View Full Version : Sackler OR Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland?
05-17-2000, 09:17 PM
I got into Sackler and the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. I have heard good things about both schools. Now I must make a decision. Any advice/info about these schools? Help would be greatly appreciated!!
04-25-2001, 02:21 PM
How long did it take you to hear from Sackler after you interviewed?
What were your stats?
04-25-2001, 07:29 PM
I was also accepted at Surgeons and I just got back from visiting the school in Dublin. The school seems great, a lot like an American med school. The class size is large- 240 students. I had a tour from a current American first year there. He is in the 5-year program. He really likes Surgeons. Dublin is a fun city, a lot like any other big European city or NYC. It's more American than you might think. I could be happy going to Surgeons, but I decided to save the money and the extra year and go to a US school. Good luck to you.
05-01-2001, 09:39 PM
A weird thing about COS that most people don't know is that about one third of the class is made up of Saudi arabians and Kuwaitis. COS sees foreign students as a kind of cash crop and they are very much looked down upon by the Irish students who are the local creme of the creme.
Another thing, Dublin is great fun if you are a drinker but if you are not then you definately don't want to be there. In Dublin, telling someone that you vomited on youself and ended up sleeping in a puddle by the side of the road is tantamount to saying you had a great night. It IS a strange place.
05-03-2001, 12:18 AM
you seem to have some kind of inside knowledge about RCSI (not COS), could you please tell us where you got your information about Saudis and Kuwatis, and also that the Irish students are the local creme of the creme. dare I say that your post seems to be a bit on the racist side?
Perhaps the other point to elaborate on is that RCSI is a PRIVATE medical school, ie, not supported by the Irish government like the other Irish med schools, and thus relies on foreign students to sustain it's financial viability.
05-03-2001, 08:15 AM
My 'inside knowedge' comes from spending some time living in Dublin's fair city. An old girlfriend of mine went to COS (that's what they call it there)
I'm not at all racist. The thing is that the Saudis and Kuwaitis tend to be the sons of arab noblemen and often have questionable qualifications.
Yes the Irish students at COS are the local creme. COS is just about the most difficult thing to get into in Ireland. Education is extremely competitive there as anyone with the highest grades can get their choice regardless of money. You wouldn't believe how much Irish kids are pushed into education. Education is like the frontline in a class war over there. The Irish students probably would not be mean or rude to you - their culture is just not like that - but they do consider the foreign students (including the 'yanks' as they call us) to be something of a joke.
Also there is really no such thing as a private school in Ireland any more. The EU pays for everything now. In Ireland stateschool and private school pretty much just signifies who owns the realestate they are built on.
As for the drinking thing. I hope I wasn't too harsh but what I saw in Dublin convinced me to pretty much give up alcohol completely. Oh the horror.
This aside COS is really an excellent school.
05-03-2001, 09:08 AM
Thanks for the reply!
I'm glad we agree on a few things.
First, RCSI (and it is abbreviated RCSI, look at their website, or the qualifying letters after a physician's name) is an excellent school.
Second, there are many countries represented at Surgeons, and that alone is an amazing aspect, regardless of whether one group thinks less highly of other groups.
However, it's certainly not my understanding that the irish students consider everybody else to be "jokes."
And also, there is still such a thing as a private school, contrary to what you think. (The EU does not yet own everything). In fact, the joke about RCSI is often about all the stuff the school owns... vineyards, tons of land/properties etc... The fees paid by international students help run the institution.
Perhaps your "old girlfriend" had a different experience at Surgeons, but please be careful when taking what you heard some time back and applying to the present.
Lastly, I REALLY suggest that if somebody wants legitimate information on a school, they should contact students at the school directly. The student services dept of schools can usually provide help in this regards.
05-03-2001, 01:22 PM
The official name of the school (yes, the one that appears on the website) is Royal College of Surgeons, Ireland) However as there is no other 'college of surgeons' in Ireland, the Irish people simply call it the college of surgeons. Occasionally they abbreviate it to COS.
My old girlfriend had a great experience at COS. She was in fact an Irish student. I spent a lot of time hanging out with Irish students from COS. A lot of the science these kids learn in high school is well above the level of most of my college pre-med requisite courses here. That does not escape their attention. In general they are very mature but there is a tendency to scoff a little.
I think if you work really hard to get up to their level youll probably be fine. Irish people are very friendly. Being aware of this will definately help you if you decide to go there.
The point about the alcohol is for real. If its not your thing Dublin wont be the place for you. If it is then you'll be in heaven.
05-03-2001, 02:27 PM
I think perhaps Mikado's experience with the attitude about the Yanks is much the same as that in Australia.
First, the Irish (as the Australians) know that international students are big money-makers for the school and therefore, may consider that the international students are less qualified than they. We had much the same problem at my school and the Dean had to finally come in and set the record straight - that the Americans had higher entrance exam and gpa scores than the Aussies (never mind that the average gpa in the US is higher anyway because of grade inflation; we didn't let that one slip! ;) ).
