StarryNights

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It's a relatively new school and I know a few people who attend it. Yakima has a pretty developed medical community even though it's supposed to be a podunk town from what I heard. If any of you guys have attended the interview or tour, could you describe your impressions and opinions regarding the school and its future potential? I didn't find too much from its online website and right now the only pro I have so far is location is close to home :(. I'm afraid the individual school thread might be biased. Thank you!
 

MLT2MT2DO

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Close to home is a major plus for me. As far as DO schools go PNWU is the only one I've visted It is a single building but it is new and spiffy. Most people don't like the town because it is fairly ran down with a high hispanic population. The area I live in is similar so I hardly notice a difference, I grew up on the lower side of middle class so I dunno.

I feel the tuition is steep for a school still waiting to graduate their first class, but they are getting ready to build another building. They had some previous turmoil but seem to be recovering from that, as far as I can tell.

Also a class size of only 75 is highly appealing to me. If it truly is close to home you should probably set up a tour to make the decision for yourself. Everyone has different priorities and looks at things different through their own eyes.
 

FutureCTDoc

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It's too early to tell. They accepted their first class in fall of '08 so no residents turned out and no one really knows about it's 3rd and 4th year performance, board scores etc. So if you are willing to make a gamble its fine and most likely it will be a fine school. However their just aren't the thousands of grads behind the name.
 

BKtomodachi

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The facilities are nice, although not necessarily the most spacious. They are really in need of a second large lecture area, as 2nd years are packed fairly tightly into a smaller classroom. This may not bother some but it certainly would me.

There is no significant research at the school, although it is not their focus. They strive to produce excellent clinicians.

The 3rd/4th year rotation schedule is very appealing to me. You choose/are assigned a "home base" where you could perform most or all of your rotations without moving.
From memory, these include....
-Seattle area
-Yakima area
-Portland area
There are probably more that I'm forgetting.

The tuition is rather high as well.

I am on the waitlist.
 

Melicopter

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I interviewed there, and think it looks like a great school.

Granted I chose not to attend, but only because it is a new and unproven school and I got an acceptance at another school that I loved. I did seriously consider it, though.

I loved the social climate there, and the community seemed to really be supportive of the school. The faculty I met were impressive, the anatomy lab was great, and they're paying a lot of attention to making a curriculum that will prepare students well. I think in a few years it will be a great school. I was nervous about the lack of established rotations, but that can only be remedied with time, so it's not a fault with the school - just a product of newness.
 

BOBBIO2

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I interviewed at PNWU in February. The nice things about the school are the new facilities and current students that I had the opportunity to talk to had nothing but good things to say about PNWU (although this seems to be the case at all the schools I interviewed at). Also Yakima seems to really embrace this school.
The things that drew me away from the school, however, was the fact that it's not established (no board scores to gauge how effective the curriculum is), plus the school is tiny. It's only one building and it seems to me that trying to find somewhere to study on-campus would be difficult, which may be why the second year is designed to be self-study. When the tour guide showed us the library I felt embarassed for her since it's a tiny room with a single shelf of books.
There really wasn't anything that stood out when I interviewed and I think this was really due to the fact that the school is new. They couldn't elaborate on board scores and rotations like other schools I interviewd at - all PNWU could do was speculate on these things.
I think if the school was a little older (say the first class was in 2005) I would probably attend for geographic reasons, but I chose to decline because the newness of the school is hard to overlook.
 

tele turnin

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i turned down another acceptance and waited another year in order to go to pnwu and i don't think i will regret it when i start in august. things that drew me to the school were the class size, location, and the newness. i think with it being new they will focus on doing things right due to what is at stake. i was accepted at another school with a class size approaching 200 and didn't get the same feel there. this school was also opening a branch campus the year i was interviewed/accepted and just 3 months prior to starting there i met with the vp of that branch for an interview and he could hardly answer some of my most basic questions, and laughed at the fact that they hadn't yet hired all of the faculty and that coca still had a list of things for them to complete before they held classes in 3 months. i know that a lot of people are nervous and shy away from a new school like this and i know that there have been and will be some more bumps, but there are bumps at every school and i felt that pnwu was way more on track with things than this new branch campus of an already established school.
 

Roberie

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I didn't wait an extra year, but I did turn down several other acceptances/interviews once accepted at PNWU.

As for the small facilities and otherwise diminutive "campus," I think it's more of a psychological detractor than anything else. If you stop to actually think about what they DO have (no pun intended), I think you'll realize they have pretty much everything you'll need.

For example, they don't have a large campus with dozens of old, ivy covered buildings. big deal. Someone mentioned the library was tiny, well, that's because they focus on medical journals and online resources. No need to stock Robinson Crusoe or have the kind of square footage that any undergrad library would have.

