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Stanford vs. Wash U

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by lizparker, Feb 5, 2002.

  1. lizparker

    lizparker Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    Sep 23, 2001
    I was accepted to Wash U in December, and I basically assumed that I wouldn't go on anymore interviews since I have always considered it my first choice. Recently, though, I recieved an interview invite from Stanford and I'm considering going because everyone has such great stuff to say about it. I would just go and check it out, but I'm REALLY low on money cause of all my other interviews.

    Does anyone have any thoughts on Stanford or Wash U? I know they have pretty different curriculums, but I don't know much Stanford's. To be honest, I'm from St. Louis, so that has played a large part in my decision to make Wash U my number one choice. I don't want to be too close-minded. I'd appreciate any advise. Thanks!
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  3. jrucb

    jrucb Member 10+ Year Member

    Jan 11, 2002
    Go to St. Louis, WAsh U is tight as hell! I interviewed there this past week with Dr. Ross and had the greatest time there. Since I was there from Thursday til Saturday, I was able to hang out with a bunch of med students and really got to like the school.

  4. Mutterkuchen

    Mutterkuchen Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Nov 28, 2001
    I am master's student at WashU. I love the university and love St. Louis, but I don't know if I would pass on the chance of living in CA for a while. I'd check it out, unless you don't care to live in California.
  5. CoffeeCat

    CoffeeCat SDN Angel 10+ Year Member

    Jun 3, 2001
    People have been drooling on this website, just considering the possibility of a stanford interview invite. It's supposed to be one of the best, why not try it out?
  6. Sonya

    Sonya Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Aug 12, 2001
    WashU, no question whatsoever. BUT THAT IS MY OPINION.

    Let see, i grew up next door to stanford (about 2 miles), I went there all the time: hospital, music shows, seminars, high school "medical explorers" club field trips(highschoolers who want to go to medicine), visiting the library when our school didn't have enough.

    Eventually it came time for my brother and I to choosing a school for undergrad. If given acceptace to Stanford vs UCBerkely, my brother was like pretty sure he would REJECT stanford for berkely (until we realized that a small school brings TONS of advantages). I have grown up with a bias against stanford, but when it was time for me to apply for undergrad schools, i became more neutral. I didn't get into stanford undergrad when I applied.

    As an undergrad I applied to and got into WashU. It was my second choice (compared to hopkins.. and now i'm glad I didn't get hopkins, because matriculating there would be a mistake). I've been an undergrad here at WashU for three years.

    Stanford and WashU are both Excellent schools, but in my opinion, they are also exact opposites.

    WashU is a great research school, and i'm under the impression stanford is not that well funded.
    My bias against stanford is that they are sort of a liberal art school. even in medicine they want to train politically active doctors.

    I haven't looked into medschools yet, as I have yet to start the application process for another year.
    But, seriously, look into the research funding, whether you are shuttled into primary care, curriculum, etc. I am positive you will find BIG differences. I can't say which is better since I don't know what your interest is.

    I'm under the impression stanford is more primary care oriented.

    If you have questions about the area, i can tell you a LOT about palo alto/bay area, stanford, or WashU school enviroment. I lived in Palo alto (which is where stanford is) from ages two till I was a college sophmore.

    You can PM (or better yet e-mail me [email protected]) me if you have questions or whatever. I could probably say a lot. But seriously, look into facts about the schools, and you will find they are very different.

    It really depends what your interest in medicine is: primary care, research, specializations, public health...

    Hope this helps.


    (sorry if I rambled a bit too much.. and if I don 't respond, don't feel shy to e-mail me, SDN is often not letting me post also.. stupid computers <img border="0" title="" alt="[Frown]" src="frown.gif" />
  7. rajneel1

