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University of Pittsburgh (and other Pre-Med Programs in PA)

Discussion in 'hSDN' started by SlaskWroclaw18, Dec 3, 2008.

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  1. SlaskWroclaw18

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    I am a high school junior who will soon be starting to apply to colleges. I want to go to medical school (allopathic) and I am trying to figure out which schools have good pre medicine programs. I reside in Pennsylvania (northeast around Scranton to be specific) and I am seriously considering the University of Pittsburgh. How is their pre-med program? I read one of the earlier threads that only 7-15 of their pre med students matriculate to their Medical School (Pitt) but I want to ask if doing undergrad and med school both at Pitt is feasible(if I have the right gpa and mcat of course)? I do like Pitt a lot and going there for undergrad would be good but also going to their medical school would be great. What do you guys think? I am a good student (3.8 overall gpa and greater) and I really want to become a doctor. Thanks!!
     
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  3. smq123

    smq123 John William Waterhouse
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    Pitt doesn't have a "pre-med program." In other words, there is no official pre-med major.

    If you're interested in attending Pittsburgh for undergrad AND medical school, apply to their guaranteed 8-year program. If you keep a certain GPA during undergrad, you're guaranteed a seat in Pitt's medical school. You need a certain SAT and high school GPA to qualify for that program.
     
  4. SlaskWroclaw18

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    I understand that they don't have a "pre med program" but does a good percentage of their pre-med students go to medical school. I know they discourage students (like many schools) who they feel are not fit for med school from going down the pre med path. But would it be a good or bad idea for me to go to Pitt for undergrad if I intend to go to medical school?
     
  5. smq123

    smq123 John William Waterhouse
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    You can go to any undergrad, and go to med school. Pitt is no different.

    I went to Pitt, and went to med school. Lots of people went to Pitt, and went to med school. I think that, on average, about 60% of pre-meds who apply from Pitt are successful (which is better than the national average of 47-49%.) Fundamentally, it comes down to you and how hard you push yourself.

    It's a bad idea to go to Pitt for undergrad if you intend to go to med school if you don't like the school. It's a good idea to go to Pitt for undergrad if you intend to go to med school if you love the school. That's all there is to it.

    Like I said, if you intend to go to Pitt for med school, look into their 8 year program. (http://www.pitt.edu/~oafa/guarantee.html --> scroll down to "School of Medicine Guarantee")
     
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  6. SlaskWroclaw18

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    Thanks. :) Since you went to Pitt. Can you tell how the cirriculum is like? How are the classes there (especially the "pre-med" classes you need to take for medical school application i.e Organic Chemistry, Biology, Physics, etc.) How is the pre-med advisor? How is the school overall?
     
  7. smq123

    smq123 John William Waterhouse
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    These classes are big.

    Like every other major university, TONS of people start out wanting to be dentists, veterinarians, pharmacists, and (especially) doctors. Organic chemistry and biology are all required for all of those fields. So you may be in a class with 150 other people. (Not necessarily 200 - Pitt didn't have those massive football-stadium-crowd like classes....but it's still much bigger than high school.)

    The pre-med advisor when I was there wasn't so great - I think she had been a bio major, but had never really worked for a medical school admissions office at any point. NOTE: THIS IS TOTALLY NORMAL FOR ALMOST ALL COLLEGES. Most pre-med advisors have never had any experience with med school admissions EVER. :rolleyes: Hence, why I got the bulk of my "advising" from SDN. :D

    The school, overall, is great. Pittsburgh is really geared towards undergrads, and give you all kinds of crazy discounts. The school is big enough to feel like a real "college," but small enough not to be overwhelming. The professors were great, the research opportunities came out the wazoo....I had a great time there.
     
  8. SlaskWroclaw18

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    Why kind of schedule did you maintain as a pre med? Did Pitt any MCAt prep courses, pre-med groups, etc? Also how hard were the science (premed classes)? Please that in perspective a high school student can understand.
     
  9. smq123

    smq123 John William Waterhouse
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    As a premed....I took a full course load, which was usually 17-18 credits. Any more than 18 credits, you need to pay extra tuition money. I also held down a part time job in a research lab.

    You average class is 3 credits. I also usually had to take a corresponding laboratory course, which was 1 credit.

    Pitt didn't have a very active pre-med group when I was there. To be honest, that was fine with me since I couldn't stand most pre-meds. Most pre-meds are often very arrogant and insecure....and they disguise their insecurity with more bragging and boasting. I didn't enjoy hanging out with them very much.

