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nvega13

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Hey Guys!

I was just wondeirng, for all of you who have been accepted to American schools, are you still planning on applying to Waterloo. And if not, how do you plan on paying for the American tuition. I don't have the grades to get into Waterloo, but I think that I have a pretty good shot of getting into an American school. However the tuition + cost of living seems like such a burden to undertake, and I don't know if I am naive to think that I will be able to pay it off quickly on an OD's salary!
 

ariel winter

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trust me. if you work hard, you will be able to pay it off no problem in shorter time than you think. :thumbup:
 

pre_opt_sku

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nvega13 said:
Hey Guys!

I was just wondeirng, for all of you who have been accepted to American schools, are you still planning on applying to Waterloo. And if not, how do you plan on paying for the American tuition. I don't have the grades to get into Waterloo, but I think that I have a pretty good shot of getting into an American school. However the tuition + cost of living seems like such a burden to undertake, and I don't know if I am naive to think that I will be able to pay it off quickly on an OD's salary!

I've been accepted to an American school, but will still be applying to Waterloo. In the case that I don't get into Waterloo, I will be paying for school with a professional student line of credit + the CanHelp loan. You can shop around for your line of credit, but I found the Bank of Montreal to be the best deal ($120 000, interest at prime + 0.5%). Just keep in mind though that with the line of credit, you need a cosigner and you need to make monthly interest payments. For the International CanHelp loan, you can get $20 000 US/year with no co signer (or more if you have a cosigner) the interest rates are crappy, but you can push off making ANY paymets until you are done school.... Anyhow, I understand how you feel like it will be such a burden. I feel the same way... but the way I see it, if it has to be done then it has to be done!
 

l2en

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yeah i'm in the same boat here...does anyone know REALISTICALLY the GPA that Waterloo requires? My Science advisor at school told me last year that it's upwards in the 3.7+ range.
 

jefguth

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l2en said:
yeah i'm in the same boat here...does anyone know REALISTICALLY the GPA that Waterloo requires? My Science advisor at school told me last year that it's upwards in the 3.7+ range.

Realistically, I would suggest that about 85% would be pretty competitive, maybe a little less (but not much!).
 

montrealrep

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or you can learn french and come to Montreal!! Great city!
 

nvega13

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Do any of you know of any Canadian who received scholarships/grants (especially from SUNY, NECO or ICO)? ARe we eligible for any of them if we do really well while in OD school?
 

pre_opt_sku

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nvega13 said:
Do any of you know of any Canadian who received scholarships/grants (especially from SUNY, NECO or ICO)? ARe we eligible for any of them if we do really well while in OD school?

I received a scholarship from ICO worth $7500/year.
 

rekhaA

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Hi everyone,

I have received interviews from SUNY and PCO, but am worried sick about what they'll ask. As a Canadian student do we need to know the laws of Optometric practice in the US? What about their associations etc. Has anyone had an interview at either of these schools or anywhere else? Please post/msg me, I would really appreciate some pointers (ie. sample questions)

Hope to hear from someone soon,

Thanks a lot
- Rekha
 

pre_opt_sku

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rekhaA said:
Hi everyone,

I have received interviews from SUNY and PCO, but am worried sick about what they'll ask. As a Canadian student do we need to know the laws of Optometric practice in the US? What about their associations etc. Has anyone had an interview at either of these schools or anywhere else? Please post/msg me, I would really appreciate some pointers (ie. sample questions)

Hope to hear from someone soon,

Thanks a lot
- Rekha

I only went to my ICO interview, but they didn't ask me anything about the associations or laws or anything like that. We did kind of compare/contrast optometry in the US and Canada....it just sort of came up in conversation during the interveiw, there were no formal questions about it.
 

Hitman99

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I'm from Canada as well. I had my interview at PCO last week, and no questions pertaining to specifics about optometric practices were mentioned. It was all just personal questions regarding my background/optometry experience, etc.
 

