Rosalind Franklin BMS (Biomedical Sciences) Program SCAM - Current Student

Feb 19, 2020
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Hello SDNers,

This forum gave me so much in helping me with my premed career in preparation for MCAT and Pre-Med journey (I wish I had taken some of the posts more seriously so I wouldn't have been in this situation) and I wanted to give back so that no one else would have to face what I did. This past fall, I had decided to enroll in the Rosalind Franklin BMS (Biomedical Sciences) Program that claimed to have a linkage to RFUMS Chicago Medical School (CMS). After applying for the program, I got an immediate acceptance within a week and I had spent about a month to decide whether or not I should go for this program. I have done so much research about the program before deciding to enroll. While I read many many negative things about the program and CMS in general, I had focused more on the information that was positive which was a grave mistake. The truth is a lot of the positive information about the program and linkage is now outdated due to the changes with the CMS and BMS program this past year and I did not know that. I'm taking time to write this so that future Pre-Meds who were in my shoes don't fall for the same mistakes. This is not a rant but just a real experience I want to share. Even before starting BMS, I always got a very sketchy vibe from everything. I had a "BMS counselor" who called and tried to sell this program and beg me to submit my deposit multiple times. The counselor also gave me some "advice" about applications but a lot of the information was either unhelpful or just false and it was clear they had no idea what they were talking about. I wish I had caught this early on and noticed the red flags. The first thing the program director said to us at orientation was "I know all you have been unsuccessful and/or don't have the capabilities to get into medical school and are here because this program is your only hope of ever becoming a doctor.." and it felt like such a negative way to start off the program and it sounded like he was just showing pity on us. Here are reasons complied by several students in the program during this current school year about why this program is a failure and potentially a scam for your money:



- LINKAGE ISSUES (**MAIN PROBLEM**): When you come into the program, they tell you: your past scores and GPA don't matter and everything is now based on your BMS grades and everyone in the program is guaranteed an interview. They say if you had As and Bs and have a decent interview, you will get into CMS. Maybe in the past the linkage had been strong but there were some pivotal changes with CMS and BMS that may have had a large role in the linkage. Prior to 2018, BMS students took classes along side of CMS medical students and took the same exams with their curve. Now with a change in the CMS curriculum, BMS students no longer take classes with CMS students and you only are in class with other BMS students. This may have changed how CMS sees this program since in the past BMS students were directly compared with the CMS students curve for the grades, which is what vouched for BMS students to be able to get into CMS. But now they don't have that comparison, so the linkage this past year has been so low and nothing like what most people from past years claim on SDN. I personally know people who had all As in the program (which is quite difficult to make) and had killer interviews but still did not get in. They had spoken to the program director (please read below about staff/faculty) and CMS admissions and they were not given any reason for their rejection even after having everything perfectly aligned. They just said "not everyone gets in" and brushed it off. There were also people who had barely made the grades and had sub par interview but got a conditional acceptances so this linkage has no meaning or value anymore at all. Its all purely random. There is also a new dean for CMS who is not fond of this BMS linkage program and this might have played a role in the failed linkage.

- HIGH COST: This program itself has a $50k+ tuition rate with an add of $20k+ for program costs, housings and other misc costs. Definitely not worth dropping this much money just for a random linkage that has more odds of not even working out. Don't be fooled that this school is located in Chicago like its name, thats a scam. This school is located in the middle of nowhere and 40+ miles away from the Chicago city. It's actually closer to Wisconsin than Chicago. The area of school is located in a small, remote town with nothing to do (lyft and uber don't even come here) but housing at the school is so high. A degree from RFU has no weight for future career options so the price tag is not worth it and you're essentially just paying $70k+ just for a guaranteed interview for a linkage that is not even real anymore.

- VERY DISORGANIZED: from classes to exams grading to interviews, this program is very disorganized from the start and it made the whole process so hard for everyone. there were so many times we felt that our time was being wasted due to how disorganized this program was.

- WORST FACULTY AND STAFF: The program director is one of the biggest scam artists and tries to sell this sub par program for all the wrong reasons. He is extremely rude and arrogant and plays favorites. The other staff are just there and do not care about you or your application. They don't know what they are doing and often give out false info that may hurt you (some people had missed deadlines due to this and hurt their other applications).

- RFU/CMS REPUTATION: CMS is an unranked medical school and not very well known in the Chicago community as is it known to be the "worst" or "low tier" medical schools. With the new USMLE Step 1 score being pass or fail for all students, this means that where you go to Med school and its ranking/reputation matters a lot. This is really bad news for CMS because of CMS reputation/ranking and now the school will have similar chances as low tier DO and Caribbean MD schools. Also, there is no home hospital for CMS for students to do rotations or research so this is a major disadvantage for residency connections. A BMS masters degree from RFU does not carry any weight in future medical school admissions or for your future career so the high-priced degree is just a waste of money.

- HIGH RISK: this program is not easy at all and it is very easy to not be able to get the grades because of how some exams have such little number of questions. Many students have gotten screwed over due to the way this program is graded. PM us directly regarding the risks of the program and some scandals with cheating and unfair grading going on.

- PROGRAM ONLY CARES ABOUT YOUR MONEY AND MAY BE A SCAM: I had a few friends who had left the program due to health and financial issues but had already paid tuition for future classes that they had not even started. The program director refused to allow for a refund regardless of the struggles of the students and their situation even when the students DID NOT even start the classes but had to pay full tuition for them even with their problem. The whole linkage program is now scam because it just seems random and the overall numbers for the linkage was very low even with meeting all the requirements and going beyond. They only care about your money and try to grab it early on.



With all this, I wish I had known about all this before I had applied and I want to warn those who are currently looking into this program because it is the worst. Please don't hesitate to contact me or anyone else in the BMS class this year before your make any decisions on this program and waste your money.

PS: I just wanted to clarify that I have been conditionally accepted and did not make this post as a negative comment from being rejected. As you could see in my post, there is nothing about the grades being the reason why this program is going in a negative direction but all the other factors that had shaped the program. I just wanted to share my experience along with the experience of other students in the program who had contributed to my post. These were my thoughts from before and after being accepted. I felt that everyone should know about the changes and reality of the school so I had made this post. It was not intended otherwise.
 
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I don't really know much about the school so I don't have anything to contribute to your other points, but I did just want to say that P/F Step 1 doesn't mean students at Rosalind Franklin are going to have "similar chances as low tier DO and Caribbean MD schools." It's still a US MD school, and it's also way too early to make judgments like that.
 
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Kumorebi

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I don't really know much about the school so I don't have anything to contribute to your other points, but I did just want to say that P/F Step 1 doesn't mean students at Rosalind Franklin are going to have "similar chances as low tier DO and Caribbean MD schools." It's still a US MD school, and it's also way too early to make judgments like that.

I liked ffxii despite some people I know hating on it. Learned the ending song on piano.

To the OP - SMPs are supposed to be risk high reward, however it seems as if this MBS wasn’t very transparent with what opportunities they offer and the risk wasn’t worth the “reward.” With any SMP, you really need to get that 4.0 and over 512 MCAT if you want a shot at an MD program (assuming you are actually attending the program for real GPA repair).

I’ve heard some controversy regarding VCUs CERT program (SMP) which happened more recently. Before, they were very transparent with their numbers and the percent of students that went on to medical school. However, our class didn’t even receive a survey. I talked to an M2 at VCU and she said there’s a lot of drama in the department right now. Maybe SMPs are becoming more predatory.

Speculate all you want, but no one knows the effects or the unintended consequences of Step going 1 P/F. I’m going DO next year and would take an MD acceptance at CMS even if I had an acceptance at the top 5 DO schools (if there is such a thing).
 
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Feb 19, 2020
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I liked ffxii despite some people I know hating on it. Learned the ending song on piano.

To the OP - SMPs are supposed to be risk high reward, however it seems as if this MBS wasn’t very transparent with what opportunities they offer and the risk wasn’t worth the “reward.” With any SMP, you really need to get that 4.0 and over 512 MCAT if you want a shot at an MD program (assuming you are actually attending the program for real GPA repair).

I’ve heard some controversy regarding VCUs CERT program (SMP) which happened more recently. Before, they were very transparent with their numbers and the percent of students that went on to medical school. However, our class didn’t even receive a survey. I talked to an M2 at VCU and she said there’s a lot of drama in the department right now. Maybe SMPs are becoming more predatory.

Speculate all you want, but no one knows the effects or the unintended consequences of Step going 1 P/F. I’m going DO next year and would take an MD acceptance at CMS even if I had an acceptance at the top 5 DO schools (if there is such a thing).


Not sure about the unintended consequences of Step going 1 P/F and how that will affect schools but this is just information what I've read online so definitely don't take my word for it at all. This part was just a side note but does not really contribute to the issues with the BMS program at RFU,

I also heard about the VCU SMP and decided to stay away from it last year. You may be right about SMPs becoming more predatory.
 