    There are no MCAT prep courses offered through Pitt. There is a Kaplan center near the university, though.

    The pre-med courses were not THAT difficult, necessarily. They involve a fair amount of studying...probably similar to an AP class in high school.

    The hard thing about being a pre-med is that it is a juggling act. You have to juggle extracurriculars, volunteering, shadowing (which I did not do), research (which I DID do), and school...and still find time to do laundry, go food shopping, hang out with friends, etc. The courses aren't THAT tough...but combined with each other, and on top of your other activities, can make it more challenging.
     
  10. SlaskWroclaw18

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    Ok. How were the profesors? Were they helpful or did they care less about the students? Also I am asking about your class in particular, how many "pre-meds" were in you freshman year as compared to the students who actually had a chance when it came to senior year?

    PS
    Sorry about the bombardment of questions but I really want to find out as much as Pitt as I can so I can make an objective decision on terms of colleges. Also which med school are you attending currently?
    Thanks for your help and patience!!:D
     
  11. Bacchus

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    If you have the finances (enough for a private education) I would recommend my undergrad, Univ. of the Sciences in Phila. We don't offer non-science degrees (depending on what you classify Pharm Mktg and Healthcare Policy as) so there is not much fluidity if you decide you don't want to pursue science. That said, I enrolled in the biochemistry major here. I never had a mandatory class with over 60 students and generally have had classes of about 30-35 students excluding microbiology, which was about 150ish. However, I knew the professor in that class so it was not a problem.

    The school gives every student financial, merit-based aid ranging from $1000-$9000 a year. This however does not make a dent in the $26k tuition and $8-9k room and board package. This is a great school, but only if you have $$$$ or a lot of outside aid.

    Check it out... www.usp.edu
     
  12. SlaskWroclaw18

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    The University of Pittsburgh is my top choice but now one of my secondary choices is King's College, one of my local colleges. It is in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania. It accepts aroud 78% of their students but according to College Board, 11% of students (not of premeds, but rather the graduating class!!) who complete the a BA program here goes on to Medical school. Would this be a good secondary choice to Pittsburgh? It is a smaller school so I could possibly become closer to my professors (there for, more letters of recommendation).

    http://collegesearch.collegeboard.com/search/CollegeDetail.jsp?collegeId=3678&profileId=7
     
  13. Bacchus

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    As far as caliber of institution, Pitt surpasses King's. I'm a PA native and I heard of Pitt before I heard of King's. However...if you are happy and think you will do well at King's, do not write it off. Make sure it fits your needs. If it does, then that is all that matters. When you are applying to medical school its your performance that matters more than your institution.
     
  14. SlaskWroclaw18

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    Which is a better university for a pre-med to go to, Pitt or Penn State (main campus)?
     
  15. Bacchus

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    Pitt is smaller...probably has less drunk people. Penn State is going to give you classes in the hundreds. My one friend had a general calc class with 400+ students.
     
  16. han14tra

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    Pitt is okay, but don't expect a lot of individual attention from them. Penn State gets a lot of people into med school. Personally, I go to Bucknell and a lot of us get in. Lots of individual help.
     
  17. smq123

    smq123 John William Waterhouse
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    Eh, these types of generalizations don't always hold.

    I went to Pitt. Got lots of individual attention. Had professors who knew my name, knew my family, I had been to their houses, etc. They were able to write excellent letters of recommendation for me, because they truly knew me.

    If you never go to class and never do any research, and never take any advanced-level classes, then sure. You might get lost in the "crowd" at Pitt. But if you have that kind of personality (i.e. always content to sit in the corner, never assertive, never push yourself intellectually), then you're unlikely to get into medical school in any case.
     
  18. JJMrK

    JJMrK J to the J
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    Just go somewhere you like, feel comfortable, and can envision yourself being successful.

    If you then find that medicine isn't for you, you're not at a school that you chose solely on it's ability to generate med students.
     
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  19. sparker09

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    does anyone know the percentage rate of upitt premeds that actually get accepted into a medical school?
     
  20. Emperor Napoleon

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    Hey guys. I just wanted to ask, how hard is it to get into the pre-med program?
     
  21. Toutie

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    This thread is 10 years old! :eek:
     
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  22. mmmcdowe

    mmmcdowe Duke of minimal vowels
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