Columbia University ETP Program 2013 - page 11

The thread here for the Columbia University ETP program for entry in 2012 is pretty long (45 pages right now!), so I was hoping to elicit some of the same responses for those who are applying in... Read More

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    Thank you for the validation PNPhopeful and LaurenMW! Still haven't received my email yet but I feel better knowing this is to be expected!

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    I hope Columbia and their hospital is okay after Hurricane Sandy! I heard about the NYU hospital and how the generators stopped working during the storm. What a tragedy! Thoughts and prayers for those affected by the storm.
    hollysf likes this.
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    Has everyone received their email about their applications being sent to admissions? I still haven't heard from them, but I assume the storm set them behind and so I guess I shouldn't worry?
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    I'm a current student in the program and wanted to give everyone a heads up that emails may have been delayed after Hurricane Sandy. The entire Columbia campus was closed Monday and Tuesday and there was a skeleton staff present on Wednesday. Today (Thursday 11/1) was the first day the entire campus came back to life. The ETP group has had the last 4 days off from school! With transportation still being an issue, staff may have difficulties coming into the office. Hopefully things resolve soon and this doesn't delay communication out to all much longer. Good luck to you all! I know how nervous you may be feeling right now. Let me know if I can be of any help to you. Feel free to pm me
    LaurenMW and hollysf like this.
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    hello everyone!

    I have a lot of nervous energy tonight and have been poring over the ETP archives. I can't believe we have to wait til February!
    I haven't seen a lot of prospective/current PMHNP students on here - are you out there?

    I applied A WHOLE TWO WEEKS AGO for the priority deadline. My background is in visual art - I have a BFA and have spent the time since working as a nanny, art teacher, and making paintings. I have a 3.6 undergrad GPA and 3.9 pre-req GPA. My GREs were 170V, 157Q. I got a 4 on the writing component, which was lower than I expected. But hopefully it's not weighed too heavily? I think my statement is articulate and non-generic (though of course I'm still obsessing over the little things I might change now).

    I have 150+ hrs volunteering/interning in NYC. I have at least two (presumably wonderful) letters of reference, but my academic letter may not be especially specific - I'm 6 years out of undergrad at this point and my pre-req courses are not exactly intimate.

    From what I can tell, stat-wise, I think I'm in the running. Good luck to everyone! I'd love to hear from anyone in the psych specialty.
    Last edit by prospectivepmhnp on Nov 2, '12 : Reason: adding info
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    Hi applicants!

    I'm a current ETP student and I just wanted to come on here and offer you support. I thought the nursing school application process was really wrenching and exhausting, so I just want to tell you all to hang in there - you will make it! By the time you're a few weeks into your first semester of school you will barely remember all the painful waiting (I know that seems impossible, but it will happen).

    I'm happy to answer as many of your questions as I can. Congrats to those of you who have already submitted your apps, and good luck to the rest of you as you finish up!
    hollysf likes this.
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    Thanks CU2012 I have lots of questions! How do you like the program? Do you get a choice in where you do your clinicals? Does the faculty seem supportive? Are most of the students succeeding? What were your stats when you applied? What's the program like? I wish there were blogs or something about the experience because I'm so curious about what DE programs are really like!
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    Hey the healer's art, hopefully I can help you just as much as CU2012 can

    As far as my experience goes, there are pros and cons to the program as there are with any other program. For me, one of the best things I like about this program is that it is the fastest program in the country that I know of in terms of the 1st year (BSN phase). The majority of the professors are great resources and have had pretty amazing experiences to pull from which adds to the richness of the courses. With that being said, this program for me is grueling and tough due to how fast paced this program is. You're some of the brightest and best students in the country which is great because you can work with one another - problem being, you have to find a group of people that work the way you work. I was lucky enough to find that but there are people who struggle with that. Also, a huge con for me is the administration. There are too many issues that stem from the office that I get frustrated that the staff is not more organized.

    In terms of clinical, you do not get to choose your site. You are placed at one of a handful of hospitals throughout the entire city. All of which though are accessible via public transportation except one site in psych which they provide a shuttle for. When it comes to the actual clinical, the ETP class is broken up into 4 separate groups to participate in one rotation at a time (Meg/Surg, Psych, OB, and Peds).

    The faculty for the most part do seem supportive. There are some faculty in my experience who are less helpful than others but I think you will find that is not an issue that pertains to Columbia only.

    In terms of students succeeding, trust me, most are doing extremely well. You'll find that there is a large competitive nature among students here wether they will own up to it or not. However, you will find that there are many who are more than willing to help each other out to understand the material and work in teams to succeed. Ultimately, stress levels do get high but I think that stems from the disappointment students feel when they get anything less than an A. You'll come to hear that the honor society for the ETP class only invites the top 30% of the class - last year that meant you needed above a 3.85 I believe. So yes, I would have to say that students here do well.

    I know that stats are a major factor and applicants love to hear about them. Mine were on the low end so hopefully it gives hope to those in similar positions
    Undergrad GPA: 3.0
    Pre-reqs: 4.0
    Volunteer Hours: ~800 hours? Over the course of 3 years. Completed in several units and community clinics.
    GRE: V 420 M 660 (not sure how this would translate to the new GRE format)
    Language: English speaking only
    Please know that the staff first read your personal statement before doing anything else (this includes looking at your stats). This was discussed in our orientation. They really do want to get a sense of the applicant before diving into the numbers. I heavily believe that my personal statement and letters of rec helped me with my admission.