As for the curriculum, I was skeptical of their second year self study thing until I realized that was what I'd always wanted. I remember going on a rant once during undergrad to one of my friends about how the traditional education model is outdated and inefficient. Well here you go, they've implemented a relatively new, but apparently proven teaching model for second year students. The DO school in Texas (forget the whole name, off hand) has been using this model for a while now. So it's not just something they're thrusting upon the students due to space constraints, though that could be one reason.

Let's see, what else. Facilities were nice and new. No funky old anatomy lab like at KCOM. Faculty seems committed to the student's success. Class size is small and proportional to the facilities. Other schools, such as AZCOM, have larger campuses and SEEM more spacious, but you forget they don't just have four classes of DO students at 75 apiece. No, they've crammed every health professional degree program out there into that big facility. So, in the end, you're left with only a small chunk that is actually devoted to the DO students.

Can't speak to board scores, match lists, etc. and I won't refute their importance. However, I'm confident that no matter where I attend school the curriculum will be largely the same. Ultimately, it comes down to my ability to learn said material.

Even though I haven't actually started, I feel more confident than ever that I made the right choice.
 

mechanictodr

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I'm seriously considering this school as it will be one of only 4 in the NW this time around. Western Lebanon, OR campus should be accepting apps as well and since Western is proven gold for a DO school I would have to say that the unproven PNWU would rank 4th on my list of my NW choices.

The tuition is the highest of the three that are currently open and it went from $32K for the first year students to over $42k for the second year students. That right there says there are some major problems with funding... who increases tuition by 30+% in once year?
 

Roberie

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I'm seriously considering this school as it will be one of only 4 in the NW this time around. Western Lebanon, OR campus should be accepting apps as well and since Western is proven gold for a DO school I would have to say that the unproven PNWU would rank 4th on my list of my NW choices.

The tuition is the highest of the three that are currently open and it went from $32K for the first year students to over $42k for the second year students. That right there says there are some major problems with funding... who increases tuition by 30+% in once year?
Although, they haven't continued the same trend of tuition hikes. I think it will stay the same this year. I also think it was just an unfortunate consequence of the economic downturn last year. They had planned on more outside funds than they ultimately received. Also, one aspect you're probably missing is that they're not yet receiving their full revenue from student tuition. Meaning, the first year their revenue was largely dependent upon outside funds, as they had only 75 students paying tuition. This year there are two. Next year three and then four the following year. So, once they're running at "capacity" their financial situation should be less precarious and less dependent on outside funds.

Plus, how can you be sure Western's branch campus won't have the same growing pains? Just because it is linked to an established school does not mean they share revenue or anything else, for that matter.
 
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mechanictodr

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Although, they haven't continued the same trend of tuition hikes. I think it will stay the same this year. I also think it was just an unfortunate consequence of the economic downturn last year. They had planned on more outside funds than they ultimately received. Also, one aspect you're probably missing is that they're not yet receiving their full revenue from student tuition. Meaning, the first year their revenue was largely dependent upon outside funds, as they had only 75 students paying tuition. This year there are two. Next year three and then four the following year. So, once they're running at "capacity" their financial situation should be less precarious and less dependent on outside funds.

Plus, how can you be sure Western's branch campus won't have the same growing pains? Just because it is linked to an established school does not mean they share revenue.
I work at the hospital tied to the Lebanon campus and I know that they already have rotations setup that are solid and have good residency spots. The students in the NW Track program love it and have nothing bad to say other than tuition is high at Western.

Tuition is also really high at PNWU and they have none of the things Western has or Western Lebanon has (even before it opens). Also, if PNWU got more funding in the future would it decrease tuition? Most likely not. They are now basically charging for 5 years worth of schooling and have yet to show the location and quality of rotations or where they have opened residencies and in what specialties.
 

Roberie

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I work at the hospital tied to the Lebanon campus and I know that they already have rotations setup that are solid and have good residency spots. The students in the NW Track program love it and have nothing bad to say other than tuition is high at Western.

Tuition is also really high at PNWU and they have none of the things Western has or Western Lebanon has (even before it opens). Also, if PNWU got more funding in the future would it decrease tuition? Most likely not. They are now basically charging for 5 years worth of schooling and have yet to show the location and quality of rotations or where they have opened residencies and in what specialties.
I certainly won't refute your statements regarding the school in Lebanon, since I honestly haven't paid much attention to those developments. However, I doubt PNWU has "none" of the things this school will have and I caution you not to count your chickens prematurely. That's really a debate for another thread, though.

As for tuition, I agree that it probably won't be coming down. On the other hand, it's not the highest tuition around and for HPSP students (myself) it's not a huge concern. Also, as for the huge 33% tuition hike, they made that adjustment after the first year. I mean, the school administration made their best prediction of what tuition should be that first year and quickly realized it wasn't feasible to have a medical school in the growth phase while also offering cheap tuition. It was an admirable goal, it just didn't work out.

