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Where would you go (and why?)

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - DO' started by momgracea, Dec 5, 2008.

  1. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    Hi everyone,

    I was accepted to four schools (one is out of the running - Touro CA - as I would have had to submitted by deposit already) and having a terrible time deciding where to go. Here are the details:

    LECOM (Erie)
    Pros: I really liked the people, love PBL, and it's not too expensive. My hubby can enroll in a grad program nearby. Can get a 3 bed townhome for under $1000.
    Cons: Two extra months of winter?

    NSU
    Pros: Awesome school, "college" feel, get to wear scrubs everyday. Location, location, location! Family within a few hours drive.
    Cons: Freaking expensive, no way in h*ll we'll afford a house, let alone a decent apartment. Grad school will also cost hubby lots more $$$. Kids hate Florida. (They are weird.)

    Texas Tech (Foster School of Medicine - El Paso)
    Pros: (Don't flame me!) It's an MD school. Least expensive (instate tuition of ~ $12K a year) Brand new facilities which are totally state of the art. Class of 40 for first year. Modified PBL. Can eat/drink in classrooms (at least for now.)
    Cons: In the middle of NO WHERE. Hot, dry desert. It's sister city, Juarez, is murder central. El Paso Times proudly reports that crime (mostly rapes and car robbery) is down, and only one category, "Murder, is up." One of the highest TB rates in nation. Have to start early to learn Spanish. (Pro?)

    So... I am interested in everyone's perspective. What would you do? Why? Other factors I am not considering? HEEEELLLLLLPPP MEEE!!!
     
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  3. ILikeFood

    ILikeFood NSU Class of 2013
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    I'd go to Texas Tech. 12k/year? We have a winner.

    NSU-If your kids hate florida, you'll hate florida. Especially if you can't afford a decent space.

    LECOM vs Texas Tech. Both crap locations. But Texas Tech is cheaper, has new facilities, and won't be as much of an adjustment for your family. Buy some flak jackets and firearms with the money you save (kidding). Or move to a gated community.
     
  4. Bacchus

    Administrator Moderator Physician 10+ Year Member

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    What is your husband going to do in TX? Are there any possibilities for him? If you like Erie and have the financial means, you can purchase a modest house relatively cheap for the four years you are there (granted you rotate in the area) and then sell the house once the mortgage crisis is over and make a good profit. Yeah, the crisis might not be over but your house should appreciate in value. Also, it'd probably be cheaper or comparable to buy your own home in Erie when compared to renting. Erie is a quiet community, safe for the kids, I'd assume. Lots of family activities.
     
  5. Deepa100

    Deepa100 Junior Member
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    Congratulations !!
    I would definitely go with a school which will make my family happy too. Because if they are not happy, I ain't gonna' study well. Just my 2 cents...
     
  6. SB25

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    I wouldn't even consider NSU because of the cost and if your family is not going to be happy, it's definitly not worth it.

    Texas Tech sounds like a nice program, but I'm big on going someplace you will actually want to live at for the next four years. Sorry, but the idea of being gang raped in a back alley as I'm walking to the grocery store is not appealing to me.

    I vote LECOM. It sounds rather inexpensive, especially when you consider the affordable housing. It sounds like you really like the program, too. Plus your hubby can continue his education. It sounds like the perfect situation! As far as the snow is concerned, you'll get used to it. If you're from the south, it probably won't be pleasant, but think of it as an adventure! Your family might get the chance to experience some activities they otherwise wouldn't have-skiing, skating, building snowmen-totally fun!

    Good luck with the decision! :luck:
     
  7. engineeredout

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    Erie. TX is cheaper but personally a new school doesn't sound appealing. Plus if I end up at erie thats all the incentive anyone would need.


    Although, in TX it sounds like you'll get pretty good clinical experience. Murders/attacks are good for the aspiring med student.
     
  8. Altruist

    Altruist Hoodledooer
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    I would say, throw out Nova, for the reasons listed above.

    From there, a couple of question: Are you going to spend 2 years in El Paso or 4 years? If you're going to do your rotations elsewhere in Texas, maybe the location isn't such a huge deal. That in-state tuition is awfully hard to pass up.

    If your husband will be working, this may not be true, but I'd guess you can expect to take out at least $80-100k in loans over your 4 years even in El Paso. That was my sister's experience paying $12-13k in in-state tuition even with my brother-in-law working a blue-collar job all 4 years. Some people might say, what's another $100k once you're at that level? ;)

    If you offered me $12k a year tuition if only I'd move to El Paso, I think I'd turn it down, but that's just me. I'm from NoDak, so Erie would be a step up for me, weather wise!

    Whichever way you go, best of luck to you. If only the biggest problem we all had to face was choosing among our acceptances!
     
