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I am weighing two programs on opposite sides of the country. I have only been waitlisted at Redlands, but they only give you 24 hours to accept or reject their offer if accepted off of the waitlist. It may not even be an option but I am trying to get prepared in case I am accepted! I was able to tour Emerson and loved it, but have only visited the Redlands campus when it was closed for the holidays. Does anyone have any positives, negatives, or other information not listed here about these programs? I am obsessively thinking about this and I am not sure I am going to be able to tour Redlands before I would have to accept an offer from them. Both are terribly expensive so that is not an issue :P THANK YOU!!! 

EMERSON COLLEGE

Pros:

-Brag about their supportive environment

-In-house clinic with some really interesting specialty areas and programs 

-As an out-of-fielder, I would be finished May 2019

-54-credit program

-Faculty with varied backgrounds + teaching and clinical faculty separate

-Interesting research being conducted

-Boston = interesting and varied clinical opportunities

-Highly ranked 

-More grad schools for partner to apply to

-Good "feel" when I visited... I pretty much fell in love

-Well-rounded program

Cons:

-In Boston... far away! And expensive living. And I don't think I'm a "city person"... but Boston is also really cool!

-Larger cohort

-Would need to start online prereq classes this May (not sure if this is a + or -)

-Have to start clinicals one semester later than in-field cohort

-Other than SLP, it is not medical/education-focused - it's an arts school

 

UNIVERSITY OF REDLANDS

Pros:

-Also brag about supportive environment on website

-In-house clinic (no knowledge of specialty areas, but it caters to all ages and disorders)

-**Location = close to family (this one is big due to some family issues, and may make me accept an offer either way)

-I would like to move back to the west either way after graduation (but probably not southern Cali), so I would already be in the region - not sure if this matters

-Beautiful campus

-Small cohort

-I have heard great things about the school as a whole

-Cheaper cost of living than Boston

-60-credit program

-Well-rounded program

Cons:

-I really only know what I have seen on their website and this forum... not a lot!

-As an out-of-fielder, I would graduate May 2020

-Wouldn't start until January 2018 (not sure what I will do until then, as I had to quit my job already in preparation for Boston)

-Small faculty group, limited research and focuses

-No specialty areas (other than bilingual) 

-Not a lot of grad programs my partner can apply to

-Can do research, but final project cannot be a thesis (not sure if I want to do research, but I want to keep my options open!)

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Holy cow, I just realized how long this post is... sorry!!! But thanks for any help! :D 

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That is definitely a lot think about! I wish I had a good answer! All I have are more things to think about...

I think cost is a big consideration, and you're right: Boston is an expensive city. Sounds like Emerson might let you finish quicker. THey're both private. Is tuition comparable? 

Can you work as an SLP-A in either California or Massachusetts with your current qualifications? If so, it might be a good part-time job option to help pay for Boston or to do from August to Jan while waiting to start at Redlands. 

Both schools mentioned "a supportive environment" but you'll have to take that with a grain of salt. Have you called and talked to faculty at both schools? See which ones make you feel more comfortable. 

You mentioned you're not a "city person." That's cool. Consider your commute and life in Boston vs Redlands. Boston you'd probably live without a car, walk a lot, and take the subway. Are you okay with that? Try Google mapping the areas you might live in and do the street view. How does it seem?

I wish I had some good, solid advice but it is a decision only you can make. Either way, you'll be fine :) Both are great schools! 

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Thank you @mcamp!! Their tuition is pretty much the same. I would be paying rent in California for longer, but Boston is more expensive. I guess I really need to break down how much living expenses would be in both places.

I'm happy you brought up the fact that I need to really investigate whether or not they really are "supportive environments"—I got that feel at Emerson, but need to find out more about Redlands.

Thank you again!

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I live in Redlands currently and grew up 20 miles away and have always heard good things about the school and program.  I have lived in Redlands for a year now and it is a GREAT little city.  Population of about 60-70k and away from the major CA traffic (though if you want to go to the beach or Disneyland, etc then your back in that traffic).

