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what should be more important when choosing a school?

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Hi everyone, 


I'm currently trying to decide between two programs. Program A has a well set up didactic year and an environment that I'm very comfortable in and will be confiddent in my success, but only has 1 elective rotation. Program B will be 7-10K cheaper and allows for 3 electives (4 weeks each), and although the environment is fine, I do not like it as much as school A. 


Should a gut feeling override 3 electives (especially when I'm very interested in so many specialities)? Or should electives override an environment?


I have until tonight to place a deposit down on program B and would love some opinions, thanks!

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PANCE passing rate





I'd put comfort > electives.  You're going to spend a LOT of time in the school, with the students, and with the faculty.  There's a lot to be said for being in a welcoming environment when everything else about PA school is stressful.


Do I wish my program had more electives?  Sure.  Is my education lesser for not having them?  No.

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I had ONE elective and I went to an extremely supportive school. I don't regret my decision in the least.


Rotations may help you pick a specialty, but probably more importantly, it will let you see a variety of work environments (big or small practices), hospitals and offices, rural vs urban, etc.



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comfort with environment>quality/variety of rotations>didactic quality>pance pass rate>cost

pance pass rate is more about the individual student than the program. a good student at the worst pa program in the country will still pass pance. you need to feel comfortable at your program and be provided with excellent rotations and didactics. low cost is nice, but not at the cost of the other factors.

In general, attend the oldest/best established program you can get into as they will likely have the best faculty and rotation sites. newer programs are a gamble. could be great, or could have terrible faculty and poor rotation sites, especially in a location with lots of older programs, which have secured the best faculty and best rotation sites.

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