Utah Diversity course requirement

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by isidella, Oct 12, 2002.

  1. isidella

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    I was just finishing up my UTAH secondary and saw the diversity course requirement. "i.e. ethnic minorities in the US, Intro to gender studies, gender and social change and ethnic politics, etc.)

    I didn't take anything like those courses in college, and UTAH requires it. Anyone else who is applying there: how did you fulfill this requirement?

    I am tempted to put down a course I took about religious persecution, or maybe one about minoan history (they are certainly minorities now):laugh:

    Gees, I think I am screwed. Can they ding my app for not having this requirement? Should I waste my money applying? (I will call them on Monday, but if anyone has insight this weekend, I would appreciate it.)

    :confused: Isid
     
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  3. jot

    jot

    that is one wack requirement - i bet it doens't matter though - your religious persecution course should definately count. i'm sure there is a healthy amount of latitude on that - check it out though!
    -jot
     
  4. conure

    conure Master Distiller
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    Isi,

    I'm applying to Utah as well and I just don't get that requirment. I was wondering really how serious tehy are about it. their letters of reccomendation reqs are crazy too. They want five different ones according to their web site. I'd be interested if you find anything out one monday.

    It just seems to me that this school is incredibly defensive of its application process and if they didn't include things like this they wouldn't have to answer for it. this is the only school I know of that has this diversity class requriement.

    I haven't gotten the secondary yet (aug mcat) is there actually a place on the secondary to specify the class?
     
  5. isidella

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    Yes, the standard form asking you to list your science pre-reqs has a slot for that class. It is by far the most complicated secondary I have done thus far, and it is just for the MD program(and I am doing all MD/PhD, so there is a bit more involved with some of them).

    There is also a form about your ability to "multi-task." It asks for all of your volunteer work, ECs, and employment along with the credit hours you were taking that semester for all four years of college. The instructions on the form are really vague, and I am about ready to just toss it in the trash. (But them I think of all the great research there, and those mountains. . . ) But the Utah app just seems like a waste of paper, (like why do they require AMCAS or interviews?) I got all of my secondaries over a month ago, and this one rolled in really late, so I guess I am out of the "secondary mood."
     
  6. uclachris

    uclachris Doctor Doctor Member
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    Re: Diversity Issue-- If you don't have one; sign up for one in the spring quarter. If you get in, then take the class-- if not, then dont take the class.

    Re: LORs-- the same letter can qualify for more than one category.

    I hope this helps,
    C
     
  7. wolferman

    wolferman Member?
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    I still can't believe all the stuff they want you to put in your Second Personal statement while keeping it under two pages in length. They tell you to "show depth" and to get the reader "involved", but then give you a length limit that is shorter than the AMCAS personal statment.

    If you've had any fluctuations in academic performance, then you also have to include a paragraph about why.

    If you're a reapplicant, you have to include a paragraph on significant changes to you application.

    How in the heck are you supposed to get ALL that in just two pages double spaced?:confused:

    I think that Utah is using the 6 LORs and diversity class as a method of keeping their applicant pool smaller. In the long run, I think it'll hurt them.
     
  8. uclachris

    uclachris Doctor Doctor Member
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    Agreed... Unless one was dead-set on going to the U or someone who currently goes there as an undergrad, it would be nearly impossible to predict these pre-requirements...

    C
     
  9. lola

    lola Bovine Member
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    while the diversity requirement may seem silly, i do think it's a good idea. i'd imagine they get many mormon applicants that don't really have a grasp on how the real world operates. this is in no way an attack on mormons (i have quite a few mormon friends) but it has been my experience that many have led such sheltered lives that they don't realize the way things are outside of their religion.
     
  10. wolferman

    wolferman Member?
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    Does anyone know if the University of Utah or BYU requires a diversity class as part of their undergraduate curriculum? I wouldn't be surprised if one were required to graduate. If this were the case then it would seem that the diversity requirement might actually be a ploy to get more Univ of Utah and BYU students into their medical school, essentially screening the rest of the applicants in the US for Utah undergrads. I sincerely hope this is not the case though....just my paranoia setting in.
     
