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trying this out again. USC or Temple?

Discussion in 'Pre-Dental' started by Dentwannabe18, Dec 20, 2008.

  1. Dentwannabe18

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    Apparently, I am a bit "posting impaired on SDN" because I thought I posted this question the other day... but it looks like I somehow messed up the post.

    Anyway, my question to everyone is which school would you choose: USC or Temple, assuming you had a full scholarship to either, such as HPSP? I'm curious of other SDNers' opinions. I am torn because Temple is closer to home, but I think it would be a great experience to live in Cali for 4 years. Also, I know Temple has an excellent clinical program. I've heard some people say that USC has an excellent clinical program but others have said that students have trouble getting patients, so I'm curious as to which is true. Also would love to hear any other reasons for or against either school. Thanks in advance:D
     
  2. Albuterol

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    I don't know much about either school since I haven't applied but just from reading your post you seem more inclined to attend temple but are looking for a reason to move west to cali.
     
  3. Quattro DMD

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    I haven't been to either school, but for me the PBL curriculum at USC would be difficult. I'm not sure about the patient flow at USC but I heard Temple is in a really poor part of Philly so that should help with patients. So it's up to you, as price isn't an issue to due the military scholarship.
     
  4. seaweed719

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    i would say stick with temple. usc isn't even worth you moving across the country. temple has a very well renowned clinical program. usc gets mixed reviews from people even in california.

    if you want to know more about socal and LA, just spend a week or two in the summer and visit places like hollywood, universal studio, santa monica, etc and you will have seen it all.
     
    #4 seaweed719, Dec 20, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2008
  5. PDizzle

    PDizzle PreDents.com
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    USC is the "red headed step child" of CA dental schools, that part is true.

    USC is hella expensive and smack dab in the Ghetto (But so is Temple so that should be a wash)

    I personally hate the PBL thing, especiaslly when it's 100% PBL.

    Unless you're dying to get away and live/practice in CA, prob should go to Temple
     
  6. hurley987

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    temple. I would avoid USCs PBL system.
     
  7. 206127

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    hahahahaha, red headed step child... :laugh:

    I live in Southern California and I would only go to USC if it was the only school that accepted me. If you want to come down to Cali, do it after you become a dentist or go to UCLA...

    USC < Temple
     
  8. DuffMan01

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    I would agree with all the posts saying go to temple! I am from Cali and let me to tell you...USC is NOT the place you want to live near by. I have friends that go to both and friends that go to USC is not that happy...PBL just sucks! Cost is really expensive to attend and live there, FYI. Go temple, that would be the smartest move. Then after you get your degree, move to Socal so you can appreciate how you didnt go there lol

    Good luck on your decision :D
     
  9. Fonz

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    temple. I think USC still struggles trying to get students to pass the boards AND graduate on time
     
  10. Dentgirl09

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    I didn't realize USC had such negative feedback... BESIDES the cost.... I always felt like I would love to go there if cost wasn't an issue... hmm!
     
  11. Hysteria24

    Hysteria24 1K Member
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    Passing the boards: That was true in the past (pre and early PBL). Recently we've been ranking in the top 12 for all d-schools.

    Graduation: This past class I believe had an on time grad rate in the high 80's. Still not superb, but much better than the debacle of 2007. All the road blocks that have contributed to these numbers are being eliminated thanks in part to an overhaul of the clinic structure by the new clinic dean.
     
  12. ROSE1010

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    I think there are always different impressions about USC. The other day I received a response by one of the USC students and it seems he is not happy about the clinic. Here is his response:


    "The clinic is the problem. It doesn't seem like anyone listens to us. They don't care, and I feel they make money off of doing this to us. Maybe they just want us to suffer!! Who knows. I just know a lot of students are paying for it financially, and mentally!"


    I think PBL is still manageable but clinic is the problem at USC. I also live in LA, but it definitely gets hard to go to USC when you hear these negative feedbacks about USC. Especially after going to an interview and not being able to see any faculty at USC, it becomes harder to trust them.
     
