Low GPA: chances into Carribbean Med School?

Discussion in 'Caribbean' started by palumacella, Jul 15, 2017.

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  1. palumacella

    palumacella

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    I graduated with a degree in bio (2.78 gpa). I haven't taken the MCAT yet and my ECs are mainly various volunteer activities including hospital patient care. What's an ideal MCAT score to shoot for to get into mid tier Caribbean schools like St. Matthew's, AUA and the like?
     
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  3. duopy

    duopy 2+ Year Member

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    Do NOT go to the Carib. Do a post-bacc and study your ass off for the MCAT. See The Million Dollar Mistake for more info.

    Million $ Mistake
     
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  4. efle

    efle not an elf Gold Donor 2+ Year Member

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    You don't really prepare for the MCAT with a certain score in mind - you just prepare 100% and see how high that puts you. If you score well and do some grade repair, DO is a much better option than Caribbean.
     
  5. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    Lol...you lied to your parents and told them a GPA that ALSO would not be competitive?

    Well, either tell them the truth, or let them know that your fake GPA isn't competitive either....which is true. Tell them that you need to do a post bac to boost your chances.

    Don't go to the Caribbean.
     
  6. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    Also, your parents cannot "force" you to apply to med school next year or any year.
    Aside from the lie about GPA, the simple response is that even a 3.12 is too low. I would also guess that any LORs you'd get from profs would be lukewarm at best, and that also can be an argument to your parents.

    If YOU want to become a physician, you need to step up to the plate, knock a post bac out of the park, and then you'll also have recommenders who actually will want to write glowing LORs about you.
     
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  7. Turkishking

    Turkishking 2+ Year Member

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    If medical school is what you want, I suggest retaking C/D/F coursework as a DIY Post bacc. While doing so, I would volunteer at a hospital and one non-clinical volunteer work that you feel passionate about. After completing the coursework, I would study for the MCAT. Take the MCAT. 2 cycles does not work out, prepare an application to the carribean if you still want MD
     
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  8. Goro

    Goro 7+ Year Member

    How many of these posts are you going to make???
     
  9. Optimist Prime

    Optimist Prime 2+ Year Member

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    Bro we told you already. We get it that you don't want to let yourself or your parents down and you think you can get out of it by going to a Caribbean me school and they will be proud of you. Do what everyone is telling you to do and work to get into a DO school for a few years or don't go to medical school at all. Your stats show that you are very unlikely to pass boards let alone receive a spot in a residency. How proud do you think your parents will be when you have to tell them 3 years from now that you failed out of medical school with $200k debt that you still have to pay back??? Be a responsible adult and stop trying to find loopholes to avoid responsibility because it will come down on your head in the end.
     
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  10. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    This.

    A family friend's son barely made it into a lower tier DO school. He's just failed step 1. I don't really know what happens next as far as the financial impact. Will med school now be 5 years if he eventually passes? No med school is doing anyone any favors by accepting students who are less likely to pass exams.

    Is there any data about the delinquent debt from those who dropped out of nonUS med schools or who couldn't get residencies?
     
    Goro likes this.
  11. palumacella

    palumacella

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    Why does it bother you? If you don't like it, then feel free to comment elsewhere. I'm not obligating you to answer my questions. Good for you that you have your life figured out. Soon I will too but I won't be a jerk to others. Have a nice day.
     
  12. Goro

    Goro 7+ Year Member

    I'm trying to help you avoid TOS violations....because cross posting is just that.

    And posting multiple time hoping to get the answer you want isn't a good strategy either. You should be (and have) been getting the answers you need.
     
  13. palumacella

    palumacella

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    Ok, but you didn't need to get aggressive about it. You could've just said that in the first place. Anyway thanks for looking out for me brother. No hard feelings
     
  14. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    Why do you have a problem with my posts? You included mine in your response.
     
  15. Turkishking

    Turkishking 2+ Year Member

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    That's medicine right there. You need to develop a thick skin. Nothing wrong with that.
     
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  16. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    Oh brother... :rolleyes:

    Why does this guy's blog keep getting recirculated? Everyone should know by now that anecdotes don't prove the rule. What's next? Someone going to start posting links to Jenny McCarthy's anti-vaccination website?