    rajneel1 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Oct 29, 2001
    i disagree with SONYA,!
    first of all, stanford is very much research oriented as 75% of their medical students do research, some even take some extra time and complete PhD. it doesn't even rank on US news and world reports' Primary care list. also, funding for med student research projects are easy to get and you get a good amount of money for it! from what i haev heard, stanford is interested in graduting physician scientists. they graduate alot of people who go into specialities.
    both stanford and wash u are well funded (if you look at the rankings). and I would not call stanford a primary care school, even their med students will tell you that it is not a primary care type of school. so you won't be shuttled into a primary care type of curriculum.
    but the curriculum is soo flexible, you could pretty much do anything! people get MBAs while they are there. travel aboard, community service, etc. stanford med students are some of the happiest around.
    the facilites are stanford aren't that stellar but i heard the staff and faculty are super cool. the clinical experiences are good.
    i grew up in the bay area also, it is a good area to live in. stanford is kind of in the suburbs. california is wonderful! but you are from st. louis so i don't see why you would want to leave your life there! your choice. i say go to the interview!
  8. lilycat

    lilycat Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Aug 12, 2000
    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Sonya:

    WashU is a great research school, and i'm under the impression stanford is not that well funded.
    My bias against stanford is that they are sort of a liberal art school. even in medicine they want to train politically active doctors.

    </strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">At best, this seems like gross misinformation.

    Stanford is EXTREMELY well-funded for research, and concentrates on turning out physician-scientists and specialists. The Dean of the Med School issued a statement saying as much last year -- I posted a link to it on one of the threads at the time -- if you do a search on "Stanford" in the Pre-Allopathic forums, you should be able to find it.

    The "liberal-arts school" comment -- well, I'm just confused. Stanford University is probably too big to be defined as a true liberal-arts school. As for student politics, I don't think Stanford is any different from other medical schools -- there are conservative and liberal student groups, and the student body doesn't seem to be overly politically active or radical as a whole.

    Being familiar with both schools, in my biased opinion I would choose Stanford in a heartbeat. Even though you have family ties to St. Louis, it's probably worthwhile to at least go the interview and check Stanford out. I think the airfare would be worth it rather than wondering what might have been.

    The pros about Stanford are the extremely flexible curriculum (you have the option of a 5-year plan, so you can make it as traditional or as non-traditional as you like), a generally laid-back atmosphere (as laid-back as a med school can be at least), the California weather (Palo Alto is much more sunny and warm than San Francisco), and excellent financial aid, and close proximity to San Francisco. The facilities are okay -- I've heard there are new anatomy labs and some new classrooms, with new ones still on the way. The biggest complaint is usually about the library, but the undergrad library is beautiful and is an excellent alternative for studying.

    The main con is the cost of living (definitely higher than St. Louis). Some people are turned off of the location -- Palo Alto is definitely a suburb and some prefer more of a big city environment. Personally I'm not a fan of their small class size (86 students, I believe), but again, that's a very personal and subjective call -- some people probably love having a small class.

    Research Stanford and see if the school appeals to you. The travelling costs are pretty small in the scheme of things and in relation to the time and money you've already spent.
  9. Sonya

    Sonya Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Aug 12, 2001
    What i'm mainly saying, is look into it. They are both good but quite different. I haven't yet looked into school in detail, so you're probably more correct, lilycat.

    Cost of living is extremely expensive in Palo Alto. Moving like 5 miles away will make a BIG difference in cost. East Palo Alto is a bad neighborhood. Mountain View and Los Altos are similarily nice areas as palo alto, but Mountain View is cheaper and Los Altos more expensive. Other than East Palo Alto, all the neighboring town are reasonable areas, and many are much cheaper.

    The weather: Extremely rarely will it go below 40 deg F or above 85 in palo alto. It's perfect. But, i've gotten used to St. Louis, and in my opinion, Palo Alto weather was boring (okay, i'm weird in that sense).

    If you live near WashU, it will be a suburban area, but it's 2 or three miles from downtown. As opposed to Palo Alto being about 40 miles from San Fransisco. Another thing, you will probably find a MUCH more diverse student body at Stanford.
  10. coop

    coop Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 4, 2001
    not to knock Sonya, I was surely as misinformed a year or so ago, but stanford is probably the school most skewed in favor of research, and away from primary-care that there is. Stanford is a research powerhouse, thats for sure. Of course Washu is also. They are both top schools, certainly washu is not as laid back and flexible as stanford, but that can be viewed as a good or a bad thing, depending on what you are looking for.
  11. choker

    choker Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jul 30, 2001
    i suggest you forget about stanford and dont even visit.

    that way there will be one more space in their class for me. :D <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> :mad:

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