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Turning down Duke?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by sheils, May 1, 2001.

  1. sheils

    sheils Junior Member
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    Ack! I feel so annoying posting this, but I'm just trying to get an idea of how many people out there are either turning down Duke or turning down a spot on the alternate list? Good Luck EVERYONE! :D
     
  2. lilycat

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    I have a friend who withdrew from the alternate list, and I think 2 posters on this site have said they are turning down Duke.
     
  3. Socceroo4ever

    Socceroo4ever Senior Member
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    Just curious as to why anyone is turning down Duke. Not that I'm saying Duke is "all that" (having been a UNC Tar Heel for too long, you'd not be catching me saying that often!), but I just wanted to know what was against Duke in particular... the campus? Faculty? Got accepted into your Number One or Two universities instead?
     
  4. coop

    coop Senior Member
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    i have 2 friends who just turned down duke for upenn (plus still on jhu waitlist). While i don't know the details of why I know that they both weren't super impressed with duke when they saw it, they said the people weren't friendly, the MS1s seemed stressed out and I got the impression the whole place just didn't seem like the right fit for them.

    good luck, I hope you get their spots :)
     
  5. lilycat

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    My friend who withdrew from the waitlist absolutely hated Duke/had an awful time while he was there -- he was fully ready to choose Northwestern over Duke, if he had been outright accepted. He wouldn't really go into too many particulars, but I know he did not have a good interview experience, the students he met seemed alright, but I think he just didn't click with the school and the area in general. It actually left a very negative impression on him. Not all schools click for all people.
     
  6. sheils

    sheils Junior Member
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    Hey COOP!! I'm from Baltimore, MD. :D
     
  7. coop

    coop Senior Member
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    sheils:
    I can't claim to be a native. I'm from CA, a junior undergrad at hopkins, so I've been in bmore for 3 years now. Despite the bad rap, I really like it here. It has all the city stuff I need without being as packed and busy as ny or boston. Are you coming back for med school (MD) if you don't get into duke or are you going to NYU? good luck
     
  8. sheils

    sheils Junior Member
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    I grew up in Towson/Hunt Valley area and went to a girls school there.
    I loved Baltimore, but I'm psyched for NYC. I've regretedly decided to turn down MD. So anyone out there on MD's wait-list, start getting psyched! It was a hard choice, but I went with my gut--and not necessarily my father's economic advice!
     
  9. Socceroo4ever

    Socceroo4ever Senior Member
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    Ah, now we agree on some things. I chose UNC Chapel Hill as my undergraduate school of choice over Wake Forest and Duke for various reasons. I was accepted to Wake but couldn't afford the $27,000+ for the private education, so ended up with Chapel Hill... but I get ahead of myself.

    I had strongly considered applying to Duke and decided to check out the campus before I committed myself to applying. First, we spent the day at UNC, fifteen minutes away, and then went to Duke for the night. They have a program whereby prospective freshmen can stay on-campus with freshmen to get a taste for what college life is like, specifically Duke's college life. I absolutely hated that experience! The people were obvious snobs with money greasing their pockets. One of the guys I stayed with showed me a tin of homemade cookies and bragged that his mother sends them to him (from Penn, I believe) every week. :rolleyes:

    Anyways, the long and the short of it is that Duke wasn't for me in a lot of respects. I was particularly turned away by the fact that 75% of entering freshmen are declared as pre-med (although this statistic is reduced by quite a lot by the senior year). The point is that basically I didn't find the school all that attractive for undergraduate, and although I was considering Dookie (hehehe) for medical school, I wondered if the same undergrad snobbishness carries over to the grad schools too. Now I know. :)
     
  10. omores

    omores sleep deprived
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    Oh dear, I'm feeling compelled to defend Duke, and I don't even go there yet. Let's hope this isn't the start of a lifetime of snobbery.

