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be careful about Caribbean medical schools

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therealadvisor

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Why I would be worried about going to a Caribbean School


First, I am not making a crack at the intelligence or work ethic of ANY Caribbean student. I just want to make sure that the truth is out there about what happens when you go to a Caribbean school.


I feel that the Caribbean schools lie to you in order to get your money…


Fact number 1
Roughly 50 % of US foreign graduate students do not match for a residency over the last 6 years. This table is straight from the National Resident Matching program.
http://www.nrmp.org/res_match/tables/table2_06.pdf
Ross advertises a high match rate >85%. St. Georges is on par as well. My question is why are there numbers so different from the national match information? See answer below


Fact number 2
MCAT score and USMLE Step 1 and 2 scores are correlated.
http://eric.ed.gov/ERICWebPortal/Ho...chType_0=eric_accno&objectId=0900000b802752b0
Ross’ average MCAT score is 22. Yet, a Ross representative told me their USMLE Step 1 scores were 92%, which is in the upper range for US MD schools. How is this possible? Having advanced degrees in Statistics and I can tell it almost impossible given the correlation between the MCAT and USMLE step 1


Fact number 3
http://www.valuemd.com/ross.php
“As was recently published in JAMA, in 2002 Ross University placed more graduates into 1st year residency positions than any other medical school in the world, including all the US medical schools.”
How far can the truth be spun? Ross accepts students 3 times a year (spring, summer, and fall) with an average class size of 330. That means almost 1000 students a year enroll at Ross and would in theory be applying for residency’s when done. I believe the largest US MD school has roughly 350 students. This means that if Ross matches about 40% of their students the above statement is true. Kind of scary when you think about it, isn’t it?


Fact number 4
Is Ross part of AAMC? NO. How is it accredited?
http://www.rossu.edu/med/whyross/faqsross_061.cfm
Please read the part about accreditation and think about these things.
Approximately 50% of Dominica’s GDP is accredited to Ross University. Ross’s numbers pass through the government of Dominica, what do you think they would let slide?


Fact number 5
MD’s from the Caribbean do not earn the same respect as US MD’s. Is this fair? maybe or maybe not. Bottom line is that you have to be ok with this. It is very similar to being a DO.


In conclusion,
Be weary of what these schools tell you. You ARE going to have to work hard, You ARE going to have trouble coming back to the US although it can be done as numerous posters have stated. Just be realistic with your expectations and follow the advice of those posting on this website.
Once again, I am not knocking any of you in any way, shape, or form.



Please do not reply with “my friend went to the Caribbean and he is doing a residency in the US” because of course there are people that go there, do well, and come back to the US. The rate is just not as high as the schools advertise.
 

dr aaron

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The reason only 50% of the img's pass step one and match is simply due to the fact that this statistic is taking into account students from all over the world, many who do not even speak english.....if you look at the stats of american citizens studying medicine in the caribbean, most pass and just about everyone who wants a residency will get one........this is yet another ditsy premed student who doesnt know what he or she is talking about..........why dont you READ into the statistics before you come in here acting like you are doing everyone a favor lol, what a joke
 
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monsoon338

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Exactly as Dr. Aaron points out. 50% of all US FMGs don't match for residency. How can Ross be 85%? Because not all US FMGs go to Ross. Some go to India or Ireland or the 20 other lesser Caribbean med schools. Fact #1 is a fact but it also depends on a large part which school you go to in the Caribbean.

Who says that the USMLE and MCAT are correlated? Just because you do well on the MCAT doesn't mean you will do well on the USMLE as much as you doing well on the SAT means you do well on the MCAT. You can have a poor MCAT, learn a lot in the Caribbean, and still do well on the USMLE.

Fact #2 only states that the better you do on the Verbal section the better you are at reading and therefore better able to understand the questions. It says nothing about having a high MCAT means a high USMLE.

Ross does have a high rate of attrition. That is true. But if you study your ass off, then you should be fine. That statement cannot be understated: STUDY YOUR ASS OFF! Of course you would have to study your ass off no matter what med school you got into...

Fact #5 is not a fact at all but perception and opinion. I have seen numerous people I have talked to and read on these forums say that all that really matters is what you know and not where you come from. There might be a bad stigma attached but once they see the type of person you are and how much you know, then where you come from doesn't matter.
 

Bill Lumbergh

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The reason only 50% of the img's pass step one and match is simply due to the fact that this statistic is taking into account students from all over the world, many who do not even speak english.....if you look at the stats of american citizens studying medicine in the caribbean, most pass and just about everyone who wants a residency will get one........this is yet another ditsy premed student who doesnt know what he or she is talking about..........why dont you READ into the statistics before you come in here acting like you are doing everyone a favor lol, what a joke

ok, first, why the hostility? all the op did was do some research, come to some conclusions based on it, and try to share it with others. granted, some of the research is flawed/misleading, but there was nothing to deserve your response.

secondly, if YOU read the statistics, you would see that the 50% match rate applies to US Foreign Graduates, that is, students from the United States who chose to go to foreign medical schools, so there is no language barrier. they list non-US foreign graduates in a different section. please try to respond intelligently, or at least in a more civil manner from now on.

Now, on to the OP's "Facts"

Fact 1

The match rates for both Ross and St. George's ARE >85%, no matter how much you doubt those numbers. There are a couple reasons that help explain the difference from the 50% US-FMG match rate.

1: These schools are the cream of the crop in terms of Caribbean schools, but there are many, many others. These are the most reputable schools and so when residency programs are picking US-FMGs, they'll be picking from those schools. After them (and maybe a couple other reputable schools), there's a sharp decline in match rates such that the overall US-FMG match rate is about 50%. This is why you cannot used generalized US-FMG information to describe specific foreign schools. You have to look at each school as a separate entity. There are so many of them and they have a HUGE variation in quality.

2: The numbers represent the match rate of those that applied for the match from these schools. They say nothing of attrition rates or of in-school policies that prevent students from taking step 1 and advancing unless they meet certain academic standards (at least at SGU)


Fact 2

1: I think you are under the impression that the Ross representative is saying that their students score in the 92nd percentile, but he's not. He's saying they have a 92% first-time pass rate. That is, 92% of their students scored above a 183. He's not saying they're all scoring in the 240+ range. Their mean score could be 190 for all we know.

