The importance of your Dental School's reputation when specializing? Ohio State vs. UNLV vs. Louisville?

Jul 22, 2020
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Hello everyone! I was recently accepted to a few Dental schools and don't yet know if I want to specialize, but I would like to keep my doors open moving forward. How important is the "prestige" or "reputation" of your dental school when applying to residency programs? Also, which schools would you say are better at getting students to match into programs-Ohio State vs. UNLV vs. Louisville?
 

Ivy.ch

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May 6, 2018
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It’s not important at all. You know what is? The money remaining in your bank account and the debt on your loan bill. If you run out of money, specializing becomes a much bigger mountain to cross. Even the ones that pay.
 
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Bigjt1420

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I go to UNLV. Picked it because it was the cheapest school I got into. This school isn’t “prestigious” by any means, and guess what — I know people who have gotten into OMFS, Perio, Pediatrics, Prosth, Endo, Dental Anesthesiology, and Ortho all coming out of this school. It literally does not matter where you go if you want to specialize. Go to the cheapest school!!!
 
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MG14

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It’s not important at all. You know what is? The money remaining in your bank account and the debt on your loan bill. If you run out of money, specializing becomes a much bigger mountain to cross. Even the ones that pay.
I go to UNLV. Picked it because it was the cheapest school I got into. This school isn’t “prestigious” by any means, and guess what — I know people who have gotten into OMFS, Perio, Pediatrics, Prosth, Endo, Dental Anesthesiology, and Ortho all coming out of this school. It literally does not matter where you go if you want to specialize. Go to the cheapest school!!!
This all sounds like a broken record. “Go to the cheapest school.”

When I was applying I thought it was silly and people just being lazy to not think of all the other aspect of dental school that would determine your destiny and which school would set up up best to be the worlds best dentist.
Well, once I got into school I realized they’re all a joke and each have similar hoops to jump through. It’s just a giant game.

So, play the game with the smallest of debt as possible. Like everyone else, I suggest go to the cheapest school. You have just a good chance to specialize at either of them. It’s all depended on you and how you apply yourself in school. Same with just being a good dentist.
 
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PerioDont

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Jun 7, 2015
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This all sounds like a broken record. “Go to the cheapest school.”

When I was applying I thought it was silly and people just being lazy to not think of all the other aspect of dental school that would determine your destiny and which school would set up up best to be the worlds best dentist.
Well, once I got into school I realized they’re all a joke and each have similar hoops to jump through. It’s just a giant game.

So, play the game with the smallest of debt as possible. Like everyone else, I suggest go to the cheapest school. You have just a good chance to specialize at either of them. It’s all depended on you and how you apply yourself in school. Same with just being a good dentist.
So true. Just like anything else in life. Invest in yourself and you will become an excellent doctor.

Many students graduate year after year from the same school with the same training but come out with immensely different skill levels. You are the difference in how much effort you put in learning and practicing. then you continue learning your whole life with mentorship and study clubs.

I was just with a D4 classmate today who I sat with in simulation clinic. She had over reduced a crown prep to 4mm (supposed to be 2mm). might not sound like much but it is a pretty large error. she had the exact same training and literally sat next to me. Your success is dependent on yourself and yourself only, not the school. One of my professors said 75% of what he learned in dental school he never practice that way again after school. So again. go to the cheapest school. It is totally a game of hoops to jump through.
 
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Like_Groceries

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Jan 25, 2018
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Just curious since everyone is saying go to the cheapest, which school on that list is the cheapest lol
 
Sep 22, 2020
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School reputation means very little in the overall scheme of things. What matters is individual performance.

the funny thing is, us as students become so enamored with a “name” that we lose sight of this.

I opted to go to a somewhat prestigious University for undergrad. I paid a premium for the name and did decently well there. However, my friends who went to my state school (and had a relatively easier time) not only saved money, but they also performed quite well.

fast forward to today. My friends with the 3.8+ from state schools (ranked much lower than mine) have received more interviews/offers than me, someone with a 3.5 from a well ranked school. (Same DAT, similar hours)

I’m confident I could have got a 3.8+ from that state school (I took summer courses there and got As without effort. I also looked at my friends’ exams and they were considerably easier. Also factor in less competition).

im sure we all have similar stories or have heard similar stories. We should know better by now. Schools place little weight (they place some weight but not much) on undergrad reputation. They are evaluating you based on GPA/DAT and shadowing/service hours. That is it.

in 4 years when you want to specialize, a high class ranking/GPA and High NBDE exam will be the MAIN driving factors for admission.

a 3.8 from Harvard is better than 3.8 from Howard of course. But a 3.8 from Howard May be viewed more favorably than a 3.5 from Harvard.

