Aug 20, 2019
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Hi, I don't mean to sound ignorant but I'm genuinely curious -- what exactly makes UCSF dental school so unique besides the name value?

I know it is a really amazing research school and it receives a lot of NIH funding but what makes them so top-notch? Besides research, is there anything in the curriculum/opportunities offered that makes the school stand out? For example, UPenn has the Selectives Program that basically offers a bunch of unique/extraneous courses outside of the traditional curriculum.

All I've found is that UCSF has a prestigious summer research program between year 1 and 2 (many schools have that), the John Greene Society (some schools have that too), and operates on a mission of serving the underserved by offering community clinics/externship opportunities (many schools also have that too). I didn't see any courses in the curriculum that stood out to me either. Someone, please advise me!!!
 
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FutureDent020

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Yea, that “prestige” is related to number of citations, peer reviews, faculty, and international involvement/ reception. Unless you are involved in research during your dental school education, that prestige won’t trickle down into your general education too much. It’s a cheap dental school in California, that’s what makes it so unique and popular. And fairly so.
 
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laundry

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UCSF is a research powerhouse, as are Michigan, UCLA, and a few others. It consistently ranks #1 in NIH funding. I think the allure of this is due to there being no official ranking for dental schools, so the NIH rank is viewed as the "next best thing". However, this has NO bearing on the clinical dentistry training. When it comes to clinic, UCSF is very much a school that does not hold your hand - you have to look and fight for cases, which is often challenging.

That being said, UCSF gives a SOLID medical education for the first two years of dental school. I still sometimes marvel at how well obscure bits of information hung around my brain a decade later.
 
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Darth Endodontus

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Besides research, there are opportunities to get involved in patient care as early as Winter quarter of D1. We have a program called Community Dental Clinic (CDC) that helps the community with dental care once a week in the evening. Traditionally, CDC only accepted adult patients, but within the last year or so, they have expanded to pediatric patients as well. D1/D2s assist and D3/D4 provide care. This is a great opportunity to get involved early on and learn!


P/NP, Research opportunities, Grant/Scholarships, SF, Crap ton of extracurricular opportunities. What is there not to like :)
 

Life of Pablo

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I think what makes it unique is that it's a state school that doesn't give its in state applicants preference. How many state schools do you know that do that?
 
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ChristianT

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It gives loads of grant and scholarship, as much as $40k/year (sometimes even more lmao). I can tell you as many as 50 % classes receive half (or more) tuition discount. This makes the school as cheap as Texas ones (well excluding cost of living) but with all the additional benefits listed above. My cousin goes to UPenn with 40k scholarships/year too but in the end, she had to borrow as much as a UCSF student with no scholarship offer and minimal grant (everybody at UCSF gets 5k minimum grant). Apply there and give it your best shot. Thats all I can say.
 

ChristianT

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It is very OOS friendly, MUCH MUCH more than UCLA which can only have <10% OOS.( Think UCSF= private school OOS friendly). Most OOS people who rejected UCSF had an offer from their cheap state school lined up for them. I forgot to tell you but OOS UCSF students have additional 1 year grant for their D1 year to help offset OOS extra tuition. When you are in, the school figure out ways to help you afford your dental education without being a slave to your debt.

The biggest issue is... you have to get in first. It’s OOS friendly but they have like 2000+ application.
 

MG14

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I think what makes it unique is that it's a state school that doesn't give its in state applicants preference. How many state schools do you know that do that?
University of Utah.
Haha but you’d think there shouldn’t be any but they exist.
 
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