  11. isidella

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    Well, I hope the rest of my app speaks to the fact that I am a well-rounded individual, even if I am lacking diversity as indicated by my lack of diversity class on transcript. :p

    But really, I was just eating a Chinese steamed dumpling, it was a slippery sucker and I lost control of it. It plopped in the hot soy sauce with a great force! Hot soy sauce everywhere!! New paint in bedroom, my shirt, the dog and my Utah secondary (finished, yet lacking diversity course requirement.) Hmmmm, every page of the secondary is a different pastel color, pretty rough to duplicate. The repressed, mystical side of my personality asks, <Is it a sign?>
     
  12. isidella

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    it asks, "Is it a sign?"
     
  13. uclachris

    uclachris Doctor Doctor Member
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    Use the Online forms. They are PDF and you can type on them!
     
  14. srabulldog

    srabulldog Member
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    just a comment on UUtah's requirements. My husband found them to be *very* strict about all the letters of rec, and all the other forms... Everything had to be filled in just so. For instance, there is a current course update form, and he graduated college in 1999 and has taken only 1 course since then. He sent in the "current course update form" marked n/a, as instructed. Meanwhile, UUtah changed their forms because they were too confusing. When my husband got back from a different interview trip, he found the new forms, which he had to fill out and resubmit. But, for some reason, he didn't submit the "current course update form". Later, he checked his app status and found that it was incomplete because of this form. He sent the school an email, and asked them if it was necessary, etc. They sent him a super-sarcastic email in reply, and one advisor told him he should FED EX it in next day mail! He sent it off in snail mail, and within a week he got an invite to interview! So they were just being really really anal about this particular form... I don't get it, but I'm guessing that in the end, they may be very sticky about the diversity course requirement... Well, good luck!
     
  15. isidella

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    Looking and can't find them! Help! What is the web address? Thx!
     
  16. uclachris

    uclachris Doctor Doctor Member
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  17. wolferman

    wolferman Member?
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    Will they be granting admissions in time for you to do this? I may need to take 2 credits of physics labs because my year of physics at my previous undergrad institution didn't include them. I'd hate to start taking these physics labs and then get rejected by Utah.
     
  18. Ninjaboy

    Ninjaboy Taneuma
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    I'd be careful about generalizations you make about people.
     
  19. lola

    lola Bovine Member
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    i said that that has been my experience. of course not all are like that, but it's hard not to be if you've grown up in an an environment where everyone is very similar. of course not all have grown up in that environment. my friends did not grow up in an all-mormon environment but still could not really understand what things were like in my world or chose to ignore reality. anyway, not meant to be an attack in any way. i suppose it is a generalization since it's based off of only about 15 people i've known well, and i'd be happy to change my opinion when i encounter otherwise. i think we could all use a little diversity exposure. not necessarily in a class, but a class is better than nothing if you're not getting it in the real world.
    :scared:

    now that i think about it... going on a mission ought to satisfy that requirement.
     
  20. wolferman

    wolferman Member?
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    I found lola's "generalization" to be eerily accurate on occassion (in my own experience). But I shouldn't be talking. My high school was only 50% mormon and Idaho has only had more mormons per capita than Utah for about a decade. ;)

    Seriously though, I think the diversity requirement is a good idea, just like the 6 really specific letters of recommendation that Utah is requiring. I just wish they waited until next year to implement these requirements.
     
  21. conure

    conure Master Distiller
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    U of U SOM.

    This school is under tremendous scrutiny for its diversity policies. A legislator accused them of being biased against white males. The school has been answering for this over the past two years. I believe it is important to have URMs in medical school however to go to the lengths that this school goes to makes one wonder why they are doing this. It could be because of the predominantly white, mormon culture in Utah. More likely they simply want a diverse class and this is one way they go about it. Having a diversity class requirment is not the way to go about this.

    This school prides itself on having an applicant pool that has high statistics (MCAT and GPA). They love to flaunt that of state schools in the US their students have some of the highest GPAs and MCAt scores. They also love to say that many people they reject go on to be accepted at other private schools. Who cares! What does any of that prove? It should just be about what kind of doctors they turn out.

    All in all if they are trying to be selective and they want a diverse class why go about it this way? They are inviting controversy and not making things any easier on themselves.
     
  22. wolferman

    wolferman Member?
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    I guess my intuition was right. I checked the Univ. of Utah's website and sure enough, they do have a diversity requirement for their undergrads. Personally, while I believe diversity is important, I still think this is a underhanded way at ensuring that Utah students get into their medical school. This, and the 3 specific LOR's. Who else thinks they're making us jump through a lot of hoops?
     
