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SUNY Buffalo vs SUNY Upstate/ Syracuse

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by LeLu, Apr 23, 2008.

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  1. LeLu

    LeLu Cookie Monster 2+ Year Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    So I spent a good hour or so looking at the other posts. They are either not helpful at all or years old. Would anyone like to contribute?
    What I know:
    UB has class until noon (AWESOME!)
    Buffalo wins over Syracuse (city vs city)

    Add anything? Systems vs subject (I think UB is subject)? Match? USMLE pass rates? Anything else you all consider when choosing a school? I know tuition is about the same. Still waiting for my financial aid letter from UB, got a small scholarship to Upstate. Anyone happen to have a friend who studied any graduate environmental sciences in Buffalo?

    Please post if you'd like to help. keep it quiet if not.:p

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  3. scowdeva

    scowdeva MS I 2+ Year Member

    Aug 1, 2007
    Buffalo, NY
    According to their website and curriculum guide, UB does an organ systems based approach...that's all I can help ya with, I know nothing about Syracuse. Good luck and congrats!
  4. LeLu

    LeLu Cookie Monster 2+ Year Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    I'm adding some stuff:

    Buffalo - 8 affiliated hospitals
    Syracuse - 6 affiliated hospitals/ Level 1 Trauma Center

    Syracuse - 100% match in 2005 (2007??)
    Buffalo - ??

    Anything else I should be considering?
  5. ParvatiP

    ParvatiP Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Jun 21, 2006
    I believe that Buffalo has early clinical exposure starting in year 1 (working with a preceptor once a week and seeing patients), if that is important to you.

    FWIW, I also liked Buffalo a lot better than Syracuse, thought that students seemed happier there, and was also impressed by their match list when I saw it (I think it's available online). The short class time is a huge plus as well.
  6. LeLu

    LeLu Cookie Monster 2+ Year Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    Upstate just offered me another scholarship. That will make it harder because I had more pros on Buffalo.

    Anyone else?
  7. scowdeva

    scowdeva MS I 2+ Year Member

    Aug 1, 2007
    Buffalo, NY
    I'm somewhat biased, but I think the best choice might come down to money. From my (admittedly limited) knowledge on the two schools, it seems that they are both good choices. If you are in-state, they are both nice cheap schools, and you mention that you are getting scholarship offers. Do you have the finaid packages for both? Maybe try calling UB to see what they are expecting to offer you? If one is significantly cheaper than the other, that would be the deciding factor for me between the two.
  8. Breazy

    Breazy 10+ Year Member

    Jul 12, 2007
    upstate has the new setnor academic building. i walked through it while i was doing research there last summer and its downright amazing. from what ive heard, upstate has a great reputation for professors who like to teach and are great at it. i don't know much about UB, but keep in mind that syracuse is an awesome city, especially with SU college bball games. its only a few blocks from upstate's campus. it's dirt cheap to live in too (think expenses outside of tuition and fees). oh yea, theyre also in the midst of building golisano's new children's hospital (i think its private and not part of upstate, but that can still only be a good thing, not a bad thing).
  9. nowanmd

    nowanmd 7+ Year Member

    Nov 18, 2007
    I went there :)
  10. LeLu

    LeLu Cookie Monster 2+ Year Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    Nothing against Downstate. I was just accepted to Syracuse & Buffalo.

    I have really been trying to research these schools b/c the May 15th deadline is fast approaching.

    Does anyone have info on early clinical exposure at Upstate? Buffalo has the shadowing once a week every week starting first year. I read they give you assignments to do at the dr's office like taking histories in your 1st semester and parts of the physical exam your 2nd semester. I thought that was cool.

    I also read UB has 2 months of electives in the 3rd year. It always freaked me out to apply to your residency without many electives to explore different interests beforehand. Upstate has no electives until 4th year.

    I found some scores for Upstate - still looking for UB - any help??

