merrimack

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What are the specific advantages and disadvantages of each school? Given the choice, which one would you attend and why?

Edit: I've listed some possible advantages/disadvantages of attending each school below. Feel free to add to or revise anything on the list.

advantages of Tufts:
-boston arguably a more interesting place to live than worcester
-more diverse student body, both geographically and ethnically
-less focused on primary care (either an advantage or a disadvantage depending on one's goals)

advantages of UMass:
-much cheaper, and lower cost of living
-affiliated teaching hospital possibly better
-smaller entering class (is this an advantage or a disadvantage?)

toss up between the two:
-academic reputation
-research opportunities
-match list quality
-grading/curriculum (both have H/P/F for all 4 years, correct?)
 

cpants

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What are the specific advantages and disadvantages of each school? Given the choice, which one would you attend and why?
UMass. Tufts is one of the most expensive medical schools in the country. Also, Tufts-New England Medical Center, is a decent hospital at best. Most of the cool stuff goes to Mass General or Brigham and Women's. In contrast UMass's hospital in Worcestor is huge, well-respected, and covers pretty much anything major from western Mass.
 

yaah

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$50,000 per year vs $10,000 per year with forgiveness of about $6000 of that if you go into primary care. That's the difference.

Not really a tough decision.

If you go to UMass I believe you can do a lot of your third year rotations at a Tufts affiliate in Boston. At least, that was true a few years ago.
 

HanginInThere

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$50,000 per year vs $10,000 per year with forgiveness of about $6000 of that if you go into primary care. That's the difference.

Not really a tough decision.

If you go to UMass I believe you can do a lot of your third year rotations at a Tufts affiliate in Boston. At least, that was true a few years ago.
UMass does get you with higher fees than most schools, so that $10,000 per is more like $15,000 from the numbers I found. But by my math, that still means you're going to save over $125,000 at UMass in four years. And you can add the cost of living to that, which will be a lot higer in Boston than Worcester.

Their USNews rankings, if you care, are similar for research and favor UMass significantly for primary care.
 

cpants

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UMass does get you with higher fees than most schools, so that $10,000 per is more like $15,000 from the numbers I found. But by my math, that still means you're going to save over $125,000 at UMass in four years. And you can add the cost of living to that, which will be a lot higer in Boston than Worcester.

Their USNews rankings, if you care, are similar for research and favor UMass significantly for primary care.
USNews rankings are BS. That said, I think UMass actually is considered a better school by most people. Tufts Med does not have the prestige of its undergrad or some of the grad programs. The only real positive for Tufts is that it is in Boston.
 

skiball55

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I would go to Tufts (assuming you can afford it). It's in Boston (very important for the lifestyle category) and unless you know you want primary care, Tufts is at least as good a school as UMASS. I've heard (and yes, it's just hearsay) that UMASS looks down on too many Boston rotations. They really want you to stay around Worcester and they really want you to go into primary care. Either way, you have a nice problem. Good luck deciding!
 

PreMD86

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Be careful of who you take your advice from. The above poster, for example, is a currect applicant that is eagerly waiting to be accepted to Umass (as am I). There is absolutely no evidence for any of the claims this person has made.
 

silas2642

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What are the specific advantages and disadvantages of each school? Given the choice, which one would you attend and why?

Edit: I've listed some possible advantages/disadvantages of attending each school below. Feel free to add to or revise anything on the list.

advantages of Tufts:
-boston arguably a more interesting place to live than worcester
-more diverse student body, both geographically and ethnically
-less focused on primary care (either an advantage or a disadvantage depending on one's goals)

advantages of UMass:
-much cheaper, and lower cost of living
-affiliated teaching hospital possibly better
-smaller entering class (is this an advantage or a disadvantage?)

toss up between the two:
-academic reputation
-research opportunities
-match list quality
-grading/curriculum (both have H/P/F for all 4 years, correct?)
Go to Umass. This is advice coming from a current Tufts student. I say this because of cost-- I would love to be in your position, but alas, I have no state school.
 

Orthodoc40

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The 2 main differences b/w these schools are money, and diversity of the students. UMass is not $10k - it is more than that - they get you with big time fees, but still way cheaper than Tufts, and living in/near Boston.
But UMass will be full of kids who grew up in Massachusetts - not incredibly diverse in comparison to Tufts.
 

dienekes88

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UMass. Hands down. Great community. Great school.

After I got my UMass acceptance, I canceled my interview at Tufts.

While UMass may offer a lot of incentives to go into primary care, you don't have to do it. I have a friend who went to UMass and ended up in surgery. As far as I know, nobody beat her up for making that choice.
 

HanginInThere

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Be careful of who you take your advice from. The above poster, for example, is a currect applicant that is eagerly waiting to be accepted to Umass (as am I). There is absolutely no evidence for any of the claims this person has made.
Well, yes and no. He is telling the truth that Tufts is in Boston. ;)

Whether that's worth $100+K is something you'll have to decide for yourself. When you're looking to buy a house, or getting ready to pay off loans, that much money might have an impact in your "lifestyle" considerations!

For what it's worth, every practicing physician I've spoken with has strongly recommended going with the money. They've also spoken highly of UMass's reputation within the New England medical community.



Full disclosure: I'm currently holding a UMass acceptance, and I've withdrawn my app from the Tufts "Active Consideration" pile. The only personal stake I have in this is that I want good classmates. (Actually, with that in mind, are you (OP) a jerk? If so, I've heard Tufts is amazing and UMass sucks.)
 

HanginInThere

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But UMass will be full of kids who grew up in Massachusetts - not incredibly diverse in comparison to Tufts.
That's what I'm there for - I'm old, and I grew up in New York. How's that for diversity?

But I know what you mean. The interview day conversation where people talked about where they were from was a little surreal compared with other schools: "I'm from central Mass." "Hey, me too." "Oh, really? I'm from Western Mass." "Yeah, I'm from Cambridge." "Go Sox!"
 

cpants

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cpants

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Wasn't trying to zing you, just a comment in general. Erased the quote.
 

bostonmedical

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I assume this will be a decision I may have to make in two years. For me it is really the curriculum that kills. I wish Umass was P/F.

Also, I hear primary care is about 50%. That is a high chunk, but that still means a good mount choose specialties.
What I want to know is for those who pick specialties, how many actually choose to go out of New England?
Are we only "competitive in New England?

Any future Umass Med Students already know that they will be applying outside of New England for residency.
 

skiball55

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Hey merrimack -

another plus for UMASS is that the students are really friendly with one another (not super competitive with each other) - I have friends at both schools and that's what they've told me so take it for what you want - I'd still go to Tufts because of ties to Boston but I know class unity is important to a lot of people
 

swbkrn

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Umass is pass/fail?

UMass is H/P/F. We all try to do as well as we can. If you honor, you honor. I have some classmates who are just happy to pass. We all want to do well, and the environment is still very supportive and not at all competitive.

The match this year was good. Yes, there is an emphasis on primary care, but I met many 4th years who were pursuing radiology, surgery, etc. Bottom line: the school doesn't limit you.

Some people like being in Boston. I would have preferred to be in a city but Boston is still accessible if you're willing to drive down. I know many people who drive down to Boston for the weekend. But, honestly, you're not going to have much free time to go out during the week when you're in class or studying.