DUKE: Perks include the school's great reputation, the fact that it's located here where I already live, the option to do an international rotation, the fact that they have a club swim team, and the dress code of "smart casual" (meaning presentable, but not overly dressy). The only real drawback is that I wouldn't be allowed to use my shiny new Mac. Tuition would be around 57k, and the cost of living is moderate.
PACIFIC: I love the fact that it's a small private school with a lot of focus on its place in the international community; my linguistic skills would be highly valued and I'd be able to do a rotation practically anywhere, from Kenya to Australia to Mexico. We'd be on the brand-new Health Professions campus (accessible within a few minutes by *train* from Portland), I'd be able to use my Mac, and the tuition rate is actually the second-lowest of all my options, only around 54k. Drawbacks include the lack of a club swim team, the required "professional" daily dress code, and the fact that the school is in Oregon (...though that's actually kind of exciting, too).
MEDICAL U: This is the most expensive school, with tuition of 74k, a very high cost of living, and a rotten parking situation. There's also no swim team. On the plus side, the beach is ten minutes away, Macs are allowed (even encouraged -- their entire library uses the Mac platform), rotations abroad are available, and there is no dress code (hello, flip-flops!). It's also a large, fun city, right in between Raleigh and Jacksonville, with lots of options for L to get a job.
UNIV OF FL: The tuition would be ridiculous as an out-of-stater (75k) but the cost of living is relatively low, and this is a town I'm familiar with and like a lot. They do have a club swim team (as I know from personal experience!), Macs are permitted, they use full cadavers in their dissections (which almost no schools do), and the dress code is royal blue scrubs. No international rotations, though (which is a bit surprising, considering the strength of their study-abroad department).
ECU: This is far and away the cheapest option, with tuition of only 18k and a low cost of living. I'd most likely be living in a fantastic apartment complex right across the street from the health sciences building, so the two mainstays of my weekday would be within a football field of one another. I'd be able to use my Mac, and there is a club swim team. The downside is that this school is quite limited with regard to what it can offer -- all rotations are in the state of NC (so don't even think about trying to go abroad) and there isn't even a choose-your-own-elective included in the rotation list, as there is at almost every other school. It's a solid program, and I admit that it's kind of 'pulling' me, but the only real reason to choose it over the others in this list would be the cost... and I haven't yet decided how important a factor that is to me.
At the moment, having only visited Duke, MUSC, and ECU, I can't say exactly what my preferred ranking is. It depends on the gut feeling I get from the remaining two schools and whether or not any of the five offer me money. Though I gotta say, UF is really impressing me so far with its degree of communication, clarity, and preparedness for the interview (which is in two weeks!). I haven't heard a darn thing from Pacific or Duke since I submitted my application two months ago.
As far as easy decision-making, worst-case scenarios would include all five schools accepting me but nobody giving me any money, or some sort of in-between, like Duke accepting me with no aid and ECU and UF both offering me full rides (I don't think that's a common occurrence in PA school, but if it's going to happen, those would be the schools for it). That would make for a really, really hard decision.
Any other opinions, comments, ideas? Please leave comments -- I really need some input.