    Upstate: 2007 Match = 100%
    2005 USMLE Step 1 = 94%
    Step 2 = 92%

    Upstate has 6 affiliated hospitals
  11. BigRedder

    BigRedder Passing Gas 5+ Year Member

    Jan 31, 2008

    There is a student-run clinic run by Upstate that you can get involved in during your first year, whatever that's worth. Personally I plan on waiting until I know something before I start getting in the way.
  12. BEMD

    BEMD 7+ Year Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    There are several volunteer clinics that students are allowed to volunteer at, SC Hope for example. They are a great opportunity, but they are also really popular so students only got to sign up once or twice a semester this past year.
    As far as organized clinical exposure at Upstate, there is a preceptorship in a specialty of your choice during the spring break of your first year. You get to shadow the doctor and practice your physical assessment skills. It was a lot of fun. We don't have a class like Buffalo that involves weekly shadowing though. If you are very interested in first year clinical exposure there are still several options. There is a miracle of life elective, which allows students to follow a mother through her prenatal visits, birth, and then follow up visits with the baby. I know several people who are currently in that class. In addition, they just added another class where students are allowed to go to the floors once a week and practice skills like starting IVs, doing blood draws, and taking physical exams/ histories. I believe the students shadow nurses, but I'm not positive.
    You also asked about curriculum. They recently changed the first year schedule, so I'm not really sure how to explain it. The second year how ever is organ/ system based. The first year has classes for most of the day, usually done around 3pm, and the second years are done by noon most days.
    As far as teachers go, most of them are very good, especially the anatomy professors. They are all willing to answer questions via email or meet you outside of class to help you if you would like.
    If you have any other questions let me know. Good luck:)
  13. BEMD

    BEMD 7+ Year Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    Sorry, I meant to address this early. The children's hospital is actually part of Upstate University hospital. It will be done by the time the incoming class is starting their second year, so it will be one of the sites available during your third and forth year. :)
  14. RugbyJC

    RugbyJC Junior Member 5+ Year Member

    Jun 15, 2006
    Agree with what BEMD said.

    I was early assurance and had to make the same decision between Buffalo and Syacuse. I think I even liked Buffalo a little better, but they gave me the run around about something (long story), so I chose Syracuse. Its really hard for someone to tell you which one you will be happy at. I doubt anyone attended both schools as an MD candidate. Sometimes its just better to go with your gut.

    oh yeah, and at least in my opinion I would not worry about cost. Unless you get a full ride or can pay your own way, you will have loans. Whether you are 100 grand or 150 grand in dept, it doesn't really make that much of a difference. They are both state schools and tuition is far less than what you would owe if you went to a private school, even if there is a few thousand descepancy. So you'll be paying $250 per month instead of $200 per month for the next 20 years (I made up those numbers). If you like Buffalo better, then go to Buffalo or vice versa. both schools have pros and cons and are probably on a par academically...or at least were when I was making this decision many years ago.

    Good luck!
  15. medgrlsox21

    medgrlsox21 2+ Year Member

    HEY I went to UB undergrad, in the Biomedical/Medical School. There are good points and bad points.

    The faculty, are friendly but not there to help you and not super into making things work if you want to do something outside the box. There are two campuses the main non-medical campus which is much nicer and south campus which is the medical buildings. It's in a very bad area, people are shot once a week no JOKE and don't expect your car to remain in nice condition which by the way you WILL require a car. There is only the Veterans hospital with walking distance and unless you want to live in a dorm (with undergrads) you'll have to commute to campus. There are more hospitals associated but 2 of them are the WORST hospitals outside of Kings in Brooklyn. The library is so so, but you also share it with so many other students its not exactly ideal for pounding in hours of medical material. I have several friends who are in med school there now and dislike it. Good points: you're out of class earlier, lets you maybe plan gym, work whatever. Town is pretty decent, has a city with some nice places. Bills/Sabres sports, access to Canada (if anyone cares). Housing is very cheap, you can get a nice place for like 350/month rent. I believe UB is ranked lower than Upstate in medical school listings but I personally don't care.