2: once again, at SGU you have to have a certain gpa or pass an in-school comprehensive exam before you can take step 1, making sure that only students who are likely to pass the test take the test

3: the study you sent the link for only shows a correlation between that specific reading test and MCAT or USMLE scores. it does not correlate MCAT and USMLE.

Fact 3

Yeah, it's a marketing ploy. Any other school would advertise it if they could say the same.


Fact 4

No medical school outside the United States is accredited by the LCME, and therefore Caribbean schools are not accredited by the LCME. It's not because they don't meet those standards, and it's not that they're trying to dupe you. They're accredited in the only way they can be.



Fact 5

I would amend this to say Caribbean medical students do not earn the same respect as US medical students by residency programs. Once you become a practicing physician, almost noone ever asks where you went to med school. Just like once you're in med school, noone cares where you went to college. You're all in the same place.
 

therealadvisor

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Dr. Aaron, Thanks for the personal attack. I won't stoop to your level. As for Bill and Moonson, thanks for the responses.

Ok, so lets straighten some things out. If you read the table I showed you, it states that of the roughly 2400 applicants over 6 years (only 400 per year), half did not match. 200 US foreign graduates match per year and thats it. Where are they coming from? Mostly from the top 3 Caribbean schools.

I AM NOT KNOCKING ROSS or ANY OTHER school.
I just want everyone to know the numbers.
 

Bill Lumbergh

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Dr. Aaron, Thanks for the personal attack. I won't stoop to your level. As for Bill and Moonson, thanks for the responses.

Ok, so lets straighten some things out. If you read the table I showed you, it states that of the roughly 2400 applicants over 6 years (only 400 per year), half did not match. 200 US foreign graduates match per year and thats it. Where are they coming from? Mostly from the top 3 Caribbean schools.

I AM NOT KNOCKING ROSS or ANY OTHER school.
I just want everyone to know the numbers.


read the chart again. there were 2435 USFMG applicants and 1231 matching in 2006, not over 6 years. you're only looking at the last column. each column represents a different year.

US FMG and non-US FMG have 4382 matched spots out of 20072 total spots filled in 2006, or about 20%. So 1 in 5 new doctors in the US are from non-US schools. That would be a more accurate representation of the numbers.
 

therealadvisor

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Sorry,

Wrote that last responses in pieces.

One more look shows that last year 1231 US foreign graduates matched, while almost 15000 US senior students matched.

If anyone had a breakdown of those 1231 or how many matched from Ross and St. George's it would be very useful.

Fact number 5 is a fact in the academic community but its definitively not always the case.
 

SabaMed

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Why go to school in the caribbean in the first place? I say try as hard as you can and stay in the states or canada. I believe some people think you can become a MD on them islands but I think its more like the TV show survivor and your gonna get voted out one episode at a time. Think about it.
 

oldpro

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Dr. Aaron, Thanks for the personal attack. I won't stoop to your level. As for Bill and Moonson, thanks for the responses.

Ok, so lets straighten some things out. If you read the table I showed you, it states that of the roughly 2400 applicants over 6 years (only 400 per year), half did not match. 200 US foreign graduates match per year and thats it. Where are they coming from? Mostly from the top 3 Caribbean schools.

I AM NOT KNOCKING ROSS or ANY OTHER school.
I just want everyone to know the numbers.

HAHAHA what's the game here? You come off like Moses here with no new information. Why come on here and post things that are incomplete and only part of the REAL STORY.

Poorer students go to the Caribbean, many could not get into a US medschool and yes there is increased risk to going.

No I do not see you as knocking but acting like you have real answers to "SAVE" people from what becoming Doctors? ( Glad I wasn't saved!) Yes there are people who should not go to medschool, and as you show in those numbers there are a lot who should go. Should a Doctor just give up if 1/2 his patients die with a Chemo treatment, Uh just stop treating the other 50% who make it? Huh, I do not want your kind of logic! Also are all the resdencies out side the match included? Caribbean Grads can get a residency outside the match (Oh lets not confuse us with facts)

I say thank but no thanks!

This is really about those who go to the caribbean study and learn then pass Step one will not only make it but get a Residency and have a career.

Of course this Caribbean student who has a prematch doesn't know anything right?


BTW
Please do not reply with "my friend went to the Caribbean and he is doing a residency in the US" because of course there are people that go there, do well, and come back to the US. The rate is just not as high as the schools advertise.

I do not have one but many who have done well and as I said I'm one of them so it's not anecdotal not as this quote by you.
 

oldpro

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Why I would be worried about going to a Caribbean School................................................................

IF you have below a 3.4 GPA and a MCAT below 28 then I guess you can stay in the US and be Salesman or something?

For those who will work hard the Caribbean gives you a chance to study medicine it's up to you you may or may not make it this is true. BUT it may be the only chance you get to study medicine yes you should do this if you are dedicated, an MD will not be given to you real people who become Doctors from the Caribbean or the US or Europe work hard thats why they make it.:luck: :smuggrin:
 

Northerner

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No I do not see you as knocking but acting like you have real answers to "SAVE" people from what becoming Doctors? ( Glad I wasn't saved!) Yes there are people who should not go to medschool, and as you show in those numbers there are a lot who should go. Should a Doctor just give up if 1/2 his patients die with a Chemo treatment, Uh just stop treating the other 50% who make it?

...what the hell are you talking about? Terrible analogy. And besides, he wasn't saying "don't become a doctor", he's saying "don't go to medical school in the caribbean". Granted, he was misinformed and misleading in some of his points, but Lumbergh addressed those pretty well to clarify.

I do not have one but many who have done well and as I said I'm one of them so it's not anecdotal not as this quote by you.

Again - while he may not be right, it's silly to offer up your own "examples" of success stories. Your "many" who have done well, while perhaps a testiment to the strength of a caribbean education to you, is still nonetheless anecdotal and doesn't really weigh in on this discussion. He acknowledged it was very possible to do well and be successful going to caribbean medical school. The point of this thread seemed to be to clarify misconceptions and misleading advertising (i.e. on a larger scale, the statistics that are quoted).
 

oldpro

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...what the hell are you talking about? Terrible analogy. And besides, he wasn't saying "don't become a doctor", he's saying "don't go to medical school in the caribbean". Granted, he was misinformed and misleading in some of his points, but Lumbergh addressed those pretty well to clarify.
You did read the whole statement right? I said if your stats are so you cannot go into a US school then what do you do? You take a risk, I see the intent as to steer people away and thats kinda stuck up in my opinion. I'm allowed to post my opinion right? My opinion is based on reading between the lines I think (IMO) there was a message there, why else "Warn people about the Caribbean" if not to stop them.


