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SUNY Downstate vs. SUNY Upstate vs SLUMD


New Member
May 9, 2020
  1. Pre-Medical
Hi, lucky enough to be admitted to three programs. Need to make a decision in a few days, super torn as to what to do.

Background: NYS Resident, living in Queens. Aiming for ophthalmology residency so research is extremely important for me. I would appreciate any help, advice or thoughts.

SUNY Downstate:


  • Close to home, family and friends.
  • NYC, can't beat living here in your mid-twenties
  • Excellent clinical experiences and training
  • Decently strong match
  • New sim center?? (idk if MS1s will be using this)
  • I've heard that MS3 is brutal. Residents are overworked, often times they're IMGs and don't mentor well
  • Haven't heard much about them flexing their research capabilities
  • Facilities overall seem a little bit shabby
  • High COL
  • Mediocre match outside of NYS
SUNY Upstate:


  • Spacious and pretty campus
  • Overall people seemed a little bit friendlier and lax, more Type B than Downstate
  • Seemed like more students were involved in research
  • Seems like the school matches students all over the country, moreso than Downstate
  • Syracuse is kinda far and not a great city in my opinion
  • Patient population doesn't really seem diverse
  • Overall I don't feel like I'd have access to as many opportunities when compared to Downstate
St. Louis University SOM


  • School is really, really pretty and has great amenities
  • Students seems down to earth and easy to talk to
  • Brand new hospital affiliated with the school opening up in September
  • Going to be about 50k more expensive over the course of 4 years than either SUNY
  • Their research capabilities are severely eclipsed in the face of WashU
  • Match is all over the place, didn't really get a fair idea if SLU would open any doors for me
  • Far. Super duper far from home, fam and friends.
  • St. Louis as a city isn't the safest place to be.


Full Member
5+ Year Member
Oct 7, 2014
  1. Resident [Any Field]
Downstate student. Don’t underestimate support from family and friends.

Just to touch on some of your pros/cons:
- SIM center is up and running, MS1s-MS4s are all using it already. We used to have to commute to the Bronx for this but now we never have to do that again.
- Plenty of research opportunities. We matched 5 Ophtho this year, none went unmatched that applied Ophtho from what I know.
- Obviously it's not as pretty and glamorous as your Manhattan hospitals, but it's one that operates efficiently and depends on all their healthcare workers (especially medical students) to function smoothly.
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