Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

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anonymous user 100

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Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby anonymous user 100 » Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:45 am

I'm going to try to boil this down as simply as possible in hopes of diverse responses and thoughts since I appreciate the good will on this site:

I blanketed the T-14 this year, received acceptances to everywhere (minus Y and S where I'm still waiting), and got the max dean's scholarship (but not Darrow) at Michigan (others withdrawn or pending). Attending HLS has always been a dream (immigrant background, not-URM), and to see the opportunity present itself along with all of the opportunities it would create during my 30-40 year career is truly humbling. That said, my parents do have $$$ so I am not expecting much aid, but they would not be helping me pay for my tuition or expenses either.

Now the conundrum - my spouse applied to MD programs this year as well, and was admitted to Michigan (a top medical program) and nowhere else.

I'm losing sleep over the question of what to do. Do I forego my aspirations, and all the other options I had (CLS, Chicago, Penn), and go to Michigan; have spouse reapply next year in hopes of landing in Boston; live apart at some point, .... ?

Thank you in advance for any insights
Last edited by anonymous user 100 on Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:50 am, edited 1 time in total.

20170322

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby 20170322 » Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:49 am

anonymous user 100 wrote:I'm going to try to boil this down as simply as possible in hopes of diverse responses and thoughts since I appreciate the good will on this site:

I blanketed the T-14 this year, received acceptances to everywhere (minus Y and S where I'm still waiting), and got major aid (but not Darrow) at Michigan (others withdrawn or pending). Attending HLS has always been a dream (immigrant background, not-URM), and to see the opportunity present itself along with all of the opportunities it would create during my 30-40 year career is truly humbling. That said, my parents do have $$$ so I am not expecting much aid, but they would not be helping me pay for my tuition or expenses either.

Now the conundrum - my spouse applied to MD programs this year as well, and was admitted to Michigan (a top medical program) and nowhere else.

I'm losing sleep over the question of what to do. Do I forego my aspirations, and all the other options I had (CLS, Chicago, Penn), and go to Michigan; have spouse reapply next year in hopes of landing in Boston; live apart at some point, .... ?

Thank you in advance for any insights


Michigan. You'll be with your spouse, have great prospects, and little debt.

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half moon

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby half moon » Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:57 am

I'm in a similar position, applying to T14s while my SO applies to medical residency. I think the most important thing here is to have an honest talk with your spouse and decide whether the two of you are really comfortable with long distance while you're in school.

As much as it'd be hard to pass up HLS though, Michigan with limited debt is a great option. Since your spouse is already in at their med school, that would probably be my choice.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby AJordan » Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:59 am

Tougher when a spouse is involved. They get a say too. If you spouse is excited about going to UM Med, which is phenomenal, then it makes a lot of sense to get jazzed about your full ride and go to Ann Arbor. What does your spouse think about you going to Harvard?
Last edited by AJordan on Mon Jan 29, 2018 2:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

anonymous user 100

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby anonymous user 100 » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:04 am

AJordan wrote:Tougher when a spouse is involved. They get a say too. If you spouse is excited about going to UM Med, which is phenomenal, then it makes a lot of sense to get jazzed about your full ride and go to Ann Arbor. What does your spouse think about you going to Harvard?


SO definitely wants me to go to Harvard (and not to Michigan), but doesn't want to give up Michigan Med or play the game of MCAT and applications all over again either.

Living apart for multiple years is very unsettling, though.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby albanach » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:19 am

So, looking down the line, eventually your spouse is going to Match somewhere and you'll be moving to a destination not entirely of your choosing. You'll still be a junior associate so not have much other than the JD upon which to sell yourself.

That HLS degree would be very portable. You should be able to find work anywhere on the back of it.

Still, three years living apart is a really big deal. It's a tough choice.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby BigZuck » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:23 am

Michigan fully vs Harvard sticker is a no brainer to me

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby Stylnator » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:25 am

I guess with SO's sacrifices sometimes have to be made. But just remember this, when she graduates med school you will probably have to move again to wherever she matches - and that whole process necessarily gives you a much smaller say than you have now. You could use this time to go to the school you clearly want now, HLS then make the sacrifice to move with her wherever she ends up in 4 years. Jobs are everywhere but there is only one HLS.

Also, flights from DTW <-> BOS are <$100 if bought at the right times (moved to MI from the northeast and I fly home once a month so trust me I know).

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby Blue664 » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:54 am

There are people who do long-distance for several years, even long-distance marriages. It's not for everyone, but are you afraid of it in theory or are you certain it wouldn't work given your personalities/relationship expectations etc.? You'll both be extremely busy (which will help), and there is an end in sight (end of school), so that would help!