Secondly, the science courses taken by Australian and Irish High School students rea *generally* more rigorous than ours and the expecations for learning are higher. It is quite possible that the Irish students realize this and either project the belief that the Americans students are either not capable of more rigorous study or are simply a product of the often poorly taught American educational system.
Finally, most of the Australians and Irish realize that most of the Americans and Canadians are there because they could not gain entrance into US medical schools. Thus, there is the perception that these students were not even good enough for their home country schools and that Surgeons and other schools like it are lowering their standards by taking them in. The Australians look at the 3:1 ratio of applications to admissions in the US (which is what is was a few years ago) and figure that the qualified should get in; after all, they have 10+ applicants per spot they reason, so 3 shouldn't be any big deal right? Of course, they neglect the "real numbers" behind this ratio (ie, 660+ applicants/spot in California, etc.).
Bear in mind that I'm not defending these beliefs and do not assume that everyone harbors them, but I have heard them expressed time and time again and I am sure they are akin to what Mikado experienced.
05-03-2001, 05:50 PM
It is not cos it is reffered to as just SURGEONS. I actually go there and the Irish students do not resent us north americans. Some of my best friends here are Irish. There is a lot of drinking though. Also some people do complain that the school is more of a biz than a school. I would rather go to a school that is rich than poor. There are quite a few arabs, but they do not have questionable backrounds. They are some of the most dedicated students in the school. My roomate is from the UAE and he studyies harder than any one I know and does quiet well. This is a good school but living is ISRAEL would be great (just a personal dream)
I was talking to a fellow who was from Kuwait and is currently studying here in Ireland. His government is paying for him to be trained here, on condition that he return with his training to share his knowledge and help improve the quality of healthcare in Kuwait. He said that there is a good medical school in nearby Iraq that the Kuwaiti government used to send most of its scholars too, but that obviously is no more, so more of the students are in Dublin now. He says he enjoys it, though he misses his fiancee at home and uses every vacation to go home to see her.
06-07-2001, 12:25 PM
Can anyone tell me where to get more information on applying to RCSI? I have a feeling I'll be reapplyiing and want to apply there as an option. Thanks!
06-07-2001, 06:40 PM
If you do a web search for "Atlantic Bridge," and the name of the Irish med schools, you should find what you need.
Best to you.
06-11-2001, 01:10 PM
I spent six years at the RCSI / surgeons (not COS!) and loved it there. The training is superb, the international links are tremendous, and now I'm a happy medical resident in a harvard program: and I have the RCSI to thank for much of my success. The atmosphere and congeniality between nationalities is superb: at no time did I find the attitudes racist, and I did not consider the foreign grads as anything other than equal. Please feel free to e-mail me about the school: I'd really recommend it to anyone thinking about medical school; whether Irish or any other nationality.
07-03-2001, 02:10 PM
My experiences are a little different - I haven't studied medicine (yet), but I spent a year abroad at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland which also has a wonderful reputation in medicine. Half the people I met among the med students were American or Canadian, with very diverse experiences. My friends there chose to study medicine there, and didn't apply just because they didn't get accepted in North America. I think actually more Australians or New Zealanders study there for that reason. So, I don't think there's contempt from Irish students for non-Irish medical students. In studying at Trinity, you get 3 degrees in medicine & obstetrics & surgery in their 6 year course (Americans with suitable bachelor's degrees enter in year 2, so 5 yr. program). Now, Trinity also has the reputation of being rather "posh," but the students are very accepting people and among student age, are very tolerant of people from other racial or sexual orientations. I'm considering going back to Trinity for med. school (also contemplating UK and Australia)
I'd be lying if I didn't say there are some situations where being of a certain race is uncomfortable. I'm Asian-American and frequently got weird or curious looks and questions. Funnily enough, most of that came from foreigners (Germans, French). But once they realized I could probably speak English just fine and probably better than a lot of them, they became accepting instantaneously. You have to keep in mind that Dublin has only become cosmopolitan in the last 5 years, and the people are still adjusting to influxes of different cultures. Their growth has been remarkable.
I also had a Canadian "friend" at the Royal College of Surgeons. If anything, she turned out to be more of a close-minded jerk than any of the Irish.
While drinking is a huge part of their society, I don't think it's correct to say you're in the wrong place if you don't drink. Plenty of Irish people even don't drink, and they're slagged, but you can't be forced to drink. And, there's plenty of fun to be had without drinking. some of my friends took religious vows not to drink, and a lot of my time was spent on drinking bans for athletic reasons (although when the bans were lifted, we went wild and had a fab time). Just saying that drinking ANYWHERE is not a prerequisite to having loads of fun. :p