  23. mattbrady69

    mattbrady69 New Member

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    Man, it's been awhile since I've taken a look at these threads, but it's funny how some things never change. I'm a first year now so I guess it's pretty easy to look back and think I was never overly critical of medical school admissions policies and didn't display any paranoia toward the U and its "unfairness" in admissions.

    The fact of the matter is, they're really no different than any other good university in the country. I wasn't a biology or chemistry major so did it put a cramp in my style to take a biochem, cell biology, genetics, or liberal arts class to fill a prerequisite? Not really. It did me good. The diversity prerequisite will do the same. There's a whole lot more to medical school than learning a bunch of basic science facts that go in one ear and out the other, then become outdated as soon as they leave my head. Some things are consistent in good medicine, like good relationships. Any class that teaches you to really understand somebody else, especially somebody who may not be like you in many ways gets my vote as a class necessary to begin to practice medicine. The art of medicine is much harder to learn than the science of medicine.

    So, go on and try to figure out why the U, Wash, Harvard or any other school is doing what they do. When it comes right down to it, if you're qualified you'll get in somewhere to learn to practice medicine and if you're not you won't. The U will still have a top-notch research program, incredible faculty, innovative curriculum, essentially the same percentage of Univ. of Utah and BYU acceptances as they've always had, average MCAT's/GPA's comparable to more "prestigious" schools in the country, a diverse body of students, and some of the finest slopes around to session on a snowboard.

    Sorry if this comes off as kind of harsh. I didn't mean it to be. There is just so much garbage flying around about the U and it's simply not true. Best of luck to all trying to get in here. You won't be disappointed.
     
  24. TysonCook

    TysonCook Senior Member
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    Hopefully this will help some of you.

    I was a Utah undergrad. Here are some insights for the app process that may help some of you. The school is extremely competitive for white males and if you are out of state I would take a second look at even applying (unless you are WICHE). This is the first year they even look at out of state app's that are not EDP (ie MD/PhD)

    Good luck (I was not accepted, but I went to a school that I liked).

    I. Yes, a "diversity course" is required for all Utah students to graduate. But...you should be able to fill this with a general ed class such as women studies, or native american culture. If you are really motivated go to www.utah.edu and look up the reqirements and they will tell you what ones will fill these.

    II. Yes, they will want ALL the LOR's. If you are missing one they will not even open your application.

    III. Yes, they are biased against white males (as a % of the applicant pool vs. gen populatoin) THIS IS NOT MY OPINION--The Utah Legislature did a two year study and threatened last year to pull state funding of UofU SOM if they did not change their policies. If you look under the utah gov web site you can find the publication. Works out to be if you are female/minority 1 in 2 accepted after cutoff levels (3.0/27), 1 in 9 accepted for white male after cutoff (3.5/30).

    IV. If you are out of state (not WICHE), then it is extremely difficult to be accepted.

    V. The U of U SOM is in a condemmed building that used to be a hospital, but they had to move the patients since it was unsafe for them (but it is good enough for you med students). So you do get a cheaper education, but the facilites are anything but nice. And dont be fooled by the great looking web site etc. The U has many buildings and facilites that don't even pass fire code.
     
  25. mattbrady69

    mattbrady69 New Member

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    I appreciate the fact that the previous poster has taken the time to look up some quick statistics on the U and offer them to those applying, but it would really help if the statistics were accurate and representative of how many universities (not just the U) are addressing "access to health care" problems within medicine.

    It wasn't extremely apparent that this was a case of sour grapes until point V of the previous post. It's no secret that there are many qualified applicants from Utah just chomping at the bit to get into the U, and it is also no secret that many don't get in. But it is also no secret that those who are accepted are every bit as deserving to be there as those who didn't get in. It's funny how "rejected" Utahns are so quick to claim bias and take cheap little shots at the school when in reality they would have given anything to be a part of the program they are antagonizing.