    -Skip
     
  17. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    Yes, in medicine, but really in real adult life, you need to develop a thick skin. People aren't going to sugarcoat

    If it were just one anecdote, you might have a point. However, the drop out rate is not anecdotal. And, the matching residencies and numbers are not anecdotal.

    There is strong evidence that shows that what Million Dollar Mistake guy experienced is true; that despite high scores, there is a Glass Ceiling that is nearly impossible to break thru for specialties other than primary care, and that's even only if you make it THAT far. And, still many will not match.
     
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  18. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    Okay, you are speaking "rates". You are saying they are not anecdotal. Fine. What are those rates? Please irrefutably describe something for us - here and now - that I personally have been awaiting validation for at least 16 years now.

    No, there are cobbled-together stories, like his, that other people believe to be true based on whatever impression they seek to reinforce.

    "Nearly impossible..." and "many will not match"... more nebulous qualifiers.

    If you know something tangible, spit it out. Please.

    -Skip
     
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  19. efle

    efle not an elf Gold Donor 2+ Year Member

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  20. gonnif

    gonnif Only 1194 Days Until Next Presidential Election Lifetime Donor 7+ Year Member

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    in 2017, of the 17,276 who initially registered for NRMP, only 6239 actually got any slot (both Match and SOAP) for all international grads (US and Non-US). Of those 3,000 or just under 50% got a slot in one of the 5 specialties at bottom. We can also also assume that at least 20,000-25,000 started medical school for this cohort, only 17,276 registered for NRMP, and only 6239 got slots. At best, that's 30% success rate for starting medical school, earning a degree, and getting any medical residency slot and may be closer to 20%.

    You can see the complete spread of slots for 2016 for IMGs in chart below

    www.nrmp.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Charting-Outcomes-IMGs-2016.pdf#page=8
    upload_2017-7-17_17-19-50.png

    www.nrmp.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Main-Match-Results-and-Data-2017.pdf#page=15
    For non-U.S. citizen students and graduates of international medical schools (“Non-U.S. IMG”), the top five
    specialties/specialty tracks were:
    Internal Medicine (categorical) (2,003)
    Family Medicine (337)
    Pediatrics (categorical) (253)
    Pathology (215)
    Neurology (categorical, ad
    vanced, and physician positions) (191)
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2017
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  21. efle

    efle not an elf Gold Donor 2+ Year Member

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  22. Shinken

    Shinken Family Medicine 10+ Year Member

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    They've already made up their minds, please don't confuse them with facts.
     
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  23. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    Yes. What Skip Intro has to say... because we all know that you should base all your life decisions on what people say on an Internet forum. :rolleyes:

    To wit, many posters come on here and emphatically and repeatedly state you have "less than a 50% chance" of matching if you go to the Caribbean. They then post a litany of "lumped" NRMP data. Even some of the data from a Bloomberg article that you yourself, despite being from an almost 10-year-old report that has been rebutted by DeVry, flies against the oft-reported "facts" on this forum by other posters.

    University Facts & Figures

    Regardless, we rely on these schools - which was my primary point - to provide this data. It is not validated (my other main point). But, people want to lump all foreign grads (i.e., U.S. permanent residents in foreign programs) based on the NRMP data. It is not "granular" enough for people to provide broad conclusions about all the schools. Many of you want to lump when you need to split.

    So, I'm still waiting (go back and read my post again) for validated data from individual schools before anyone here (or elsewhere, including the schools) makes robust and purportedly irrefutable claims.

    Between the "big four" schools, there are thousands of licensed, practicing physicians in the U.S. The majority of those who make the decision to attend one of the "big four" schools will succeed somewhere in medicine. It's just not as dire as the "Caribbean bashers" make out here. And, based on even the refuted data you list, you certainly have greater than a 50% chance of succeeding if you go to Ross or SGU (and a few select others).

    There's my response. Plan accordingly. It's okay that you missed my point.

    -Skip
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2017
  24. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    @Skip Intro

    What year did you graduate from a Caribbean med school and what is your specialty?