    The program overall is an exciting one to be in but I would be lying if I say I don't think about how my life would be if I chose another program or option (not like there were many). Ultimately I am happy with my decision because of the fact that this is one of the faster programs in the country for the first year and my heart knows that I am not going to be an RN, but rather a Nurse Practitioner. Certain administration make it seem like you HAVE to work as an RN before going on, but that is not how our program is designed. Sure, I do want to work as an RN for a small period of time to gain more experience but the two roles of very different. I think that by truly understanding the difference between the two roles will help make your experience here a lot easier. This program will test your ability to time manage and perform at the highest level at all times like you have never experienced before. BUT the rewards of working with some of the top professionals in the field are well worth it. Especially if you get to have clinical's at any of the NYP hospitals

    Sorry for the lengthy message but hopefully this adds some more info for you all. Let me know if I can help in any way!
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    In brief: I am definitely liking the program. I think I am being well educated, I'm having good clinical experiences, and I am mostly impressed by my classmates.

    I do want to address the thing I've seen on these boards about hearing "mixed reviews" about Columbia - I also heard that comment when I was applying and I never knew what to make of it! So here's my take on that: the ETP program is large - 175-ish students. I had thought this might be an issue in terms of class participation or something, but that isn't a problem at all - even though lectures can be large, it can absolutely be participatory and have plenty of discussion. Where the largeness of the program has actually come up is in 2 ways:

    1) When you have this many people in a program, people simply have different reactions to exactly the same situation. Sometimes people have said negative things to me (about a particular exam, or class, or professor) and it's been so different from my experience that I wondered if we were talking about the same thing! Some people get upset about every little thing that doesn't go their way, cop a huge attitude and decide they're going to be unhappy about everything, and then they come on these boards and talk about how the program is "SO DISORGANIZED" ( isn't disorganized at all, IMO). My point is that there are a lot of people in the program, so you're going to get lots of perspectives - heard something bad about the program from one person? Ask someone else and see what they have to say.

    2) The real way in which having a large class manifests itself is in clinical placements - they send us out to hospitals all over the city (and even a little beyond) which means that some clinical sites are better than others. To answer your question: you have no say in your clinical placements (except during integration at the end of the ETP year, when they take the location of where you live into account). I feel like I've had great experiences thus far: some have been great hospitals, some have been not-great hospitals (i.e. a large public hospitals) but I've learned an enormous amount from each placement. I've had friends tell me that X or Y placement they had wasn't good - this could genuinely be because a given place was truly bad, or again it could be because of their individual attitude about a place or a preceptor. But it is important to bear in mind that variation in quality of clinical site is probably inevitable when you have a large class like this.

    To answer your other questions directly:
    - Re: supportive faculty - Faculty are supportive if you make an effort to go talk to them and get to know them. I was surprised by how warm, friendly and helpful a couple faculty members were when I went to their office hours, given that they hadn't seemed that way during lecture (but again, talking to a person 1-on-1 in their office is different than lecturing to a class of 150!). If you've never introduced yourself to a professor and expect to get a supportive response when you suddenly write them a snippy little email about your grade on their last test...that's not gonna go so well. Make an effort and you will be rewarded!

    - Re: students succeeding - To be upfront about it: a few people have dropped out, although I'm not sure how many (I would say maybe 5-10, but that's totally anecdotal). I know of two people who dropped out - one dropped out very early on in the program for religious reasons, and the other dropped out after consistently not doing well in class and (I think) not liking clinical. I know of a few people who are considering stopping after the ETP year simply because it's going too fast for them and they want to do the masters at a slower pace. But the majority of people I talk to are doing very well - we're all pretty stressed, but doing well enough academically.

    Again, I had a few choices of schools and I'm very happy to have chosen Columbia. However, the program is VERY tough and unforgiving in its schedule. If you get behind, you are kind of screwed. If you get really sick and can't keep up with the work/make it to clinical, you are kind of screwed. If you decide halfway through a semester that you're going to be mad at everyone and stop doing your work for 10 days because of how fed up and sleep-deprived you are, you're going to be kind of screwed.

    So when you're applying, try to maximize the chances of doing well once you're in the program by being seriously honest with yourself about your life: are you in a place where you can give 95% of your waking time and energy to school? Are you prepared to have a pretty anemic social life, at least for the first few months? Are you prepared to work very hard, get really exhausted, and just keep going? Do you have adequate support for family or childcare responsibilities that you might have? The time to think about all of this is now, not once you've already started and signed on the dotted line for your loans.

    ...sorry, this was really long! Any other qqs I can answer before getting off my soapbox?
    sweet03nesy likes this.
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    Oh, I forgot my stats! To be clear, I really don't think these are that important. As dedicatedone said: the MOST important things are a) your personal statement (by far - really try to knock it out of the park), and b) your letters of recommendation. Then everything else. That said:

    Undergrad GPA: 3.65 (I think)
    Prereq GPA: 4.0
    GREs: ~1500
    Prior experience: 2.5 years abroad getting patient experience in 2 public hospitals
    Languages: Trilingual

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