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Nov 5, 2019
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Hello SDNers,

This forum gave me so much in helping me with my premed career in preparation for MCAT and Pre-Med journey (I wish I had taken some of the posts more seriously so I wouldn't have been in this situation) and I wanted to give back so that no one else would have to face what I did. This past fall, I had decided to enroll in the Rosalind Franklin BMS (Biomedical Sciences) Program that claimed to have a linkage to RFUMS Chicago Medical School (CMS). After applying for the program, I got an immediate acceptance within a week and I had spent about a month to decide whether or not I should go for this program. I have done so much research about the program before deciding to enroll. While I read many many negative things about the program and CMS in general, I had focused more on the information that was positive which was a grave mistake. The truth is a lot of the positive information about the program and linkage is now outdated due to the changes with the CMS and BMS program this past year and I did not know that. I'm taking time to write this so that future Pre-Meds who were in my shoes don't fall for the same mistakes. This is not a rant but just a real experience I want to share. Even before starting BMS, I always got a very sketchy vibe from everything. I had a "BMS counselor" who called and tried to sell this program and beg me to submit my deposit multiple times. The counselor also gave me some "advice" about applications but a lot of the information was either unhelpful or just false and it was clear they had no idea what they were talking about. I wish I had caught this early on and noticed the red flags. The first thing the program director said to us at orientation was "I know all you have been unsuccessful and/or don't have the capabilities to get into medical school and are here because this program is your only hope of ever becoming a doctor.." and it felt like such a negative way to start off the program and it sounded like he was just showing pity on us. Here are reasons complied by several students in the program during this current school year about why this program is a failure and potentially a scam for your money:



- LINKAGE ISSUES (**MAIN PROBLEM**): When you come into the program, they tell you: your past scores and GPA don't and everything is now based on your BMS grades and everyone in the program is guaranteed an interview. They say if you had As and Bs and have a decent interview, you will get into CMS. Maybe in the past the linkage had been strong but there were some pivotal changes with CMS and BMS that may have had a large role in the linkage. Prior to 2018, BMS students took classes along side of CMS medical students and took the same exams with their curve. Now with a change in the CMS curriculum, BMS students no longer take classes with CMS students and you only are in class with other BMS students. This may have changed how CMS sees this program since in the past BMS students were directly compared with the CMS students curve for the grades, which is what vouched for BMS students to be able to get into CMS. But now they don't have that comparison, so the linkage this past year has been so low and nothing like what most people from past years claim on SDN. I personally know people who had all As in the program (which is quite difficult to make) and had killer interviews but still did not get in. They had spoken to the program director (please read below about staff/faculty) and CMS admissions and they were not given any reason for their rejection even after having everything perfectly aligned. They just said "not everyone gets in" and brushed it off. There were also people who had barely made the grades and had sub par interview but got a conditional acceptances so this linkage has no meaning or value anymore at all. Its all purely random. There is also a new dean for CMS who is not fond of this BMS linkage program and this might have played a role in the failed linkage.

- HIGH COST: This program itself has a $50k+ tuition rate with an add of $20k+ for program costs, housings and other misc costs. Definitely not worth dropping this much money just for a random linkage that has more odds of not even working out. Don't be fooled that this school is located in Chicago like its name, thats a scam. This school is located in the middle of nowhere and 40+ miles away from the Chicago city. It's actually closer to Wisconsin than Chicago. The area of school is located in a small, remote town with nothing to do (lyft and uber don't even come here) but housing at the school is so high. A degree from RFU has no weight for future career options so the price tag is not worth it and you're essentially just paying $70k+ just for a guaranteed interview for a linkage that is not even real anymore.

- VERY DISORGANIZED: from classes to exams grading to interviews, this program is very disorganized from the start and it made the whole process so hard for everyone. there were so many times we felt that our time was being wasted due to how disorganized this program was.

- WORST FACULTY AND STAFF: The program director is one of the biggest scam artists and tries to sell this sub par program for all the wrong reasons. He is extremely rude and arrogant and plays favorites. The other staff are just there and do not care about you or your application. They don't know what they are doing and often give out false info that may hurt you (some people had missed deadlines due to this and hurt their other applications).

- RFU/CMS REPUTATION: CMS is an unranked medical school and not very well known in the Chicago community as is it known to be the "worst" or "low tier" medical schools. With the new USMLE Step 1 score being pass or fail for all students, this means that where you go to Med school and its ranking/reputation matters a lot. This is really bad news for CMS because of CMS reputation/ranking and now the school will have similar chances as low tier DO and Caribbean MD schools. Also, there is no home hospital for CMS for students to do rotations or research so this is a major disadvantage for residency connections. A BMS masters degree from RFU does not carry any weight in future medical school admissions or for your future career so the high-priced degree is just a waste of money.

- HIGH RISK: this program is not easy at all and it is very easy to not be able to get the grades because of how some exams have such little number of questions. Many students have gotten screwed over due to the way this program is graded. PM us directly regarding the risks of the program and some scandals with cheating and unfair grading going on.

- PROGRAM ONLY CARES ABOUT YOUR MONEY AND MAY BE A SCAM: I had a few friends who had left the program due to health and financial issues but had already paid tuition for future classes that they had not even started. The program director refused to allow for a refund regardless of the struggles of the students and their situation even when the students DID NOT even start the classes but had to pay full tuition for them even with their problem. The whole linkage program is now scam because it just seems random and the overall numbers for the linkage was very low even with meeting all the requirements and going beyond. They only care about your money and try to grab it early on.



With all this, I wish I had known about all this before I had applied and I want to warn those who are currently looking into this program because it is the worst. Please don't hesitate to contact me or anyone else in the BMS class this year before your make any decisions on this program and waste your money.


Hey OP! I'm also a current BMS student too and I recently made a post about my experience with BMS too on a different thread. I'll go ahead and post it here too since it may help those looking at thread. I do agree with a lot of the points you bring up especially about the linkage and how disorganized the program is (ugh TIPS class is a nightmare). I never thought about the Step 1 P/F until I saw your post but thats definitely something to think about after being conditionally accepted to CMS..

Anyways, here was my take on BMS that I posted on different thread:


"Current BMS student here and another west coaster! I was recently conditionally accepted but I do want to shed some light. I've recently met with the program director and heard that the program started off with 87 people and less than 40 people are still there with conditional acceptances. Some people had left due to getting an acceptance at an other school. Some did not have the grades after Biochem+CMCB had left. A large chunk of people who had the grades and met the requirements didn't make it after the interview, which was way over the amount of people from initial Biochem/Chem cut + ones who got accepted elsewhere. I know a lot of these people who got cut worked so hard and did much better then me in the program (grades wise) had gotten rejected after the interview. These people are also much better than me in terms of interviewing (they helped me improve while I was preparing) and said it went really well for them so I'm really not sure how the program decided who gets in. Yes, this program worked out for me somehow and I am so happy. However, if I had a sibling or close friend who is interested in the program I would NOT recommend that they go through it. The linkage seems to be not as strong as previous years (maybe because the classes are not with med students anymore?) and many people who deserved to get in got rejected somehow. Some people like myself who were not as qualified did somehow get in so the process just seems random even if you have the grades and hours they ask for. I was so lucky and I am really happy I got in but I do want to point out that there are so many ways that this program not work out and could end up hurting you. As they say, its a VERY high risk program. For the initial cut, only four exams determine your grade (some exams are have as little as 21 questions and getting more than 2-3 wrong already puts you at a B). Getting even Bs in this program is quite difficult and even with As and Bs in this program, the graduate GPA would be less than 3.5 GPA which ends up hurting many people's chances into ever getting into any med school in the future if the program doesn't work out. Although you are getting a masters degree, Rosalind franklin does not have big value outside the school so the master's degree wouldn't mean much in terms of helping your career in the future. RFU/CMS are not too highly regarded in the medical community overall but I mean any med school is worth going to if you get in. If you care about Med School reputation and options for being able to rotate at a home hospital then CMS wouldn't be the best option since CMS doesn't have an official hospital system attached to the school and has its students rotate in community hospitals in the area.
So unless you are lucky enough for this program to work for you, it can actually screw you over for your future after spending over $60k for the year. Its a high risk and after seeing many classmates getting screwed over when they did everything possible, I would not recommend it because of the super high risk involved. Instead, you should look into spending time retaking your MCAT and working on taking postbac courses to increase your GPA or look into another linkage program with a more organized linkage system. I am definitely happy with how the program ended up working for me but I do want to be honest with giving a non-biased view about the program overall. Let me know if you have any questions!"
 
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FutureSurgical

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Posts like these make me happy I got accepted to med school my first round. Can anyone shed more light on the VCU program as well? I was looking at that if my cycle was unsuccessful
 
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gonnif

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Having consulted on establishing on several PBs and especially SMP programs, I can tell you at many school these are considered revenue generating/profit centers and from a business perspective are beginning to sound like some off-shore schools. The advising at many of these programs suffers from the same lack of any professional pathway in becoming a premed advisor and often get pressured from school and program administrators to increase enrollment. However, I will also say that the large attrition rate is due in part to the level of students who are in these programs, who are often those still having a 'dream" of being a doctor without having the academic aptitude or discipline to be come one.
 