    #12 ROSE1010, Dec 20, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2008
  13. dent2009

    dent2009 YEEE BOI
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    Tough choice. But for me it would be easy. I live on the east coast and man, I wish I had an opportunity to experience cali for 4 years. You've been in or around Philly your entire life so why not try something different??? And there's no better place than southern cali.
     
  14. 2school4cool

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    HAHA. i totally have to incorporate the "red headed step child" metaphor into my sentences from now on.

    anyways! i sense the majority of the people contributing to this post have choosen TEMPLE>USuCk and i wholeheartedly concur with this decision.

    i interviewed at both and absolutely loved temple. from the people in my interview group to the students i met, it seemed like a friendly atmosphere from the get go. :cool:

    but the most amazing part was the amount of clinical experience you get. i would actually consider temple over some of the ivy leagues because i feel you walk as a truly competent dentist. they also accept a lot of their own students into their specialty programs. :p

    anyways, both are in the ghetto so to speak, but the difference with temple is you benefit with a huge patient pool while usc seems to be somewhat deficient in that department.

    for more cons for usc, check out one of the usc interview forums i think it's really recent but somebody bashes usc in the "negative aspects" window.

     
  15. xhamburgersamx

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    usc because they gave me a happy holidays postcard!
     
  16. Columbia07

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    I would probably post this question in the "Dental" Forum not the "Pre-Dent" Forum as most, if not all, of these pre-dental students have never stepped foot into either dental school aside from their 7 hour interview.

    From personal experience, USC's clinical program is as strong as any program in the country. PBL is not for everyone, but we still perform extremely well on the boards (by the way, people earn their scores, not the schools). We put people into top specialty programs (Parkland OMFS, UCLA Ortho, etc), so aside from cost, I'm not sure where this ugly redheaded stepchild idea came from... My suggestion, go where you can see yourself enjoying the next four years of your life because they will be tough and long, so you're going to want to try and retain as much of your sanity as possible.

    Good luck to you.
     
  17. Dentwannabe18

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    Thanks for your responses everyone! I really appreciate your insight.
     
  18. DentalRocks09

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    USC hands down..but curious where r u from? because that has a definite impact on ur decision...temple isnt a bad school and i believe around 20k a yr cheaper
     
  19. xhamburgersamx

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    I think anyone of us pre-dents can pass boards if we self studied dental-decks and a bunch of other prep books, old exams, etc.
     
  20. DROCKINDAHOUSE

    DROCKINDAHOUSE UTHSCSA c/o 2013
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    I say USC so that you can go watch the Trojans DOMINATE every saturday.

    By comparison, who wants to see Temple play?
     
  21. PDizzle

    PDizzle PreDents.com
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    To defend my "red headed step child" comment:

    In CA, USC is rarely a first choice. Out of all who got into USC: If you had gotten into all the other CA schools, whould you pick USC?? Be honest.

    USC over UCLA?? Over UoP? Don't think so.

    Most people aren't down with PBL. The mere idea of paying an enormous tuition to teach yourself and have other equally unqualified teachers(i.e. your classsmates) teaching you is kinda strange, to say the very least.

    The class size if huge, and if they are not in your PBL group you prob won't know your class very well.

    Tuition is astronomical, especially when taking in all the negatives that some say exist @ USC.

    Location is pretty bad. I interviewed there so I know this first hand.

    Many people had major complaints about the clinics. Graduating ontime seems more of a chore @ USC, according to people that have been there.

    The Pros:

    Awesome footbal team!
    Hot chics(dudes)
    Nice weather
    I heard that you make good contacts with USC Alumni
    If your into PBL, then it's a plus


    I'm just saying, out of the CA schools, its @ the bottom for most people. This is based on people having to decide between acceptances at more than one CA school. It's just a fact.

    Now, all you USC students will prob flame me but if you ask most people, including yourselves, who could pick any CA school to go to, a very small percentage would go to USC.


    Columbia07, please argue any of the points I made since you actually go there and mayby PBL and clinic isn't like what I heard it was.

    I do have to say one thing tho, no one goes to more than one dental school! So everyone's opinion is based on their own experiences and can not be compared to other schools, since they havn't been there. They have to go by what they, "heard" from other students.