    Here's the scoop from a white male at the University of Utah telling it like it is. It is quite possible that the percentage of white males at the U doesn't reflect the percentage of same applying to the school. So what! If 90% of the applications received are from white males (and they very well may be) does that mean that 90/100 of those accepted should be white males? Let's get real. I wouldn't be surprised if 95% of all applications to the U are received from in and around Salt Lake City. Does that mean that 95/100 of those accepted should be from this area also? Medical schools have more to worry about than simply trying to hit percentages like that. For example doctors have to be trained to serve the rest of the state of Utah (most of which is quite rural) and to serve underserved populations throughout the state. Would those 95/100 that should have been accepted from in and around Salt Lake be likely to move to these locations or work on tough/difficult populations that may be foreign to them? Statistics say no. Therefore, admissions committees or left to decide who is most likely to fill those niches, and it just so happens to be those that come from them.

    The little shot about the safety of the medical school was quite humerous. (sour grapes) What he failed to mention was the expansion of the university hospital, brand new health education building, expansion to the renowned Huntsman Cancer Institute,
    brand new Moran Eye Institute, new health sciences library, and new genetics research building. The facilities for learning medicine are awesome.

    Once again, the UofU is no different than any other good medical school in the country. Don't let the off-base, negative comments of those who didn't get accepted fool you. It's a great school. If you would like to be apart of it, good luck. If it happens that you aren't accepted, it doesn't make the school any less competent or any more biased--it just means that another qualified applicant made it instead. Noroc!
     
  26. TysonCook

    TysonCook Senior Member
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    Here are the articles for you to decide. I am not bitter at all, and completely understand the reason that I was not accepted had nothing to do w/ quotas, but more of a reason that I did not accept the views of one of the adcoms (dr. ingebretson). Regardless the post I made is completely accurate and not a case of "sour grapes".

    You are under the assumption that the U was my first choice and me not getting in mad me mad. The U was never my first choice and I am psyched with the accepts that I did have and my present school.

    U. Med Bias Alleged, Lawmakers: Audit confirms their fears
    Wednesday, January 30, 2002


    BY KIRSTEN STEWART AND ASHLEY E. BROUGHTON
    THE SALT LAKE TRIBUNE

    Women and minority applicants are accepted by the University of Utah Medical School at twice the rate of their white, male counterparts, according to a legislative audit of the school's admissions process.
    The audit, released Tuesday, also said the medical school has lowered the academic bar for "disadvantaged" appli- cants -- those who have a lower socioeconomic status -- while requiring higher grade-point averages and entrance exam scores from other, more privileged applicants.
    U. medical school representatives denied using an acceptance system that gives preference to any group of applicants.
    "In its admissions process, the school of medicine has only one goal: to select applicants who together who will make a strong medical school class and who individually will become excellent physicians," said Lorris Betz, dean of the school.
    Admission to the medical school is competitive. Of the 1,200 people who apply each year, 102 are accepted.
    For the past two years, medical school records show about half the female applicants were accepted, compared with one male in five. Similarly, half the minority applicants were accepted, compared with one white in five.
    Auditors found no proof of age-related or regional bias among applicants, and no sign of an anti-Mormon bias, as has been alleged. And there was no evidence that nonqualified applicants had been admitted.
    But some lawmakers said the audit confirmed their fears. "It's reverse discrimination," said Rep. Carl Saunders, R-Ogden, who requested the audit after his son and grandson were both rejected by the medical school. "Many of my allegations have been borne out. To keep calling it 'diversity' is just dancing around the issue."
    Saunders wasn't alone in seeking the review. Lawmakers from Utah County also called for the audit after receiving complaints from constituents who alleged the medical school is biased against white, Mormon males.
    Betz and others said there is no quota system for minorities and women, suggesting instead that they successfully stand out from a pool of applicants.
    "Women and minorities tend to pursue less traditional paths to medical school, which sets them apart from their male counterparts," Betz told lawmakers at a subcommittee meeting.
    Once a woman or minority member meets the basic requirement of a 2.5 GPA and a score of 7 on the Medical College Admission Test, the admissions committee only looks at an applicant's work history and background.
    Betz and others said their goal is to select a medical school class that mirrors the state's population.
    But recent changes to the school's selection criteria -- de-emphasizing grades and test scores and giving more weight to applicants' character and background -- have led to higher acceptance rates for women and minorities while making it harder for white males to get accepted, auditors said. Despite that, white males make up the majority of each class currently enrolled at the school.
    The acceptance practices, though consistent with the U.'s strategy to improve diversity among its student ranks, conflict with nondiscrimination policies of the state Board of Regents, which governs Utah's state-funded colleges.
    "An applicant's race and gender are the attributes most often used to identify their diversity," the report said.
    The practices also fly in the face of the university's claim that students are never evaluated on the basis of gender, race and religion, said House Speaker Marty Stephens, R-Farr West, reminding Betz that such discrimination violates federal law.
    Betz denied that women and minorities have an advantage over white, male applicants, saying the U.'s medical school is simply following national trends. The school's selection criteria is endorsed by the Association of American Medical Colleges, he said, and is used by most of the nation's 126 medical schools.
    Only three of those schools, he noted, admit a lower percentage of women than the U.
    "We're not accepting women and minorities for the sake [of doing so]," said Kim Wirthlin, assistant vice president for legislative and public affairs at the U.'s Health Sciences Center.
    Auditors claimed that applicants from advantaged and disadvantaged backgrounds are subject to disparate treatment; applications from would-be students routinely have "disadvantaged" written or stamped on them and the candidates are given lower academic standards to meet, they told lawmakers.
    Betz denied existence of a lower academic standard, saying, "There's no evidence that we treat advantaged or disadvantaged applicants differ- ently."
    "There's no evidence?" responded Stephens. "We're talking about this report, dated January 2002?"