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby BobBoblaw » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:55 am

Let's not forget that OP will be done with law school ~5 years before SO is done with med school and residency. While Michigan is a great school, there are only so many biglaw jobs in Detroit/SE Michigan. If OP did end up in Michigan, they should have an idea of how they are going to spend those extra 3-5 years until their SO IS able to move again. Sounds like there isn't an easy answer here.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby malleus discentium » Wed Mar 01, 2017 12:23 pm

Why do you want to go to H? Just because it's H? That's not a real reason, especially when you have a full scholarship at Michigan and your spouse is going to be there (!).

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby albanach » Wed Mar 01, 2017 1:19 pm

BobBoblaw wrote:Let's not forget that OP will be done with law school ~5 years before SO is done with med school and residency. While Michigan is a great school, there are only so many biglaw jobs in Detroit/SE Michigan. If OP did end up in Michigan, they should have an idea of how they are going to spend those extra 3-5 years until their SO IS able to move again. Sounds like there isn't an easy answer here.


I think you're ignoring the fact that SO's spouse will very likely have to move for their residency unless they match in Michigan. That's why I pointed out the HLS degree will be more portable for someone just starting as an associate. They'll then face a further disadvantage because, when OP then tries to find work wherever their spouse matches, the new employer may perceive them as only likely to stay three years. Again, the prestige of HLS will help there.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby BobBoblaw » Wed Mar 01, 2017 2:04 pm

albanach wrote:
BobBoblaw wrote:Let's not forget that OP will be done with law school ~5 years before SO is done with med school and residency. While Michigan is a great school, there are only so many biglaw jobs in Detroit/SE Michigan. If OP did end up in Michigan, they should have an idea of how they are going to spend those extra 3-5 years until their SO IS able to move again. Sounds like there isn't an easy answer here.


I think you're ignoring the fact that SO's spouse will very likely have to move for their residency unless they match in Michigan. That's why I pointed out the HLS degree will be more portable for someone just starting as an associate. They'll then face a further disadvantage because, when OP then tries to find work wherever their spouse matches, the new employer may perceive them as only likely to stay three years. Again, the prestige of HLS will help there.



Tbh, I'm not sure how this normally works, though the handful of MDs I know all did their residencies in the same city, usually the same university hospital system where they got their MD. I assumed this was standard procedure, but it may not be. In either case, the SO would be stuck in Michigan for a MINIMUM of 2 additional years, but as many as 5+ depending on what the deal is with residency.


I kind of agree with you that Harvard might be the best choice here.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby anonymous user 100 » Wed Mar 01, 2017 4:24 pm

BobBoblaw wrote:
albanach wrote:
BobBoblaw wrote:Let's not forget that OP will be done with law school ~5 years before SO is done with med school and residency. While Michigan is a great school, there are only so many biglaw jobs in Detroit/SE Michigan. If OP did end up in Michigan, they should have an idea of how they are going to spend those extra 3-5 years until their SO IS able to move again. Sounds like there isn't an easy answer here.


I think you're ignoring the fact that SO's spouse will very likely have to move for their residency unless they match in Michigan. That's why I pointed out the HLS degree will be more portable for someone just starting as an associate. They'll then face a further disadvantage because, when OP then tries to find work wherever their spouse matches, the new employer may perceive them as only likely to stay three years. Again, the prestige of HLS will help there.



Tbh, I'm not sure how this normally works, though the handful of MDs I know all did their residencies in the same city, usually the same university hospital system where they got their MD. I assumed this was standard procedure, but it may not be. In either case, the SO would be stuck in Michigan for a MINIMUM of 2 additional years, but as many as 5+ depending on what the deal is with residency.


I kind of agree with you that Harvard might be the best choice here.


Yea the residency deal is that they could get matched in different cities for a period of 3-5 years. We will likely put our eggs in the D.C. basket since that is where we want to be long-term, but to the point of previous replies that is a time that I will need to be flexible.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby floatie » Wed Mar 01, 2017 5:31 pm

So, a few things to think about:

1) Whether you can make long distance work for 3 years, if you choose HLS. No one else can answer that for you. Some couples make it, some don't.
2) Your spouse is going to be in Ann Arbor for 4 years, you've got 3. What are you going to do for that extra year?
3) The matching process does give your spouse some choice. Your spouse will rank programs they're interested, and the programs will rank the candidates, and then there's an algorithm that assigns you, based on the best pairing of student/program rankings. Usually, barring something crazy, medical students at a T25 medical school (which includes Michigan) will get one of their top 3 residencies, so don't think that you both have absolutely no say on where your spouse goes for residency.