    In the end, I'm sticking to my, "Go to the cheapest dental school in wich you will be happiest for 4(3) years." We all become dentists
     
    #21 PDizzle, Dec 22, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2008
  22. Doc Ock

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    I always like these...my school is better than your school because blah blah posts. Or I attend the superior school because blah blah blah. What it comes down to is what you want out of a school and where you want to practice. Some schools have a research emphasis (ala Lab Rat UCSF) and other clinical emphasis (ala UOP). The student bodies reflect this and are chosen for these emphasis (UCSF has a non dentist researcher for Dean for example and the student body is chosen with a lot of research experience). Schools go in cycles as to who is the "red headed step child". I clearly remember when UCSF was on probation for it's horrible physical plant and was restricted to only taking 55 students because it was in such bad shape. Things are changing at USC. The dean who revamped the clinic (Sigmund Abelson) is the interim dean. And he is a UOP trained guy. The Provost at USC is not going to let the dental school slip off into mediocrity or continue to have a bad rap or rep. That is why he fired Slavkin (who was a Lab Rat not a clinical dentist). PBL was a problem...things are changing to a hybrid. PBL still trains critically thinking dentists not just rote reciters. Things are a' changing at USC and will depend on the new dean. Choose a place that you are comfortable with and can afford.
     
  23. ROSE1010

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    I personally hope USC gets better and the new dean make changes! They had a strong reputation in the past, and in LA some of the best dentists are USC graduates, and that's why ordinary people trust USC graduates because of their clinical skills! The good thing about Dean "Abelson" is that he was an associate dean for clinical affairs and he can makes changes to fix the graduation rate. And it seems students graduate on time is one of his top priorities.
     
    #23 ROSE1010, Dec 22, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2008
  24. sl2obel2ts

    sl2obel2ts i like tomatoes
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    temple because brian is really cool.

    oh wait, they are both brian
     
  25. xhamburgersamx

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    Dean Slavkin isnt at USC anymore ...lol
     
  26. ROSE1010

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    sorry I meant Dean Abelson not Slavkin. I will edit it.
     
  27. Columbia07

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    Look, I'm not going to flame you because I honestly think you're a good guy and have a vested interest in providing students with the best possible information (e.g. Predent.com); however, I will argue the point that we, at USC, "teach ourselves."

    If you really think about it, and be honest with yourself, when you sit down to study for boards, do you pull out your old powerpoint slides from microbiology or biochemistry? I would estimate that most, if not all, students go straight to the review books (i.e. BRS, USMLE, Kaplan, etc) and Dental Decks when they sit down to study for boards. Think about it, the medical science classes taken in dental school are almost solely used to prepare us for the boards, but how many students can crank out a 95 with only their UCSF, Harvard, Michigan, etc lectures and no use of review books? I would venture to say that less than 1% of dental students can rely solely on the information taught in their lectures to get them a score above a 90 on Part 1. So, in the end, we all teach ourselves the material to ace the boards (i.e. review books because we've forgotten most of the material), and then we puke it all out on the test day and forget almost all of it by the time we hit 35.

    While I understand that USC students pay a lot for facilitators, we do have lectures in the important classes (composite, fixed, perio, amalgam, endo, local anesthesia, sedation, etc). I completely understand the apprehension most students feel about attending USC, and this is becuase of our past leaders and their ineptitude to correct serious matters (namely the clinic situations that are finally being resolved). I can assure you that you will see good things come from USC in the near future.

    Finally, I'm not going to tell you where to go. You need to be able to make this decision on your own.

    Good luck.
     
  28. woops03

    woops03 New Member
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    Does anybody know the specialty rate for USC? :rolleyes:
     
  29. Hysteria24

    Hysteria24 1K Member
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    Why the sarcastic eyes?

    A school-wide board score average ranking in the top 12 only helps specialization prospects for students here.

    I have actually been trying to get these exact numbers from administration but they say they haven't started tracking this info until this last graduating class and don't have all the stats compiled yet. The only stats I have are unofficial numbers from students who graduated last year.
     
  30. Doc Ock

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    To the OP: Depending upon where you want to practice you should also base your choice. Dentistry can be regional in philosophy and practice. Also taking a board licensing exam at your home school is a big advantage (not having to either fly in patients or hustle around for patients in a different environment). I do not know what PA licensing requirements are (NERB?) if it is like NY then this doesn't matter. So in this analysis Temple would be your better choice.

