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Does the location of the PA school matter?


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Does it matter where you go to PA school location wise?

I recently got accepted (finally!!) to a really good program in Philly!! Here's the dilemma: I preferred to go to a school down south because of the warmer weather, change of scenery, and the possibility of moving down south one day. I am single and young so I have nothing holding me from moving far away. I live in Pennsylvania, and applied to some schools in Philly because it is close to my family and friends, but also applied to several programs in the south. I got waitlisted at two southern schools and accepted to the Philly school so far. I have one week left to submit my deposit at the Philly school. I was supposed to have an interview this week with a school in GA, which I was looking forward to, but they rescheduled it to October, so now I will have no choice but to submit my  $1500 deposit to keep my seat at the Philly school. I do love the program, I am just not fan of the city life. 

So now I am wondering if it is worth attending other interviews once I submit my deposit? A PA once told me that it does not matter where you go to school because you will only live there for about a year and then move around for clinicals. Is this true? Am I being foolish for possibly dropping my $1500 seat for the sake of changing locations? Or is it best to stay near family and friends for a social support system? Obviously, I did not pick random southern schools. I chose ones that genuinely interested me. I also am the type who wants to weigh out all options before making a final decision which is why I still want to attend the rest of my interviews. Please let me know your thoughts!! 

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I know plenty of people that will put a deposit down to the first school they are accepted to and still Interview at other programs. If you can afford to lose the money and you'd honestly rather go to school in the South then put the deposit down and see how your next interview goes or if you hear back from the programs that you were wait listed. 

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I did exactly what you’re considering. I put down ultimately two deposits to the first school that accepted me and ulitmately went somewhere else. It felt strange to spend the money but at least I knew I was going somewhere and could start planning accordingly.

If you can afford the deposit and would go to the school if nothing else better comes up, the peace of mind might very well be worth it.


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You never know if you will get accepted elsewhere. If you don't put down the deposit and things don't go well with your other interviews you may have a lot of regret. 

As far as location, I don't think it really matters. I think what matters is going to a school that will prepare you to practice medicine and pass the PANCE.

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@TheFatMan  @UGoLong

Thank you for the responses! More specifically though, how much time did you actually get to experience the area where you went to school? Did you actually have time to explore where you lived for that time or were you mostly indoors studying and in class? I guess what I am trying to figure out is if it is even worth wanting to go to a school just for the sake of experiencing the new location if I am only there for one year and then spending the second year doing clinical rotations. 

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Most people who chose to stay in their state for the PA program decide on the basis of tuition fee and the fact that they may not have to rent an apartment If you have decided to move to another state you will probably receive job offers after doing your rotations there. I also suggest to confirm PA school Accreditation status & reason eg why they are on probation as a clue to find out if they are on solid ground

You may find these links useful:

http://www.arc-pa.org/accreditation/

https://www.mypatraining.com/choosing-the-best-physician-assistant-school-for-you/

https://beaphysicianassistant.com/blog/finding-pa-programs-that-are-a-good-fit

 

 

 

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On 9/18/2020 at 9:55 AM, eluch15 said:

@TheFatMan  @UGoLong

Thank you for the responses! More specifically though, how much time did you actually get to experience the area where you went to school? Did you actually have time to explore where you lived for that time or were you mostly indoors studying and in class? I guess what I am trying to figure out is if it is even worth wanting to go to a school just for the sake of experiencing the new location if I am only there for one year and then spending the second year doing clinical rotations. 

This is a very relative question. I was an old guy and did go around the town with some of my classmates. I enjoyed the town and the restaurants, etc. The young single people went places on the weekends (sometimes), like camping, etc. I drove the 2 hours to go back home and spent it with my family. 

A school day for me involved 1-2 hours away from school or home (where I studied). That was about it.

Edited by UGoLong
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On 9/18/2020 at 8:55 AM, eluch15 said:

@TheFatMan  @UGoLong

Thank you for the responses! More specifically though, how much time did you actually get to experience the area where you went to school? Did you actually have time to explore where you lived for that time or were you mostly indoors studying and in class?

I'm in school right now - one of the reasons I chose my program was for the city. Obviously I haven't experienced it much, and I'm not sure how much will change by the time your cohort begins. If it weren't for the current situation, I feel I would have time to explore and enjoy this area though. 

Just like UGoLong, I paid for two deposits and I don't regret it. It gives you security because you really never know what could happen. If you can afford it, I'd put down the deposit.

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