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An Honest Review of Trinity School of Medicine (Please!!!) ?

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BeKind

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Hello! I am deciding between attending Trinity and St George's in Fall 2019, and I am trying to get an honest review from a current/former Trinity student. For the record, I know that attending a Caribbean med school is not ideal, but I don't have the GPA to get into an American med school, and I have the rejection letters to prove it. I'm not extremely worried about residency matching because I want to go into Internal Medicine or Psych, and if necessary I'm happy to do my residency and have my career outside the US. As long as I can be a doctor I don't care about my geography.

Trinity seems great based on their website, I like the idea of smaller class sizes (relatively speaking) and it seems like you get a lot more early clinical exposure. Plus it's a lot cheaper. Trinity Students- What's the catch? I don't want to be fooled by good marketing, and it's so hard to find any information online that isn't from the school themselves! I would be eternally grateful to any Trinity student/alum who can answer these questions.

1. Assuming you put in the work, does Trinity prepare you to be a good doctor?

2. Do you actually get patient exposure in the first few years, or was it all lectures?

3. Is there any info on the Trinity site that is blatantly wrong/misleading?

4. If you could go back, would you choose a different Caribbean medical school over Trinity? Compared to other Caribbean schools, does Trinity hold its own?
 
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Mister Significant

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Before we answer this, do you have a sub-3.0 gpa, did you apply DO? What extenuating circumstances plagued you in undergrad which you will be able to fix for graduate school?


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BeKind

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The fact you're even considering the school means you already have.

Did you actually attend Trinity? You're entitled to your opinions, and I'm aware of the general stigma against Caribbean schools, but I'd really like to hear from someone with firsthand experience.
 

BeKind

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Before we answer this, do you have a sub-3.0 gpa, did you apply DO? What extenuating circumstances plagued you in undergrad which you will be able to fix for graduate school?

My MCAT is fine (518), The GPA on my transcript is not fatal (about a 3.4), but that's because they calculate it by replacing failed classes with the new grade once you retake it. AMCAS and AACOMAS don't do their math as generously. Applied MD and DO, didn't even get interviews. The TLDR is that I failed (yes actual Fs) organic chemistry twice before finally passing it. I was really sick for a couple years, then drowning in medical bills and working crazy hours to keep my head above. I absolutely should have taken time off from school and went back, that was an incredible lapse in judgement that it's too late to fix.

By posting on SDN I fully expect to be told that if I couldn't handle undergrad I shouldn't even attempt medical school and should seek a different career. I also know I will be told that Caribbean medical schools are unaccredited cash cows duping desperate students. It's not an ideal situation, I know that a lot of people wouldn't take the risk, and I do understand why. But the fact is that some students graduate from these schools and become physicians. I know my odds aren't great, but I am going to try.

I really just want to hear firsthand experiences from people who have attended these schools, particularly Trinity. Even if neither is great, I would really like to know how they compare to each other. I've gotten a lot of feedback from people who have never been to these schools, and I just want honest information from someone who actually has.

Thanks! :)
 
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My MCAT is fine (518), The GPA on my transcript is not fatal (about a 3.4), but that's because they calculate it by replacing failed classes with the new grade once you retake it. AMCAS and AACOMAS don't do their math as generously. Applied MD and DO, didn't even get interviews. The TLDR is that I failed (yes actual Fs) organic chemistry twice before finally passing it. I was really sick for a couple years, then drowning in medical bills and working crazy hours to keep my head above. I absolutely should have taken time off from school and went back, that was an incredible lapse in judgement that it's too late to fix.

By posting on SDN I fully expect to be told that if I couldn't handle undergrad I shouldn't even attempt medical school and should seek a different career. I also know I will be told that Caribbean medical schools are unaccredited cash cows duping desperate students. It's not an ideal situation, I know that a lot of people wouldn't take the risk, and I do understand why. But the fact is that some students graduate from these schools and become physicians. I know my odds aren't great, but I am going to try.

I really just want to hear firsthand experiences from people who have attended these schools, particularly Trinity. Even if neither is great, I would really like to know how they compare to each other. I've gotten a lot of feedback from people who have never been to these schools, and I just want honest information from someone who actually has.

Thanks! :)
You should reapply to US schools.

Do you know the number of incoming students to trinity each year? And the number who matched in the US last year? What are those numbers?
 