    To the USC naysayers: Things are changing at USC. USC has been and will be again a premier Dental School. There is still a rich tradition of clinical, technical excellence. A return to it's roots of the competent clinician will happen. Here is an example of the new attitude at the school...

    Dear USC School of Dentistry Faculty and Staff:
    At this time of the year, while we are enjoying the Holiday Season with our families and friends, it is an excellent opportunity to reflect on our roles and responsibilities at our school of dentistry. Particularly, as to the part each of us has in providing the best educational experience possible for our students, in moving our school forward, and the significance of the role we individually play in this process.
    It is my goal that The USC School of Dentistry educates the highest quality practitioners who will ultimately practice independently and successfully in their patients' best interests. A humanistic approach to education best accomplishes this goal. Humanism is based upon honest communication of clear expectations along with positive support for diligent effort. Although kindness is valued, humanism is not interpreted to mean softness, weakness or superficial niceness. In fact, humanism places great responsibility on each member of the dental school community.
    In order for this approach to work, faculty members and staff, must be models of the profession's highest standards, and they must teach in a way that encourages and energizes students. Students, in turn, are expected to set very high standards, to work hard and to take personal responsibility for their own learning process.
    We must not train only the head and hands and leave out the heart. Although we teach modalities that are state of the art; the care that our graduates provide must also be state of the heart.
    I have previously informed the students that they must adhere to the Dress Code at our school and they have been very cooperative. I would also ask that as professionals, we, faculty and staff, also maintain a professional appearance. Remember, we are all role models for our students.
    Therefore, I am requesting that jeans and shirts without collars for men, are never appropriate attire at our school, and may not be worn at work. ( on days when the clinic is closed supervisors may approve dressing in jeans if special work needs to be accomplished where dress clothes may not be appropriate) It is important that we maintain a professional appearance at all times, not just for our students, but for our patients and colleagues at the university as well.
    I am looking forward to all of us, faculty and staff, working together to make the USC School of Dentistry the best it can be. We have a rich tradition of many dedicated faculty and staff to build on. The best is yet to come.

    Again, I wish you and your families all the very best for a Happy, Healthy and Safe New Year.

    All my best,

    Sig

    Sigmund H. Abelson, D.D.S.
    Acting Dean
    USC School of Dentistry
    925 West 34th Street, DEN 203
    Los Angeles, CA 90089
    T: 213-740-3124 F: 213-740-1509
     
  31. PDizzle

    PDizzle PreDents.com
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    Well, thanks for not flaming me :) You were one of the ones who helped me with Predents.com a while back, so I know you're a nice guy as well. If I offended you about your school, I appologize.

    I also agree with you 110% about "teaching" and "learning" when it comes to test taking. IMO, the instructors presence in the classroom serves only to indiacte to me what to emphasize in order to get a high score on the upcoming test. There are few exceptions: My pathology teacher was awesome and I actually listened and learned a lot from him. Our director of OMFS was also an amazing lecturer but besides those, I would have been better off in my room studying PP slides.

    The NBDE part 1 is even a better example of teaching yourself, so I agree with you here as well.

    Here's my beef, (correct me if I'm wrong since I only saw one PBL session @ USC). Don't other students in your class dig up and teach different parts of a subject to the rest of the PBL group? If thats true, I just wouldn't trust someone else with the info, I'd just go look it all up and study that, so it seems like its just a waste of time. I say, give me a book and tell me when the test is.
     
  32. xhamburgersamx

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    Well from what I heard, you're supposed to read your groups learning needs prior to going into your PBL session and you're supposed to only ask questions if you're not sure about stuff. The rest of the time is used to discuss the case.
     
  33. Columbia07

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    I would say that 95% of the time students are not teaching other students the material "directly." We don't sit around the table and let little Jimmy with his history degree teach us about the life cycle of the 4 different malaria viruses. Instead, we (the group) trust that little Jimmy can use a few of his brain cells to look up the information and copy and paste that information into a word document, write a brief summary or highlight a few of the key points and put his name and a title on the paper and e-mail it out to the rest of the group members. It is then the job of each group member to read the material (check the references to make sure the material is legit - 99% of the time it is) and digest it yourself. If you have questions, you bring them to the table during pre-session and you hash it out as a group and the majority of the time the group will solve the problem, which is the point of the process. The case is only really relevant to our learning because it gives us a situation to relate all of the material we've researched.

