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University of Miami vs. University of Pittsburgh

premed39premed39 0 replies2 threads New Member
Hello everyone! I know this is a bit late, but I just want some last opinions.

I’m a high school senior who is planning on studying biology on a pre-med track. As of now, I’m deciding between University of Pittsburgh and University of Miami. I’m OOS for both schools, but I got a $15k scholarship at Pitt and a $12k scholarship at UM. I’m in the honors program for Pitt, but not UM.

I like Pitt because the medical school is ranked higher and UMPC is right on campus. It is also in more of an urban location that UM, which means there are probably a lot of opportunities for things like volunteering and shadowing. Pittsburgh seems like a nice city, and I definitely want an urban setting. Pitt is also more affordable than UM.

UM doesn't have a hospital that is as close by since the city of Miami is a bit farther than Pittsburgh is from Pitt. But UM also has a lot of research opportunities and an early assurance program that is exclusively for UM students. The school size and the overall class sizes are also smaller, which is a big advantage for things like recommendations and research. Miami is obviously a very happening city, and Coral Gables isn't too far from the main city.

I just can't make the final decision between these two schools, so I'm looking for some input on which do you think will better prepare me for medical school and give me a good education in general. Thanks in advance!
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Replies to: University of Miami vs. University of Pittsburgh

  • KonaBartiKonaBarti 1 replies0 threads New Member
    I was wondering if you made your final decision yet because I'm stuck in a VERY similar boat as you.
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  • NJdad07090NJdad07090 618 replies8 threads Member
    I would go Pitt , cool city and a medical center on campus, you would be in the honors college and I wthink Pitt is a better but colder city
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  • amc2020amc2020 61 replies5 threads Junior Member
    I’m a Pittsburgh native and I will tell you their premed program is top notch. I know a handful of people from HS who are in their premed program and love it. In my opinion, Pittsburgh is a great place to go into the medical field with all the opportunities in the area. Oakland where Pitt is located is a great area. I would like to point out that the winters in Pittsburgh are not fun. I think people that aren’t from Pittsburgh don’t realize how miserable our winters can be! Overall, Pitt is great for premed and a great place to go to college.
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  • sostressed201sostressed201 67 replies18 threads Junior Member
    In terms of prestige, I would say Pitt. UM may have a good rep in Florida, but assuming you would like to get a residency or go to medical school outside Florida, I would highly recommend Pitt. UM has research opportunities but it is known as a party school, and besides a select few elite students, most do not end up at top tier medical schools.
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  • sostressed201sostressed201 67 replies18 threads Junior Member
    Also FYI I do not go to Pitt but I have friends attending both
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  • sostressed201sostressed201 67 replies18 threads Junior Member
    One more thing check out this link https://talk.collegeconfidential.com/discussion/comment/22802478#Comment_22802478
    Somebody was talking about why they left UM pre-med
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  • happygliahappyglia 5 replies0 threads New Member
    edited June 20
    I may be uniquely situated to answer this as I have undergraduate degrees from Pitt i and a graduate degree from Miami in your fields of interest.

    It is a no-brainer for Pitt, and it isn't even close for all the reasons you mentioned. The undergrad opportunities for research, medical volunteerism, shadowing, and faculty connections are much greater at Pitt because there is a lot more medical facilities and substantially more research going on, but also because of the physical proximity of the hospitals and labs to the undergrad campus, which at Pitt, are all right on campus and even adjacent to or right across the street from undergrad housing in some cases.

    In my years at Miami, you hardly ever saw undergrads on the medical campus. Maybe one that I can recall out of multiple labs I was familiar with, and this person was rarely there and weren't involved in any meaningful research projects. And there is barely any research being done on the Coral Gables campus where all the undergrad programs are. Undergrads are all over the research labs at Pitt. It's just a different culture and opportunity for students there in regards to research and medical experiences. And there is no size advantage of Miami over Pitt because the research opportunities aren't there in nearly the same numbers. In the upper level classes, there won't be much difference in class size at all. And the letters of recommendation that will serve you better anyway are those you get from the connections you make in the labs or clinics.

    I will also say that, flat out, based on what I observed, the classes are also better and the class offerings more robust at Pitt. In fact, Pitt's undergrad classes were better in some instances than Miami's graduate level classes. I feel very confident in advising any student that they will be better prepared for the bio, medical, and health sciences at Pitt. Pitt is really is one of the best places to go in the entire country for any of those fields.
    edited June 20
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  • virgosunvirgosun 28 replies9 threads Junior Member
    @premed39 what did you decide on? both these schools are on my list (Pitt is at the top, Miami is in the middle), so just wondering what you decided on
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  • QuietTypeQuietType 715 replies17 threads Member
    Back in the days when dinosaurs roamed the earth, I attended the University of Miami in search of a degree in biology - my intention was to feed the world with protein from the ocean. Later on, when I awakened to reality, I enrolled at Pitt to finish my BS degree in biology. My comments regarding the two schools are:
    1. Pitt is by far, far and away, better suited, both academically and physically to provide for health science majors...and it isn't even close in the comparison.
    2. Health science majors at Pitt can literally walk to world-class hospitals for experiential and practical opportunities in all the health sciences. UM doesn't come close...
    3. I was amazed at the quality of Pitt professors and instructors versus those at UM, and I have great admiration for some of the UM professors I had...but overall, the Pitt professors in biology were much more approachable and helpful than their UM equivalents.
    4. I was working in a lab in the science building at UM when we had to evacuate due to an alarm of a natural gas leak...only to be told later by a tenured chemistry professor that there was no natural gas piped into building... Some student had dropped a test tube containing mercaptans which triggered the alarm. While I'm all in favor of safety concerns, I question the competence of physical plant folks that are ignorant of simple utility piping.
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