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Goro

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However, I will also say that the large attrition rate is due in part to the level of students who are in these programs, who are often those still having a 'dream" of being a doctor without having the academic aptitude or discipline to be come one.
Indeed. We have found that our SMP students who do poorly have the following deficits:
Time mgt
Smarts (in all honesty, these are student who can't learn how to learn, or are simply in over their heads).
Poor choice making
Still have an attitude that they're in UG, instead of an audition for med school
Illness
Coping skills
Rarely, motivation (as in kids of Tiger Parents forcing them into this pathway)
 
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Indeed. We have found that our SMP students who do poorly have the following deficits:
Time mgt
Smarts (in all honesty, these are student who can't learn how to learn, or are simply in over their heads).
Poor choice making
Still have an attitude that they're in UG, instead of an audition or med school
Illness
Coping skills
Rarely, motivation (as in kids of Tiger Parents forcing them into this pathway)

Goro, I guess it could be said that you’re biased, but regardless, do you feel that SMPs in general are headed in the same direction as RFU? In terms of seemingly very weak linkages, etc.


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Goro

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Goro, I guess it could be said that you’re biased, but regardless, do you feel that SMPs in general are headed in the same direction as RFU? In terms of seemingly very weak linkages, etc.


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
Med schools have realized that these are cash cows, but in return they do allow students to redeem themselves academically. The problem is, not all students can do this.

Candidates should always look for:
1 year program given at a med school
Cheapest tuition
Some sort of linkage to the med school

Ideal candidates will have had 1-2 years of rising GPAs (ie, good JR+ SR or SR years).

At least the hole is only a year deep, unlike the four years for the Carib predators.
 
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Hello SDNers,

This forum gave me so much in helping me with my premed career in preparation for MCAT and Pre-Med journey (I wish I had taken some of the posts more seriously so I wouldn't have been in this situation) and I wanted to give back so that no one else would have to face what I did. This past fall, I had decided to enroll in the Rosalind Franklin BMS (Biomedical Sciences) Program that claimed to have a linkage to RFUMS Chicago Medical School (CMS). After applying for the program, I got an immediate acceptance within a week and I had spent about a month to decide whether or not I should go for this program. I have done so much research about the program before deciding to enroll. While I read many many negative things about the program and CMS in general, I had focused more on the information that was positive which was a grave mistake. The truth is a lot of the positive information about the program and linkage is now outdated due to the changes with the CMS and BMS program this past year and I did not know that. I'm taking time to write this so that future Pre-Meds who were in my shoes don't fall for the same mistakes. This is not a rant but just a real experience I want to share. Even before starting BMS, I always got a very sketchy vibe from everything. I had a "BMS counselor" who called and tried to sell this program and beg me to submit my deposit multiple times. The counselor also gave me some "advice" about applications but a lot of the information was either unhelpful or just false and it was clear they had no idea what they were talking about. I wish I had caught this early on and noticed the red flags. The first thing the program director said to us at orientation was "I know all you have been unsuccessful and/or don't have the capabilities to get into medical school and are here because this program is your only hope of ever becoming a doctor.." and it felt like such a negative way to start off the program and it sounded like he was just showing pity on us. Here are reasons complied by several students in the program during this current school year about why this program is a failure and potentially a scam for your money:



- LINKAGE ISSUES (**MAIN PROBLEM**): When you come into the program, they tell you: your past scores and GPA don't matter and everything is now based on your BMS grades and everyone in the program is guaranteed an interview. They say if you had As and Bs and have a decent interview, you will get into CMS. Maybe in the past the linkage had been strong but there were some pivotal changes with CMS and BMS that may have had a large role in the linkage. Prior to 2018, BMS students took classes along side of CMS medical students and took the same exams with their curve. Now with a change in the CMS curriculum, BMS students no longer take classes with CMS students and you only are in class with other BMS students. This may have changed how CMS sees this program since in the past BMS students were directly compared with the CMS students curve for the grades, which is what vouched for BMS students to be able to get into CMS. But now they don't have that comparison, so the linkage this past year has been so low and nothing like what most people from past years claim on SDN. I personally know people who had all As in the program (which is quite difficult to make) and had killer interviews but still did not get in. They had spoken to the program director (please read below about staff/faculty) and CMS admissions and they were not given any reason for their rejection even after having everything perfectly aligned. They just said "not everyone gets in" and brushed it off. There were also people who had barely made the grades and had sub par interview but got a conditional acceptances so this linkage has no meaning or value anymore at all. Its all purely random. There is also a new dean for CMS who is not fond of this BMS linkage program and this might have played a role in the failed linkage.

- HIGH COST: This program itself has a $50k+ tuition rate with an add of $20k+ for program costs, housings and other misc costs. Definitely not worth dropping this much money just for a random linkage that has more odds of not even working out. Don't be fooled that this school is located in Chicago like its name, thats a scam. This school is located in the middle of nowhere and 40+ miles away from the Chicago city. It's actually closer to Wisconsin than Chicago. The area of school is located in a small, remote town with nothing to do (lyft and uber don't even come here) but housing at the school is so high. A degree from RFU has no weight for future career options so the price tag is not worth it and you're essentially just paying $70k+ just for a guaranteed interview for a linkage that is not even real anymore.

- VERY DISORGANIZED: from classes to exams grading to interviews, this program is very disorganized from the start and it made the whole process so hard for everyone. there were so many times we felt that our time was being wasted due to how disorganized this program was.

- WORST FACULTY AND STAFF: The program director is one of the biggest scam artists and tries to sell this sub par program for all the wrong reasons. He is extremely rude and arrogant and plays favorites. The other staff are just there and do not care about you or your application. They don't know what they are doing and often give out false info that may hurt you (some people had missed deadlines due to this and hurt their other applications).

- RFU/CMS REPUTATION: CMS is an unranked medical school and not very well known in the Chicago community as is it known to be the "worst" or "low tier" medical schools. With the new USMLE Step 1 score being pass or fail for all students, this means that where you go to Med school and its ranking/reputation matters a lot. This is really bad news for CMS because of CMS reputation/ranking and now the school will have similar chances as low tier DO and Caribbean MD schools. Also, there is no home hospital for CMS for students to do rotations or research so this is a major disadvantage for residency connections. A BMS masters degree from RFU does not carry any weight in future medical school admissions or for your future career so the high-priced degree is just a waste of money.

- HIGH RISK: this program is not easy at all and it is very easy to not be able to get the grades because of how some exams have such little number of questions. Many students have gotten screwed over due to the way this program is graded. PM us directly regarding the risks of the program and some scandals with cheating and unfair grading going on.

- PROGRAM ONLY CARES ABOUT YOUR MONEY AND MAY BE A SCAM: I had a few friends who had left the program due to health and financial issues but had already paid tuition for future classes that they had not even started. The program director refused to allow for a refund regardless of the struggles of the students and their situation even when the students DID NOT even start the classes but had to pay full tuition for them even with their problem. The whole linkage program is now scam because it just seems random and the overall numbers for the linkage was very low even with meeting all the requirements and going beyond. They only care about your money and try to grab it early on.



With all this, I wish I had known about all this before I had applied and I want to warn those who are currently looking into this program because it is the worst. Please don't hesitate to contact me or anyone else in the BMS class this year before your make any decisions on this program and waste your money.

My experience has been very different from yours. I was at orientation too and I never heard the department head express those words. I too was not accepted into the CMS program because I didn't get the grades needed to be considered for admission and although I am too am very upset that I didn't get in, I have to be realistic and mature about this and accept the fact that I knew what the conditions were before starting the program. The BMS faculty and staff has been very supportive and helpful to me and I know others can agree.

As with every university all have positive and negative aspects with room for improvement. Yes, the program is expensive but no one forced me to come to Rosalind Franklin and yes, this program is for people that have not been successful getting into med school due to a low GPAs, low MCAT scores or simply because the amount of applications received by medical schools is the only logical reason of not getting in. I wanted to avoid a gap year and so I decided to complete this program and better prepare myself for medical school. I am writing this because I truly feel that this program has helped me in so many way to pursue my career in the future whether it's med school or DO school. I don't regret coming to Rosalind Franklin and will continue to recommend it to others in my situation.

Good luck getting into Med School!
 
Feb 11, 2020
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My experience has been very different from yours. I was at orientation too and I never heard the department head express those words. I too was not accepted into the CMS program because I didn't get the grades needed to be considered for admission and although I am too am very upset that I didn't get in, I have to be realistic and mature about this and accept the fact that I knew what the conditions were before starting the program. The BMS faculty and staff has been very supportive and helpful to me and I know others can agree.

As with every university all have positive and negative aspects with room for improvement. Yes, the program is expensive but no one forced me to come to Rosalind Franklin and yes, this program is for people that have not been successful getting into med school due to a low GPAs, low MCAT scores or simply because the amount of applications received by medical schools is the only logical reason of not getting in. I wanted to avoid a gap year and so I decided to complete this program and better prepare myself for medical school. I am writing this because I truly feel that this program has helped me in so many way to pursue my career in the future whether it's med school or DO school. I don't regret coming to Rosalind Franklin and will continue to recommend it to others in my situation.

Good luck getting into Med School!