Canadian26

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Im in the same boat as you as well, my grades and OAT mark arent high enough to get into waterloo. I think from what I remember they dont accept anyone unless you get a 360 on the OAT, but the GPA wasnt that high I think it was around a 3.3-3.4. The info is posted on their website, theres really no pnt in e-mailing the admissions commite, takes them a very long time to reply.
 

ariel winter

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:) yeah, i emailed the admissions committee at waterloo on more than one occasion when i was in the applications process back in september. i found the school to be surprisingly unprofessional and quite "distant" from the applicants. it seemed as if they didn't want people to apply or something. put a bad taste in my mouth, so i didn't apply... i wasn't impressed with their facilities anyway... and i have more family in the states, so it made more sense for me. :)

Canadian26 said:
Im in the same boat as you as well, my grades and OAT mark arent high enough to get into waterloo. I think from what I remember they dont accept anyone unless you get a 360 on the OAT, but the GPA wasnt that high I think it was around a 3.3-3.4. The info is posted on their website, theres really no pnt in e-mailing the admissions commite, takes them a very long time to reply.
 
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Looman

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Waterloo has a very flawed application system. Number one, the application is on paper, and you literally (not joking) have to cut out your paper resume and paste it on the application sheet! I think the application process is geared towards Waterloo undergrad. The interviews are pretty subjective and it just depends on your luck if you get nice interviewers. The facilities are passable but nothing to write home about. We use trial lens sets from the 1950's in some labs, and the entire building has no windows. The library contains ONE table, (again not kidding). And of course, NO games room/lounge or Cafeteria. Just a bunch of tables in the hallway is where we eat, with only seating for about 100 when there are about 300 people total in the school. I guess I'll end up being an OD in the end and where I went to school won't matter, but still, it would be nice to go to school in a decent building! lol
Ok my rant is done, good luck to everyone
 

pre_opt_sku

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Canadian26 said:
Im in the same boat as you as well, my grades and OAT mark arent high enough to get into waterloo. I think from what I remember they dont accept anyone unless you get a 360 on the OAT, but the GPA wasnt that high I think it was around a 3.3-3.4. The info is posted on their website, theres really no pnt in e-mailing the admissions commite, takes them a very long time to reply.

My friend was accepted to Waterloo, and she definitely did not score 360 on the OAT.
 

ucbsowarrior

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Looman said:
Waterloo has a very flawed application system. Number one, the application is on paper, and you literally (not joking) have to cut out your paper resume and paste it on the application sheet! I think the application process is geared towards Waterloo undergrad. The interviews are pretty subjective and it just depends on your luck if you get nice interviewers. The facilities are passable but nothing to write home about. We use trial lens sets from the 1950's in some labs, and the entire building has no windows. The library contains ONE table, (again not kidding). And of course, NO games room/lounge or Cafeteria. Just a bunch of tables in the hallway is where we eat, with only seating for about 100 when there are about 300 people total in the school. I guess I'll end up being an OD in the end and where I went to school won't matter, but still, it would be nice to go to school in a decent building! lol
Ok my rant is done, good luck to everyone


I'll back you on this one. My cousin was applying to Waterloo and he told me about their admissions process...without elaborating...it's a friggen joke. After reading their essay questions and looking over my cousin's application...I started to think this school is not looking for well rounded students...they are making a casting call for The Revenge of the Nerd!

My advice to all you up north is, if you can get into the University of Waterloo than go - b/c you save money....but in the end the sad truth is you get what you pay for.
 

vtrain

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If you get into Waterloo - go! Save yourself the unecessary debt. In end, it doesn't really matter where you go, but the debt will be there. If you take out a $150K, you will probably be paying back at least twice that if you stretch it out over 25 years (which most people, if they are smart enough and can financially do it, wont do). With that being said, YES, you will be able to pay off your debt in you go to an american school, but most likely you will have to stay in the US to do so...and who wouldn't want too....you can do way more procedures and Rx more down in the states...why not use your degree to the fullest extent. An american education will make you more of a solid clinician as the waterloo clinical experience can not compare. Bottom line: if you get into waterloo,go,...if you dont, go to an american school, but plan on staying in the US to practice for at least a couple of years. Paying off an american debt making canadian $$ is not very smart. Oh - I took my CSAO and Law exam in Waterloo --my hats off to those who can live there for four+ years!
 

xmattODx

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vtrain said:
If you get into Waterloo - go! Save yourself the unecessary debt. Oh - I took my CSAO and Law exam in Waterloo --my hats off to those who can live there for four+ years!

I couldn't agree more. If you can go to Waterloo go.

Funny that you're Canadian vtrain. I'm an Edmontonian myself. Took CSAO in Montreal though. (A year after graduating. That wasn't fun!)
 

Looman

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ucbsowarrior said:
I'll back you on this one. My cousin was applying to Waterloo and he told me about their admissions process...without elaborating...it's a friggen joke. After reading their essay questions and looking over my cousin's application...I started to think this school is not looking for well rounded students...they are making a casting call for The Revenge of the Nerd!