Again - while he may not be right, it's silly to offer up your own "examples" of success stories. Your "many" who have done well, while perhaps a testiment to the strength of a caribbean education to you, is still nonetheless anecdotal and doesn't really weigh in on this discussion. He acknowledged it was very possible to do well and be successful going to caribbean medical school. The point of this thread seemed to be to clarify misconceptions and misleading advertising (i.e. on a larger scale, the statistics that are quoted).


Silly? My prematch is serious and is not anecdotal how can it be it's right from me!

My friends may be but it's the truth, but as always SDN is not about truth but mostly opinion and those who try to squash it.
Those stats are not all the info anyway and yes I agree there is some misleading by schools oh well thats life
Good Luck:confused:
 
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oldpro

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Oldpro,

Which school are you currently at and what stage of the medical school process are you in?

I'm in my last 10 weeks of basic sci, MS II

I was offered a deal and took it already (Yeah I have connections) But they wanted this old Caribbean student.

I go to St. James no not a Big 4 school they are just going through ACCM accreditation. they Started in 2001.
 

Northerner

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You did read the whole statement right? I said if your stats are so you cannot go into a US school then what do you do? You take a risk, I see the intent as to steer people away and thats kinda stuck up in my opinion. I'm allowed to post my opinion right? My opinion is based on reading between the lines I think (IMO) there was a message there, why else "Warn people about the Caribbean" if not to stop them.

Well, his opinion was that it's better to work on your stats to get into a U.S. institution rather than going to the caribbean. Can't fault him for that. I'm not sure whether I agree with him.

Silly? My prematch is serious and is not anecdotal how can it be it's right from me!

I think you should look up the definition of "anecdotal"....

SDN is not about truth but mostly opinion and those who try to squash it.

Well, I agree with you there.
 

oldpro

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Well, his opinion was that it's better to work on your stats to get into a U.S. institution rather than going to the caribbean. Can't fault him for that. I'm not sure whether I agree with him.

Hell I agree with that especially with some of the younger people, but some have a mess with undergrad due to many reasons and others like me are older and we would have to go back for a whole new degree to satisfy the Medschools in the USA to accept you, I would still be in undergrad trying to do that now and not about to Graduate Basic Sci. So Yeah I understand but many people are scared and read so much crap thats just conjecture. I like to post as a devils advocate on the crap, I guess I need to do better huh? LOL
 

PathOne

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This subject has been flogged to death numerous times, but why not again? :)

1. Obviously, US citizens that wants to work in the US have the best options if they graduate from a US school.
2. Obviously, people who decide to spend serious $$$ and spend a serious amount of time on a third world Caribbean island couldn't get into a US school, but still wants to be physicians.
3. Since there's effectively no accreditation of Carib medical schools, the quality of both schools and students vary considerably. Some students have most, but not all, of the qualifications to attend a US school. Others couldn't even make it past secondary.
4. I agree, that post residency, few if any care about which school you went to. However, Carib schools CAN limit your access to the most competitive residencies, and the majority can even limit which states you can get licensure in (how anybody can contemplate attending a medical school that limits where you can work is another matter, which, however, isn't applicable to Ross).
5. Perhaps one of the biggest differences is, that if you enter a medical school in the US, your chance of graduating and getting a residency is statistically very, very high, as attrition is very low, and # of residency spots very high, compared to total output from US schools. One of the MAJOR drawbacks of Carib schools is, that there's a much higher number of people that spend quite a lot of time, and especially a lot of money, on trying to get a degree, which in the end comes to naught. Some flunk outright in school, others can't pass the USMLE, and still others can't get residency, or otherwise never get licensed. One of my big problems with Carib schools is, that to my knowledge nobody actually publish information on how many people actually make it to the other side.
 

oldpro

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This subject has been flogged to death numerous times, but why not again? :)

1. Obviously, US citizens that wants to work in the US have the best options if they graduate from a US school.
2. Obviously, people who decide to spend serious $$$ and spend a serious amount of time on a third world Caribbean island couldn't get into a US school, but still wants to be physicians.
3. Since there's effectively no accreditation of Carib medical schools, the quality of both schools and students vary considerably. Some students have most, but not all, of the qualifications to attend a US school. Others couldn't even make it past secondary.
4. I agree, that post residency, few if any care about which school you went to. However, Carib schools CAN limit your access to the most competitive residencies, and the majority can even limit which states you can get licensure in (how anybody can contemplate attending a medical school that limits where you can work is another matter, which, however, isn't applicable to Ross).
5. Perhaps one of the biggest differences is, that if you enter a medical school in the US, your chance of graduating and getting a residency is statistically very, very high, as attrition is very low, and # of residency spots very high, compared to total output from US schools. One of the MAJOR drawbacks of Carib schools is, that there's a much higher number of people that spend quite a lot of time, and especially a lot of money, on trying to get a degree, which in the end comes to naught. Some flunk outright in school, others can't pass the USMLE, and still others can't get residency, or otherwise never get licensed. One of my big problems with Carib schools is, that to my knowledge nobody actually publish information on how many people actually make it to the other side.


ALSO pathone, there is really no regualtion to all the schools, ACCM does accredit them but really it's not like the LCME in the US there is really no oversite, the island governments are glad to have the income but do little to oversee nor do they know how to over see. The schools also lie to the Islands as well.

I would like to see either the ACCM get some teeth or a new independent Org start up and do some real house keeping. ( not an Org like CARCOM that is run by certain Caribbean schools, it needs to be independent)
 

therealadvisor

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Some of you took my post the wrong way. Here is my point.

The schools seem to offer some level of false hope. If you go there you will match for a residency. This is true if you work hard, which lots of people have done. However, just going there does not mean you are going to get a residency. When Ross says their match rate is >85% that is misleading.