As for clinical sites/residencies, they did just release some news about those developments. There seems to be much enthusiasm from the school, but yeah, not much real info there to make a decision either way. Again, since I'm obviously pro-PNWU, let me just say that none of the schools I visited made any guarantees on clinical education. You almost universally were forced to move out of state or even cross-country for clinicals. Plus, they were all very diligent in informing applicants that "clinical sites were subject to change."
 
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BOBBIO2

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I'm seriously considering this school as it will be one of only 4 in the NW this time around. Western Lebanon, OR campus should be accepting apps as well and since Western is proven gold for a DO school I would have to say that the unproven PNWU would rank 4th on my list of my NW choices.
The tuition is the highest of the three that are currently open and it went from $32K for the first year students to over $42k for the second year students. That right there says there are some major problems with funding... who increases tuition by 30+% in once year?
Just curious, when you say 4 schools in the northwest, are you including allopathic schools, or are you just talking about DO?

Initially, my mindset was set in trying to stay close to home, so PNWU was at the top of my list but after interviewing at other schools and then at PNWU, the priority of geography dropped.

Other factors that drew me away from PNWU was the large increase in tuition, plus the news about the pending lawsuit with the old president.
 

MLT2MT2DO

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Just curious, when you say 4 schools in the northwest, are you including allopathic schools, or are you just talking about DO?

Initially, my mindset was set in trying to stay close to home, so PNWU was at the top of my list but after interviewing at other schools and then at PNWU, the priority of geography dropped.

Other factors that drew me away from PNWU was the large increase in tuition, plus the news about the pending lawsuit with the old president.
If you're making your judgement on public turmoil, I hope you also dropped KCUMB due to recent happenings. As well as KCOM from a couple years ago, don't forget Touro NY.
All in all I think that should be a small factor in the decision process.

And he is talking allopathic/osteopathic. UW,OHSU,PNWU,Western OR
 

BOBBIO2

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If you're making your judgement on public turmoil, I hope you also dropped KCUMB due to recent happenings. As well as KCOM from a couple years ago, don't forget Touro NY.
All in all I think that should be a small factor in the decision process.

And he is talking allopathic/osteopathic. UW,OHSU,PNWU,Western OR
It may be a small factor, but in combination with other factors it does add up to be a big part in the decision process - at least for me.
 

Roberie

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It may be a small factor, but in combination with other factors it does add up to be a big part in the decision process - at least for me.
Exactly, and that's your prerogative. Everyone has their own criteria of what they want in a med school.

Also, with regard to residencies, I feel more removed than most applicants since I'm HPSP. So, no matter what programs have or haven't started, I'll be off to an Army program somewhere. My point being, I couldn't really care less about PNWUs residency situation, while others might be focusing on that exclusively.
 

MLT2MT2DO

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It may be a small factor, but in combination with other factors it does add up to be a big part in the decision process - at least for me.
Fair enough, I'm interested in PNWU but not overly thrilled about everything involved with the school (tuition, clinicals still iffy, etc). I just found that last line to be a bit of a grasp.
 

mechanictodr

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I certainly won't refute your statements regarding the school in Lebanon, since I honestly haven't paid much attention to those developments. However, I doubt PNWU has "none" of the things this school will have and I caution you not to count your chickens prematurely. That's really a debate for another thread, though.

As for tuition, I agree that it probably won't be coming down. On the other hand, it's not the highest tuition around and for HPSP students (myself) it's not a huge concern. Also, as for the huge 33% tuition hike, they made that adjustment after the first year. I mean, the school administration made their best prediction of what tuition should be that first year and quickly realized it wasn't feasible to have a medical school in the growth phase while also offering cheap tuition. It was an admirable goal, it just didn't work out.

As for clinical sites/residencies, they did just release some news about those developments. There seems to be much enthusiasm from the school, but yeah, not much real info there to make a decision either way. Again, since I'm obviously pro-PNWU, let me just say that none of the schools I visited made any guarantees on clinical education. You almost universally were forced to move out of state or even cross-country for clinicals. Plus, they were all very diligent in informing applicants that "clinical sites were subject to change."
If you look at if from your perspective it doesn't matter what school you choose. You will do a military residency and as long as you are either more competitive or go into a field that they have more spots then applicants you will get what you want. However, if you want something that is highly sought after and you don't get in you'll spend some time as a Flight Surgeon or a GMO until you either get what you want or take what you can get "per the needs of the military". Ya, I've read the whole contract and the "per the needs of the military" part was all I needed to see to know I could not take a risk on the govt. determining what I end up doing. If I'm going to put myself through this then the only thing I want holding me back are my own abilities and not the school I attend or the govt.