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Mister Significant

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I doubt you will find any past students from Trinity to respond to you on here. As Carribean go the biggest/best ones are Saba, Ross, AUC, and St.George. I currently work in a clinic as a scribe/medical assistant. We have 2 medical school graduates who have recently been hired within the last few weeks (doing my position). One went to an American med school in Europe while the other one went to AUC. The former graduate still hasn’t taken the USMLE 1 so I will ignore him. The one who graduated from AUC is more inclined. He is a good clinician and a great guy. He scored a below average USMLE 1 which has prevented him from matching into any residencies. I was a bit shocked when I looked at his resume and saw that he had research, publications among other things. In my opinion he is competent and would be a great doc but his low exam grade has taken him out of contention. I am assuming you have a sub-3.0 gpa, which will probably take you out from attending any of the big Carribean schools, so I wouldn’t even consider the Carribean as a backup by this point.


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BeKind

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I am assuming you have a sub-3.0 gpa, which will probably take you out from attending any of the big Carribean schools, so I wouldn’t even consider the Carribean as a backup by this point.

Thanks for the input! I was already accepted by SGU and Trinity, which is why I'm trying to get "inside info" from students.
 

BeKind

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Do you know the number of incoming students to trinity each year? And the number who matched in the US last year? What are those numbers?

According to their website they have about 60-70 students per class, and 83% match in the US. They also have a list of the residencies where students matched for 2018, and there are 62. Of course, since it's from their website I take it with a grain of salt.
 
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deleted480308

According to their website they have about 60-70 students per class, and 83% match in the US. They also have a list of the residencies where students matched for 2018, and there are 62. Of course, since it's from their website I take it with a grain of salt.
They are liars, those numbers are not all true
 
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Mister Significant

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I still think with a over 3.0gpa and a 518 mcat you can get into a DO school if you apply smart. Try one more cycle and if you can’t get in then do the Carribean


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bedevilled ben

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Thanks for the input! I was already accepted by SGU and Trinity, which is why I'm trying to get "inside info" from students.

I am a graduate of SGU and currently a PGY3 resident in psychiatry. I can't give you any insider info on Trinity but I can tell you that I've been active and following the Caribbean Medical School fora here for over 8 years. I've spoken about my experiences with SGU at some length in the past, and they are faaaar from perfect and either way you will have a tough time of it, internal medicine/psych or not (PS, psych is getting much more competitive and is no longer the back-up residency.) I would very strongly encourage you to look around the forums and see more of the reputation that Trinity has. In the past there was a poster named @TrinityMDMPH (Dean, perhaps? I can't recall) that would occasionally post statistics and attrition rates, and it appeared that they were in an active campaign to improve their image. Whether there is data available to back that up, I cannot say. But this is absolutely the kind of research you need to be doing. Don't get subjective opinions from current students who have not graduated or succeeded through the Match, you need to get in touch with alumni or current residents that were graduates of the program within the last 1-2 years. If the school is not able to put you in touch with recent alumni, that should raise your attention. Regardless, based on my experience alone, I do not recommend most students go to the Caribbean, and if you do, I only recommend SGU or Ross.
 
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Shinken

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Did you actually attend Trinity? You're entitled to your opinions, and I'm aware of the general stigma against Caribbean schools, but I'd really like to hear from someone with firsthand experience.

Yes, I'm entitled to my opinion. But my opinion is backed by several years as faculty and now as program director of a residency program. I see applications from FMGs and IMGs all the time. They stink. Out of 300 we might find 3 or 4 worthy of considering for an interview, and none of them are from Trinity. The ones from Trinity get deleted after a cursory inspection, usually we don't make it past the USMLE tab (we start with that one, it's the most telling).

I don't need to attend Trinity to tell you not to consider the school. If you want to continue to be fooled by their marketing, go right ahead. Good luck to you, and best wishes. You don't deserve the benefit of my experience and informed opinion.
 
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mark v

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I graduated from SGU 10 years ago and completed family medicine residency in 2012. As a chief, I interviewed candidates and helped cull down the pool of interviewees. There absolutely is a bias. It goes US grads then DO, then well known foreign schools. Newer non-us schools don't even get considered. It was hard enough to break through as an SGU grad. I can't imagine trying to get through coming from a lesser known school. The advice you've received is solid. Proceed at your own peril.
 

Medic741

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Thanks for the input! I was already accepted by SGU and Trinity, which is why I'm trying to get "inside info" from students.
Why are you throwing your medical career away with an MCAT this high?
 
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docneurol

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Not a review about Trinity but OMG if you can score 518 on the MCAT... YOU ARE SMART and you can definitely get into MD or DO easily. Just go through a post bacc program to improve your GPA. There are a lot out there. And most of them guarantee a seat or at least an interview.

You have a bright future, my friend. Just don't give up on it :)
 
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Ki-100

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man why the hell you want to go to Caribbean with a MCAT 518? Just do a master or something then I apply. I am assured that you will get in MD/DO school.
 