Hey,

Thanks for sharing your experience! I am also a fellow BMS student and I have been conditionally accepted. Its awesome that you had a great experience regardless of the CMS outcome. This comes to show that the program experience doesn't necessarily have to do with the CMS decision/outcome. But I do think that OP made some valid points about the program that people should know about before they sign up. The OP and WestCoastPremed147 listed some valuable details that I personally wish that I had known before coming into the program because I did see it all during the program. I think it was great that they shared their experience and that you shared yours because this will help prospective students look at all viewpoints. Although I did get into CMS conditionally, I am not happy with how the program turned out and am not sure if I will be attending CMS this fall if my conditional stays. I also felt that the school and the program were quite disorganized and there were some internal issues that I heard about which have been raising a lot of concerns. I don't want to post any sensitive information on here but there are some issues with the school (CMS) and the program. Due to my personal experience and with how things are turning out with the school, I would not recommend this program to anyone. However, thats just me. I really like how positive you are about your situation and have no doubt that you will be doing amazing in the future. Good luck with everything!
 
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Hey,

Thanks for sharing your experience! I am also a fellow BMS student and I have been conditionally accepted. Its awesome that you had a great experience regardless of the CMS outcome. This comes to show that the program experience doesn't necessarily have to do with the CMS decision/outcome. But I do think that OP made some valid points about the program that people should know about before they sign up. The OP and WestCoastPremed147 listed some valuable details that I personally wish that I had known before coming into the program because I did see it all during the program. I think it was great that they shared their experience and that you shared yours because this will help prospective students look at all viewpoints. Although I did get into CMS conditionally, I am not happy with how the program turned out and am not sure if I will be attending CMS this fall if my conditional stays. I also felt that the school and the program were quite disorganized and there were some internal issues that I heard about which have been raising a lot of concerns. I don't want to post any sensitive information on here but there are some issues with the school (CMS) and the program. Due to my personal experience and with how things are turning out with the school, I would not recommend this program to anyone. However, thats just me. I really like how positive you are about your situation and have no doubt that you will be doing amazing in the future. Good luck with everything!

Hi @mapleapple55, if you do not want to describe your experiences in a post, would I be able to DM you? Until recently, this was my first choice program and I now am seriously reconsidering.


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
 
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Coffee&Scrubs26

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My experience has been very different from yours. I was at orientation too and I never heard the department head express those words. I too was not accepted into the CMS program because I didn't get the grades needed to be considered for admission and although I am too am very upset that I didn't get in, I have to be realistic and mature about this and accept the fact that I knew what the conditions were before starting the program. The BMS faculty and staff has been very supportive and helpful to me and I know others can agree.

As with every university all have positive and negative aspects with room for improvement. Yes, the program is expensive but no one forced me to come to Rosalind Franklin and yes, this program is for people that have not been successful getting into med school due to a low GPAs, low MCAT scores or simply because the amount of applications received by medical schools is the only logical reason of not getting in. I wanted to avoid a gap year and so I decided to complete this program and better prepare myself for medical school. I am writing this because I truly feel that this program has helped me in so many way to pursue my career in the future whether it's med school or DO school. I don't regret coming to Rosalind Franklin and will continue to recommend it to others in my situation.

Good luck getting into Med School!

I think what op is saying is that this program has significantly changed compared to prior years. In the past, many believed this program to have a high rate of linkage to their med school which made it so appealing. This seems to no longer be true
 
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TSHJB302

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I find it almost irresponsible to have a class size of 80+ students without having the reputation of, say Georgetown’s SMP. Having that high of an attrition rate means that they were accepting students who clearly weren’t academically ready. Seems like a cash cow to me. I did my SMP at UIC (which is actually in the city) and my cohort had a 100% acceptance rate for this cycle if anyone is looking for an SMP in the Chicago area. There’s also Loyola.
 
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Coffee&Scrubs26

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I find it almost irresponsible to have a class size of 80+ students without having the reputation of, say Georgetown’s SMP. Having that high of an attrition rate means that they were accepting students who clearly weren’t academically ready. Seems like a cash cow to me. I did my SMP at UIC (which is actually in the city) and my cohort had a 100% acceptance rate for this cycle if anyone is looking for an SMP in the Chicago area. There’s also Loyola.
How many people were in your program?
 
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My experience has been very different from yours. I was at orientation too and I never heard the department head express those words. I too was not accepted into the CMS program because I didn't get the grades needed to be considered for admission and although I am too am very upset that I didn't get in, I have to be realistic and mature about this and accept the fact that I knew what the conditions were before starting the program. The BMS faculty and staff has been very supportive and helpful to me and I know others can agree.

As with every university all have positive and negative aspects with room for improvement. Yes, the program is expensive but no one forced me to come to Rosalind Franklin and yes, this program is for people that have not been successful getting into med school due to a low GPAs, low MCAT scores or simply because the amount of applications received by medical schools is the only logical reason of not getting in. I wanted to avoid a gap year and so I decided to complete this program and better prepare myself for medical school. I am writing this because I truly feel that this program has helped me in so many way to pursue my career in the future whether it's med school or DO school. I don't regret coming to Rosalind Franklin and will continue to recommend it to others in my situation.

Good luck getting into Med School!
Thank you for sharing your experience, and please forgive me for being stupid, but can you explain how the program helped you in so many ways to pursue your career in medicine? Apparently they took a lot of your money, you didn't get the grades, didn't get accepted to CMS, and didn't avoid a gap year. Whether or not you regret attending, exactly what did the program do to help advance your goals? It doesn't sound like the program did anything other than take your money and waste your time.
 
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Thank you for sharing your experience, and please forgive me for being stupid, but can you explain how the program helped you in so many ways to pursue your career in medicine? Apparently they took a lot of your money, you didn't get the grades, didn't get accepted to CMS, and didn't avoid a gap year. Whether or not you regret attending, exactly what did the program do to help advance your goals? It doesn't sound like the program did anything other than take your money and waste your time.

I actually think it may hurt you more than help you if you didn't end up getting the grades (Cs and below). If there is a C on your transcript for a graduate level SMP that claims to have med school level classes, if you apply again in the future for medical school, they may not look favorably upon you as it may seem to them that you are not capable of excelling in those classes (you may be well-capable but that remark would steer them to think otherwise). A low grade may also tank your graduate GPA and get you auto-filtered out of some applications, which would mean that schools may not even get to read your wonderful app with all your hard work of years. So essentially this may end up hurting you, especially if you don't end up getting the grades, not to mention the large amount of monetary costs, hard work and time commitment. Not saying this is definitely what will happen or making any claims but I am predicting based on what I have heard from past students and thinking in the shoes of the Adcoms. Yes, you may have learned how to study for tough classes and the material will be helpful to know before medical school during this program. But what good will that do if you are being strongly hindered to even getting to medical school in the future due to this program? If this program did benefit by teaching you how to learn, then shouldn't your grades reflect how much the program helped you learn? I, by no means, am trying to sound negative but just trying to put out the realistic and practical view point. If I were to go back a year, I would not have done this program.
 
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I actually think it may hurt you more than help you if you didn't end up getting the grades (Cs and below). If there is a C on your transcript for a graduate level SMP that claims to have med school level classes, if you apply again in the future for medical school, they may not look favorably upon you as it may seem to them that you are not capable of excelling in those classes (you may be well-capable but that remark would steer them to think otherwise). A low grade may also tank your graduate GPA and get you auto-filtered out of some applications, which would mean that schools may not even get to read your wonderful app with all your hard work of years. So essentially this may end up hurting you, especially if you don't end up getting the grades, not to mention the large amount of monetary costs, hard work and time commitment. Not saying this is definitely what will happen or making any claims but I am predicting based on what I have heard from past students and thinking in the shoes of the Adcoms. Yes, you may have learned how to study for tough classes and the material will be helpful to know before medical school during this program. But what good will that do if you are being strongly hindered to even getting to medical school in the future due to this program? If this program did benefit by teaching you how to learn, then shouldn't your grades reflect how much the program helped you learn? I, by no means, am trying to sound negative but just trying to put out the realistic and practical view point. If I were to go back a year, I would not have done this program.

Agreed. You brought out a really good point!
 
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I am also a current BMS student and wanted to share my own experience which was different than the above. I think for those of you reading, it's important to remember there were ~70-80 people in this program and you're only reading 3-4 people's experiences.... I walked out of undergrad with a 3.2cGPA, 2.9sGPA, 504MCAT which is why I decided to pursue a HIGH RISK HIGH REWARD SMP. Every single person here knew there was a possibility of being rejected, and the faculty had made it clear that people have been rejected in previous years so it was really up to you to decide if this program is worth it or not to you.

In terms of grades, if you get a C you're out, there is no chance for acceptance. DO NOT DO ANY SMP IF YOU'RE NOT GOING TO PUT IN THE WORK AND END UP WITH A C! This will hurt you more, other school will look poorly upon it. These courses are extremely difficult but doable. The school provides free tutoring, etc. to help you get the grades you need. The advisors provided help with interviews, and multiple advisors told me to walk in any time if I wanted to practice.

I won't go as far as to say this program is perfect, BUT the program director is extremely passionate about this program and you can tell he actually cares about the students in it and puts in the work to fix what is not working. He's transparent, extremely honest, and is more than willing to help you. I have personally never heard anyone have a negative comment to make about faculty, so it's a surprise to me that a post above has had that experience ...call his office yourself if you actually want to see what he's like.

I think community service plays a big role in acceptances. Many of us were told we needed more hours, so if you didn't do them that's completely on you for not listening to the advice FROM THE MED SCHOOL. I know some people who didn't fulfill their hours and got rejected. I think that if you do BMS, you should volunteer locally every once in a while too even if they say you don't need more hours. They provide you with organizations to get involved in so it's easy and low-commitment. In general, I estimate that a little over half of the people who made grades and interviewed got accepted, but I can't speak to how their interviews went or their community service which probably influenced rejections and acceptances, too.