My advice to all you up north is, if you can get into the University of Waterloo than go - b/c you save money....but in the end the sad truth is you get what you pay for.

Its funny you make that comment about "Revenge of the Nerd". I was talking to one of our profs and he remarked "This class (2009) is one of the largest classes full of Type A personalities. I've never seen a whole class so anal before." lol Not only is the building ugly, but the class is full of the biggest keeners you've ever seen. we have some classes with averages in the 90's. :s
 

ariel winter

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:) where in edmonton, xmattODx? i live in sherwood park!

xmattODx said:
I couldn't agree more. If you can go to Waterloo go.

Funny that you're Canadian vtrain. I'm an Edmontonian myself. Took CSAO in Montreal though. (A year after graduating. That wasn't fun!)
 

xmattODx

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ariel winter said:
:) where in edmonton, xmattODx? i live in sherwood park!

I grew up pretty close to you! My family still lives in the Londonderry area (right near Londonderry Mall). I live in Atlanta, GA though :(

Cool to see so many Canadians out there!
 

Canadian26

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You two live pretty close to me as well, Im right of 34st and whitemud.
 

ariel winter

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crazy! it feels like such a small world! :)

Canadian26 said:
You two live pretty close to me as well, Im right of 34st and whitemud.
 

vtrain

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yeah...waiting a year would be rough; optics info definitely has a limited shelf-life!

Montreal would've been a much better place to take the exam - I could've made a weekend out of it.
 

jefguth

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vtrain said:
If you get into Waterloo - go! Save yourself the unecessary debt. In end, it doesn't really matter where you go, but the debt will be there. If you take out a $150K, you will probably be paying back at least twice that if you stretch it out over 25 years (which most people, if they are smart enough and can financially do it, wont do). With that being said, YES, you will be able to pay off your debt in you go to an american school, but most likely you will have to stay in the US to do so...and who wouldn't want too....you can do way more procedures and Rx more down in the states...why not use your degree to the fullest extent. An american education will make you more of a solid clinician as the waterloo clinical experience can not compare. Bottom line: if you get into waterloo,go,...if you dont, go to an american school, but plan on staying in the US to practice for at least a couple of years. Paying off an american debt making canadian $$ is not very smart. Oh - I took my CSAO and Law exam in Waterloo --my hats off to those who can live there for four+ years!

What did you think of the CSAO exam having gone to a US school? Looking at the stats for the past few years for Canadians graduating from US schools really scares me. :scared:
 

vtrain

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jefguth said:
What did you think of the CSAO exam having gone to a US school? Looking at the stats for the past few years for Canadians graduating from US schools really scares me. :scared:
The optics section was tough. I took the exam with five other friends and two failed the optics portion and had to repeat up in Montreal. I was very well prepared for the biosci and disease portion of the exam and the TMOD section (it's been a little while - I can't remember the individ sections). The CSAO is geared towards the waterloo cirriculum and they LOVE optics ( which makes sense since it reflects the type of practice rights up in Canada). The practical portion was fine though they have some tests that you might need to do that I'd never heard of previously (ie monocular EOMs). Also, they ask you to provide some of your own equipment like a lens clock.Why they cant provide a couple at the testing site is beyond me. Seriously, who owns a lens clock???

Also, if you want to practice in Ontario - beware of the jurisprudence exam!!! It is tough!!! I took that up @ UW too and they had a day of classes (waste of time) and then an all day exam. don't take this exam for granted.
 

drmhyde

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nvega13 said:
Hey Guys!

I was just wondeirng, for all of you who have been accepted to American schools, are you still planning on applying to Waterloo. And if not, how do you plan on paying for the American tuition. I don't have the grades to get into Waterloo, but I think that I have a pretty good shot of getting into an American school. However the tuition + cost of living seems like such a burden to undertake, and I don't know if I am naive to think that I will be able to pay it off quickly on an OD's salary!
If you want to email me I could put you in touch with a good friend of mine who recently graduated from UCHO (2002). He's from Toronto. He has a very relistic understanding of your situation and I'm sure he could help you decide this. It is quite expensive. I believe after the exchange rate it was somewhere around $120,000 our US. To put into perspective..my wife and I graduated from UHCO and had a combined $170,000..so canadan to american tuition is very high.

mike
 
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