    Socceroo, I certainly don't want to contest your impression of Duke undergrad. But my experience at the med school was that the current and prospective students I met were remarkable for their LACK of snobbishnes, elitism, etc. That's not to say that obnoxious and arrogant students don't exist there; I'm sure there are plenty of them. And I'm sure there are plenty of them at Harvard, JHU, and even at my beloved SUNY schools as well.

    The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced that impressions-of-the-student-body is one of the least reliable things to judge a school on, because it's so random. It depends on who you encounter. When I was at Duke, I happened to meet some really wonderful people that I clicked with, but I could just have easily met people I didn't click with, and then I might have ended up at another school.

    Conversely, when I visited UVM (a school renowned for its friendly and laid-back students), most of the ones I encountered struck me as stressed out, not very friendly, and overly concerned with the reputation of their school. That soured me on the place, but I know that if I'd talked to a different batch of students, I might have come away with a much more favorable impression.

    I suppose I'm just cautioning people not to make too many generalizations about what a school's student body is like. If the admissions committee has done its job, there will be all types of people there.

    But there are plenty of other reasons not to choose Duke: the curriculum compresses basic sciences into one 11-month year, followed by a by-all-accounts very grueling second year of clinical rotations. That means that most students take Step 1 of the USMLE in their third year, and end up having to do a lot of, uh, refreshing.

    And although there is plenty of debate about where exactly the center of the universe is (NYC? San Francisco? Paris?), I doubt you'll hear anyone suggesting that it's in Durham, NC.
     
  11. Socceroo4ever

    Socceroo4ever Senior Member
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    To be fair, it isn't fifteen minutes away in Chapel Hill, NC either. ;) Be that as it may, I know the graduate schools and undergraduate schools are quite different entities and it is indeed wrong to generalise one based on the other. As I said previously I had considered Duke for medical school because it really *is* a good university academically and I hoped that the donkey's arses that I met in undergrad wouldn't be there second time around for medical school. Until I've visited the campus again I can't say for sure. :)

    In any case, best of luck with your endeavours at Duke! I'm sure it'll be a great experience for you!
     
  12. gel1

    gel1 Senior Member
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    I also had horrible experiences while visiting Duke's undergrad as a prospie. I had always wanted to go there, but ended up choosing another school even though I was accepted at Duke. I talked to a URM who said that the students were extremely segregated and that race relations were heavily strained. She said if she could do it again she would never go there. I talked to a pre-med who said that at a med school interview someone told her not to ask a certain bio professor to ever write her another letter because he said negative things about her even though she did well in his class. The worst was when a bunch of prospies were at an info session at the admissions office and the woman from Duke decided to tell us that none of us really had that much of a shot at her school. Plus, some huge number of students are in frats, which can be elitist if given overwhelming power on campus.
    I know the point was made that the med school seems much different, but I feel that because of my earlier experiences at Duke there isn't a chance in hell that I would apply to their med school.
     
  13. SistaKaren

    SistaKaren Displaced Tar Heel
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    I also had bad experiences with Duke. As a high school senior, I went and spent a weekend at Duke. I had a horrible experience. I've seen firsthand how bad race relations are among the undergrads (ie, a white student calling a black driver the "N-word"...heh...isn't that PC!). Although one could argue that is an extreme experience, which it is, my HS calculus teacher, who also taught at Duke (at the time), also commented about it to me and dissuaded me from going there, not only because of race relations, but also because of socioeconomic disparities (which a few have already commented on).

    Thank God. I love Carolina (Go Heels!). (and I had a MUCH better weekend there than at Duke)

    I don't think that'll dissuade me from applying to med school there though. I think that the med school experience would probably be a lot different than undergrad.

    Karen
     
  14. omores

    omores sleep deprived
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    This kind of thing absolutely makes my blood boil. I would be able to understand (if not tolerate) that kind of behaviour from someone who'd lived a completely isolated life in whiteland, but it's completely inexcuseable in someone attending college in North Carolina. Good grief.

