Med students will get choice: Athens or Augusta?

  • Follow Latest News

ATLANTA — When the Medical College of Georgia opens a satellite campus in Athens 16 months from now, the future doctors applying to attend will be asked where they prefer to study: Athens or Augusta.

But they may not get their pick, said Dr. Barbara Schuster, dean of the Athens campus.

She outlined the process today for members of the University System of Georgia’s Board of Regents as part of an update on progress at the new campus and preparation for a visit from a team of observers from the accreditation agency. The observers from the Liaison Committee on Medical Education will be looking to make sure students receive the same quality of education and support services in Athens as they would at the home campus in Augusta.

Among those support services are tutoring, counseling for excess debt or psychological issues and even medical care. Those will be provided by the University of Georgia, just as MCG does for UGA pharmacy students taking classes in Augusta, she said.

The committee wants to ensure both campuses are equal, but that doesn’t mean they’ll be identical. And students are likely to prefer one over the other.

Some students may be drawn to Athens’ night life, football games and thousands of undergraduate coeds, while others may see those as a distraction.

“We’ve had some comments among present medical students, ‘It’s kind of good not to be in Athens,’” she said. “I think we’ll see our potential students sort themselves. I think we’ll see students who don’t have a preference, and I think we’ll see students who have a great preference.”

Students are more likely to prefer one campus over another due to where the research or academic mentor is that they are interested in rather than entertainment choices, she said.

They may not get their choice anyway. Applicants will be asked their preference, but if there isn’t an opening — and Athens will only have room for 40 in each class, they’ll be offered the other campus when they decide whether to attend MCG. Admissions officers, though, will grant acceptance based on the applicant’s qualifications, not which campus they prefer.

“Where they want to go will not enter into whether or not they are accepted,” she said. “The standard of acceptance is the priority.”

Those standards will come under scrutiny during the three-day visit that begins Sunday from the accreditation committee. The three observers will go — without an escort from MCG administration — to visit both campuses, meet with faculty and even interview executives with Athens hospitals that will provide clinical experience for the students there.

MCG President Dan Rahn said he believes the school is prepared, but he anticipates the observers will make comments about several “issues in transition” or the details that are still being formulated for various programs on the new campus.

“If you don’t have issues in transition, you’re standing still,” he said.

Comments (4)

Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
Riverman1
70399
Points
Riverman1 04/15/09 - 10:08 pm
0
0

Issues??? Ha....how about

Issues??? Ha....how about totally disagreeing with your little pet project of creating another medical school? This new school will only cost hundreds of millions of dollars over the years and turn out few physicians.

donewithmedschool
0
Points
donewithmedschool 04/15/09 - 10:37 pm
0
0

As a student about to

As a student about to graduate from MCG in Augusta for med school.....I would have chosen the Athens campus if I had a choice.

HillGuy
7
Points
HillGuy 04/15/09 - 11:06 pm
0
0

I have a feeling that the

I have a feeling that the slots for the Athens campus will fill up fast. Augusta is probably a better city to be in for medical school as there are less distractions, but I can see someone in their early to mid 20s being more attracted to the idea of living Athens, over Augusta. If it helps get more doctors in georgia, then its a good thing.

recoveringliberal
0
Points
recoveringliberal 04/15/09 - 11:19 pm
0
0

Hmmmm...........let's see.

Hmmmm...........let's see. Athens has a large campus, a great social scene, football in the Fall, great university facilities and there's always something going on.

Augusta has........er.........the old Hamilton Wing of MCG and a couple of clubs on Broad St.

Yeah......that's a tough decision!

Back to Top

Top headlines

Judge denies request to delay sales tax vote

A superior court judge denied a request Wednesday from a Richmond County citizen seeking a court order to postpone the May 20 special purpose local option sales tax referendum.
Loading...