances: Budgeted around $50,000, give or take, for IS students (this may be up in the air though, given PA's budget crisis and the fact that it’s a private university). I don’t have the exact data in front of me. Hidden costs: Microscope ~$300 for two years; Health Insurance is ~$2,000 for the year, I believe, no extra cost for Rabies series; Parking Pass in Philly: pretty negligible I think
2. General comments about the program: Class size ~125; more traditional curriculum of didactic lectures; you pretty much follow the same exact curriculum as your classmates for the first two years; don’t really touch a live animal in the curriculum until junior year; business certificate
3. Outside opportunities: Seems like it wouldn’t be too hard to get a job in a lab doing clinical research during the school year; emergency shadowing and colic watch sounds great; wet labs on Saturdays; doesn’t seem like they help too much in finding summer research opportunities and externships; ISA does a short trip abroad each summer. Moderate amount of clubs.
4. Facilities: LOVE Hill Pavilion, LOVE the anatomy lab, Room A seemed cool and I like the history behind it, LOVE New Bolton (although I dislike that it’s 40 miles away…), Ryan was incredible, enjoyed the Quad, etc.
5. Life outside of Vet School: West Philly. I am torn. Living outside of the city is not an option I would consider—knowing myself, I want to be very close to my institution. I like the intrigue of living in the city with really accessible cultural opportunities, hopping nightlife, etc. Safety and adjusting to city life would be my two greatest concerns.
6. Biggest pros: high caseload, New Bolton, and facilities in general intrigue of the city, proximity to family (and friends, most of whom live in NYC), business certificate
7. Biggest cons: split campus, (by 40 miles!) bigger class size, the impression that I got from my interview (I was interviewed by a rather condescending alumna), assistance in finding research positions, externships, and networking, and feeling safe in West Philly is a big question mark.

Cornell
1. Finances: Budgeted at $58,200 for OOS students. Hidden costs: Health insurance ~$1600 (NOT including $700 Rabies series), Parking Pass ~$700
2. General comments about the program: Class size:~90; PBL curriculum which includes didactic style supplemented by tutorials in SOME blocks. Block 7 (hands-on with animals throughout) sounds AWESOME. Seems like there are a lot of options in the elective blocks and you can even end up in classes with students from other years. I met many faculty members and was incredibly impressed by all of them.
3. Outside opportunities: Seems like there are a ton—working at the clinic in the hospital, Southside, colic watch, farm calls, etc. Also possible to apply for jobs late in first semester. Seems like many students stay in Ithaca for most of the summer doing research and/or working while still getting out to pursue some externship opportunities. They did mention the possibility of getting funding to go abroad over the summer. There are a TON of clubs.
4. Facilities: I LOVE that everything is connected. Like, go from anatomy lab, to lunch, to the barn without ever having to walk outside. Overall, I didn’t think the buildings themselves were amazing, but I did really dig the barns and the farrier suite. Anatomy lab was pretty sweet. I love the dry lab, and the fact that histo is entirely digitized—no microscopes necessary!
5. Life Outside of Vet School: Loved Ithaca. It’s like what I know from undergrad but a little more spread out and a little snowier. Loved OTS—it’s definitely something I would consider doing. I know I would be comfortable going out in this type of town. I dig that it’s near a ski mountain and that there are just a ton of outdoorsy-type things to do in the area. Plus, I think I would probably have the opportunity to take some riding lessons or at least hop on a pony once in a while in the area.
6. Biggest pros: Loved the students and professors I met. I think I would enjoy tutorials. BLOCK 7 IS GREAT. Ample opportunities outside of the classroom. Ithaca feels comfortable and I’m pretty sure I would enjoy living there. Small class size. Seems like students enjoy themselves outside of the classroom.
7. Biggest cons: Ithaca is isolated and far (~4 hrs) from all of those I know (except maybe SO). Small(er?) case load. And…I can’t come to terms with the fact that I could possibly choose this over what I’ve been dreaming about for years. No business preparation.

Comments: My parents have straight up told me not to decide based on finances—they will probably help me with the difference if I choose Cornell. To be fair, I spent 3 days in Ithaca and 4 hours at Penn, so I feel like I had a much more comprehensive experience at Cornell. Based on this list, I * think * that Cornell is a better fit for me. AND I could do a residency at New Bolton? Right? RIGHT?