    When I was at Duke Med's second look weekend, my tour guide mentioned that he found many of the undergraduates rather odious as well. But he went on to say that he has very little exposure to them. Duke Med really is its own universe. You can take advantage of the cultural events at the undergrad campus, but you really aren't part of it otherwise. Everyone lives off-campus and has an independent life.

    As far as the socioeconomic disparity goes, it's disturbing, certainly, but it's also entirely representative of large swaths of America. And it makes for an excellent medical education. You'll get a completely different set of patients at the free clinic in Durham that you will at the DUMC. Duke allows you to see experience both extremes, and I think that's immensely valuable in terms of medical training.

    But I'm glad you've been having a great undergrad experience at UNC. That's worth a lot.
     
  15. Colorado_2

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    The irony of the whole situation is that the black driver could have applied to Duke, written an essay on the application about his experience with prejudice, and probably gotten in, given Duke's preference to admitting those with lower qualifications based on racial background.
     
  16. sheils

    sheils Junior Member
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    I am not an URM, but I believe that isn't irony, but rather justice. Whatever-- URMs still have to work their ASSES off to get into med school. And if there is someone in med school who doesn't have the same "numbers" as me, but happens to be an URM-- I'm sure that I have a lot more to learn from her/him than another student with a similar background to me. Med schools (ideally) don't just admit quotas of URMs to acheive a more positive perception or obtain funding, but they also like to have a DIVERSE class where students can learn from eachother. A class with students of countless backgrounds is much more informative to each student. Am I making any sense? It's Friday and I MUST LEAVE WORK!!!
     
  17. Colorado_2

    Colorado_2 Member
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    Sheils: Med. school isn't the UN. Were not struggling through four years to learn the rich histories of other cultures. I never said that URMs don't "bust their asses". Just don't forget that both very bright and very average people can bust their ass, but dedication to one's work is only part of the equation of a successful problem solver.
     
  18. sheils

    sheils Junior Member
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    Hm. Good points Colorado_2. I still haven't left work, and I'm becoming delirious b/c the weather is so beautiful and I'm inside. Anyway, I just hope people understand that while you do spend most of your time busting ass in med school memorizing and learning and studying, you also (I'm sure) end up spending a great deal of time getting to know your classmates. And I think that there's a lot to learn from classmates with different backgrounds. And I'm not so much responding to your post, but I've read SO MANY posts on other threads that insinuate a lot of negativity towards the URM/non-URM disparity in terms of GPA/MCAT numbers. I just think that people need to realize that..... whatever... i'm not making my point properly here... someone who gets it help me out!
    But again, Colorado_22, I think you raise good points.
     
  19. scully

    scully Senior Member
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    Does anyone (Christiangirl?) know what exactly they are willing to tell us on May 15th? I am wondering what I should ask when I call -- I am sure she won't volunteer anything!
     
  20. 8deuce

    8deuce Senior Member
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    hey colorado 2 you know that you are talking out of spite. just because you didn't get accepted to colorado doesn't mean you can blame it on urms. stop the whining and crying like a brat. be lucky you got accepted to buffalo and just be happy with that. oh and some advice for your stay in buffalo...lose the pompous attitude and dress warmly.
     
  21. mvalento

    mvalento Senior Member
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    i guess i'm not really qualified to post because i'm only on duke's waitlist...but i would MUCH rather go to NYU or michigan (i'm also on their waitlists) than duke if i had a choice. this is due to the students/surroundings that i experienced at my interviews...most of the duke students that i met seemed like they didn't have a social life or even wanted one. but that was just my experience, and it's probably not representative of everyone else's.

    bud
     
  22. SistaKaren

    SistaKaren Displaced Tar Heel
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    I've heard this a lot. Not only that, but I've seen many Duke med students around Franklin Street!

