Can anyone tell me if a student who is accepted to WVCOM as an out-of-stater has no way of becoming an in-stater? Im thinking of applying there but the tuition is VERY high for out-of-staters especially compared to the tuition of in-staters. My family will be moving with me wherever I am accepted and my husband will work full-time. I know some schools will allow you to be considered in-state if you can prove your family has other reasons for being there (ie, husband having full-time job in WV)?


Believe it or not, I asked this very exact question to the WVSOM representative at the convention this year. The answer is no. The mode of thinking is that you are coming to West Virginia just for school and not for residence. Even if your spouse has a job, and your kids go to school and you wind up owning a home, you will still be considered an out of state student and thus pay out of state tuition.

As an out-of-stater who was one of the last to get my status changed to in-state, I have to echo what Gabe said. They have changed the regulations and if you are out of state when admitted, you stay out of state.
As to the tuition. Yes it is high. But I would never have regretted spending a penny of it even if my status hadn’t been changed. WVSOM is an extremely good osteopathic school, especially if you are interested in primary care. (However, even if you want to specialize in another field, you will get everything you need here at WVSOM).
I absolutely love the school! Don’t let money make the decision for you. If you are comfortable with a school and feel you would do well there, the financial aspects become far less important. You will have lots of time to pay back your loans, and they are really low interest.
Good luck. If you have any questions, please email me at LWilson@wvsom.edu.

One of my major concerns is not having enough money to take out to help support my family, my hubby’s job a long will not be enough to make ends meet. Basically when everything is all done and over with I’d owe 300K (including undergrad). That is beyond what I have heard other people’s debt be. I dont even know how much more over tuition that would be available, but at mininum I would need 25K for living expenses alone.

I don’t remember the exact figure, but there is about $20-25,000 or so available for living expenses. The debt payments won’t be as bad as you imagine if you spread them over 30 years, just like a mortgage, except at much lower rates. And there are options. Like finding a community who will pay back your loans if you come and establish a practice there. Or the armed forces, which will pay all your loans + living expenses if you agree to serve one year for each year of school. Don’t write WVSOM off because of the cost. It is worth every penny of it!

I don’t usually, but I’m going to disagree with my pal Linda here because I gotta say, NO school is worth that kind of debt load. If you’ve got other options that won’t break the bank in that way, you should investigate them more thoroughly. Obviously if WVSOM were your only chance for school, you’d have to ponder whether it’s “worth it” - that’s really hard to say. But oh man that is a lot of money, especially if you’ve got kids at home and want to do things like put them through college some day.
Keep investigating, don’t cross it off your list YET, but if you end up with a good list of schools that don’t come with $300K price tags, you’ll be doing just fine. There’s lots of good schools out there.

Thanks for your candid response Mary. I know, 300K is a lot of money. They only charge in-staters about 18K, 18K vs 43K is a big jump compared to many other schools. I’m sure it is a good school though.

Since this subject came up … how do you establish residency? Seems like a silly question, but what if you apply to WVSOM and get accepted for the following year. Could you not move to WV 6 months prior and then start as a resident? WVSOM is gaining on my list of “hopefulls” and I wonder, since I have some family living there, if there isn’t someway to make the tuition situation more “agreeable” …

Well, look at Linda’s response:
"As an out-of-stater who was one of the last to get my status changed to in-state, I have to echo what Gabe said. They have changed the regulations and if you are out of state when admitted, you stay out of state."
I was one who was accepted at WVSOM, which was one of my top picks - I just loved the place. My plan was to move down, buy a house, and pay my last year taxes in WV - still they would not turn me. The only thing that might is if you married a WV resident.
I would start looking into other schools. LECOM is where I ended up, and it has one of the lowest tuitions of all the schools. It also has a huge selection of places to do rotations, and the board pass rate for PBL is around 95% - in fact, a LECOM student last year had one of the top scores in the country. I’m very happy here at the branch campus in FL - but there are some rules you need to live by, which I find older students do not have problems with - like showing up for lectures, being on time, and a dress-code.

Dunno about WV, but in Virginia to establish residency for in-state tuition purposes you must live AND WORK for at least a year prior to attending school. I know Texas has a similar policy. Establishing residency for the purpose of voting or getting a driver’s license is easy because voting isn’t costing your state $$$$$. But (speaking as a taxpayer whose kids have benefitted from in-state tuition) the in-state tuition benefit is one that I’ve EARNED so I gotta say, I’m defending it!

Depending on the school NJ is easy. For the School of Osteopathic Medicine you only need to present a lease with a NJ address.

Don’t forget to consider other expenses when estimating your loans. While some schools may charge less, or charge the same for in-state as out-of-state, the cost of living may be extremely different.
For example, the average medical school tuition is $28,000. If that school happens to be in a major urban area, such as DC, New York, etc., then your cost of living is going to be much, much higher.
So yes, WVSOM is high. I have no quarrel with that. But, the cost of living here is extremely moderate in comparison to someplace like DC, New York City, or many of the other areas where you find medical schools. I still feel that your total expenses will be competitive regardless of where you go. And, if you really like a school and feel comfortable there–well, I think those are the factors that should make the decision for you, not the financial aspects.
As to West Virginia residency. Well, you said you have some relatives who live here now. If they would allow you to use their address on your AACOMAS application as your home address, then that might give you in-state status. However, the caution to that is that it would make you out-of-state for a lot of other schools (and I’m not sure of the legality of it. But I know some people who have done just that). Otherwise, you would need to live here and have a member of your family working here for a year before you applied.
As for myself; I had options, but I chose to come here anyway even though I knew I might not be able to change my residency status. And if I had it to do all over again, I would still make the same choice.

Hi Linda,
I know this is a bit off topic, but I wanted to let you know that I met Danny Simes the other day. He came and made a presentation about WVSOM at my university. He knew that Sue M. had gone to the same university as I am, and I told him about knowing who you are through OPM. He seemed very nice.
Just wanted to let you know in case he says something to you.
racerx (Ian)

It’s great to hear from you! Danny and I are pretty good friends. I’ve worked with him from time to time on open houses, orientation week projects, etc. I’m glad he made a presentation at your school. Personally, I think that although WVSOM is a bit pricey, it is a great place to go to school!

The only thing keeping me from applying is the fact that it would be extremely difficult for my wife to find employment in her profession in the area. I asked Danny about this, and he was honest. . .he said that there wasn’t much work for mid-level accountants in the Lewisburg area. Too bad, because it seems like a very nice school.