Overall, I am satisfied with how things played out for me with a CMS acceptance. As for things that went wrong this year, I foresee the faculty actually trying to fix them for next year. Only do and SMP if you really need to and are willing to take the risk
 
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Hi everyone,

I just wanted to clarify that I have been conditionally accepted and did not make this post as a negative comment from being rejected. As you could see in my post, there is nothing about the grades being the reason why this program is going in a negative direction but all the other factors that had shaped the program and experience. I just wanted to share my experience along with the experience of other students in the program who had contributed to my post. These were my thoughts from before and after being accepted. I felt that everyone should know about the changes and reality of the school so I had made this post. It was not intended otherwise.
 
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I am also a current BMS student and wanted to share my own experience which was different than the above. I think for those of you reading, it's important to remember there were ~70-80 people in this program and you're only reading 3-4 people's experiences.... I walked out of undergrad with a 3.2cGPA, 2.9sGPA, 504MCAT which is why I decided to pursue a HIGH RISK HIGH REWARD SMP. Every single person here knew there was a possibility of being rejected, and the faculty had made it clear that people have been rejected in previous years so it was really up to you to decide if this program is worth it or not to you.

In terms of grades, if you get a C you're out, there is no chance for acceptance. DO NOT DO ANY SMP IF YOU'RE NOT GOING TO PUT IN THE WORK AND END UP WITH A C! This will hurt you more, other school will look poorly upon it. These courses are extremely difficult but doable. The school provides free tutoring, etc. to help you get the grades you need. The advisors provided help with interviews, and multiple advisors told me to walk in any time if I wanted to practice.

I won't go as far as to say this program is perfect, BUT the program director is extremely passionate about this program and you can tell he actually cares about the students in it and puts in the work to fix what is not working. He's transparent, extremely honest, and is more than willing to help you. I have personally never heard anyone have a negative comment to make about faculty, so it's a surprise to me that a post above has had that experience which I think actually stems from negative feelings about being rejected rather than the program advisor himself....call his office yourself if you actually want to see what he's like.

I think community service plays a big role in acceptances. Many of us were told we needed more hours, so if you didn't do them that's completely on you for not listening to the advice FROM THE MED SCHOOL. I know some people who didn't fulfill their hours and got rejected. I think that if you do BMS, you should volunteer locally every once in a while too even if they say you don't need more hours. They provide you with organizations to get involved in so it's easy and low-commitment. In general, I estimate that a little over half of the people who made grades and interviewed got accepted, but I can't speak to how their interviews went or their community service which probably influenced rejections and acceptances, too.

Overall, I am satisfied with how things played out for me with a CMS acceptance. As for things that went wrong this year, I foresee the faculty actually trying to fix them for next year. Only do and SMP if you really need to and are willing to take the risk

Its good to hear that you had a good experience and the way that things turned out. We just wanted to put in our experience along with the information about the potential changes and lapses with the linkage because of the changes in the program
 
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Hey OP! I'm also a current BMS student too and I recently made a post about my experience with BMS too on a different thread. I'll go ahead and post it here too since it may help those looking at thread. I do agree with a lot of the points you bring up especially about the linkage and how disorganized the program is (ugh TIPS class is a nightmare). I never thought about the Step 1 P/F until I saw your post but thats definitely something to think about after being conditionally accepted to CMS..

Anyways, here was my take on BMS that I posted on different thread:


"Current BMS student here and another west coaster! I was recently conditionally accepted but I do want to shed some light. I've recently met with the program director and heard that the program started off with 87 people and less than 40 people are still there with conditional acceptances. Some people had left due to getting an acceptance at an other school. Some did not have the grades after Biochem+CMCB had left. A large chunk of people who had the grades and met the requirements didn't make it after the interview, which was way over the amount of people from initial Biochem/Chem cut + ones who got accepted elsewhere. I know a lot of these people who got cut worked so hard and did much better then me in the program (grades wise) had gotten rejected after the interview. These people are also much better than me in terms of interviewing (they helped me improve while I was preparing) and said it went really well for them so I'm really not sure how the program decided who gets in. Yes, this program worked out for me somehow and I am so happy. However, if I had a sibling or close friend who is interested in the program I would NOT recommend that they go through it. The linkage seems to be not as strong as previous years (maybe because the classes are not with med students anymore?) and many people who deserved to get in got rejected somehow. Some people like myself who were not as qualified did somehow get in so the process just seems random even if you have the grades and hours they ask for. I was so lucky and I am really happy I got in but I do want to point out that there are so many ways that this program not work out and could end up hurting you. As they say, its a VERY high risk program. For the initial cut, only four exams determine your grade (some exams are have as little as 21 questions and getting more than 2-3 wrong already puts you at a B). Getting even Bs in this program is quite difficult and even with As and Bs in this program, the graduate GPA would be less than 3.5 GPA which ends up hurting many people's chances into ever getting into any med school in the future if the program doesn't work out. Although you are getting a masters degree, Rosalind franklin does not have big value outside the school so the master's degree wouldn't mean much in terms of helping your career in the future. RFU/CMS are not too highly regarded in the medical community overall but I mean any med school is worth going to if you get in. If you care about Med School reputation and options for being able to rotate at a home hospital then CMS wouldn't be the best option since CMS doesn't have an official hospital system attached to the school and has its students rotate in community hospitals in the area.
So unless you are lucky enough for this program to work for you, it can actually screw you over for your future after spending over $60k for the year. Its a high risk and after seeing many classmates getting screwed over when they did everything possible, I would not recommend it because of the super high risk involved. Instead, you should look into spending time retaking your MCAT and working on taking postbac courses to increase your GPA or look into another linkage program with a more organized linkage system. I am definitely happy with how the program ended up working for me but I do want to be honest with giving a non-biased view about the program overall. Let me know if you have any questions!"


I just read your post and saw those numbers.. Honestly I'm not even surprised since I see how many people are there for classes and everything. If more than half the program had already left then maybe that says something. Wish that SMP programs had a bit of pity of us premeds and in not wasting our time and money
 
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I just read your post and saw those numbers.. Honestly I'm not even surprised since I see how many people are there for classes and everything. If more than half the program had already left then maybe that says something. Wish that SMP programs had a bit of pity of us premeds and in not wasting our time and money
In some cases, it's the exact opposite -- they are exploiting our status to grab our money without regard to our time.
 
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Goro

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I find it almost irresponsible to have a class size of 80+ students without having the reputation of, say Georgetown’s SMP. Having that high of an attrition rate means that they were accepting students who clearly weren’t academically ready. Seems like a cash cow to me. I did my SMP at UIC (which is actually in the city) and my cohort had a 100% acceptance rate for this cycle if anyone is looking for an SMP in the Chicago area. There’s also Loyola.
Having done SMP admissions for quite some time, the sad truth is that you simply don't know who is ready, and who isn't. Even on paper, we've had weak C-/C/C+ straight across the board as UG students who did well here, as have kids with a low MCAT (like 495 and even lower) and some with rising GPA trends and a decent MCAT who absolutely bombed.

There definitely is a pool of students who simply can't hack med school lite, but discerning them from ones with other deficits (as I listed in an earlier post) is pretty close to impossible!

Even though it kills me at times to admit some people who make me feel like we're stealing their money, they continually surprise me, so I am forced to take a view of "it's on them" attitude.
 
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TheFailure

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SMPs have always been about giving people a chance. It is a high-risk high reward; however, bashing the program director based despite your acceptance does not seem quite professional. Given that this is SDN and only a few of you were accepted, I'd say tread carefully. The program works for a lot of people and naturally, your frustrations are warranted for your friends who did not make it through.

All that being said, keep in mind of your CONDITIONAL acceptance and that you can still lose it. A lot of schools are strict about being a professional and I have no doubt that this applies here. I'm sure if you have another acceptance outside of CMS take that. Administration can probably figure out who is who on here. If I were in your shoes, I'd be happy with where I was at. Let the people who are displeased with the program speak for you and be smart about it.
 
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SMPs have always been about giving people a chance. It is a high-risk high reward; however, bashing the program director based despite your acceptance does not seem quite professional. Given that this is SDN and only a few of you were accepted, I'd say tread carefully. The program works for a lot of people and naturally, your frustrations are warranted for your friends who did not make it through.

All that being said, keep in mind of your CONDITIONAL acceptance and that you can still lose it. A lot of schools are strict about being a professional and I have no doubt that this applies here. I'm sure if you have another acceptance outside of CMS take that. Administration can probably figure out who is who on here. If I were in your shoes, I'd be happy with where I was at. Let the people who are displeased with the program speak for you and be smart about it.

I have actually gone to the administration and program director myself to discuss most of these issues so they are well aware about the concerns but just decided to brush them off without addressing them. I'm not trying to do anything behind their back or making up any false information about my experience and if they were to figure out who I am, I would stand by it all so no concern there. I made a post to shed light on the issues and concerns realistically but did not try to be unprofessional when I was just sharing my own experience with the program. I think everyone is entitled to their opinion, whether it be negative or positive, and should be able to share it with others to give perspective. Nothing unprofessional about that. I wish more people had shared their experiences so I would've known better in past and I want to do that for the future. I am displeased with the program and I am speaking for it.
 