    Karen
     
  23. Pegasus

    Pegasus Senior Member
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    :D SO HAVE I. Since they take their 3rd year to do reasearch, and basically have the full year to study for Step I, they are always at Carabou Coffee studying...hehe

    :mad: Why dont we get a full year here at UNC? Well, I prefer it that way, could you imagine cramming in the first year 2 years worth of information? Geez, they take 6 weeks of Gross, we take 8 months!

    I do have a friend at Duke now, and he loves it. Taking his Step I this summer. I guess if you like research, it is for you. Personally this summer will probably be all the research I can handle
     
  24. Socceroo4ever

    Socceroo4ever Senior Member
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    Repeating the Franklin Street Dookies, I do remember that when I was staying on-campust at Duke, the guys told me that UNC's homecoming football game was the next day. Why were all the frats partying that Friday night? Because they all go to UNC to watch UNC's football games. :rolleyes:

    Even as a med student I'd hoped to have a little participation in undergraduate life as well. Not much, maybe just hanging out with some buds, but at Duke I don't think I'd be up to doing that. <shrugs>
     
  25. Christiangirl

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    Hey scully!! You have recognized me as the official Duke stalker!! Thanks!! :) I have worked extremely hard for this title!! I figure if medicine doesn't work out, the FBI will want me!! Anyway, when I called Duke last they told me that they would tell me on the 15th whether it was "more likely" or "less likely" to get off. They are basing this on whether you are in the top half or bottom half. Since I don't know how many people are on the list and I know they typically only go 15-30 deep, I intend to ask whether in the past two years, the person with my rank has gotten off. Hopefully they will share this information. Let me know what they say to you on the 15th. I will be sure to post what I am told as well. Best wishes!!!


     
  26. omores

    omores sleep deprived
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    For what it's worth, deposits are due at Duke on May 15th at 2:45pm (at least I think that's what they said). That means that the admissions office folks will probably spend the afternoon figuring out which deposits arrived and which didn't. They MIGHT be more forthcoming with information if you waited until the 16th to call them.

    Or they might not.

    Anyway, best of luck.
     
  27. Christiangirl

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    Hey omores. Thanks for the advice. I personally was not going to call until late the 16th or early the 17th, because I figure it will take AMCAS a day to generate the official list for the schools. I was just passing along what they told me.
     
  28. omores

    omores sleep deprived
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    Dealing with Duke's admissions office is enough to make you feel as if you've plunged into a Kafka novel. I'm beginning to believe that they're actually a nexus at which several parallel universes intersect.

    You call up and get one answer, you call again and get another answer, you e-mail and get a third answer. At least they're (usually) pretty friendly.
     
  29. sheils

    sheils Junior Member
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    I called last week and they told me OVER THE PHONE whether I was on the top or bottom half of the wait-list. What I said was that "A friend told me that she called, and you gave her the information... I was wondering if you could do the same for me." And they did! Bonne Chance!
     
  30. scully

    scully Senior Member
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    Hi Christiangirl! I am just curious, are you still holding a couple of other acceptances, or just one? I am holding two pending some info on exactly where I can move, and am wondering if Duke will hold this against me if by some miracle they got down to my name on the waitlist. I know that some people will hold multiple acceptances after the 15th for financial aid reasons. Do you have any ideas (or maybe you, omores?) if this is really a problem?

    That is exciting that they may tell us now where we are on the waitlist -- but I am too scared to hear the answer!! Is anyone else going to call before the 17th?
     
  31. Christiangirl

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    Hi scully. I am only holding one other acceptance. I am not sure how Duke would handle that. If you are holding two after the 15th, it may not be a good thing for any school. I would call and ask them anonymously, but I would be hesitant to be in that position personally. I think given the number of people on the list it is best to do everything "right." Just my personal opinion.

    I would call if I knew they would tell
    "more likely/less likely" but to me it would not be useful to be told whether I am in the top or bottom half of a list that may include 100 names. I mean, if you are past #30 considering in the past two years Duke hasn't pulled past that number then your chances are just as poor as #100.
     
