study abroad versus summer research

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by AegisZero, Oct 28, 2002.

  1. AegisZero

    AegisZero Senior Member

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    I essentially have a choice to study abroad or do summer research. Both are equally appealing to me, yet both have their disadvantages.

    Are there any experiences ya'll have had that might make me want to consider one over the other?
     
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  3. CrashinStoneFish

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    Well, I can't speak for both...but I did do a study abroad last summer in London and then traveled afterwords...was absolutely the best time of my life.. I would have definitely chosen my experience over a summer research position. However, I'm not looking to get into research anyway. If you are, if might be a more difficult thing to consider..I think both look good to adcoms...just my two cents :)
     
  4. PluckyDuk8

    PluckyDuk8 Pluck of all Plucks

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    Hehe, how about study abroad during the year (for at least a semester) and also do summer research? I studied abroad for a semester...I had to take summer school for one of my pre-med reqs but it was an amazing experience and SO worth it!
     
  5. AegisZero

    AegisZero Senior Member

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    Yeah, I am seriously considering a 6 week summer study abroad now. Everyone seems to have had a blast!
     
  6. lola

    lola Bovine Member

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    my year abroad was the best year of my life!
     
  7. cabruen

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    Absolutely GO!!!!!
     
  8. siempre595

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    I'd go abroad. I went to Spain for 6 weeks last summer. You can't replace that time ever, and essentially, you can always find a research spot somewhere. Go if you can and while you can!
     
  9. hey i am going for an internationla internship in france in the summer, i think u should go for study abroad, if anything u would have something to talk about in ur application, most people already do research, u can always do reserach during the school year or any other summer, so go for study abroad!
     
  10. chopsuey

    chopsuey miss independent

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    it's also not impossible to do research abroad. i've never done it, but i was strongly considering it the summer after sophomore year (i ended up taking the MCAT's instead :p )...talk to any PI's you've had before or profs and see if they know anyone who might want to help you. if this is an idea you like, you could also check alum listings and see if anyone is in a country you are interested in...the only drawbacks are if the lab isn't in English (or a language you already know well enough to use this opportunity to improve while understanding the research) and publications might end up in journals not known as well in the US (though that's debatable).
     
  11. dukie04

    dukie04 Junior Member

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    if you study abroad during the summer you can go abroad for six weeks but even as little as four weeks (Greece, Rome)...then you can still get back in time to do a six-eight weeks of research. i'm going abroad next semester and getting back just in time for the second summer session which is great because i can do an independent study. with a short amount of time, i think an independent study would work the best...especially if you already know the lab and the mentor (start planning now). also if you start during the summer, you can always continue on...

    but go abroad. all the people i know who have done the duke ones have enjoyed themselves...even if they did a one course four week program. you could also look into just doing a duke-approved one and then maybe be able to do some sorta research abroad (prob. UK if you don't have a second language). just depends what credits you still need for Cir 2000 etc.

    or wait till whatever night you're going to the dean singer presentation and ask her about options...
     
  12. exigente chica

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    Definetly do what will make u happy at the end of the day, not what the adcom's will like, first of all.

    And it's always good to broaden your horizons and immerse urself in a new culture. I say do it. You can do research ne time, and alot of applicants look like carbon copies with just research adn clinical things. Being able to talk about the buddist temples and the amazon would be much more cool!

    I was one of those lucky few that got to do research abroad!! The best of both worlds!! Pm me for me info
     
  13. abw

    abw Senior Member

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    If you have the chance, go abroad!! I did a summer semester at sea voyage and travelled all through europe, the middle east, and africa. It was the best thing I ever did and really changed a lot of my perceptions. Where are you thinking about studying??
     
  14. TroutBum

    TroutBum Senior Member

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    Go abroad!! You will always have opportunities to do research--the same cannot be said for having a well organized, long-term, educational stay in a foreign country.

    Also, I've had four interview so far and every single one of my interviewers wanted to talk about my study abroad experience. A lot of people will have research experience, but a really interesting study abroad experience may also help you stand out (of course, the best would be to have both.)

    I spent a semester in Africa, and I wouldn't trade that experience for anything. I've NEVER once thought, "you know, Africa was great but I really wish I had spent that time in the lab instead."
     
  15. Bounty

    Bounty 1K Member

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    Hey Aegis
    I was in the same exact boat as you two summers ago. I was all set to do the Duke in Spain program for six weeks and then i had the option of doing a NSF-funded summer research program (to do research in the lab where I was already doing my ind. study). It was a really tough decision for me but I ended up staying in Durham for a couple reasons. Some of them were personal - my best friend and boyfriend at the time were going to be there too and I thought it would be fun to spend my last summer of school with them. Also, the nature of the research I was doing made it hard to get things done in lab during the school year (working with monkeys = not easy). Also, money was an issue for me so I figured I would make money that summer and then go traveling in Europe some other time without having to pay the exorbitant duke program tuition.

    If I didnt have to factor all that in, I would definitely have gone to Spain. I still kind of regret not going so you should go abroad and then i can live vicariously through you! :)

    Bounty
     

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