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Coffee&Scrubs26

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I have actually gone to the administration and program director myself to discuss most of these issues so they are well aware about the concerns but just decided to brush them off without addressing them. I'm not trying to do anything behind their back or making up any false information about my experience and if they were to figure out who I am, I would stand by it all so no concern there. I made a post to shed light on the issues and concerns realistically but did not try to be unprofessional when I was just sharing my own experience with the program. I think everyone is entitled to their opinion, whether it be negative or positive, and should be able to share it with others to give perspective. Nothing unprofessional about that. I wish more people had shared their experiences so I would've known better in past and I want to do that for the future. I am displeased with the program and I am speaking for it.
Thanks, I'm definitely reconsidering attending this program
 

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Current M1 and former BMS who just found out about this today who wanted to shed some light. Something similar happened with my year in which students with grades did not get accepted after the interview. Obviously there is the behind the scenes aspect on the part of admissions for CMS that plays a role there.

I will say that at times things do get chaotic and hectic such as TIPs, but I generally feel like the administration did do a great job handling it my year. Obviously my perspective may be slightly biased as I have nothing but gratefulness for the program for giving me another opportunity. I was able to drop in and talk to them about statistics for this year. The numbers for people who interviewed with and without grades was still 60% of people who continued with the program. From what I have gathered, the year started with 86 or 87 and about 63 interviewed. People do drop out for getting into other schools or getting a C which makes perfect sense. Of those 63, around 62% were accepted (even higher if you remove people from board who did not have grades). This number is going to drop as people will lose their acceptance due to physio or neuro, but this happens every year as people get complacent.

I do know that the administration still works with people who are applying this year to help with their applications in any way possible. I know they want people to succeed, but what happens behind closed doors is beyond their reach. They play no role in our admission to CMS, but the program itself has maintained around a 60% acceptance rate for people who make it as far as the interview. I believe my year was around 70%. I may be mistaken, but it was around there. This may not be true for every year as some may be below or above, but the goal is to be around 60%. So nothing has changed.

Now, whether you need to do the master's is up to you or not. The program is not easy and is not a guarantee. I had terrible metrics and saw this as my only chance. It worked for me. This should be your last resort if you can't get in through other means. There are other programs and I encourage you to do your research on all of them and pick what suits you best. I applied to all the well-known master programs and ultimately decided to come here. Pick where you feel the best fit and not based on what other people say (although it is important to account for all types of experiences). I do agree the program is expensive and a huge risk and sadly it does not work out for everyone. I had people last year that I wish could have made it and they definitely deserved it. I'm sad about some of the people for not making it this year because there were some great people who really should have made it through.

Edit: I will say the program was great and the administration has impacted me positively. As with any program, there were good and bad - but getting through it was a journey I loved and would have done it again if I was in the same position two years ago.

PM me if you have any other questions or concerns. I don't check SDN, but I'll try to be on here for a few more days.
 
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Current M1 and former BMS who just found out about this today who wanted to shed some light. Something similar happened with my year in which students with grades did not get accepted after the interview. Obviously there is the behind the scenes aspect on the part of admissions for CMS that plays a role there.

I will say that at times things do get chaotic and hectic such as TIPs, but I generally feel like the administration did do a great job handling it my year. Obviously my perspective may be slightly biased as I have nothing but gratefulness for the program for giving me another opportunity. I was able to drop in and talk to them about statistics for this year. The numbers for people who interviewed with and without grades was still 60% of people who continued with the program. From what I have gathered, the year started with 86 or 87 and about 63 interviewed. People do drop out for getting into other schools or getting a C which makes perfect sense. Of those 63, around 62% were accepted (even higher if you remove people from board who did not have grades). This number is going to drop as people will lose their acceptance due to physio or neuro, but this happens every year as people get complacent.

I do know that the administration still works with people who are applying this year to help with their applications in any way possible. I know they want people to succeed, but what happens behind closed doors is beyond their reach. They play no role in our admission to CMS, but the program itself has maintained around a 60% acceptance rate for people who make it as far as the interview. I believe my year was around 70%. I may be mistaken, but it was around there. This may not be true for every year as some may be below or above, but the goal is to be around 60%. So nothing has changed.

Now, whether you need to do the master's is up to you or not. The program is not easy and is not a guarantee. I had terrible metrics and saw this as my only chance. It worked for me. This should be your last resort if you can't get in through other means. There are other programs and I encourage you to do your research on all of them and pick what suits you best. I applied to all the well-known master programs and ultimately decided to come here. Pick where you feel the best fit and not based on what other people say (although it is important to account for all types of experiences). I do agree the program is expensive and a huge risk and sadly it does not work out for everyone. I had people last year that I wish could have made it and they definitely deserved it. I'm sad about some of the people for not making it this year because there were some great people who really should have made it through.

PM me if you have any other questions or concerns. I don't check SDN, but I'll try to be on here for a few more days.

I've recently met with the program director and was that the program started off with 87 people and less than 40 people are still there some without conditional acceptances included. Some people had left due to getting an acceptance at an other school. Some did not have the grades after Biochem+CMCB had left. A large chunk of people who had the grades and met the requirements didn't make it after the interview, which was way over the amount of people from initial Biochem/Chem cut + ones who got accepted elsewhere. These were the stats that I was told from the administration. I definitely agree that this program should be an ABSOLUTE last resort because with the type of risk that it is, you are really shooting yourself in the foot by risking if you can improve your app. If this program doesn't work out then it may hurt you more than anything as a previous poster had said
 
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Feb 7, 2020
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OP and potential future BMS students,

I'm also a current BMS student and I wanted to provide my own opinions on the OP's post. To start I want to say I was conditionally accepted to begin at CMS in 2020. So please read this post with that in mind. I do have a lot of friends who did not get in as well so I understand the frustration from their prospectives. While the OP is entitled to their own opinions, and is a classmate of mine, I disagree with the majority of their opinions voiced. I do not think this program is a scam overall and I do not think the staff/faculty are bad.

At the start of BMS the program director, faculty and advisors make it very clear what it takes to be admitted to CMS. As everyone who is reading this thread knows it is extremely high risk and high reward. They told us the first day we must have the the four "pillars" or "quadrants" that the AAMC is looking for in medical school applicants. We were told these pillars were 1. Academics 2. Health Experience 3. Community Service and 4. The MMI Interview. If we succeeded at those 4 things we would gain an acceptance into the CMS 2020 class. We were also told that our MCAT score and GPA were good enough to get us into BMS which means they were good enough to get into CMS with success in the BMS program. I know my stats were on the higher end of the program (maybe that contributed to my conditional acceptance) but I don't think it really matters, if what they say is true.

STAFF/FACULTY/COMMUNITY SERVICE - The majority of students in this class had the Health Experience required but were lacking community service. I felt the program did a good job identifying this gap for its students. I would be aware though if you are considering this program of your community service hours. I received an email in July (1 month before starting the program) about how I needed 150+ more hours of community service added to my application. This was required to be done prior to the interview in January. With the help of the advisors, I was able to complete the hours, but I wish I would have gotten a heads up a little early than July. Something to be aware of.

ACADEMICS - The next thing I want to touch on is the Academics. This program is tough. But it doesn't get easier after this when you matriculate into medical school. From everything I've heard from previous BMS students, CMS is the similar material (both content and difficulty) but at a faster pace and more of it. So I think if you want to take the risk on yourself to be able to succeed, it's worth it. If you think you can succeed in medical school, you better be able to succeed in the BMS program. I do not think the classes are so incomprehensibly hard but I do think they could be organized a little bit better. A lot of times I had to use outside resources (pretty much YouTube) to succeed but I don't think there was any conspiracy from an academic standpoint to limit students from succeeding.

SCHOOL REP - As far as the school's reputation goes, I think the CMS match list speaks for itself. I would not have applied to this program if the match list was not competitive with other US MD schools. Take a look at the match list and if you see places/specialties on there you would be comfortable matching at, I don't see why you can't match there, assuming you succeed in the BMS program first. RFU/CMS are also investing a ton of money into research resources so that should help with school rep in the future, maybe not for me or you but in the future for sure. As far as STEP 1 goes, we have no idea how that's going to impact anything yet. It sounds like it could negatively impact people who don't go to Harvard or Hopkins but I really don't know and neither does the OP. No one does unfortunately so I don't want to speculate.

STAFF/FACULTY/INTERVIEW - Now, I cannot speak for everyone, but I can speak from my experience and I found that the advisors and staff helped me reach all 4 of those pillars which is why I think I received the conditional acceptance. In early November they start offering MMI (interview) prep for students to get practice. I went into my first one and didn't know what an MMI was but thankfully they prepared me well and clearly it paid off. I know the core group of people I study with also utilized the resources provided to them by the BMS program in the same way I did and that, in the end, led to their acceptances as well. On the flip side there were a few students who seemed to prepare well for the interview, had the grades, but did not get the conditional acceptance. I do not know their situation in full and was not there with them while they interviewed so I will not suggest reasons as to why they did not get in. Like I said, the core group of people I practiced interviewing with got in. That might be luck because there was only a few of us but it could also be because we utilized the resources provided. Again, I do not know how every other student prepared.