In the US, you go to medical school and you match with very few exceptions.
 

sweep arpeggio

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I seriously can't believe we're still having people who have ZERO direct experience with graduating from a caribbean school holding themselves out as "experts" on the subject and filling the board with this nonsense.

Am I an expert? Maybe, maybe not, you decide.

I'm a caribbean graduate. I did well enough on the USMLE to score aresidency in a competative specialty at a fairly prestigious university program, and then a fellowship as well at an equally fine institution. I have also been clinical faculty at one of top US public medical schools, and have sat on residency selection committies as well.

Can I tell you the carribbean experience has no bumps along the road? Of course not. But the basic fact is that if you go to a reputable school, study your butt off, and excel in your clinicals, you will have little problem matching into a decent residency. How "decent" is dependent on a number of factors. Some,you certainly have control over: Your USMLE scores and your LOR's. There are unfortunately things you have no control over, ie that some PD's are still prejudiced against US FMG's. However, if you do well enough on the boards, almost anything is possible.

So ignore the bs about correlation between this and that. I know several people who had MCAT's in the low 20's who applied themselves in school and scored in 230's and 240's on the USMLE.

I've met US FMG's who have matched into, categorical surgery, emergency medicine, anesthesiology, and yes, even optho, neurosurgery, and radiology. Can I guarantee you'll do the same? Of course not. But as I said, anything is possible.

Bottom line: Choose a reputable school. (No offense to anyone, but if you don't want to have problems with licensure in any state, you have to go to one of the "big four".) Then work harder than you ever have, take a prep course for the USMLE (by the way at the one I went to, 98% of the people there were from US schools), crush the exams, excel in your clinicals, and you'll succeed.
 

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"Fact number 5
MD’s from the Caribbean do not earn the same respect as US MD’s. Is this fair? maybe or maybe not. Bottom line is that you have to be ok with this. It is very similar to being a DO."

I can't believe that someone would say this. That is a harsh statement to both Carribean MDs and US DOs. I'm in Nevada and the most respected surgeon in the state is a DO.

Have you ever heard of the 2 inch total knee replacement? or the 4 inch total hip replacement? Well sorry to break the news to you but it is a DO that pioneered those 2 procedures. Funny, if DOs are not as respected then why do MDs from all over the world come to Vegas to learn from this DO?

For most patients, DOs are respected and trusted alot more than any MD.
 

oldpro

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Some of you took my post the wrong way. Here is my point.

The schools seem to offer some level of false hope. If you go there you will match for a residency. This is true if you work hard, which lots of people have done. However, just going there does not mean you are going to get a residency. When Ross says their match rate is >85% that is misleading.

In the US, you go to medical school and you match with very few exceptions.


OK I see but you are misleading on the US also,

Instead of students failing out in the US they "DECEL" when failing so they stay just retake courses

Graduating a US school may get just about anyone a residency but students with low Step one scores and just passing grades will match but not into Surgery and Derm and so on as far as Competitive residencies.

I really hate to read such posts because there is belief and there is reality.

going to a US school guarantees practicing only not Competitive residencies.

Going to an offshore school does not guarantee but if you learn and pass the USMLE then an FMG should be able to get a residency also especially in primary care.
 
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dr aaron

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i said it before and i'll say it again....this is some ditsy premed student who has never set foot in the caribbean acting like he is an expert on things he knows nothing about......if you want a residency and you pass your boards, YOU WILL GET ONE.....how hard is it to understand, have you had a college level math course yet??? it is very simple to understand, thousands of spots are left unfilled every year even with IMGs in the match, now sure if you want something that is rediculously unattainable then you might not match, but otherwise you will match somewhere........now go back to downloading free porn in your dorm and quit acting like you are doing everyone a favor.
 

therealadvisor

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Dr. Aaron,

What a great post, you have such a wonderful personality... I am sure your patients will love it.

Why don't you address something I posted instead of just personally attacking me?

So as long as I pass my boards I will match? So what about the 50% of people that did not match? I guess they did not pass their boards...but wait they would not be able to apply.

As for the stigma, some people are uneducated and have never heard of a DO. When you live in areas away from DO schools it becomes more apparent, which sucks.

You can always find examples like the surgeon mentioned, but you pass it off like it is the norm.

OldPro, Pathone... great intelligent posts and thanks for addressing the posts and not personally attacking people. .

OldPro

going to a US school guarantees practicing only not Competitive residencies.

Going to an offshore school does not guarantee but if you learn and pass the USMLE then an FMG should be able to get a residency also especially in primary care.

I agree, but it seems that the schools pitch themselves like a US school in that you will get a residency. This is not true for all students.

Sweep, "I seriously can't believe we're still having people who have ZERO direct experience with graduating from a caribbean school holding themselves out as "experts" on the subject and filling the board with this nonsense."

Can you tell me my life plans? Apparently you know me so well that you know I have ZERO experience
 

oldpro

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Dr. Aaron,

What a great post, you have such a wonderful personality... I am sure your patients will love it.

Why don't you address something I posted instead of just personally attacking me?

So as long as I pass my boards I will match? So what about the 50% of people that did not match? I guess they did not pass their boards...but wait they would not be able to apply.

As for the stigma, some people are uneducated and have never heard of a DO. When you live in areas away from DO schools it becomes more apparent, which sucks.

You can always find examples like the surgeon mentioned, but you pass it off like it is the norm.

OldPro, Pathone... great intelligent posts and thanks for addressing the posts and not personally attacking people. .

OldPro

going to a US school guarantees practicing only not Competitive residencies.

Going to an offshore school does not guarantee but if you learn and pass the USMLE then an FMG should be able to get a residency also especially in primary care.

I agree, but it seems that the schools pitch themselves like a US school in that you will get a residency. This is not true for all students.

Sweep, "I seriously can't believe we're still having people who have ZERO direct experience with graduating from a caribbean school holding themselves out as "experts" on the subject and filling the board with this nonsense."

Can you tell me my life plans? Apparently you know me so well that you know I have ZERO experience

To be honest some of the hostility comes from you SCREEN NAME, some of us are Real Caribbean students (I'm a MS II myself) and your name is "THEREALADVISOR" to many it seems like you are going to give factual advice and knowledgeable advice so others here will debate and challenge what you post sometimes the name just causes hostility I guess.:idea:
 

sweep arpeggio

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Sweep, "I seriously can't believe we're still having people who have ZERO direct experience with graduating from a caribbean school holding themselves out as "experts" on the subject and filling the board with this nonsense."