I can confirm that if you do move to the area to go to Redlands, you WILL be able to work as an SLP on a "Credential Waiver" with just a bachelors degree.  You get paid around $40-50k (depending on the district) working with a credential waiver.  So that could help you a lot as far as work.  EVERY school district in the area is in HIGH need of SLP's so finding a job is very very very easy.  You basically get to pick where you want to work for the most part since very School District is at least 1 SLP short if not 5-10 short every year.  

Feel free to Message me for more specific info if needed.  

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I think the family circumstances is a HUGE con in my book. If you can be close to your family, especially under your circumstances, I would take that opportunity. 

Plus everything @twinguy7 said I've heard as well!

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@twinguy7 Thank you!!! My family moved to Rancho Mirage a few years ago and I was able to visit Redlands last year and thought it was beautiful. It is great to hear there is an SLP shortage, especially considering that the salaries are higher there in general! (Although I'm not sure if I want to work in schools.) Thank you so much for your offer to PM you!

@kayyyyy_ I know, you're right... I am just so torn because my parents want me to choose a school for the program, not because of them... but in my situation I think it makes sense if I do! Also, I just loved Emerson so much. Thanks for all of your support! :) 

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5 hours ago, twinguy7 said:

I can confirm that if you do move to the area to go to Redlands, you WILL be able to work as an SLP on a "Credential Waiver" with just a bachelors degree.  You get paid around $40-50k (depending on the district) working with a credential waiver.  So that could help you a lot as far as work.  EVERY school district in the area is in HIGH need of SLP's so finding a job is very very very easy.  You basically get to pick where you want to work for the most part since very School District is at least 1 SLP short if not 5-10 short every year.  

Unfortunately, this is not true. Even though there is a huge need out in the school districts, University of Redlands prohibits SLP grad students from working on a waiver during the program.

I am currently finishing up the Master's program at Redlands. I can confirm that it is a very supportive environment. The faculty are invested in helping you learn, not in proving how much you don't know. The on-campus clinic is a great way to gain confidence in your clinical skills before you go out to do your full-time medical and school externships. The cohorts are close & collaborative. We all want to see each other succeed. It's not at all like the competitive environment of undergrad. I have been very pleased with my education at UofR! I'm happy to answer any questions you might have about the program.

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^^ you're not allowed to work during the program but before spring of 2018 I was trying to get at. 

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Oh, and about that waitlist. Don't plan on hearing from them until after the April 15th deadline for students to accept their offer. They'll wait until then to see how many people they can take from the waitlist, then they'll start notifying.

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21 minutes ago, jmjslpca said:

Unfortunately, this is not true. Even though there is a huge need out in the school districts, University of Redlands prohibits SLP grad students from working on a waiver during the program.

I am currently finishing up the Master's program at Redlands. I can confirm that it is a very supportive environment. The faculty are invested in helping you learn, not in proving how much you don't know. The on-campus clinic is a great way to gain confidence in your clinical skills before you go out to do your full-time medical and school externships. The cohorts are close & collaborative. We all want to see each other succeed. It's not at all like the competitive environment of undergrad. I have been very pleased with my education at UofR! I'm happy to answer any questions you might have about the program.

Wow, thank you so much for this. I do have a few questions that I would very much appreciate getting feedback on—I will message you.

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@jmjslpca I was referring to working from August to December before she starts the program as that is what she referenced earlier.

@kayyyyy_ likewise about work before 2018 start

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6 minutes ago, plume said:

Guyssss Redlands offered me a spot today with 24 hours to accept! I should be more excited but I feel ill.....!

WOW!!!  Congrats!!??!  That is a tough decision to make.  24 hours is not a long time to respond.  What does your gut tell you to do?

I know I just got an offer from WWU with 3 days to decide, after I already accepted at CSUN (my undergrad).  I'm going for it, and just realized I now have a big move to plan.  Good luck with your decision!!  I grew up near Redlands so I might be able to answer some questions if you have any.

