~*University of Vermont vs. Bloomsburg U. of PA*~

Ok, I asked this before, but now it's official. I was just offered a spot off the waitlist at the University of Vermont which only had 11 slots available in the first place. However, I was almost set on just going to an in-state school Bloomsburg University which is an hour and a half drive from my house. UVM was my "dream school" in that I am in love with area/ program/ and school. Easy decision right, except the tuition at UVM for out-of-state is $32,000 a year and the tuition at Bloomsburg U. is around $13,000 a year. While they both have a great program, is it worth the 40,000K more to come out of graduate school in student loans with?? For those who are already in or nearing the field, is it a big deal where you went to school? Will your salary when you graduate, make up for the student loans or be a struggle to pay off? Or would it be a better idea to stay in-state and do my CFY in the city of Burlington, VT where UVM is located? Or should I just say, the heck with it and go where I want? Any advice welcome!
Ultimately it's up to you.

It's also the same degree and you'll get the same job no matter where you go.

If you go into the schools, you'll start at about 45,000, into a medical setting at about 60,000. The difference in numbers is mainly because in the schools, you aren't require to work in the summer.

I know at UNT if you work as a Grad Assistant then you can get resident tuition. You might check in to your dream school and see if they offer something like that.

The loans will always be a struggle to pay off and it'll take a while... because while you'll be making a lot a year, you'll also have other expenses come along... marriage, babies, houses, insurance, cars... etc.

I'd say investigate your dream school and find out if there's a way to get a reduced tution, and if not, go to the instate because you'll probably still get a wonderful educate for half the price.
I'm in an odd place to comment on this... I went to UVM for undergrad in comm. sci. and now I just was accepted to Bloomsburg for graduate. I didn't even apply to UVM for graduate because I know how crazy intense they are about selecting the "perfect few". I loved UVM- the professors, the buildings, the major. I was not crazy about the price! I think it is a fabulous school and program (again the faculty are amazing) but for 32k a year, I think I would have to deny if there weren't some really great financial aid incentives.

I've heard great things about Bloomsburg's program and the price is great (12k/yr I think). It is really up to you, but if it were me with these two options I think, as much as I loved CMSI at UVM, I would pick Bloomsburg. The price is so much better- 2 years is basically 2/3 of the cost of 1 year at UVM.

I think it is really up to you, how much student loan debt do you want to have once you are out of grad. school? I have a ton because of UVM for undergrad, but if I could do it over I would think about price first so that now that I am married and starting grad. school my loan payments wouldn't be $500/month for the next 25 years.

Good luck with your choice. Be sure to message me if you pick Bloomsburg- as that's where I'm going this fall! Hope to meet you soon (if Blooms. is your choice!). :)
Wow, thanks for all that insight. Are you from Vermont or Pennsylvania? Because I can imagine if you are out-of-state as well that you must have racked up a good amount from undergrad. I also agree that it is such a beautiful school,and has a great faculty. I have been in touch with Barry Guitar pretty much throughout this whole application process, and he has been great. Did you like Burlington enough that you would ever consider moving back there? I have a visit scheduled to Bloomsburg this friday and am planning on making the trip to UVM the following friday. Hoping to just get the feeling which school will be the best. I will be sure to let you know, if I decide to attend Bloomsburg.:)
As the other people have already said: It's the same degree. Where you got it isn't going to matter as long as it's ASHA accredited so you can get your CCCs. The salary will be exactly the same no matter where you go.

Now that said, there are opportunities available to help with student loan payments. Check out www.ibrinfo.org. IBR is income based repayment and allows you to qualify for student loan forgiveness if you are working in public service. Repayment is based on income. If you qualify for loan forgiveness and work in public service anything you own on student loans is considered paid in full in 10 years.

If they are both good programs - personally, I'd go for the lower priced one that's closer to home. But there's no reason to do your CFY in the same city - in fact it may be a bit difficult. The external practicum may be easier there - the schools/hospitals in town are probably used to have "extra" unpaid help for those semesters. But your CFY is your first job - you should take that where ever you want to/get offered...which very well may not be in the same city where the school is (they have several unpaid people who will work - aka students).

Good luck with your decision.
$40,000 more? That's like an EXTRA $300 a month for the next 30 years (the amount you will pay is going to be mostly interest), on top of what your loans would already be at the cheaper school. Of course you could pay it off sooner to save some but an EXTRA $40,000? Do you think it's worth it? It does not matter where you went to school, a degree is a degree in this field and we are SO in demand!
i couldn't imagine choosing a school based on price tag alone. you say they both have great programs - have you visited both? i was able to narrow my decision to a handful of schools, and i took a few days and visited them. i toured the clinic, met with clinical faculty, talked to a few current (at the time) students. after that, the decision was easy. yes, i have a lot of loans, because i went to a private university. but i know i got the experience i wanted out of grad school, and wasn't stuck with placements i wouldn't have been happy with had i gone elsewhere. if you feel a connection with the less expensive program, by all means, go for it. but only if you think it's the right fit.
I am a graduate of Bloomsburg University's Master's program. I had a great experience there. The program was tough, as it should be, but I learned a lot. I had the opportunity to get involved with some research, just as I would have at a larger research institution, but at a cost I could afford. Also, I worked as a teaching assistant so I only had to pay for 3 credits per semester. You may want to check into that. I believe I was very well prepared clinically. In fact, my externship supervisor commented that she preferred Bloomsburg grads over most others in PA because they were always so well prepared. The school you graduate from won't matter much to employers because there is such a shortage of SLPs. What matters most is that you feel well-prepared for your clinical practicum. You will get that at Bloomsburg.
Thank you so much for posting this, this is exactly what I needed to hear right now. This has been one of the toughest decisions I've ever made. I decided to go to Bloomsburg, actually just today and declined UVM. However, I have been having MAJOR doubts about it and am hoping that I didn't make the wrong decision. I'm glad to hear you had a great experience there! I'm curious though, were you extremely busy with academic and clinic work that you didn't have much time for other things? I am sending in the application for Teaching Assistantship, do most students get them? Also, where did most of the graduate SLP students live?