Can you tell me my life plans? Apparently you know me so well that you know I have ZERO experience[/QUOTE]


Pardon my doubts, but I have a problem when someone makes sweeping generalizations and does not back it up with any detailed personal observations. So let's make this simple: Did you graduate from a carribbean medical school? If so, please tell us what happened, why you have this point of view, and I'll appologize for characterising you as someone with no experience.
 

dr aaron

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i agree with sweep, let me know what experience you have with caribbean medicine and ill gladly be quiet......oh and by the way, as far as my patients loving my attitude, i actually have EXPERIENCE in dealing with patients and i can tell you that each one requires a different approach. Of course you know nothing about this because you have no experience with medical school and have nothing better to do that to come in here and act like some type of expert, you are a joke. Oh and by the way do a little research into the subject with which you are trying to act so knowlageable about.
 

PathOne

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Let's try to keep a civilized tone, shall we? Courtesy is an approach that works excellent towards everybody. If posters can't argue without it turning into a verbal (or literary, as it may be) boxing fight, they should refrain from posting.

Oh, and by the way, dr aaron, as judging from your previous posts, you don't seem to have a whole lot of experience with medical schools, having "recently" been admitted to St. Matthew's University? So perhaps try to moderate your statements a bit. Thank you.
 

therealadvisor

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I have personally dealt with approximately 40 FMG who went to Carribean or Mexican medical schools and did not match. I helped them decide what they should consider doing with their lives and if they decided to still pursue a residency, I put them in contact with the people who could help. It should not come to this, but it does which is unfortunate.

I have directly advised over 1400 pre medical students and indirectly aided many more.

I am going to repost my original statements with some modifications and want pathone, bill and rest of you to comment on them. I want to create a document that is informative but not skewed in either direction so that a student could read it and have an idea of how the process works and weigh the positives and negatives. Not that "my friend went there and matched or I did the same" post. I am going to have access shortly to exactly how many people Ross matched last year. I should have the same from St. George's soon as well. What are the other 2 schools I should consider?

I have been to St. George's as well. Little known fact (maybe some of you knew this but I suspect it was before your time) is that St. Georges initiated the process to become apart of AAMC about 3 years ago. For some reason it fell to the side without any real explanation.

Can you not make personal attacks and help with this? If you can't then don't post. I believe the spirit of SDN is to help students.
 

SabaMed

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I have personally dealt with approximately 40 FMG who went to Carribean or Mexican medical schools and did not match. I helped them decide what they should consider doing with their lives and if they decided to still pursue a residency, I put them in contact with the people who could help. It should not come to this, but it does which is unfortunate.

I have directly advised over 1400 pre medical students and indirectly aided many more.

I am going to repost my original statements with some modifications and want pathone, bill and rest of you to comment on them. I want to create a document that is informative but not skewed in either direction so that a student could read it and have an idea of how the process works and weigh the positives and negatives. Not that "my friend went there and matched or I did the same" post. I am going to have access shortly to exactly how many people Ross matched last year. I should have the same from St. George's soon as well. What are the other 2 schools I should consider?

I have been to St. George's as well. Little known fact (maybe some of you knew this but I suspect it was before your time) is that St. Georges initiated the process to become apart of AAMC about 3 years ago. For some reason it fell to the side without any real explanation.

Can you not make personal attacks and help with this? If you can't then don't post. I believe the spirit of SDN is to help students.

Do Saba too because I know no one ever matched from here. You have to do at least one "ghetto" school like ours. I told you they steal your dreams and your money and leave you with nothing!:mad:
 

oldpro

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I have personally dealt with approximately 40 FMG who went to Carribean or Mexican medical schools and did not match. I helped them decide what they should consider doing with their lives and if they decided to still pursue a residency, I put them in contact with the people who could help. It should not come to this, but it does which is unfortunate.

I have directly advised over 1400 pre medical students and indirectly aided many more.

Dealing with 40 does not make you an expert, in fact this is a very small number since thousands graduate from the Caribbean evey year, so you are ready to say that these thousands are now unable to get residencies? Really?

ALso I do not have a love for advisors, when you say you have been t SGU are you saying you are a Doctor now or did you just visit?

Did you graduate and go through the match? I think if you did that puts a little more experience behind you if not then you are relying on the experience of others and at 40 just a few, what are the stats of the 40? what schools? You see all this matters

BY THE WAY WHY DID YOU NOT TELL US YOU WORK AS AN ADVISOR ALL THIS TIME? I wonder?

Hey SABA MED Hows the HOOD?
 

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I think an honest effort into providing honest and unbiased information is a great thing and commend you for it.

The thing with the Caribbean is that its a large place. The first thing I think you need to do is decide if you are going to talk about the Caribbean in general, The Big 3/4, or one school specifically.

We all know that there are many really bad schools in the Caribbean that aren't in the Big 3/4. Talking about them separately should help a lot in this process. Those people you had to advise after they didn't match: "Did they graduate from Big 3/4 or a smaller Caribbean school?"

Secondly, I think everyone on here needs to admit the fact that the attrition rate at Ross is what it is. I don't think anyone is denying the fact that 50 - 60% of the people who start at Ross will never finish the first year.

I think a large proportion of that is because Ross admits as many as 300 students per semester. If only 150 actually end up practicing, that matches the number of students that end up practicing at US med schools. Say a US med school admits 150 students and 90% end up practicing. The numbers at Ross and US schools match because only those who really wanted to be doctors ended up being doctors.

The admin problems at Caribbean med schools and even the Big 3/4 are real. I am sure the teachers are bad at Ross, but I think every school has bad teachers. Maybe Ross has more than the average. How much more? That can only be told by someone who has had experience at both. The admin problems are there. But I think if you go above and beyond your duties to ENSURE that your file is getting the proper amount of time it deserves and that there aren't any hurdles, then you should be fine. Its just a matter of you having to put in more effort than someone who deals with the administration at US schools.

In the end, any of these choices can get you where you want to be. The only real difference is that one path you have to be much more proactive and the other path basically everything is done for you.