Here is one idea: Go to Michigan with your spouse, enjoy Ann Arbor and having basically no debt. Gun for DC, and (hypothetically) get a job there. Do 1 year of long distance (your first year as an associate or whatever, and your spouse's last year of medical school). At the beginning of their 4th year your spouse will be interviewing at programs, and they can make a good case for wanting to be at a DC program (or Hopkins) since "My spouse already lives in DC" helps a lot, and residency programs like to see interest in the area. Given that your spouse is going to a good medical school and will presumably do well, if they rank DC programs as their top few slots on the matching system there's a good chance they'll end up there.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby trebekismyhero » Wed Mar 01, 2017 5:36 pm

BigZuck wrote:Michigan fully vs Harvard sticker is a no brainer to me


Go to Michigan. You can go to a big law firm with offices all over the country and then figure it out from there when your spouse matches for med school. She's going to Michigan Med, it is not like they'll end up matching in a place you two don't want to be

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby Rigo » Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:16 pm

100% Michigan and never look back.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby blueapple » Thu Mar 02, 2017 11:39 am

floatie wrote:
Here is one idea: Go to Michigan with your spouse, enjoy Ann Arbor and having basically no debt. Gun for DC, and (hypothetically) get a job there. Do 1 year of long distance (your first year as an associate or whatever, and your spouse's last year of medical school). At the beginning of their 4th year your spouse will be interviewing at programs, and they can make a good case for wanting to be at a DC program (or Hopkins) since "My spouse already lives in DC" helps a lot, and residency programs like to see interest in the area. Given that your spouse is going to a good medical school and will presumably do well, if they rank DC programs as their top few slots on the matching system there's a good chance they'll end up there.


I 1000% agree with this.
Last edited by blueapple on Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

anonymous user 100

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby anonymous user 100 » Thu Mar 02, 2017 4:55 pm

Thanks, all, for the thoughts. If nothing else, at least now I know it really is not an easy decision either way.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby BigZuck » Thu Mar 02, 2017 5:02 pm

Nah it's a no brainer when you're talking a fully at Mich vs Harvard sticker

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby BigZuck » Thu Mar 02, 2017 5:03 pm

Well unless you've figured out a way to eat prestige I guess. Then maybe it's a tougher choice.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby AJordan » Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:19 am

I actually thought a good amount about this. I think there's something to be said about the collective stress a household with a doctor and a lawyer together may possess. Your choice to attend UM on a full ride is going to not only save tuition but also save an additional rent and trans costs. This could help significantly in your home in the future if/when one of you feels super stressed by the pressures of your collective professions. As a married guy with a working spouse I understand that oftentimes one has to give up a career to support the other. My wife did it for me and it's probably the reason our marriage is so good as our time together is invaluable for the investment of marriage. If you're both charging forward into your careers it's going to be incredibly important to maintain that focus on each other. Outside of drug/alcohol abuse distance and debt seem to be the two biggest killers to a marriage. You're doing your best to avoid them and you and your SO will likely reap the benefits.

So, in the end I think UM/UM is the best option. HLS + BC/BU med would be next best. Splitting up for school + debt is a very distant third.
Last edited by AJordan on Mon Jan 29, 2018 2:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby BlendedUnicorn » Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:26 am

BigZuck wrote:Nah it's a no brainer when you're talking a fully at Mich vs Harvard sticker


I don't think the top dean's is a full ride? Not that it matters- a six figure discount at Mich is definitely a better deal than H at sticker even before the SO comes into the picture.

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby anonymous user 100 » Fri Mar 03, 2017 6:12 am

HuntedUnicorn wrote:
BigZuck wrote:Nah it's a no brainer when you're talking a fully at Mich vs Harvard sticker


I don't think the top dean's is a full ride? Not that it matters- a six figure discount at Mich is definitely a better deal than H at sticker even before the SO comes into the picture.


It's not full, but it's very close and I would be coming out at the end with no debt (when including summer internships).

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Re: Facing a conundrum - thoughts/advice appreciated

Postby nyu2019maybeplease » Fri Mar 03, 2017 9:10 am

This. UM seems like an easy call for me given the circumstances (and probably even without them), but only you know your relationship.

Do keep in mind how busy you'll both be. Finding weekends to devote to your SO isn't always the easiest, and I imagine the Med school works similarly.

floatie wrote:
1) Whether you can make long distance work for 3 years, if you choose HLS. No one else can answer that for you. Some couples make it, some don't.



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