Guh. Did I mention that SO is visiting this weekend and that we are hoping to reach a decision? And that we promised each other to have pro/con type lists ready (my only motivation to finally write some of this down). GUH. But yes, I must say, I am very grateful to have any decision to make. Just happy to be heading back to school next year…

Thanks in advance to anyone who read all (any?) of this nonsensical word vomit and has any words of wisdom…
 

BlacKAT33

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jaytee- i dont know anything about cornell lol but seems like u really know cornell well. But i'm not sure about what you said about penn and lab/research jobs-i was told by faculty and also current students that there are ample opportunities to find lab or research jobs. i mean, you do have a TON of places nearby: multiple schools and multiple programs (med). i mean, isnt penn one of the biggest research vet schools to go to? anyway, just thought id bring that up because i would view penn as a positive for jobs since it is in a populated city

i can tell you seem to like cornell better so if that is more "you" then by all means, its the right choice for you. But i also get the feeling that you are really into equine med and new bolton...why not take advantage of being there for all 4 yrs? get a job, internship, volunteer/shadow whenever you want to, and u have the opportunity to go up there at 2am if there is some crazy interesting surgery going on.

good luck deciding! :)
 

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jaytee- I suggest a dart board. One side for Penn, the other for Cornell. If it lands on the wrong one, you'll know. Otherwise, it's just as good a decision making tool as any other- since you've done all the deep, logical thinking.

-j.
 
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So I'll be applying to my Canadian school and two or three Caribbean schools (still wondering if Ross is worth applying to because of all the negative things I heard about it and the doctors that come out of it?)

When I go to vet school, I want to be able to feel like I'm apart of the school... and having a group of friends to study with would be awesome... I do my best studying sometimes when I can bounce concepts off a friend! I can't go through four years of vet school without a social group... I wouldn't survive.

I wouldn't count out Ross based on what I have heard form some people. Most of the negative comments that I have heard come from pre-vets rather than vets and vet students. I have been told on multiple occasions that Ross grads have excellent clinical skills and that they are as competent as others from US schools during fourth year rotations. Also, a Ross student told me that the community and support at Ross was excellent which from your post sounds like something you could appreciate.

Ross may appear to have fewer requirements but they do not have a low quality curriculum and if students cannot hack it, they do fail them out.

Hope that helps and good luck :)
 

StartingoverVet

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I wouldn't count out Ross based on what I have heard form some people. Most of the negative comments that I have heard come from pre-vets rather than vets and vet students. I have been told on multiple occasions that Ross grads have excellent clinical skills and that they are as competent as others from US schools during fourth year rotations. Also, a Ross student told me that the community and support at Ross was excellent which from your post sounds like something you could appreciate.

Ross may appear to have fewer requirements but they do not have a low quality curriculum and if students cannot hack it, they do fail them out.

Hope that helps and good luck :)

A young vet at the clinic where i volunteer has basically the same comment. Easy to get in but actually a lot of students don't cut it and drop out or are forced to retake a year. So if you make it through the course you have been well-trained. She did her 4th year at Penn and had no trouble fitting right in and then got a good internship. So I wouldn't look down on Ross as an option for those who are considering it.
 

StartingoverVet

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Hi all! Sorry I have been so quiet lately.... a lot going on personally outside of pre-vet stuff (including finals this week).

Anyway, a quick update on my DMP (decision-making-process).

So, I got into UC Davis (yeah). I guess my ambivalence didn't come across in the interview (I was afraid it might).

Then, I got a notice from Tufts (the same day) of a small academic scholarship. Not enough to make a huge difference (2 years @ 2k a year) but enough to make me feel, "it's nice to be wanted!"

First up, I go to Philly this week to look at housing. Maybe. If I can deal with issues on the home front. Of course, rain is forecast. Why does it always precipitate on my visits (this makes 2 rains and a snow now).

That's all for now. Gotta do a little studying. Cheers.
 

moosenanny

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Congrats about Davis! You seem like a great person . . . I'd love to be classmates. Good luck with the decision -- you really can't go wrong!
 

BlacKAT33

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Hi all! Sorry I have been so quiet lately.... a lot going on personally outside of pre-vet stuff (including finals this week).

Anyway, a quick update on my DMP (decision-making-process).

So, I got into UC Davis (yeah). I guess my ambivalence didn't come across in the interview (I was afraid it might).

Then, I got a notice from Tufts (the same day) of a small academic scholarship. Not enough to make a huge difference (2 years @ 2k a year) but enough to make me feel, "it's nice to be wanted!"

First up, I go to Philly this week to look at housing. Maybe. If I can deal with issues on the home front. Of course, rain is forecast. Why does it always precipitate on my visits (this makes 2 rains and a snow now).

That's all for now. Gotta do a little studying. Cheers.

I cant wait to meet you this weekend!! remember to use my number if you dont hear from me! i almost forgot until i saw your post now lol

maybe us pennwe's can sway u to our side :D seriously tho, it was the students and faculty at penn that made me fall in love with the school first, the facilities second :D
 
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