DocDrex1

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Hey Guys!

Just wondering, do Israeli FMG's have an advantage over other FMG's...say from the Caribbean? Do they have an advantage over British FMG's?

It seems that the schools really are geared towards US practice so I would think that they might have some advantage. However, maybe all program directors tend to treat all FMG's in the same category??

I know Sackler grads have built a strong reputation so they may be favoured (in the NY area where they have a lot of connections). But how about Technion or BGU graduates? BGU is a much newer school. Maybe some of Sackler's good reputation is also helping the other schools as well? Thanks for the help guys.

Drex
 

IzzyMD09

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Matriculating at Israeli Medical Schools and their partners in the U.S. such as Columbia Presby do have more advantages than Carribean Schools,

Students that do graduate from Israeli medical schools are considered FMG's no doubt, the difference is an overwhelming majority of students studying in Israel do so for a specific reason, and one of those reasons is NOT because they couldn't get into US schools on the contrary Carribean schools are more often then not a last ditch effort for students passionate about medicine but unable to get into US schools to become doctors.

Be it having a strong cultural or political or religious connection to Israel or a desire to learn medicine alongside a strong and superior to all others international health curriculum, there are many reasons that students choose to study in Israel. Academics and Research in clinical and basic sciences are comparable to the most prestigious institutions in the US and Europe. You will find no shortage of highly published and well renowned physicians in any given field in Israel.Additionally tuition costs are less, standard of living is great for a fraction of the cost, and the education at all three institutions is superb.

Class sizes are small, and the standards for admission are similar to those of the states, sometimes even higher since at least at Ben-Gurion Univ MSIH there are about 1000 applicants for 35-40 positions, as opposed to the Carribean where there are 300 size classes that start 3-4 times a year.

So in summation, yes you are an FMG, and no Israeli schools are regarded much much much higher than Caribbean schools!

hope that helps

Izzy
 

IzzyMD09

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Congratulations to the Class of 2009 for the by and far best match our school has ever seen....EVER!!!

Stay tuned to the website www.msihMD.org for the updated Match list for this years match!!!!!

And as always anyone interested in discussing or asking questions about BGU-MSIH please feel free to continue to PM me!

Izzy
 
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WorldTravelerMD

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Izzy,
I was recently accepted to BGU. Any advice on deciding between BGU and a US state school. Advice on preparing to go, what you wish you had know, brought with you, should have brought/left behind. What is the actual classroom/study environment like? I am very passionate about going overseas, but I am realy not sure about what specialty I want to persue (I really like Peds and GenSurg; which are about as opposite as you can get). Is it wise to go to BGU not knowing exactly what you want to do? Thanks Id love to hear any advice you can think of.
 

IzzyMD09

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Hi WOrld,

I think I replied to you on another post, YOu dont need to take much, I would say the student handout which was updated my second year pretty much sums up everything, what I found most important was reading books for pleasure, and lots of DVD's, that may have changed now what with technology and downloading stuff and what not, but I cant think of anything else

it all depends on what you like, my hiking backpack came in handy several times, everything else you can get there

Ill be honest about classrooms, they arent so great, they are crowded and uncomfortable, if one person is sick everyone gets sick, and the annoying person that talks all the time (most likely me) will disrupt everyone (i am sorry my class I cant help it...)

But we did match both peds and surgery this year, these arent highly competitive fields but surgery for FMGgers (the term I coined for FMG's) can be challenging due to lack of exposure and ability to network, but a classmate of mine matched surgery at columbia presbyterian which I think is pretty damn impressive

Hope that helps

Izzy
 

Drogba

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Izzy,
I was recently accepted to BGU. Any advice on deciding between BGU and a US state school. Advice on preparing to go, what you wish you had know, brought with you, should have brought/left behind. What is the actual classroom/study environment like? I am very passionate about going overseas, but I am realy not sure about what specialty I want to persue (I really like Peds and GenSurg; which are about as opposite as you can get). Is it wise to go to BGU not knowing exactly what you want to do? Thanks Id love to hear any advice you can think of.

I'm pretty sure the received wisdom here hold, if you want to practice in the US then your best bet is to train in the US. I don't know why you would make it more difficult for yourself if you have the option. Do you really want to go somewhere where people matching surgery(!) in the US is newsworthy? Your state school likely matches several people into surgery, derm, optho, ortho every year.
 

Guinea

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I'm pretty sure the received wisdom here hold, if you want to practice in the US then your best bet is to train in the US. I don't know why you would make it more difficult for yourself if you have the option. Do you really want to go somewhere where people matching surgery(!) in the US is newsworthy? Your state school likely matches several people into surgery, derm, optho, ortho every year.
Your state school class is also much bigger than 30 people, and depending on what state you are from, $15k more expensive per year. Some people are certain they just want to go into peds; in that case, why not Israel if it's a. cheaper, b. better clinical experience, and c. more fun?
 