LINKAGE - I knew the data going into the program for the 2017-2018 class was about 60% and the 2018-2019 class was around 60% too. This year it does seem to be a little lower but that data will not be out until the summer/next fall. I'm not going to guess on the overall class % that made it because that doesn't help anyone if it's not true.

Overall I think the BMS program, faculty and advisors kept students best interests in mind throughout the program. While I agree some of the curriculum was not organized very well I don't think it limited me from succeeding. I have had thoughts throughout this program that these types of classes were simply put in as roadblocks to our success but at the end of the day I don't think they're the reason some people didn't get into the program. In the end I thought it was worth the risk and I thought there were plenty of resources available for us to succeed.

Hello SDNers,

This forum gave me so much in helping me with my premed career in preparation for MCAT and Pre-Med journey (I wish I had taken some of the posts more seriously so I wouldn't have been in this situation) and I wanted to give back so that no one else would have to face what I did. This past fall, I had decided to enroll in the Rosalind Franklin BMS (Biomedical Sciences) Program that claimed to have a linkage to RFUMS Chicago Medical School (CMS). After applying for the program, I got an immediate acceptance within a week and I had spent about a month to decide whether or not I should go for this program. I have done so much research about the program before deciding to enroll. While I read many many negative things about the program and CMS in general, I had focused more on the information that was positive which was a grave mistake. The truth is a lot of the positive information about the program and linkage is now outdated due to the changes with the CMS and BMS program this past year and I did not know that. I'm taking time to write this so that future Pre-Meds who were in my shoes don't fall for the same mistakes. This is not a rant but just a real experience I want to share. Even before starting BMS, I always got a very sketchy vibe from everything. I had a "BMS counselor" who called and tried to sell this program and beg me to submit my deposit multiple times. The counselor also gave me some "advice" about applications but a lot of the information was either unhelpful or just false and it was clear they had no idea what they were talking about. I wish I had caught this early on and noticed the red flags. The first thing the program director said to us at orientation was "I know all you have been unsuccessful and/or don't have the capabilities to get into medical school and are here because this program is your only hope of ever becoming a doctor.." and it felt like such a negative way to start off the program and it sounded like he was just showing pity on us. Here are reasons complied by several students in the program during this current school year about why this program is a failure and potentially a scam for your money:



- LINKAGE ISSUES (**MAIN PROBLEM**): When you come into the program, they tell you: your past scores and GPA don't matter and everything is now based on your BMS grades and everyone in the program is guaranteed an interview. They say if you had As and Bs and have a decent interview, you will get into CMS. Maybe in the past the linkage had been strong but there were some pivotal changes with CMS and BMS that may have had a large role in the linkage. Prior to 2018, BMS students took classes along side of CMS medical students and took the same exams with their curve. Now with a change in the CMS curriculum, BMS students no longer take classes with CMS students and you only are in class with other BMS students. This may have changed how CMS sees this program since in the past BMS students were directly compared with the CMS students curve for the grades, which is what vouched for BMS students to be able to get into CMS. But now they don't have that comparison, so the linkage this past year has been so low and nothing like what most people from past years claim on SDN. I personally know people who had all As in the program (which is quite difficult to make) and had killer interviews but still did not get in. They had spoken to the program director (please read below about staff/faculty) and CMS admissions and they were not given any reason for their rejection even after having everything perfectly aligned. They just said "not everyone gets in" and brushed it off. There were also people who had barely made the grades and had sub par interview but got a conditional acceptances so this linkage has no meaning or value anymore at all. Its all purely random. There is also a new dean for CMS who is not fond of this BMS linkage program and this might have played a role in the failed linkage.

- HIGH COST: This program itself has a $50k+ tuition rate with an add of $20k+ for program costs, housings and other misc costs. Definitely not worth dropping this much money just for a random linkage that has more odds of not even working out. Don't be fooled that this school is located in Chicago like its name, thats a scam. This school is located in the middle of nowhere and 40+ miles away from the Chicago city. It's actually closer to Wisconsin than Chicago. The area of school is located in a small, remote town with nothing to do (lyft and uber don't even come here) but housing at the school is so high. A degree from RFU has no weight for future career options so the price tag is not worth it and you're essentially just paying $70k+ just for a guaranteed interview for a linkage that is not even real anymore.

- VERY DISORGANIZED: from classes to exams grading to interviews, this program is very disorganized from the start and it made the whole process so hard for everyone. there were so many times we felt that our time was being wasted due to how disorganized this program was.

- WORST FACULTY AND STAFF: The program director is one of the biggest scam artists and tries to sell this sub par program for all the wrong reasons. He is extremely rude and arrogant and plays favorites. The other staff are just there and do not care about you or your application. They don't know what they are doing and often give out false info that may hurt you (some people had missed deadlines due to this and hurt their other applications).

- RFU/CMS REPUTATION: CMS is an unranked medical school and not very well known in the Chicago community as is it known to be the "worst" or "low tier" medical schools. With the new USMLE Step 1 score being pass or fail for all students, this means that where you go to Med school and its ranking/reputation matters a lot. This is really bad news for CMS because of CMS reputation/ranking and now the school will have similar chances as low tier DO and Caribbean MD schools. Also, there is no home hospital for CMS for students to do rotations or research so this is a major disadvantage for residency connections. A BMS masters degree from RFU does not carry any weight in future medical school admissions or for your future career so the high-priced degree is just a waste of money.

- HIGH RISK: this program is not easy at all and it is very easy to not be able to get the grades because of how some exams have such little number of questions. Many students have gotten screwed over due to the way this program is graded. PM us directly regarding the risks of the program and some scandals with cheating and unfair grading going on.

- PROGRAM ONLY CARES ABOUT YOUR MONEY AND MAY BE A SCAM: I had a few friends who had left the program due to health and financial issues but had already paid tuition for future classes that they had not even started. The program director refused to allow for a refund regardless of the struggles of the students and their situation even when the students DID NOT even start the classes but had to pay full tuition for them even with their problem. The whole linkage program is now scam because it just seems random and the overall numbers for the linkage was very low even with meeting all the requirements and going beyond. They only care about your money and try to grab it early on.



With all this, I wish I had known about all this before I had applied and I want to warn those who are currently looking into this program because it is the worst. Please don't hesitate to contact me or anyone else in the BMS class this year before your make any decisions on this program and waste your money.

PS: I just wanted to clarify that I have been conditionally accepted and did not make this post as a negative comment from being rejected. As you could see in my post, there is nothing about the grades being the reason why this program is going in a negative direction but all the other factors that had shaped the program. I just wanted to share my experience along with the experience of other students in the program who had contributed to my post. These were my thoughts from before and after being accepted. I felt that everyone should know about the changes and reality of the school so I had made this post. It was not intended otherwise.



Please direct message me if you have any other questions. I hope this helps you with your decision regarding the program.

EDIT: This is my first post and I clearly do not know how to insert a quote. Sorry about that.
 
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About the Ads
Feb 11, 2020
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The match list that is being referred to in this post is from previous years where STEP 1 was not P/F. I do not want to make any generalizations about what could happen in the future but I think it is important to consider the school's ranking/reputation as there no level ground with Step 1 for students in all schools to prove themselves in a standardized way. I am speculating, like many others, that the school ranking/reputation will matter more (not making any claims) but just my thoughts since it makes sense intuitively. Also, it is tough to get good clinical research opportunities at CMS compared to other school due to the fact that there is no home hospital for the school and affiliations, which are at small chicago hospitals/clinics, are changing every year
 
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Westcoaststudent95

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Jan 4, 2019
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I think that a lot of the discussion here about CMS rankling and the P/F Step affecting it need to be taken in context. I personally applied to BMS because my MCAT and GPA were hot trash (<508 and <3.2 respectively) and this was my best chance at a USMD school. Was someone like me realistically going to get into a US MD, let alone a T20? Absolutely not. For someone like me, this is one of the better chances I was going to receive. If some of you applied to BMS with a 3.7+ and a 510+ MCAT, and are only now realizing that CMS isn't a top tier med school, well then I'm not sure what to tell you. I can understand if you had a strong MD level application and now after the STEP 1 P/F fiasco are a bit frustrated, but also if you had such a great application, why did you apply to a SMP? I'm going to venture on a limb and say that if you were one of my fellow classmates, you most likely didn't have a strong enough application for a US MD school, otherwise I'm not sure why you're in the program. Is P/F STEP likely going to impact CMS much more than say, Northwestern? Sure, it absolutely will. Were any of us in BMS likely to get into Northwestern? I'm also willing to say probably not. It can be easy to lament about what you could have had, rather than what you do have in front of you, which is a conditional acceptance into a US MD school, which is more than many can say.

That being said, I sympathize with a lot of everyone's frustration. Was every part of the program streamlined and laid out in an elegant manner? No, but at most steps of the way I felt like I was provided the resources I need to succeed in the program. I feel that a big takeway is that anyone considering this program should be informed of what you're getting into. It's difficult, expensive, and extremely stressful. Knowing that, you should hopefully as a BMS applicant, have done your research on various facets such as the location of the school so you aren't surprised that we aren't located in Chicago proper. I personally did my due diligence and called the school to talk to them, stalked SDN threads on the program, and reached out to people here personally to get as complete an idea of BMS as I reasonably could. During BMS, I tried to make sure that every part of my application to CMS that I could control was as comprehensive as possible. I practiced my interview skills multiple times a week, did extra volunteering, and checked in with my advisors every two weeks. I talked to at least 5 or 6 fellow classmates who told me straight to my face that they're really good at interviews and so they don't plan on preparing. Last I hear, none of them made it past the interview. Why you would spend $50,000 to keep a chip on your shoulder and risk an entire year of preparation rather than practicing just to be safe is beyond me.
 