However, you can look at the Caribbean as a good experience as it teaches you the self study skills you will need to be a successful doctor in the future. Lets not kid ourselves that we stop learning once we are outside of medical school. I think the half life for medical knowledge is something like 2 years with the new information changing so often. You have to have these self study skills and motivation to keep up with the rapidly changing field.
 
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monsoon338

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Do Saba too because I know no one ever matched from here. You have to do at least one "ghetto" school like ours. I told you they steal your dreams and your money and leave you with nothing!:mad:

Really, Sabamed? Not one single individual from Saba ever matched in the US? Are willing to wager on that?
 

oldpro

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I think an honest effort into providing honest and unbiased information is a great thing and commend you for it.

The thing with the Caribbean is that its a large place. The first thing I think you need to do is decide if you are going to talk about the Caribbean in general, The Big 3/4, or one school specifically.

We all know that there are many really bad schools in the Caribbean that aren't in the Big 3/4. Talking about them separately should help a lot in this process. Those people you had to advise after they didn't match: "Did they graduate from Big 3/4 or a smaller Caribbean school?"

Secondly, I think everyone on here needs to admit the fact that the attrition rate at Ross is what it is. I don't think anyone is denying the fact that 50 - 60% of the people who start at Ross will never finish the first year.


Yes I agree with you but when someone does not come clean with who they are when they are advising professionally I then have to wonder what agenda they have, do you not think there is a ongoing agenda against FMG's in the US? (No not a conspriacy LOL) a movement of a few people to discredit the Caribbean medical schools and divert all the federal loans to the US. Yes this was tried by some people in Congress just this past year. Do not think everyone thinks it's wonderful that we go to medical school, for one reason or another there are those who spend time trying to create a bad image of the Caribbean, if you want proof just read posts on the Allopathy about the Caribbean here on SDN or research some of the posts over the last year, a lot of nasty negativity there.

Yes I agree the schools lie, one of the biggest some schools have on the websites is under ACCREDITATIONS IS:
WHO
IMED
ECMFG
none of these accredit but list.

I try to tell people all the time that US States Approve not accredit the Caribbean schools also but some schools choose to confuse people
They tell other lies like "Our school is NY approved so you can be Licensed there" True but it's misleading since NY approves for clinicals only not Licensure, any school that is WHO listed can be considered for License on a case by case basis.

By the way there were Total: 64.9% filled out of 21659 thats 14056 positions unfilled in the 2006 match there are still a lot of opened spots in the match.

Yes this was before the scramble.....................:luck:
 

therealadvisor

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I don't have time today to get everything up today.

I am NOT an adviser in the way you think I am. I do not work for a school. I have nothing to gain by steering someone away or to a Carribean school.

What I want, is for students to have all the facts so they can make an informed decision. The schools aren't truthful, rumors abound, people think personal stories are the norm (lots of posters fit this category), and some people just flat out hate FMGs.

Last year I dealt with 40/1200 people who graduated from a Carribean or Mexican school but did not match. It is really not important anyway, because I am using statistics to explain what happens with further explanations.
 

oldpro

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I don't have time today to get everything up today.

I am NOT an adviser in the way you think I am. I do not work for a school. I have nothing to gain by steering someone away or to a Carribean school.

What I want, is for students to have all the facts so they can make an informed decision. The schools aren't truthful, rumors abound, people think personal stories are the norm (lots of posters fit this category), and some people just flat out hate FMGs.

Last year I dealt with 40/1200 people who graduated from a Carribean or Mexican school but did not match. It is really not important anyway, because I am using statistics to explain what happens with further explanations.

But if there are 14,000 open spots after the match then why are not the Caribbean grads matching? I think it's more complicated then just numbers I think there it is partly due to what the FMG want to match into. I think the interviews matter, to just say according to the numbers 1/2 the FMG's do not get a residency is really not accurate, there are factors that help one decide and most of use agree if you want primary care then the Caribbean is very viable but there are so many who think you can do surgery from the Caribbean, you can but its the few not the many.....................for instance.
 

billydoc

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I don't have time today to get everything up today.

I am NOT an adviser in the way you think I am. I do not work for a school. I have nothing to gain by steering someone away or to a Carribean school.

What I want, is for students to have all the facts so they can make an informed decision. The schools aren't truthful, rumors abound, people think personal stories are the norm (lots of posters fit this category), and some people just flat out hate FMGs.

Last year I dealt with 40/1200 people who graduated from a Carribean or Mexican school but did not match. It is really not important anyway, because I am using statistics to explain what happens with further explanations.

Therealadvisor, I understand that your intentions may be very noble, but you have to understand that ppl rarely choose to attend schools in the middle of the Caribbean Sea just for a heck of it. Most of the time they've exhausted other options. There are some exceptions, and that's usually ppl who didn't want to bother with MCAT, and / or are older (myself included), and wanted to shave off a couple of years on applying. There is nothing wrong with going to a reputable, established school with licensed graduates, good rotation sites, and good passing USMLE rates. I'd say that your numbers are probably way off, b/c Carib grads are lumped here together with all of the other FMGs from the foreign domicile programs. I don't think that anybody feeps real stats on it, but at least reputable Carib schools that cater to U.S and Canadian citizens with the main objective to go back and practice in North America do keep their stats. Most good schools won't even let you start your clinical rotations before you pass step1. Also I don't think that ECFMG will certify you for the residency app process if you don't have all of your steps, and all core rotations done. It's highly unlikely that a US IMG who had jumped through all the hoops won't be considered for a residency anywhere. If the set goal for a super competative specialty was unrealistic to begin with, then of course, the result for stats is still "no match". But this is fuzzy math. I've met a lot of ppl in the Carib who seemed quite delusional about their professional career as an IMG, thinking they are going to be plastic and ortho sergeons, derm , rds etc. Yes, there are exceptions, and very few have actually attained those residencies. But my question is always if you couldn't do well on MCAT, or your GPA sucked or there was some other reason for you not getting in U.S, then what makes you think you are just going to be so exceptional. I always hear this talk "I'm just gonna go there and kick a$$, and crash the boards" :smuggrin: as if it was such an easy thing to do. Anyway, just some thoughts for you.

good Luck with your resarch or whatever it is you do :luck:
 

PathOne

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I have personally dealt with approximately 40 FMG who went to Carribean or Mexican medical schools and did not match. I helped them decide what they should consider doing with their lives and if they decided to still pursue a residency, I put them in contact with the people who could help. It should not come to this, but it does which is unfortunate.