  9. Semicolon

    Semicolon OMS II
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    I agree with the rest. The cons definitely seem to outweigh the pros for NSU.

    Texas Tech might be a cheap MD school, but personally I would never want to put myself in the way of potential harm even for 2 years. Then again, these might just be exaggerations. I would see if I could research the area further and how current students going there rate it, just for the cheap tuition. Maybe it's not so bad.

    Overall, I'd choose Erie. It would be a major climate change for you, but if your family could be happy there (and you can afford it well enough), it sounds like the pros outweigh the cons with this one.
     
  10. rugger14

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    i feel your pain. I'm currently deciding between LECOM and PCOM. I can chime in on Erie since I was born/raised here. Yes, the winters can be a bit daunting at times, especially for people who aren't used to it. But you will be more than able to adapt. I did the postbac program last year and the students from FL, TX, etc were a little shocked at first, but they quickly got used to it. It isn't as bad as it sounds, trust me.
    -Erie is a good size..not too big, not too small. We have a good amount of family oriented activities/venues.
    -Location is a very important consideration. If you aren't happy with a school's surroundings, odds are you won't be happy with the school. (well maybe) The most important thing to me is rotation opportunities. The first 2 years are going to be similar at many schools, except for some minor differences. Good luck with your decision. PM me if you have more questions about Erie.:)
     
  11. Dissected

    Dissected All bleeding stops eventually
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    I say TX! small class size + cheap tuition = bueno! 2 years there wont be so bad!
     
  12. singinfifi

    singinfifi Professional Insomniac
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    I thought that too...and yet, I sit here as a homeowner (and an M1! w00t) You'd be surprised at what you can find. If you want, I can put you intouch with my realestate agent, maybe she can help you get perspective on the market here.

    That said, if your kids HATE FL, don't come here. It's not worth making your family msierable...I don't know how old your kids are though. That makes a diff. too. (A 4 year old "hating" someplace is WAY different then a 14 year old...)
     
  13. BrakngLyv

    BrakngLyv I've got a fever!
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    I live in Texas now and am contemplating a similar scenario. I would primarily consider your husband's opportunities. Kids are very adaptable. What are his grad school possibilities in El Paso. If you go to El Paso, will you be there for 2 years, then do your rotations in Amarillo, Lubbock or El Paso? I'm sure you want your family to stay together, so this is important. For Erie, I would consider the Seton Hill campus for PBL. It's near Pittsburgh. What would his grad school opportunities be there? You could likely do rotations in the Pitt area. My understanding is winters are somewhat milder than Erie and housing is also affordable in the area. I do think learning Spanish will be to your advantage wherever you attend, particularly if you ever want to go back to the Southwest. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Hispanic population is expected to triple by 2050, making 1 in 3 U.S. residents hispanic. Ultimately, I think you'll be trained well wherever you go. It's important your partner is fulfilled and challenged too so everyone stays happy.
     
  14. p30doc

    p30doc Ever true and unwavering
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    12k/yr would win it for me, so TX
     
  15. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    Interesting... did you have a spouse/significant other with a job? I figured buying something would be out of the question anywhere since Dan (my husband) and I will both be in school, and at best, he'll be working part-time.

    Re: the kids; they are older... one will probably be moving to go to school in CA in a year, but you hate to be like "Hey, Dad and I are moving... have a nice life!!" :D

    Anyhow, I'd be interested in talking to your RE agent. My mom had told me the same thing (as recently as this morning, as she was in town for a visit) but, of course, I didn't believe her.

    I just want to make sure I explore all my options before making a decision. The nice thing about Nova is that Dan could do his clinical psych program there as well... even if it is absurdly expensive!
     
  16. NPEMTIV

    NPEMTIV Accidentally Accepted
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    I'd personally probably go NSU or Texas Tech, but that's just me! I don't think I'd like the PBL. I like independent study, but I prefer just straight studying, not case studies.
     
  17. rajaholick

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    momgracea: is your avatar a picture of yourself?
    if so, you look like sarah chalke from scrubs
     
  18. nevinleiby

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    Elliot? doesn't seem like it, imho

    Chocolate Bear, however...man...you can't beat that one!

    scrubs, ftw! :love::love:
     
  19. tideleonheart

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    I went where my wife would have the most opportunities. Texas sounds like a winner to me, but if there aren't any opportunities for your husband there, go with Erie. If you do go with Erie, are you SURE about their PBL?

    That said, any school will give you a great education... and any job as a DO/MD will give you more than enough money to pay back your loans - as long as you're not stupid with blowing all your money.
     