Drogba

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Your state school class is also much bigger than 30 people, and depending on what state you are from, $15k more expensive per year. Some people are certain they just want to go into peds; in that case, why not Israel if it's a. cheaper, b. better clinical experience, and c. more fun?

My opinion would be that people should be very weary of closing doors so early on, especially when alternatives are available.
 

Guinea

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My opinion would be that people should be very weary of closing doors so early on, especially when alternatives are available.
No, closing doors would be failing Step 1 or barely passing, and that would apply to both US medical students and IMGs (though obviously the latter would be more sensitive).

I'm of the opinion that having too many choices and being in a constant state of indecision is not necessarily a positive, it often leads to aimlessness and mediocrity. I've seen it in my med sch friends (many of those who have no idea what they would like to do are also the ones who are struggling the most). And I've experienced it for myself personally in college as a double major.

Pick something that you reasonably believe you will like and succeed in, stick to it, work hard and brave through the trials, and you will succeed. Sure, people change their minds, but they could do it at any point of their career, not just the third year of medical school. IMO, deciding upon a surgical specialty in your third year of medical school is closing doors just as "early."
 

WorldTravelerMD

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Thanks everyone. Yeah, Izzy, you did reply to my other post. I decided to go to BGU. And Guinea, I felt you were right. I feel BGU couldnt have aligned with my life goals any better, and what is more exciting then Israel?
 

amalakassogue

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Thank you Izzy for your posts, I found them very informative. I, like I'm sure many of were, chose to go to BGU not because I couldn't get into school stateside, but rather because I figured that I should pursue my goal of working in international medicine during school rather than putting it off for 4-7 years.

With that in mind, I did have some serious reservations about being a "FMGer". No one likes to feel stigmatized and I am no exception. However, I agree that going to medical school in Israel is not like going to school in the Caribbean. Plus, I am excited about getting to do rotations at Soroka.

Questions:
1. Do you know of any graduates of BGU that are actually working for a global health organization? People's histories seem to trail off once they enter residency.

2. I am more interested in learning Arabic than Hebrew, do you think this will be possible, if not encouraged?

3. Did you find that the estimated cost of living exceeded your actual cost of living? I thought the estimates seemed a bit high.

4. I have been warned that if I bring a bike it will most likely get stolen. What is your take on this?

These questions are not just for Izzy, if anyone else has something to offer please don't hesitate.

Thanks a lot, I have found this network to be very valuable in informing my decisions.
 

doctaroo

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Some of the most prestigious medical schools are not in North America and these medical grads are considered FMGs (ie. Cambridge, Birmingham, German, Israeli, and Australian schools).

Some of the best doctors in the US right now are FMGs.

It's not much of a hurdle, especially since BGU has a curriculum which is geared toward USMLE preparation.

Great choice! I made the choice to go to BGU as well.
 

IzzyMD09

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Thank you Izzy for your posts, I found them very informative. I, like I'm sure many of were, chose to go to BGU not because I couldn't get into school stateside, but rather because I figured that I should pursue my goal of working in international medicine during school rather than putting it off for 4-7 years.

With that in mind, I did have some serious reservations about being a "FMGer". No one likes to feel stigmatized and I am no exception. However, I agree that going to medical school in Israel is not like going to school in the Caribbean. Plus, I am excited about getting to do rotations at Soroka.

Questions:
1. Do you know of any graduates of BGU that are actually working for a global health organization? People's histories seem to trail off once they enter residency.

2. I am more interested in learning Arabic than Hebrew, do you think this will be possible, if not encouraged?

3. Did you find that the estimated cost of living exceeded your actual cost of living? I thought the estimates seemed a bit high.

4. I have been warned that if I bring a bike it will most likely get stolen. What is your take on this?

These questions are not just for Izzy, if anyone else has something to offer please don't hesitate.

Thanks a lot, I have found this network to be very valuable in informing my decisions.


Quick Answers

1. Yes we have grads working for International Health Orgs in addition to practicing here in the US

2. No arabic is not taught during medical schools, you are taught hebrew, this is an Israeli/American medical program not a Palestinian/American program, I know there is some confusion out there, if you want to learn arabic during school i am sure you can, but doctors nurses most of the patients (including the bedouin) all speak hebrew or understand it to some degree. Arabic is not discouraged and I am sure if you learn it it will help but not with anything that has to do with curriculum and clerkship. Israel is not an arabic country as opposed to its 21 neighbors and it is not spoken frequently so i dont know how much it would help you in terms of getting around

3. living costs include texts, fees, furniture, med supplies (stethoscopes) licensing exams and all the hidden I think they are just about right, the dollar is decreasing in value too, so look for tuition (paid in shekels) to go up

4. bikes get stolen laptops get stolen expensive phones get stolen my laptop got stolen, other peoples goods have gotten stolen and ended up in the bedouin market, im sure it happens everywhere but it is not as frequent as you would think
 
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