I'm not saying PNWU is going to be bad, but from my standpoint of the 4 options in the NW:

1. It has the worst location
2. Very high tuition with a track record of raising it without notice by a whole lot.
3. Has the least distinguished staff
4. Has not released who they are associated with for rotations (If it's Emanuel in Portland then sign me up, but if it's some cruddy location that won't give me the exposure I need to be competitive or competent then )
5. Second year curriculum seems to be under funded and almost an after thought with the small class room and video lectures.


On a side note the students seem to be happy, and feel well taken care of. Also the staff seems to be very personable and not as arrogant/stuffy as many I have met from the NW allo campuses.
 

NerdyAndrea

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Our pre-med cohort is visiting this summer. We can post our impressions after this.

I am excited to visit. I think we're all going to be applying to UW, OHSU and if we like it PNWU.

I am glad this thread is here, thanks to everyone posting and thanks for the last post Mechanic.

A
 

MLT2MT2DO

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If you look at if from your perspective it doesn't matter what school you choose. You will do a military residency and as long as you are either more competitive or go into a field that they have more spots then applicants you will get what you want. However, if you want something that is highly sought after and you don't get in you'll spend some time as a Flight Surgeon or a GMO until you either get what you want or take what you can get "per the needs of the military". Ya, I've read the whole contract and the "per the needs of the military" part was all I needed to see to know I could not take a risk on the govt. determining what I end up doing. If I'm going to put myself through this then the only thing I want holding me back are my own abilities and not the school I attend or the govt.

I'm not saying PNWU is going to be bad, but from my standpoint of the 4 options in the NW:

1. It has the worst location
2. Very high tuition with a track record of raising it without notice by a whole lot.
3. Has the least distinguished staff
4. Has not released who they are associated with for rotations (If it's Emanuel in Portland then sign me up, but if it's some cruddy location that won't give me the exposure I need to be competitive or competent then )
5. Second year curriculum seems to be under funded and almost an after thought with the small class room and video lectures.


On a side note the students seem to be happy, and feel well taken care of. Also the staff seems to be very personable and not as arrogant/stuffy as many I have met from the NW allo campuses.
So does Western Lebanon Campus have their staff already handpicked? Have they released their clinical sites? I'm just curious how you're ranking a plot with holes and contractors loafing about above a school that actually already has two classes going through it
 
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If you look at if from your perspective it doesn't matter what school you choose. You will do a military residency and as long as you are either more competitive or go into a field that they have more spots then applicants you will get what you want. However, if you want something that is highly sought after and you don't get in you'll spend some time as a Flight Surgeon or a GMO until you either get what you want or take what you can get "per the needs of the military". Ya, I've read the whole contract and the "per the needs of the military" part was all I needed to see to know I could not take a risk on the govt. determining what I end up doing. If I'm going to put myself through this then the only thing I want holding me back are my own abilities and not the school I attend or the govt.

I'm not saying PNWU is going to be bad, but from my standpoint of the 4 options in the NW:

1. It has the worst location
2. Very high tuition with a track record of raising it without notice by a whole lot.
3. Has the least distinguished staff
4. Has not released who they are associated with for rotations (If it's Emanuel in Portland then sign me up, but if it's some cruddy location that won't give me the exposure I need to be competitive or competent then )
5. Second year curriculum seems to be under funded and almost an after thought with the small class room and video lectures.


On a side note the students seem to be happy, and feel well taken care of. Also the staff seems to be very personable and not as arrogant/stuffy as many I have met from the NW allo campuses.
I dont think the staff argument is very valid when comparing UW and OHSU, two of two of the top 10 medical schools in the country. Of course they arent going to be as distinguished with research. but you cannot compare the staff of PNWU to Western Lebanon because they havent taught anybody. They are not Western U.
 

Roberie

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With regard to Western Lebanon's clinical sites, I think he was referring to the same sites already in use by the "NW Track" students from Western Pomona. Ostensibly, these would also be used by the Lebanon (Lebanese? lol) students.

One other thing. In response to mechanictodr:
"Very high tuition with a track record of raising it without notice by a whole lot."

This is sort of misleading. They've only been conducting classes for two academic years, not even that. It's a bit of a stretch to say they have a "track record" of raising tuition. Like I said before, they made an adjustment after the first year. Hardly a track record of tuition inflation.
 
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MLT2MT2DO

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With regard to Western Lebanon's clinical sites, I think he was referring to the same sites already in use by the "NW Track" students from Western Pomona. Ostensibly, these would also be used by the Lebanon (Lebanese? lol) students.
The problem with this is there are what, at most 20 NW Track students per class right now? The class size for Western OR is going to start at 100. It is highly doubtful the current rotations are going to be enough.
 
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