  20. wackyfizzle

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    El Paso sure is not the place I would want to put down some roots (I'm from Texas myself) but four a short span of time? That doesnt sound too bad especially with the instate tuition. Plus im sure they have residencies in another part of Texas. Maybe even in the Dallas Fort Worth area. Though Im sure you would already know that
     
  21. MossPoh

    MossPoh Textures intrigue me
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    If you went to nova then you get to party with me. You know how much fun I can be. You can cite the age difference, but you're still around my sibling's age and I can hook you up with some great connections. Lawyers, doctors, accountants, guys living on sailboats for 15 years...whatever you can think of. If your kids are going to be leaving soon then I would factor them slightly less into the equation. I'll be honest and say I was less than excited about my parents moving to Florida after I graduated high school. I do miss home, but I have found its unique set of pros since then. I suspect they'll do the same. Nova is expensive but I think you'd be surprise at how little of a difference there is when all is said and done. If it clicks then go with it. I am honest about hooking you up with all sorts of lawyers, accountants, doctors, etc. Also, you don't have to look at JUST NSU for a graduate education. You also have FIU, FAU, UM, and Barry. There might be more but those are the ones that come off the top of my head. You could get instate tuition at those, which would be pretty cheap (excluding UM...private and all).

    An MD school is appealing and I don't blame you for that. One of my top choices is a first year MD school. I think a lot of the things you mentioned were superficial and maybe even a benefit to your education. Your description attempts to sound neutral, but you do seem to like it. I highly doubt that you plan to wander around the areas that have such high rates.....although, you are a shady character.


    Lecom-Erie- They now belong in the "established" category. LECOM does know how to do PBL and if you love pbl then I'd go for it. If you you are a weather driven person like me, then I might weigh that heavily into my decision. I never toured the school so I feel like a fraud giving my impressions of it. They do have lots of residency programs and are affordable. Cold and snowy. Not bad but I don't know how many times I cursed to myself saying "I could be getting instate tuition in Florida" as I scraped ice off my windshield when I was at PSU. I wouldn't trade my memories in PA for anything, but the weather is, for better or worse, a part of them.
     
    #20 MossPoh, Dec 11, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2008
  22. stonewall22

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    I would save the cash. I would go to El Paso...
     
  23. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    Yep, that's really me! Hah hah.. I like Sarah Chalke (and Scrubs, for that matter!) What a nice compliment!:D
     
  24. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    MossPoh,

    You crack me up! NSU or not, I hope I won't be looking you up in a few years... at least not for a hook up with one of those doctor/lawyer/guy on a sailboat friends of yours! :rolleyes: Maybe I'll be one of those lucky ones whose marriage lasts... Shoot, he's put up with me this long. :D

    Well, for better or worse, I did decide on LECOM. Actually, the tuition difference wasn't the issue (for if it was, I would have gone to Tech) but the budget that was allowed by all schools. Had the discretionary income (e.g., budget - living expenses) been the same, I would have picked NSU. But, sadly they were not. Likewise, I could have lived with the south of the border killings, but Tech's allowance for living expenses was pretty awful. Thus, in both TX and FL my family's quality of life would have suffered and that was a HUGE factor in my decision-making process. The other biggie is the fact that I applied at LECOM because I absolutely love PBL, so I am pretty convinced I will be happy there. And if I am happy, everyone is happy!

    Soooo.... hopefully, because I grew up in Chicago, the snow and cold won't be that big of a deal (don't quote me on that in 4 years!) My husband hasn't lived in snow, but is oddly excited about the prospect. (Let's see how HE is in 4 years!:p)

    Never know though... could see you in Fl in 2 years. LECOMers CAN do rotations down there.

    Take care and good luck!
     
  25. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    Believe it or not, 3X the opportunities in Erie (for clinical psych), which was one deciding factor. Why do you ask if I am sure about their PBL? I have heard good things...
     
  26. time2go

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    Without a doubt, LECOM, you say you love the people and love PBL and your husband can go to a school nearby and find a great home.
     
    #25 time2go, Dec 12, 2008
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2009
  27. time2go

    2+ Year Member

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    by the way, where are you leaning towards
     
  28. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    LECOM it is. I have to have the deposit in the mail tomorrow!
     
  29. teacherman

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    Just curious, did you apply to TCOM as well?
     
  30. time2go

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    good choice, congrats on becoming a med student
     
  31. FutureDocDO

    FutureDocDO 1K Member
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    Congrats! PBLers in my class love it. I was an LDP though. Erie snow gets pretty bad, a lot of snow so make sure you stay close to the school. Since you're a PBLer, it doesn't matter as much because after anatomy is over you hardly have to come to the school. There are two colleges close by you can go to study in their library. One of them opens til 2 am!

    You don't have to stay in Erie for 4 years if you don't want to. We have clinical rotations site all over the northeast region. You can certainly do all your rotations somewhere else if you want. I'm doing all of my rotations in Cleveland.
     
  32. TexasTriathlete

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    Probably a good choice. I don't know much about Erie, but El Paso is a ****hole. I probably would have picked them, for in-state tuition, but I'm a single guy with no kids. If I've got kids, I'd rather them not go to school in El Paso.
     
