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About suzanne4

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    Hive Mind Larvae
  1. Not SeaConquest here, but volunteer experience definitely counts for the direct entry combined BS/MS PA programs. Which is "easier" depends on so many things.The PA route can be quicker than NP with the direct entry programs. It is extremely difficult to get into the graduate PA programs because they expect much more - paid, full time work experience. It is super competitive.
  2. If your daughter is interested in the direct entry combined PA program, she should best figure that out now so she can get in any required volunteer work. Even if it is not listed as a requirement, it really helps in the application process and interviews. Applications at some of the schools were due in October/November. All had additional requirements (essays, interviews, experience - either paid or voluntary). It required a bit of additional work, but MUCH less than applying at the graduate level. The program itself is very tough. A fair number of students drop out or are kicked out every year.
  3. I just did a google search, and there do seem to be a few direct entry BS/MS PA programs scattered around several states, with the majority being in NY and PA.
  4. My son is a PA student and my daughter is going the NP route. My son is in a combined BS/MS program, and the entire program is four and a half years. For a student coming right out of high school who knows what they want to do, the PA route can be quicker. However, getting into a Masters program is much more difficult. They require many clinical hours (working in the medical field). It is very competitive. The actual job (PA/NP) is very similar, but the training is different. PA schools follow the medical school model, and students rotate through ten or twelve areas of medicine, spending four to six weeks practicing in each (family medicine, emergency medicine, orthopedics, pediatrics, surgery, etc). NP's follow the nursing model and become nurses first, and then go on to graduate school. They say that nursing is more preventative and focused on the whole person, and that PA school is more focused on disease because they follow the medical school model. I have heard through the college tours that western NY and Pennsylvania have the only combined BS/MS programs in the country for PA's, but I am not sure if that is true. PA's can also write prescriptions, and around here, most jobs advertise for NP/PA,so they really function the same once they graduate.
  5. We were also told that my ds had to reply before May 1st a few years ago, or he would lose his spot in a very competitive program. I made some phone calls. I can't remember who I called, but I found out that not all colleges are held to the May 1st deadline. The interesting thing is that the college told us that he would lose his spot, but when I called this national association, they assured us that this particular college would have to accept him into that program until May 1st. I think it might have been The National Association of College Admissions Counseling.
  6. I agree. CC classes helped my college students have an easier adjustment to college away from home. The knew how to deal with all the academic issues and just had to focus on roommates, meals, etc. It would have been much harder for them if they also had to deal with college courses for the first time.
  7. My son was very ready to leave for college "on time" both academically and socially. He would have done well. While he didn't do anything exceptional during his fifth year, he really enjoyed having the extra time to do his extracurricular activities that he loved for one more year. We added another year of high school though, rather than a gap year, so he could take CC courses. We both appreciate that it gave him time to try out many different courses at the CC and volunteer/shadow before choosing a career. He is now in a very competitive, specialized BA/MS program. That extra year really helped him solidify his choice as well as work on his applications and interviews. It was good for him in so many ways. My dd, on the other hand, was not using her time productively here, and was in a bad state. For her, the fresh start away at college has been really good. She needed the structure of full time away college. She was not happy here, and she was not working toward any goal. They are all so different. It really depends on the student.
  8. I held both my boys "back" and it worked out great here. They took very advanced CC courses (Calc I,II,III as well as University Physics, Differential Equations, Linear Algebra, A &P I and II, etc). That extra year gave them time to do more volunteer work which helped them figure out what they wanted to study in college. They also had another year to take college courses at the excellent local CC which then transferred to their four year college. They were able to maintain freshman status for scholarship purposes. They also really enjoyed the extra year of high school activities including sports, musicals, etc.
  9. Both of my college students needed very little. Those lists are kind of crazy. I think it really depends on the student.
  10. I have a dd with depression, and I struggled with what to do. I was very concerned about her safety, but she wanted to go, and she was doing terribly here. She is doing better there than she was here. You never know what might be best for each child, but you try to figure it out. I dread vacations and summer because she is so miserable here. I think it was good for her to get out of here and get a fresh start. She was refusing counseling after she turned eighteen. She was definitely in a bad place. I wanted to help her get out of it, but I couldn't. Sending her away has been good for her, and she just started counseling there. I am still very worried about her, but I think it would have been worse if she had stayed home. She would have felt like a failure and been bored with the lack of structure. At least there, she is keeping busy and working toward something. It just depends on the individual.
  11. That would be an advantage, but at over $30 thousand per year for a commuter to the four year college (that accounts for the highest merit scholarship), it makes more sense to take interesting elective courses at the local CC. That would have added almost $70 thousand to his expense if he had chosen that college (and actually much, much more because that was a much more expensive option overall considering the merit he receives at his current college). Also, with his merit scholarship at the college he is attending, he had to get special permission to take an elective. He already had all his gen eds completed. The college does not allow any courses that do not go toward fulfilling gen ed requirements or requirements for a major/minor. He was caught because he had completed all requirements, yet he needed credits to stay full time. They did make an exception, and he was able to take an elective. However, with the cost of college, saving a year or two can potentially save a lot of money/loans. He is in a combined bachelors/masters program.
  12. My two would not have qualified for their significant scholarships if they had earned their AA degrees. They did go in with a large number of credits (66 and 33), but they did not earn degrees while in high school. Also, depending on the program chosen, it might not save any time at all at the next college/university. There is often a sequence of courses that is required spanning four/five years (especially in medical/science/engineering programs). Even if the right courses are taken at the CC, many colleges will not accept them. Or, in our case, they would accept them, but they still wanted the student there for the entire time. Two out of three colleges that ds applied to would not take time off the program even though his required courses were accepted. They wanted him to take electives and be there "to mature." Thankfully, the third college, which allowed him to progress using the credits he received at the CC, was also the one that awarded him the huge merit scholarship.
  13. Our contribution would have been over one third (closer to one half) of our income. It's crazy. Even with top merit scholarships, the private colleges are out of our reach, financially.
  14. My kids are also spaced out (age), and we don't qualify for need based financial aid. My oldest two are going to colleges that many on this board would say are a very poor "fit" for them. They are definitely academically capable of going to schools where the average scores are much, much higher. My son received the only full tuition scholarship at his small private school that he chose for a very specific major, and my daughter received a full ride at her very low ranked state college. It's tough to read these boards sometimes. I leave feeling like they are in a terrible place, especially my daughter, who wasn't as sure as my son about what she wanted to study. Then I have to remember they will graduate without loans, and that they can go on to graduate school if they want. For each of them, there was really only one affordable option. They had already taken most of what they could at the local CC. They have good attitudes though, and I hope they aren't resentful as they get older. I also hope that we can find affordable options for the younger ones. It's not easy. I don't even encourage them to apply to most schools because I know that financially we can't do it. My daughter only applied to one school. My son had applied to three because his program is extremely competitive. He was accepted into all three, but only one was affordable, thanks to his scholarship. I know there was some luck involved in that, and that's why I am nervous about finding places for the next ones.
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