  32. sheils

    sheils Junior Member
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    Well ChristianGirl, the news was both good and bad. I found out that I'm *more likely* (ie- top half) to get in--the hope is thus still ever-present thereby making planning my future even MORE difficult. You see there is a huge difference (in terms of planning logistics) between nc and nYc.
    good luc! :confused:
     
  33. Christiangirl

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    Hi sheils. I TOTALLY do not want to ruin your hope, but by chance did you ask whether the person with your number got in last year.... :) I just really am weary that I'll have #49 and be told most likely when they have never taken that many people off the list.
     
  34. SistaKaren

    SistaKaren Displaced Tar Heel
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    That place is great, isn't it?!

    Karen
     
  35. sheils

    sheils Junior Member
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    Christian girl:

    I just wanted to ask you how you got those in the Duke Admissions Office to give you information. Did you ask them where you were? They would only tell me that I'm in the top half... Do you think that means anything? Also, What did you mean by "ranking isn't true"?

    Good Luck on your future endeavors. MANY CONGRATULATIONS ON MAYO!!!!

     
  36. scully

    scully Senior Member
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  37. sheils

    sheils Junior Member
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    ok. so i called duke today and they said that no one has come off the wait-list yet... and they won't know until next week, b/c they're pretty much giving people until the end of this week to get their deposits in, etc. so... i'll call back next week and try to find out what's up. in the meantime, i think someone should call and find out how many people have said yes... or at least try!
     
  38. Seal

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    I heard the same thing from the admissions office--I called them on Tuesday (the 15th) to tell them of my intent to withdraw. According to them, they hadn't heard from close to half of the accepted students by that time. They also told me if I changed my mind, I had until the end of the week to send in either my deposit or withdrawal letter. If that's the case, I suppose the waitlist movement wouldn't begin until some time this week or the next.

    Have you tried calling the admissions office again? Good luck, Christiangirl, and to all of you still waiting.
     
  39. Christiangirl

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    Hey Seal where are you headed? That's interesting that they have not heard from many students. I have a friend who turned down Duke late last week because UNC offered her a full ride. Anyway, that may mean that alot of people are not going and that there will be a lot of movement. It seems weird that Duke is holding open all of these seats a week and a half later. And even would go so far as to tell you you have the option of changing your mind. I've never heard of that before. I almost think they just don't want to have to make that many more offers in case it will ruin their prestige and rating next year. I've heard that the more offers they have to make to fill the seats they have, the worse it looks. I have already called/emailed/written more than any other applicant, so it won't be me. Hopefully, someone else will. :)
     
  40. spacecadet22

    spacecadet22 Senior Member
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    Dear Christiangirl and Seal,
    From what I've heard, a number of the top ten schools have not heard from their acceptees yet--including Harvard, UCSF, Yale, UPenn, Columbia, and Duke-- or the damn acceptees are holding spots at mulitple places. Not to mention, I seriously doubt it would have a big effect on their ranking. Either way, I think we are all going to have to sit tight and wait for those folks to make up their mind. Good luck to all and Christiangirl--you never know, you just may still get that call from Duke! :D
     
  41. Christiangirl

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    Hi spacecadet. The only thing is they are the top schools, so if people haven't responded, they know they have a long list. I do know that schools DO NOT like to have a high number of offers for their yield. I don't know if it will affect their ratings that greatly, but considering that all of them only seem to offer twice as many offers as seats, I am sure they don't want to be the odd one out. :)

     
  42. Christiangirl

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    Well, I called this morning out of curiosity and was told that they have had a very small amount of movement and that the class is full currently. Furthermore, the sec said that the majority of people were only holding one acceptance and that "they hoped they would not have any more movement." Sorry folks but I figured you would want to know.

     
  43. spacecadet22

    spacecadet22 Senior Member
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    Wow...what a bummer! I hope some of those one acceptance people get in somewhere else and give up some spots in the first two weeks of June. Good luck to all!
     

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