I have directly advised over 1400 pre medical students and indirectly aided many more.

I am going to repost my original statements with some modifications and want pathone, bill and rest of you to comment on them. I want to create a document that is informative but not skewed in either direction so that a student could read it and have an idea of how the process works and weigh the positives and negatives. Not that "my friend went there and matched or I did the same" post. I am going to have access shortly to exactly how many people Ross matched last year. I should have the same from St. George's soon as well. What are the other 2 schools I should consider?

I have been to St. George's as well. Little known fact (maybe some of you knew this but I suspect it was before your time) is that St. Georges initiated the process to become apart of AAMC about 3 years ago. For some reason it fell to the side without any real explanation.

Can you not make personal attacks and help with this? If you can't then don't post. I believe the spirit of SDN is to help students.

While your plan is laudable, there's a number of problems with it. Amongst others:
1. To document your findings, you'd need hard numbers. (% graduating, step 1 pass rates, etc, etc.) which can be hard, if not impossible, to find.
2. I don't really think that the major issue with Carib schools are places like SGU and Ross. Yes, they're commercial operations, but they've been around for years, and do have a proven track record. The problem is all the "Saint XYZ" (for some reason, most new Carib schools are "St. something). That's where some real info is most sorely needed. Unfortunately, a lot of these simply have no hard data at all (often being so new that they don't have licensed grads, sometimes not even residents).

As regards SGU and AAMC, I think it's fairly obvious why they weren't invited to join the club. AAMC is a lobbying organization for and by US and Canadian schools. So why on earth should they want other schools outside North America joining them? Additionally, AAMC doesn't accredit medical schools. That's LCME's job - the Liaison Committee for Medical Education is a joint body founded by AAMC and the American Medical Association, but it's independent. And again, it only accredits North American medical schools.

I think Oldpro has given some good points. The reputable Carib schools CAN make it possible for dedicated, hardworking and reasonably intelligent students to match into fields like FP, psych, peds, int med. In theory, you could also see grads from these schools match into more competitive residencies, but seeing as some fields are a reach even for US grads (who, in addition to being grads of LCME-accredited schools also tend to be more desirable overall), it's really difficult to get there as an IMG.

Now an important disclaimer: My only experience in the Carib is as a suntanning vacationer. So I can't really comment on the quality of training at Carib schools. However, the system of acceptance of medical training is clearly broken, if more or less anybody can pay for a piece of paper that say that you operate a medical school, and that piece of paper is recognized by the US (ECFMG).

Clearly, some kind of accreditation system is called for. The original system behind ECFMG was and is based on the (sensible) argument that governments kept a vigilant eye on their own medical schools, because graduates would treat that country's own nationals. That's why you don't really need accreditation systems in, say the UK, France, Germany or Scandinavia. But when you have schools that are designed solely to feed grads into the US medical system, then the system effectively breaks down.

Actually, there's no need to invent some fancy new accreditation system. You could just adopt the Californian system nationwide. California accepts "real" foreign schools without question, and can accept offshore schools pending site visits. They have accepted places like SGU, AUC and Ross, and have denied schools like Spartan and St. Matthew's. Personally, I think that's an excellent solution, and I'm pretty sure it'll work in all 50 states.

Unfortunately, it's not easy to decide on a national system, as medical licensure is closely guarded by individual states, who've seen so much autonomy slip through their fingers towards Wash DC. But apart from the politics of it all, it still makes sense.

The alternative would be for the reputable Carib schools themselves to set up a believable and trustworthy accreditation system, as one of the few "real" medical schools, UWI, as attempted. However, that's also unlikely to happen, as the "50 approved states" med schools obviously want to capitalize on their status, and will be unlikely to assist newcomers in attaining that same status.

OK, a lot of words. But bottom line, to me:
1. If going offshore, only attend a school that has a track record and can get you approved in all 50 states. If they don't want you, perhaps you should realize that you need to do something else in your life.
2. As a graduate of a non-LCME school, realize that you WILL be at a disadvantage compared to US/Canadian grads.
3. In all things, including applying to medical school and residency, always remember to use your common sense.
 

sweep arpeggio

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Yes, people will go to the caribbean and flunk out, or worse, just do enough to pass. To me, it's a simple fact that most often in life, you get out of something what you put in. If the situation with someone who didn't get a residency, is that they barely passed the USMLE by the skin of their teeth, they have no one to blame but themselves. It was emphasized to my class from day one, that our future in medicine rested with how well we did on the USMLE, and our task in the basic sciences was to study, and then study some more.


For anyone who is interested, here are the links to the recent match lists from the "big four".

http://www.rossu.edu/med/whyross/recordachieve_041.cfm

http://www.sgu.edu/website/sguwebsite.nsf/alumni/2006-postgraduate-residency.html

http://www.aucmed.edu/alumni/alumres.htm

http://www.saba.edu/residency.php

I realize that AUC and Ross don't actually publish the names of their graduates, but SGU and Saba do.


So here's my bottom line: Exhaust all possible means to get into a US medical school. If that's not feasible, then you have the choice of D.O. or going to the caribbean. My recommendation is that if you can get into a D.O. school, do so, but understand that there still is some prejudice by some physicians. If you are going to go to a caribbean school, pick one of the big four, because you will have the least problems both with licensure and recognition by PD's (yes, at this point they do know). Bust your tail, take the Kaplan review, and do as well as you can on the USMLE I, excel in your clinicals, and do equally well on USMLE II. You will get a residency and become a physician.
 

therealadvisor

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Pathone, Sweep,

That is what I am talking about!!! Some of the better posts in this forum. Very informative, thoughtful, and no personal attacks.

I think I will be able to get the number of matches and how many started in the class for the big 4 (for certain on SGU and Ross).

I think if a school is not going to release this information, I would become worried about what I was getting myself into.

Anyhow, I will get it up as soon as possible.
 

oldpro

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Pathone, Sweep,

That is what I am talking about!!! Some of the better posts in this forum. Very informative, thoughtful, and no personal attacks.