    Here is a link to the audit as well:
    http://www.le.state.ut.us/audit/02_01arpt.pdf

    As far as the buildings... Moran is Great, The good side of University Hospital is nice, and of course Huntsman is good, but the actual school building isn't so hot, espcially compared to most other school. This has always been the case with the University of Utah. Yes you can do research at Moran, but you are doing gross, Micro, Bio, etc all in a building that is anything close to exceptional.

    Have you ever wondered why the U doesn't do tours of the school during the interview?
     
  27. mattbrady69

    mattbrady69 New Member

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    It's quite clear that the previous poster either did not interview at the U or for some strange reason got an abbreviated interview. I actually took 2 complete tours as an undergraduate and 1 complete tour during my interview. I saw everything there was to see and then some. While the building where some, but not all, of our classes take place is not brand new, it is far from inadequate. The brand new health education building beginning as we speak should make the U's facilities comparable to many of the nation's best. If there are any questions at to what things are really like here I'd be glad to answer questions privately. It is much better to get the story from someone attending the institution.

    The provided article did nothing to address my previous post. There was never a doubt that the percentages of matriculating females and males to those applying are not equal. I wonder at how many schools they really are. The problem is compounded in Utah because the number of female applicants to all programs, not just medicine, is much lower than the national average. Therefore, if the percentages were to be equal our current studentbody would look something more like 90 males to 10 female. Then the U would take flack from the ACLU for discriminating against females. (even though they would not be) I personally enjoy having a class with nearly half of it being female, I hear they actually make pretty good physicians (you can cut through the sarcasm with a knife!) I'm glad the U gives them a chance in the face of a huge male majority.

    Let's not lose sight of the purpose of medical school. It is not to see who does and does not get accepted. It is to provide healthcare to the masses. The U has discovered the state's needs and is addressing them quite adequately through their admissions. So, while you and the grandfather/state legislator of others who did not get accepted are wasting money and energy claiming bias, the U is trying to turn out excellent physicians, provide access to healthcare for all in the state, and remain one of the finer state (and private for that matter) medical schools in the country.

    Point: I personally think the U is a great school (that's why I chose it over 5 others). Hopefully the diversity requirement is not a huge roadblock for applying. It really is a good idea in the grand scheme of things. Don't let anybody influence you one way or another by rumors, negative press, or heresay. If Utah interests you take a chance. I don't know how hard it is to get in or not, I rolled the dice and it just so happens that it came out in my favor. Noroc
     
  28. pocketprotector

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    I am trying not to be biased here but this seems to be an an emotional opinion rather than fact. Don't let your pride influence your emotions.

    This next section is in general and in no way directed to Mattbrady69:

    Medical school is not about showing how good you are by which school you attend, it is finding the school that best serves your needs in terms af facilities, social life and personality. You want to feel comforable and find an environment that is conducive to your learning style. If you want to apply to the UofU SOM, do so. Don't be swayed by others' opinions. Visit the campus and feel it out yourself.:p
     
  29. mattbrady69

    mattbrady69 New Member

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