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22 minutes ago, SLPsingballs said:

WOW!!!  Congrats!!??!  That is a tough decision to make.  24 hours is not a long time to respond.  What does your gut tell you to do?

I know I just got an offer from WWU with 3 days to decide, after I already accepted at CSUN (my undergrad).  I'm going for it, and just realized I now have a big move to plan.  Good luck with your decision!!  I grew up near Redlands so I might be able to answer some questions if you have any.

Gosh, that's so hard! What a switch, but congrats! Isn't it hard to change your whole mindset about where you will be living and everything?

Thank you so much for the offer to connect—I may take you up on that!

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2 hours ago, plume said:

Guyssss Redlands offered me a spot today with 24 hours to accept! I should be more excited but I feel ill.....!

Congrats!!! Now you have quite the decision to make! And in only 24 hours too :blink:

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Do you see yourself wanting to settle on one coast or the other after the program? Also, CA weather definitely beats Boston (though I am a bit biased). 

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GAHH I am so excited for you but also I know that this is probably a tough decision for you!! Being close to family (if you have the option) is always nice!! 

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8 hours ago, jmk said:

Do you see yourself wanting to settle on one coast or the other after the program? Also, CA weather definitely beats Boston (though I am a bit biased). 

I want to be in the west after my program, but probably no Cali. Does that make a big difference career-wise in this field? I AM SO TORN!!!

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9 hours ago, plume said:

I want to be in the west after my program, but probably no Cali. Does that make a big difference career-wise in this field? I AM SO TORN!!!

I would think being out on the west coast might be slightly more beneficial if this is where you see yourself because of the networking aspect. 

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I'm sorry, I have been sort of avoiding this forum because of this decision! It has been a seriously emotional and teary rollercoaster (sort of ridiculous, I know—I am blessed to have options!) but I have come to a decision.

I will be attending Emerson next year. My dad was hopeful I would move to Cali—we are Italian, and family is everything!—but he is supportive of my decision. I was talking to my mom and we were discussing how by Christmas I will be 1/4 of the way done if I go to Emerson, and I won't have even started the prerequisites yet at Redlands. There are other factors in the mix... my long-term partner is applying to med school, and if he cannot get into a school near me we will only be apart for one year if I go to Boston, versus two years if I go to Redlands. He is going to apply to soCal programs so we might have the option to be near my family. I know there is no guarantee he will get in, but Emerson just provides flexibility sooner. I'm also not sure if this is viable, but I could possibly stay at home for a few months after my program or do my CFY there. If my dad's health does go downhill, I will need to take a break regardless of whether I am in Cali or Boston—I will be there for my family. My sister and I also laid out all of my breaks. I am planning to purchase tickets to CA for every one of them (they are surprisingly affordable, minus over Thanksgiving), and I am going to try to be home every 2 months. It makes me feel better to know I will be home more often than I have been in my working life over the past 5 years.

There was no wrong answer here, and I know I would be very happy at either program. I knew I would regret something if I went to either one, too. I guess the other piece is that in my gut, I really want the experience of Boston and to go to Emerson, and I honestly felt sort of sad when I was admitted to Redlands because I felt obligated to go. I have not heard anything really negative about either program, but I had to pick something!

I am worried people will think I am a bad person for choosing the program away from family. I am teary writing this, because I worry so much about my dad, but I cannot plan for his death and I have no idea when it will happen. I am now focusing on trying to  feel confident with my decision and moving forward with this adventure! Also, I just need to say, THANK YOU everyone for all of your help!!! (And thanks for the emotional dump here!)

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I don't think anyone is thinking anything bad about you or your decision! So many factors play into this decision, and everyone's situations are different. It is obvious that you spent a lot of time considering the pros and cons of each choice, and you made the choice you felt was best for you at this point in your life. Congratulations! Boston will be a great experience!!

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