    Why did you opt for a Carib med? Did you have grade or MCAT issues? Were you a non-trad?
     
  25. mcat_taker

    mcat_taker 2+ Year Member

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    Honestly, there is no rush. As a current medical student, I am still amazed at the age range in my class around 24-38. What I really hate seeing on these forums is the fresh faced right out of college student rushing to get into carib schools when they shouldn't really feel pressured to go that route until they are closer to 30. My own advice is to work on your grades and MCAT for a few years. You really shouldn't feel pressured to go to your last choice option until you're at least 26 imo.

    My other issue is that no one can tell you where to apply to, because you haven't taken the single most important factor in deciding your med school fate-- THE MCAT. That being said, a low GPA and a low MCAT doesn't do you any favors. Med school doesn't suddenly become easier once you become accepted. You need to prove to yourself first that you can hang.
     
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  26. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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  27. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    @Skip Intro
    When you get a chance, can you please answer the above. And, I'd like to add:

    Can you describe the majority of your classmates? Were they non-trads? Were they traditional students who got in with low stats?

    At the time you matriculated, how many Carib med schools were there?
     
  28. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    How many MS1 Caribb students are there in a given year? Or at least what's the avg number in the last 5 years?

    How many MS4 Caribb students had a successful Match in 2017? And if you want, 2016?
     
  29. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    WADR, PreMedMissteps, the information you're asking is already available in this sub-forum if you search. I was challenged to respond to gonnif's cherry-picked and biased view based on my (mostly rhetorical) request for posters who, like yourself, tend to post opinions and anecdotes as "facts" to stop doing so, which was a request that apparently flew over at least one other poster's head.

    I think I've accomplished all I need to as of this point in the exchange. Just read that other thread I linked. It answers some of your questions. In the meantime, the other information you ask is out there already. Do a search. I'm happy to affirm or, alternatively, offer a different perspective/answer on whatever you find.

    -Skip
     
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  30. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    Are you saying that you've already answered all of my questions above? If so, in the amount of time you spent typing your last post, you simply could have answered the above.

    The fact that you didn't, makes me suspect that you know that your answers will indicate that the climate (and I'm not talking temps) was different when you went, and your cohort was different, and that the current overseas MS1s have a very low chance of making it thru AND having a successful match. Furthermore, those lucky few that do match, will mostly likely be in primary care.
     
  31. PreMedMissteps

    PreMedMissteps The Great West Coast Silver Donor

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    Are you saying that you've already answered all of my questions above? If so, in the amount of time you spent typing your last post, you simply could have answered the above.

    The fact that you didn't, makes me suspect that you know that your answers will indicate that the climate (and I'm not talking temps) was different when you went, your cohort was different, and that the current overseas MS1s have a very low chance of making it thru AND having a successful match. Furthermore, those lucky few that do match, will mostly likely be in primary care.
     
  32. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    You can go back 15 years and read the same arguments that are being fostered and fomented here. Heck, you can go back five years ago and see that many people were predicted by 2016 that there would no more spots for U.S.IMGs based upon the trends. Some even reported articles from JAMA (which was an opinion piece) as "evidence" that this was true and going to happen for certain.

    None of that has come to fruition.

    But, the "I suspect it's different now" is one of my favorite spurious rebuttals. Do a search. I've been here a long time. Work for it. You'll appreciate it more when you get your own answers or, like others have, try to catch me in a contradiction.

    -Skip
     
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  33. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    P.S. ...

    (1) "Lucky few" is another nebulous descriptor that means nothing. (I think I've successfully answered the challenge, to my mostly rhetorical original response to your post, by linking an extensive prior exchange with gonnif last fall.)

    (2) It has always been the case that primary care (FP, categorical IM, peds) is the primary pathway of Carib graduates. Again, your apparent astonishment at this fact (and, yes, that is a "fact", an observation supported by evidence) shows that you have not done enough homework on this forum... which again you're invited to do. No one with any credibility has ever suggested otherwise.

    (Work for it. You will appreciate it more. No one is going to spoonfeed you. Especially in the medical profession.)