    It's not a difficult process and it definitely doesn't work well for all subjects (namely anatomy and immunology). We take a gross Head and Neck course with cadavers and lectures so that problem is solved, but the immunology is not covered well at all and it's a difficult subject on top of everything else. However, the process works really well for physiology, pathology, microbiology, dental issues, public health, epidemiology, and a few others.

    Anyways, PBL is not the problem at USC. Many pre-dents who are blind and oblivious to almost everything like to think this is and will be the demise of this institution; however, 100% of the problems relate solely to the clinic and its operations. These issues have been highlighted a thousand times on these boards and are being addressed at the school. The dean expects a 96%+ on-time graduation rate this year (optimistic, but certainly doable).

    Now, let me address one more thing. If you are a pre-dental student I want to remind you of something, and this is extremely important so open your eyes and read what I've written carefully. Specializing has nothing to do with your dental school and anyone who tries to tell you differently is delusional.

    Your dental school, the name, the location, the endowment size, the class size play absolutely NO ROLE in your admissions to a specialty program. Besides the 3% of cases of nepotism you can be confident that if you do well at your d-school you WILL specialize. Now you're probably thinking, what in the hell is this guy talking about, look at Harvard, every damn student specializes there. Open your eyes kids, Harvard did not get them in, they got themselves in by doing well on their boards, doing externships, volunteering in the pedo clinic, research, stellar grades, etc. The school did not get them in. End of discussion.

    So, when you are asking about "specialty rates" ask yourself how this information is going to help you. Why does it matter that 30% of the class is specializing. All this means is that 30% of the class worked their butts off to do well and match to a program. It has absolutely NO REFLECTION on the dental school they attended.

    Merry Christmas!:D
     
  34. Dentwannabe18

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    Again, I really appreciate everyone's replies. As for PBL, I think it's an interesting way to learn and I think I would like it. I took a grad level Molecular Bio course that was partly PBL and I learned so much more from doing my research for the case studies than from any of the lecture. So I think I could do well with either PBL or traditional lecture. I also agree that dental school can be what you make of it and we'll all get out of what we put into it... and upon graduation, we'll all be dentists. :D I realize that either Temple or USC will make me a dentist and I really feel blessed that I even have the option of choosing between these two superb dental schools.

    I am, however, interested to see if USC students believe it's difficult to get enough patients. I would be curious about this for Temple too, but they certainly answered that question during their interview. I know that USC's students (as well as all the other D-schools' students) seem to be doing a good job of graduating so they must be getting the patients they need. I'm just curious if the current students ever feel like it's an issue. I think I'll also post this question on the Dental Student forum.

    Merry Christmas everyone!
     
  35. ROSE1010

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    I am also interested to know whether it's difficult to get patients at USC or not? Are USC students getting the patients they need at clinic? I appreciate your feedback.

    Merry Christmas to all the future dentists!:D
     
  36. xhamburgersamx

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    Does anyone know what happens if you are on HPSP scholarship and don't graduate on time? I think this worries me a lot
     
  37. Doc Ock

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    "we don't make anything up with regard to USC"

    Just cracks about "red headed stepchild of the CA schools"

    Can anyone give a update on how the clinic and requirements are running NOW? Not a year ago, but NOW?

    Graduating late can be due to a lot of factors...one may be having too stringent requirements and over idealistic criteria for competency examination. If the requirements are too stringent, but the graduates perform well on licensing exam, then the requirements can be lightened.
    Also, due to University rules, anyone not meeting graduation requirements by midMay will be issued his/her degree in midAugust. That means if you actually finish your requirements mid June you are still "late". I believe things have been adjusted in regards to both requirements and competency exams. A current student's viewpoint would be much appreciated...not a year old post.
     
  38. ROSE1010

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    #38 ROSE1010, Dec 24, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2008

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