SUNY Downstate vs Georgetown

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New Member
May 22, 2024
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Hi all - need to make a decision quickly about these two schools since I just heard back about aid/scholarships. Please don't quote!

I have interests in oncology, gastroenterology, dermatology, rad-onc, and anesthesia. A lot of this essentially comes down to cost, support system, and slight curriculum differences:

Downstate (80k total a year)
- IS, love NYC & Brooklyn (crown heights/PLG/etc) - would be so much more convenient to stay here
- support system is here (friends & partner)
- want to end up in NYC/Northeast and their Match is really excellent for that
- true P/F pre-clinical (same as Georgetown)
- no mandatory lecture
- NBME based exams every (?) 10 weeks
- known for strong clinical exposure; lots of health equity, diversity, disadvantaged populations, & urban health focus - something I'm really passionate about

- cost, ends up being ~70-80k more in debt
- immediate area of Flatbush is not the best
- facilities are pretty old and not many resources/study areas
- not the best research, but similar to Georgetown from what I hear
- internal rankings apparently? unsure about this

Georgetown (got a big scholarship but tuition is initially much higher to begin with lol - 60k a year)
- cheaper (which is funny considering COA was so high I wasn't expecting to consider it solely for this reason)
- P/F for pre-clinicals AND core clinical rotations (but this could hurt me in residency apps)
- no AOA or internal rankings
- really great area and DC is nice
- potentially better opportunities for research?
- no mandatory lecture
- better layman's prestige but unsure if this matters to residencies in comparison with Downstate

- farther from support system and NYC life
- in-house exams (apparently - unsure about this or how big of a deal it is compared to a NBME style system)
- some people complain about facilities - haven't toured so can't comment or compare as much to Downstate
- ranking/match for NYC & northeast doesn't seem as strong as Downstate's (?)

TLDR really: does the 80k difference really matter in terms of total debt burden? It's basically 290k Downstate vs 210k at Georgetown. Apparently Downstate has an internal scholarship process that does not occur right now, but later in the summer which could potentially grant me institutional aid or other scholarships - I'm worried though that's a big risk and may very well not happen to the extent I'm hoping it to. I haven't been able to learn how big this internal aid/scholarships are and the office has not been transparent/helpful at Downstate.

If anyone can give advice, especially if you attend these schools I'd be very grateful!

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Georgetown! Better match list and cheaper! If you weren't interested in some of those competitive specialties I would say downstate for the support system