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Magyarzorag

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I thought this was Trinity University in the UK, not some developing carribean nation
 
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Emmet2301

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Well this is in the Caribbean section of the forum so...
 

HoyaMedicineMan

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I graduated from Trinity. I’m a PGY2 in a Peds program now. I know that a good number of the people I started with never graduated, but those who did and did well in school matched for residencies. Going the Caribbean route is a gamble, and can be very painful at times. I was an older applicant and was impatient to reapply, so I took a chance, and it’s worked for me. But it is not for everyone. If you have specific questions, feel free to PM me.
 
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MedSchool28

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I thought this was Trinity University in the UK, not some developing carribean nation
What an unnecessary comment. There are plenty of Caribbean schools that produce perfectly capable physicians. I grew up in the Caribbean and had to get surgery there on more than once occasion and turned out just fine. We may have less resources in certain areas, but the doctors who come from my country are just as smart and capable as any American doc.
 
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hallowmann

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Hello! I am deciding between attending Trinity and St George's in Fall 2019, and I am trying to get an honest review from a current/former Trinity student. For the record, I know that attending a Caribbean med school is not ideal, but I don't have the GPA to get into an American med school, and I have the rejection letters to prove it. I'm not extremely worried about residency matching because I want to go into Internal Medicine or Psych, and if necessary I'm happy to do my residency and have my career outside the US. As long as I can be a doctor I don't care about my geography.

Trinity seems great based on their website, I like the idea of smaller class sizes (relatively speaking) and it seems like you get a lot more early clinical exposure. Plus it's a lot cheaper. Trinity Students- What's the catch? I don't want to be fooled by good marketing, and it's so hard to find any information online that isn't from the school themselves! I would be eternally grateful to any Trinity student/alum who can answer these questions.

1. Assuming you put in the work, does Trinity prepare you to be a good doctor?

2. Do you actually get patient exposure in the first few years, or was it all lectures?

3. Is there any info on the Trinity site that is blatantly wrong/misleading?

4. If you could go back, would you choose a different Caribbean medical school over Trinity? Compared to other Caribbean schools, does Trinity hold its own?

Stop. Stop right now. Reapply broadly US. Defer your SGU acceptance to make yourself feel better. Forget Trinity.

As others have said, I think you can get in US if you actually apply broadly, even with failing Chem twice.

As for Trinity, dude, a degree from that school will not make you eligible for medical licensure in all 50 states. Why would you limit your residency chances even more by going to a non-Big-4+AUA school? I can tell you that the residency programs at my large institution (in the midwest mind you, not competitive coastal city) does not interview or accept applicants from schools that aren't on the CA list, even though you can be licensed in our state from those schools. That's all programs, including FM, peds, etc.
 
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I have to correct you. Trinity graduates are eligible for licensure in all 50 states in the US, territories in Canada, and the Caribbean. If our students weren't, we wouldn't be fully accredited and that would be an issue on a subsequent reviews. And we do have students who practice in CA too. All of students take the same shelf exams and Step Exams that US students do. If you look at Match Data, you can see that IMGs Match Rates increased 2.4% from 2018 to 2019 - research indicates that's expected to grow as the physician shortage grows. IL is a midwestern state that takes a large number of IMG grads yearly. If you look at survey data the NRMP conducts of Residency Directors, where a student attends doesn't even crack the top 20 on how residency applications are evaluated. To virtually no one's surprise - Step Scores, Letters of Rec, MSPE's, and grades are top factors.

If anyone is considering going a Caribbean school or US school for that matter, do the PROPER research 🔎 . Ask current students, talk with residency directors, recent grads, visit state licensing requirements, etc. While forum critiques have their place, it's not the best place for facts. That would be akin to believing everything your read on Facebook as fact ;)
 
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NotAProgDirector

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If you look at survey data the NRMP conducts of Residency Directors, where a student attends doesn't even crack the top 20 on how residency applications are evaluated. To virtually no one's surprise - Step Scores, Letters of Rec, MSPE's, and grades are top factors.
Although school in the carib can certainly lead to a successful medical career in the US, this statement is not quite correct.

I assume you're referring to the PD Survey. If you look at Figure 1, your statement seems true. But the relevant item in Figure 1 is "Graduate of a highly regarded medical (MD/DO) school". This isn't getting at US vs IMG, it's asking about "top XX US" vs the rest.

The answer to your statement is in Figure 6. Using the "all specialties" as an example, 94% of programs often invite USMD grads. But only 34% often invite US IMG's (with 54% seldom). The data do vary by specialty, quite a bit.
 
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