So the only factors I would consider are:
1) COST
2) where do you think you would excel most

if 1/2 are comparable. Go to the school with a better name.
 
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PerioDont

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Jun 7, 2015
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School reputation means very little in the overall scheme of things. What matters is individual performance.

the funny thing is, us as students become so enamored with a “name” that we lose sight of this.

I opted to go to a somewhat prestigious University for undergrad. I paid a premium for the name and did decently well there. However, my friends who went to my state school (and had a relatively easier time) not only saved money, but they also performed quite well.

fast forward to today. My friends with the 3.8+ from state schools (ranked much lower than mine) have received more interviews/offers than me, someone with a 3.5 from a well ranked school. (Same DAT, similar hours)

I’m confident I could have got a 3.8+ from that state school (I took summer courses there and got As without effort. I also looked at my friends’ exams and they were considerably easier. Also factor in less competition).

im sure we all have similar stories or have heard similar stories. We should know better by now. Schools place little weight (they place some weight but not much) on undergrad reputation. They are evaluating you based on GPA/DAT and shadowing/service hours. That is it.

in 4 years when you want to specialize, a high class ranking/GPA and High NBDE exam will be the MAIN driving factors for admission.

a 3.8 from Harvard is better than 3.8 from Howard of course. But a 3.8 from Howard May be viewed more favorably than a 3.5 from Harvard.

So the only factors I would consider are:
1) COST
2) where do you think you would excel most

if 1/2 are comparable. Go to the school with a better name.
Completely agree.

I went to my fairly unremarkable non-fancy public state school for undergrad. did quite well, got a full ride scholarship, lived at home and graduated in three years. Got into state school dental school, many of my classmates went to Ivies, UC, and other fancy schools and came out with lots of debt.

Fast forward to today and I am specializing also at a cheaper residency associated with a state school. Once again many of my co-residents went to fancier sounding dental schools, some that cost much more than mine. (though some did not and went to state schools.)

Overall it did not matter for getting in to a residency what school you went to as much as your performance at said school, and if you did research, ECs etc. What they did bring from those schools was the higher $$ amount.
 
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Sep 22, 2020
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Completely agree.

I went to my fairly unremarkable non-fancy public state school for undergrad. did quite well, got a full ride scholarship, lived at home and graduated in three years. Got into state school dental school, many of my classmates went to Ivies, UC, and other fancy schools and came out with lots of debt.

Fast forward to today and I am specializing also at a cheaper residency associated with a state school. Once again many of my co-residents went to fancier sounding dental schools, some that cost much more than mine. (though some did not and went to state schools.)

Overall it did not matter for getting in to a residency what school you went to as much as your performance at said school, and if you did research, ECs etc. What they did bring from those schools was the higher $$ amount.
Yup, you were smart enough and made the correct decision from the beginning and it’s paying off. Thanks for sharing the opposite end of the situation

and when you enter the workforce, no employer is going to accept/deny you solely based on where you did your specialty training. It will be, what do you know, what can you do, and do you fit into the practice. Professionals don’t care one bit about asking where you went to school lol.

Very few patients (not enough to make a meaningful impact) care about your training. International grads are just as successful as US trained ones. Again, it’s about your quality of work and your personality to an extent.

I finally realized this after my mistakeS. But lots of people are still caught in that ideal of “name/status” And it prevents them from owning a practice/home earlier than colleagues who chose your route
 
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Voltron2010

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May 31, 2010
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Hello everyone! I was recently accepted to a few Dental schools and don't yet know if I want to specialize, but I would like to keep my doors open moving forward. How important is the "prestige" or "reputation" of your dental school when applying to residency programs? Also, which schools would you say are better at getting students to match into programs-Ohio State vs. UNLV vs. Louisville?
The school itself wont influence the decision. Most people I know who have become specialist were pro active about it. They would find a program they wanted to attend and ask to volunteer there or even observe regularly. Basically, they got to know the right people and made a good impression on them and got into the program. Also take CE courses in the area you want to specialize in and meet people in the field and get to know them. For example, there is a pedodontist that is always presenting CE courses and he is a director at a few programs. The only decision with which school to go to should be which will leave you with the least debt.
 

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