    -Skip
     
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  34. efle

    efle not an elf Gold Donor 2+ Year Member

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    Two things:

    1) As gonnif pointed out in the originally quoted post, they didn't contest the figures of interest that he used. They took issue with several other things like calling the loan system a "loophole" but did not anywhere provide a number to contest that 1/4 to 1/3 do not earn a degree (and then after that 15% that do get the degree fail to get a residency and so on). In fact they hilariously dodge giving a number here, all sorts of other areas they give numbers where they think it helps their case, and yet here all we get is:
    • Program completion: Student attrition is an important issue. Most attrition at Ross occurs in the first year of study, before students who are taking loans accumulate a large debt load. We're concerned about attrition and work to make sure our students receive the support they need to succeed; but while it's an issue, we will never sacrifice academic quality to show a higher graduation rate.

    2) 40%+ of people failing to clear some hurdle or another along the way and having large debts to show for it, even at some of the "best" options, is enough to justify the dire warnings that you get as a knee-jerk on SDN in my opinion. Maybe this is just a difference of opinion. For me personally "most" (like 50-something percent) is not the threshold at which wagering years and massive debt becomes a good, reasonable idea.

    Again, gonnif and others that caution against this route always do include the fact that yes, thousands of people do go on to become practicing physicians in the US from this pathway. It's ignorant or disingenuous to say Caribbean spells doom, but it's just as bad to pretend the warnings against Caribbean are unwarranted. I'm sure you're proud of the individual-school-data defense because you know that such data will never be publically available, so you can never be proven wrong using data from the source itself at a fine-grained level. Anyone with half a brain reading these kinds of exchanges will see how weak a defense that is.
     
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  35. Goro

    Goro 7+ Year Member

    And, as I have to keep on pointing out:

    The point here isn't that there are successful Carib grads. The point is how many additional obstacles to success you face by going to a Carib school.
     
  36. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    Gonnif massages the data to serve his anti-Caribbean bias agenda. (Read the other thread.)

    First part of this sentence correct. Second part... I am baffled that your position seems to be that most of us - apparently myself included - have "pretended" that the "warnings" against this pathway are "unwarranted", or that we've somehow diminished the substantial risk in time, blood, sweat, and treasure in going this pathway that the matriculant undertakes. Nowhere on this forum have I ever done that and I challenge you to find an instance where I have.

    So, let me state it as clearly as I can - again and despite innumerable times doing so in the past - right now: going to a Caribbean school should be a last resort for students seeking a medical degree along with the opportunity to enjoy a career in medicine in the United States or Canada.

    There. Happy?

    Again, I would be delighted - as I've also said innumerable times on this (and other) forums - if the schools would be more transparent. There was legislation proposed a few years back that would make FFEL loans contingent on providing such data. Don't underestimate the power of DeVry (who purchased the school while I was there) and other lobbyists in killing such legislation. I am not defending their actions. I think it is unconscionable that they hide behind their "offshore" status as a means to circumvent this transparency.

    But, I am also equally against conjecture, innuendo, anecdotes, and otherwise worst case scenarios being offered as the "standard, expected pathway" if you choose to go to one of the reputable, established schools. People love stories about the unfortunate victim of a gruesome and disfiguring shark attack. But, you are much more like to suffer permanent injury from a slip and fall in your bathtub. That is a verifiable fact. And, that's all I want: verifiable facts. Not hot-breathed anecdotal horror stories or manipulated speculation based on scant data.

    You either believe gonnif, whose argument I dismantled nearly a year ago on another thread, or you believe the schools, who owe us more transparency because our tax dollars are, in part, helping to secure low interest loans for their students! What I don't believe is some unverifiable and likely embellished blog post from a former, current, or disgruntled student/graduate. And, neither should anyone else.

    Aside from that, don't over-interpret what I say, make assumptions about what I think, or put words in mouth. Read what I write. Try to understand it. And don't project your own biases onto it. I've really got no dog in this fight. I'm a successful graduate. And I just want the truth.

    -Skip
     
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  37. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    Is that a question? Are you asking me?