I think I will be able to get the number of matches and how many started in the class for the big 4 (for certain on SGU and Ross).

I think if a school is not going to release this information, I would become worried about what I was getting myself into.

Anyhow, I will get it up as soon as possible.

Look I agree with a lot if what you say and the schools should release more info and not have confusing or misleading websites yes I agree but the bottom line in my 43 years on this earth is it is the students, the people themselves who need to pass the USMLE it's not the schools, it's the students who must study and study not the schools, it's the students who must take the review course and know the material, a school provides the means the students must be able to study and just plain attend class................................

I'm so tired of reading the schools the schools, what about these people who get the chance and do not make the most of it why do why coddle them and say it's not their fault? In the end it was up to them to pass and work hard not one can make anyone do that. No one can make someone pass and be successful that is up to the individual. Over and over again everyone wants to blame this school and that school when it's the students.

Yes there should be admission standards to prohibit some of the poor students from attempting but I have to tell you that some of them deserve the chance and the USA does not give them that chance, there is no room in the process to allow someone with a 3.0 or a 2.7 but has other qualities, if they can work their tail off they can get through medical school I have seen them and know them, they are in residency now.

One last thing there are about 50% in my school of one ethnic group, their moms and dads come here and make sure they are received some are good students and others do not know why they are here, do not show up to class and do not study well. It's not even funny. But I can tell you it annoys me because those of us who are dead serious cannot stand it that they squeak by.
 

DRJJ1

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Look I agree with a lot if what you say and the schools should release more info and not have confusing or misleading websites yes I agree but the bottom line in my 43 years on this earth is it is the students, the people themselves who need to pass the USMLE it's not the schools, it's the students who must study and study not the schools, it's the students who must take the review course and know the material, a school provides the means the students must be able to study and just plain attend class................................

I'm so tired of reading the schools the schools, what about these people who get the chance and do not make the most of it why do why coddle them and say it's not their fault? In the end it was up to them to pass and work hard not one can make anyone do that. No one can make someone pass and be successful that is up to the individual. Over and over again everyone wants to blame this school and that school when it's the students.

Yes there should be admission standards to prohibit some of the poor students from attempting but I have to tell you that some of them deserve the chance and the USA does not give them that chance, there is no room in the process to allow someone with a 3.0 or a 2.7 but has other qualities, if they can work their tail off they can get through medical school I have seen them and know them, they are in residency now.

One last thing there are about 50% in my school of one ethnic group, their moms and dads come here and make sure they are received some are good students and others do not know why they are here, do not show up to class and do not study well. It's not even funny. But I can tell you it annoys me because those of us who are dead serious cannot stand it that they squeak by.


The people who post here are so immature that if they got a hold of more info online from the schools they would abuse those people in admin and annoy them with phone calls about nothing important..this is sad
 

oldpro

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Absolutely then we have these people who claim to be helping when what we have is students wining that a school fails people then wines when a school passes people that should not pass, frankly when a school fails people ( Believe it or not mine does fail some) then it is a sign that the school is doing it's job.

But God help us from the ones who make the curves and then screw up the USMLE and and or getting a residency,

all of a sudden I'm to be on here and agree its the school's fault. Why do some of these level headed people all of sudden stop using the logic they have and agree it's all the school? How does the material change all of a sudden? its the Students who are more screwed up then the schools for Gods sake.

Yes the schools lie, but there are also students who think they can con their way to MD. They think they can just pass school, pass the usmle, then clinicals and a residency will be handed to them. Sorry, I think these are the 40 that showed up to this advisor, these are the poor souls out of thousands who were able to get it right enough, who just made it through the system and did not get the residencies.

If I'm wrong then please post it but I see this as a good thing, we all say the USMLE and the system works well maybe the system does work. You want everyone to practice even the ones you are in class right now who are major screw ups? they some how pass but still do not know a thing? I dunno if I want to go that far..............................

( There this is my reason for contempt, my questioning any one who says they are here to save me from this, from the Caribbean schools. I for one work hard and I'm glad for the opportunity that is here in the Caribbean)
 

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I think this thread is very helpful. I had no idea that Saba grads don't match! I just wasted 60K and I want my money back. I had no idea I really didn't, I want to thank the therealadviser for opening my little eyes.:eek:
 

oldpro

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Since we are doing real stuff:

FMG's have a better match rate then IMG's the average match rate for 2000 to 2006 is:

US FMG's = 53.2%
NON US IMG's = 49.6%

This is the NRMP data from their report, every body without an advisor can see these numbers I know I have followed it for years

So beware IMG's do not come to the USA infact do not go to medical school in your country it's useless.
 

Bill Lumbergh

Division V.P., Initech
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Why do some of these level headed people all of sudden stop using the logic they have and agree it's all the school?

the one that always gets me is when people hear "caribbean med school," they automatically think "yeah, those schools must be easy," yet at the same time, they believe that the schools force a lot of people to fail out. how can they fail out more students by being easier? i also like how people think that carib students do nothing but party and lie out on the beach, yet somehow, magically, they are able to pass the boards and know the same information that US med students spend endless hours studying. it's just that word "caribbean" that paints a certain picture, i guess.
 

oldpro

MS IV
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the one that always gets me is when people hear "caribbean med school," they automatically think "yeah, those schools must be easy," yet at the same time, they believe that the schools force a lot of people to fail out. how can they fail out more students by being easier? i also like how people think that carib students do nothing but party and lie out on the beach, yet somehow, magically, they are able to pass the boards and know the same information that US med students spend endless hours studying. it's just that word "caribbean" that paints a certain picture, i guess.

Exactly yet there are some who endlessly pick on Caribbean schools and never ever want to say it's the students, the students are the biggest part of the matching and the USMLE pass rates, the schools have a role to play but not as much as is said on these boards. I admit in the past I have been too critical of the Caribbean schools myself and at times picked on certain ones guess I have grown out of it now that I'm about to move on to MS III, but please do not think I'm soft on the schools because I'm not I think they should tell the truth 99% of the time and any lie is caught is bad. I will just post what I know like I did on the other post and leave it, no reason to go overboard there are plenty of others to do that! :rolleyes:

Maybe I should change my ID to "THEREALCARIBSTUDENT" ?
 
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