  33. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    Actually, no. PM me if you want to know the details of why. I've also posted a comment on the thread about them wanting to go MD (along with their DO) that briefly mentions my experience with them (not positive.) It is unfortunate, really. My family doctor graduated from TCOM several years ago and loved them, but things have changed, and they are not the same place they used to be.
     
  34. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    You can say that again... but I've never been fond of the desert. Being in the middle of freaking nowhere isn't all that thrilling either.

    My friend who grew up in Las Cruces, as well as buddy who manages hospital facilities in the Texas area, including the one that Tech uses, also had less than complimentary opinions of El Paso - - and I trust them to give me the honest truth. Interestingly, though, both spoke highly of Texas Tech and their contributions to the area.

    So, yeah, if I was young and single like you, I probably could have managed. But I am not!! :D So, Erie is a better choice.
     
  35. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    Ok y'all... I lied. Texas Tech awarded me a full four year scholarship a few days ago and so ... well, it's an offer I couldn't refuse. Best of luck to all my buddies who will be attending LECOM next year. And to those of you who are wait-listed, be looking for a spot to open up!
     
  36. NurWollen

    NurWollen Strong with the Force
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    El Paso may be "in the middle of nowhere," but El Paso itself is a much larger city than Erie, if I'm not mistaken. Also, the opportunity to learn Spanish, for me, is a pro not a con. Learning a language can be incredibly fulfilling and broaden your perspective and, important, I think, as a physician, your level of compassion. It helps you see others as equals and helps you be more understanding of different cultures, etc.

    That said, your family I assume is your priority, and you should consider what type of schools, safety, etc. you'll have in El Paso. I don't know if the violence in Ciudad Juarez spills over to El Paso, but I know the trauma does. I read an article a while back about how Mexican officials keep sending shooting and other trauma victims over to the US side. Great stuff for a med student, maybe not so much for a family.
     
  37. Dissected

    Dissected All bleeding stops eventually
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    Congrats thats awesome!!
     
  38. ShyRem

    ShyRem I need more coffee.
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    I would absolutely no holds barred go to the cheapest place I could find. You have no idea how awful it is to have that $$$$$$$ factor hanging over your head. It's totally depressing to know I'm going to be over $200K in debt when I'm done.

    momgracea, I thought you got off a waitlist last year? (or am I misremembering?)
     
  39. momgracea

    momgracea Junior Member
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    Hi ShyRem,

    You remember correctly, though it was in the 2006-2007 interview cycle. Got off waitlist for Bradenton and was actually accepted LMU-DCOM even before that happened. I also had interview at NSU that I cancelled when it became apparent that moving, and thus medical school, would not be possible for some time. My family went through some serious turmoil that year, and I kind of dropped off the face of the SDN earth for a while. But all those issues have since resolved, life is good, and the time is now right.

    Ironically, I truly believe because the circumstances that caused me to withdraw in 2007 (this information is asked on the TMDSAS application) were known to Texas Tech, I became a more desirable applicant, e.g., someone who could face adversity, survive, and push forward.

    Not 100% sure, of course, but nonetheless I feel immensely lucky to have been accepted at so many schools during this cycle, and also to have been awarded the scholarship. It is an awesome feeling!
     
    #38 momgracea, Feb 7, 2009
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2009
  40. JaggerPlate

    10+ Year Member

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    Wow congratulations. Take it and don't look back. You'll get a solid education, the LCME approves solid schools, I wouldn't stress about the quality of any school in the US. Good luck.
     
  41. Terpskins99

    Terpskins99 Fear... The Stig
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    Congratulations! Honestly, I was going to recommend Texas Tech even before your scholarship. Med school loans are an absolute pain in the rear to deal with. I wholeheartedly recommend anyone doing whatever they can to minimize it.

    And people are so busy in medical school, that location quickly becomes an overrated factor.
     
  42. ShyRem

    ShyRem I need more coffee.
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    Go to Texas Tech and don't look back, mom. Truly. And good luck. :)
     
  43. HyperSpace

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    During your clinical years at Texas Tech you are going to see some really rare interesting cases considering that there is a lot of people who dont seek health care until the last minute in Juarez Mexico. Also having cheap tuition really does make choosing a speciality easier on the long run since you dont have to worry to much about your loans. El paso isnt that bad of a town. I would hate to go to Lubbock Texas for Four years but El paso isnt that bad. UTEP is in El paso so your husband will have the opportunity to go to graduate school. Another reason I like Texas Tech is their curriculumn. I like how you dont have to go to lecture and labs for 8 hours a day.

    Ok I just read that you went to Texas Tech. GOOD CHOICE and good luck! =)
     
  44. nevinleiby

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