    The answer to that is: zero. I have faced zero "obstacles" (whatever that even means).

    -Skip
     
  38. Goro

    Goro 7+ Year Member

    I applaud you on your success, but you're in the class of Lotto winners. I am not attack Carib grads m but the predatory schools that take such advantage of desperate and gullible people.
     
  39. efle

    efle not an elf Gold Donor 2+ Year Member

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    The fact you've never put "I defend Carib as an option" in writing in those words, doesn't mean you aren't doing it. Start qualifying your posts with "While it's true even the strongest Carib schools have 40%+ walking away with debt and nothing else..." the way gonnif qualifies about thousands of successful grads and the forums will be better for posterity
     
  40. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    I've been practicing for 8 years now. I've seen just about ever clinical presentation. My practice involves, among other things, counseling patients on smoking cessation, alternatives to narcotics, risks and benefits of epidural anesthesia for labor & delivery... and numerous other things.

    What I've learned, as a board-certified and independently licensed physician, that it is incumbent upon me to provide the best, most factual information to the patient so they can make their decision. But, it is their decision. If I lie because I've either up-played or downplayed a particular risk because I'm trying to manipulate them into making the choice I want them to make, then I've failed them in my fiduciary responsibility.

    This isn't personal. Despite what it may appear to the casual observer. However, you see it as taking "advantage of desperate and gullible people", emotionally-laden language, whereas I'm not invested in their decision. Just the truth.

    -Skip
     
  41. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    Man, you really want to tell me what I think, don't you? :lol:

    I think I know what I mean. And, so do most others.

    -Skip
     
  42. Goro

    Goro 7+ Year Member

    And I will point out that if any mainland med school had the attrition and placement rates of any Carib school, they would be shut down by LCME.
     
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  43. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    Which attrition rates? The ones speculated on here on this forum? Or, the ones reported by the schools? Which are true?

    I've already argued that (1) we need more transparency and (2) don't underestimate the power of a large corporation to "get their way" in the U.S. Fact is, Ross and SGU (and a few others) serve a need, namely getting doctors trained to take primary care positions that many other U.S. grads don't want or aren't interested in. So, blind eyes are turned by some.

    As I said, I'm not emotionally invested in personal decisions of individuals. But, informed consent? As best as I can provide it.

    -Skip
     
  44. Goro

    Goro 7+ Year Member

    The ones shown in NRMP.
     
  45. PossibleDOC?

    PossibleDOC?

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    Wait so im confused.....a while back the argus stood with the NRMP like it was his first born and now another successful caribbean grad is telling me to ignore it.....hmmmm............
     
  46. Skip Intro

    Skip Intro Registered User 10+ Year Member

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    What?

    -Skip
     
  47. ill be a doc soon

    ill be a doc soon

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    I think if you get a 527 you should get atleast MERPed at Ross
     
  48. mcat_taker

    mcat_taker 2+ Year Member

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    Did you miss the post where skip intro specifically mentions how the NRMP data lumps all caribbean schools and IMGs together which is misleading as some programs are much more reputable than others (as there are hundreds of caribbean schools, this makes sense)? Or are you just trying to attack him blindly no matter what.

    @efle I'm not sure why you are so up in arms. The caribbean pathway is a business, they give people a chance. That means they let in some people who unfortunately shouldn't be there, and those people probably wouldn't be successful at any med school, but they give them an opportunity.

    I also get annoyed on here when premeds like yourself act like they know everything about match outcomes and academic quality of various institutions. Start medical school first before you start lecturing the rest of us.
     
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  49. PossibleDOC?

    PossibleDOC?

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    Who me? im in school :laugh:
     
  50. mcat_taker

    mcat_taker 2+ Year Member

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    Not you haha. I was talking about efle
     
  51. efle

    efle not an elf Gold Donor 2+ Year Member

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    It's a predatory business for a big chunk of the population in my opinion, and again I always try to keep it part of the discussion that people do succeed, but that the warnings and negative SDN attitude are justified.

    Nothing makes you look like an idiot quite like playing the "I'm ahead of you in the pathway" card on a topic that isn't a part of medical education.
     

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