    Upstate: all courses are recorded podcast style so you're not required to be present (except histology i believe?) so that equalizes the out of class playing field. New clinic opening, so equal early exposure. No txt books (there are notes which each professor has you print so I'm told). There are 3-4 hospitals within walking distance of the campus. You don't need a car because if you don't have one they will give you ambulatory assignments within walking distance. The housing is maybe a tad more expensive unless you want to drive which then its equal. However there are apartment towers where many students stay and WALK to campus daily (save gas!). The facilities are newer and their faculty seems to really just want you to enjoy your time there. They will bend over backwards to help you do research, medical spanish, whatever you need. Summer anatomy/Binghamptom campus/Rural med program all bonus if you want they're there. Bad: syracuse? not to sure its a wild place. It's no NYC or Boston, but neither is buffalo and I hear there are many trips to NYC/where-ever after tests etc.

    Hope this was helpful I've been to both and seen what both has to offer.
  16. SketchLazy

    SketchLazy 5+ Year Member

    May 16, 2007
    Thanks for confirming my positive impressions of Syracuse. :thumbup:
  17. Chaswald


    Apr 29, 2008
    Golisano children's hospital is built right on upstate medical center... and actually when you look at their residency for ped's they have golisano all over the place
  18. racerx

    racerx ASA Member 10+ Year Member

    Nov 16, 2001
    Pretty much right on. A couple of points I may be able to define.

    The notes are provided for you, even hard copies. Usually there is no need to print them out, as they're handed out before each unit. Of course, the powerpoints are put online so you can use it to follow the lecture, or print in color or a larger format if it suits your style.

    There are some classes where having a text to supplement the coursework is useful. Getting a Rohan anatomy atlas was the best buy of my medical school experience. The practicals are mostly tagged parts, and the Rohan book is great at showing anatomical variations. A Robbins for second year path (I got "mama" Robbins, and it was fine) is a good investment.

    Faculty are great, and very accessible.

    Housing is dirt cheap; this is especially true if you get a roommate.
  19. themitz

    themitz Member 10+ Year Member

    Sep 5, 2003
    Alright, so this is definitely a bit late and most of you have hopefully made your decisions already, but I felt like there wasn't any good info about UB up here :)

    Not sure why Medgrlsox has such a bad impression of the medschool/south campus, but as someone who went to UB undergrad and just finished 2nd year of med, I'll clear some things up!

    South campus is not GREAT, but its not THAT bad. Yes there have been shootings off campus, but not even close to once a week. Look at any school in a big city... Columbia, Cornell, Chicago...they ALL have shootings off campus. Its a city, jeez. The campus itself is relatively safe. My car was never vandalized once in 6 years, and I've had a new car for a year that still looks new.

    Yes there are a lot of hospitals, but you'll spend most of your time in 3. ECMC (big county med center -- definitely a good hospital.) Buffalo General (Not my favorite, but not bad either) and Childrens (one of the best children's hopsitals I've seen.)

    All lectures are now VIDEO taped, and you can watch them with in an hour of them finishing.

    There are some people that are unhappy here (like anywhere), but giving the view that EVERYONE is unhappy is ridiculous. Majority of my class enjoys it here.

    Most classes 1st/2nd year are done at Noon. Only thing in the afternoons is clinical activities about 1-2 times a week starting from Day 1. (Going into 3rd year you feel very confident in seeing patients.) It is NOT shadowing -- even as a first year you're interviewing, doing physical exams, and in some cases minor procedures.

    Most people live in either Amherst (very safe, nice local suburb -- 5-10 min to south campus) or downtown (10-15 minutes to campus, 2-5 minutes to any hospital.) Elmwood Village is VERY nice, SAFE, and was rated as one of the top 10 best neighborhoods in the country to live in. Anyone that thinks Buffalo is "boring and lame" has never spent any time down by Elmwood, Allen Town, or in the theatre district. Great small stores, coffee shops, restaurants, theaters, plenty of bars to suit every persons taste, and tons of festivals during the summer.

    Let me know if you have questions!
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2008

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