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Nov 5, 2019
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That's fair but I also know at least 5 people from BMS who got the grades, did the volunteering, thoroughly prepared for the interview, and checked in with their advisors and despite doing everything that would have likely gotten them in easily in prior years or even last year, they didn't get in this year and no one knows why. As a CMS student it's extremely difficult to recommend this program to others who want to do an SMP because BMS's strength was that its route to get an admission to its medical school was simple and straightforward (but not easy), but now there are so many question marks that raise too much uncertainty on the risk/reward balance of this program. Nobody knows what the admissions committee is looking for in a BMS student anymore - you ask 10 BMS students, or BMS -> CMS students, and you'll get 11 different answers.

Because of that I don't recommend this program anymore especially compared to other programs with strong linkages, like Tulane ACLP/Temple ACMS or even the more well known yet high risk ones like Georgetown/MAMS/Cincinnati/Loyola. There's (very much unconfirmed) rumors circulating around that the new president wants to get rid of the BMS and PMP programs anyway, so all of the recommendations here (and unnecessary and factually incorrect slander to some degree) may be for nothing in a few years.

CMS itself is fine. Some commenters here are unnecessarily slandering its name because of the location/name misnomer, which you should have known to check while researching SMPs in general, and because of the lack of hospital affiliation, which has had zero actual effect on the quality of upperclassmen's experiences on clinical rotations and obtaining clinical research.


This post really hits importants points and I hope any prospective applicant takes all this into consideration before applying. As someone in the program with a conditional, I would not recommend BMS to anyone due to the reasons that @Highwalk had mentioned, who seems to be a past BMS and medical student at CMS. I do think that you would be better off working on enhancing scores and your grades with a more well known yet high risk SMPs that are listed.
 
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I've been a lurker for this post and have been considering the Rosalind Franklin BMS program for a while now since I am from the area. I was initially going to apply to start this past fall but due to some things that came up and also reading about the changes with BMS and the linkage possibly being affected, I had decided to wait and apply for this year. After reading this post and the comments by current students, I was first a bit skeptical in both ways about the program, especially with posts from past saying good things about the program and linkage. I did think about how people may just be on here possibly complaining after being rejected. But after reading about people who got in and the information they talked about, I decided to visit the school and meet with the program faculty myself since I live 15 min away from RFU anyway. I visited and I have to say that I am soooo glad that I went because I was able to see at firsthand what the students were talking about. First off, I went on the campus tour that they had offered and it wasn't the best school I have been seen but it is okay. The commute locally is pretty easy especially if you take the metra since the school operated some shuttles. The tour guide students didn't seem very enthusiastic about the school and the facilities did seem a bit dated except for this one new building that was supposedly also contracted to other biotech companies in the area. The tour/facilities weren't amazing but I did not mind since I was there for the BMS program. I made an appointment to meet with an advisor who also ended being the director of the BMS program (I believe his name was Dr. Whyend?). I was really enthusiastic about the program since I've been looking into it for a while but let me just say this visit changed it all..

In my meeting, the counselor basically told me that once you're in BMS, if your GPA and MCAT are good enough to get into BMS then they're also good enough to get into CMS and that if you get As and Bs in classes with a passable interview you will get into CMS. He said this program is like a backdoor to CMS admissions and that almost all BMS students get into CMS without any problems. When I'm saying this, its not implications from the conversation its literally what the director himself said to me himself. He then went to talk about somethings about the program that seemed a bit exaggerated. A lot of it seemed too good to be true. I was a bit skeptical about it so I had mentioned what I heard about in this post. He quickly said to never look at SDN and that every BMS student that started in the fall except two students are still in the program and that the two students who left only left because they weren't able to handle the workload early on. He said that the two students that left had withdrawn back in September and that all students had gotten conditional acceptances since everyone got the As and Bs due to the resources and support of the program. The counselor mentioned that some students love RFU and the interprofessionalism so much that they end up changing to different schools (podiatry or PA) after they get that experience from BMS. I'm not sure much about this but I just wanted to put it out there because he mentioned it. Now after reading posts from years in the past and this year, it seemed that many students had left this program and that more than two left this year? I asked several times to confirm that he was talking about this year's class. He even said that the linkage is stronger than ever and that almost every student got in except the students that left. I was a bit sketched out with the whole meeting and didn't want to mention too many things. But it was quite evident that the counselor or director was really trying to get my to enroll ASAP. I was reluctant about the program because of how fake it sounded and I'm sure all these current students who have both positive and negative experiences we're just lying for no reason. Then on my way back to the metra, I met a current student on the RFU shuttle and asked them about the program and me thinking about the program being too good to be true is real. Apparently many students did leave he program (almost half the class not just two student) this year. I asked her about some of the things mentioned on this posts and they confirmed that its true.

Clearly, the counselor had tried to over-sell this program to me by giving false info and was urging me to enroll. Now I see why even the people that are conditionally accepted and M1s on here are not recommending this program. The transparency isn't there and I felt cheated by what I was told. I'm not trying to just to any conclusions here but this school's program did seem scammy to me from what I went through. Now I know for a fact that I won't be coming to RFU BMS program and will be looking into other SMPs. I hope you guys take this into account before you apply to this or any SMP because some of these programs are really out here only for your money. I wouldn't have ever decided to go in and visit/do more research if it hadn't been for these current students raising these issues. Thank you all sooooo much for taking your time to do this. Y'all saved me my money and chances for my future aspirations. Now I'm back on my SMP search so if anyone has any recommendations of good programs, please message me!

Wow, I'm sorry you had this experience. I can also confirm that a lot of students left the program (for many reasons) and that there are so many that did not get a conditional acceptances with the grades and interview. Unfortunately, what you heard seems to be not true because I personally know of many friends who left and several that didn't get the conditional acceptance despite having done everything they could.
 
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chocopuffs8

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Jan 9, 2019
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I've been a lurker for this post and have been considering the Rosalind Franklin BMS program for a while now since I am from the area. I was initially going to apply to start this past fall but due to some things that came up and also reading about the changes with BMS and the linkage possibly being affected, I had decided to wait and apply for this year. After reading this post and the comments by current students, I was first a bit skeptical in both ways about the program, especially with posts from past saying good things about the program and linkage. I did think about how people may just be on here possibly complaining after being rejected. But after reading about people who got in and the information they talked about, I decided to visit the school and meet with the program faculty myself since I live 15 min away from RFU anyway. I visited and I have to say that I am soooo glad that I went because I was able to see at firsthand what the students were talking about. First off, I went on the campus tour that they had offered and it wasn't the best school I have been seen but it is okay. The commute locally is pretty easy especially if you take the metra since the school operated some shuttles. The tour guide students didn't seem very enthusiastic about the school and the facilities did seem a bit dated except for this one new building that was supposedly also contracted to other biotech companies in the area. The tour/facilities weren't amazing but I did not mind since I was there for the BMS program. I made an appointment to meet with an advisor who also ended being the director of the BMS program (I believe his name was Dr. Whyend?). I was really enthusiastic about the program since I've been looking into it for a while but let me just say this visit changed it all..

In my meeting, the counselor basically told me that once you're in BMS, if your GPA and MCAT are good enough to get into BMS then they're also good enough to get into CMS and that if you get As and Bs in classes with a passable interview you will get into CMS. He said this program is like a backdoor to CMS admissions and that almost all BMS students get into CMS without any problems. When I'm saying this, its not implications from the conversation its literally what the director himself said to me himself. He then went to talk about somethings about the program that seemed a bit exaggerated. A lot of it seemed too good to be true. I was a bit skeptical about it so I had mentioned what I heard about in this post. He quickly said to never look at SDN and that every BMS student that started in the fall except two students are still in the program and that the two students who left only left because they weren't able to handle the workload early on. He said that the two students that left had withdrawn back in September and that all students had gotten conditional acceptances since everyone got the As and Bs due to the resources and support of the program. The counselor mentioned that some students love RFU and the interprofessionalism so much that they end up changing to different schools (podiatry or PA) after they get that experience from BMS. I'm not sure much about this but I just wanted to put it out there because he mentioned it. Now after reading posts from years in the past and this year, it seemed that many students had left this program and that more than two left this year? I asked several times to confirm that he was talking about this year's class. He even said that the linkage is stronger than ever and that almost every student got in except the students that left. I was a bit sketched out with the whole meeting and didn't want to mention too many things. But it was quite evident that the counselor or director was really trying to get my to enroll ASAP. I was reluctant about the program because of how fake it sounded and I'm sure all these current students who have both positive and negative experiences we're just lying for no reason. Then on my way back to the metra, I met a current student on the RFU shuttle and asked them about the program and me thinking about the program being too good to be true is real. Apparently many students did leave he program (almost half the class not just two student) this year. I asked her about some of the things mentioned on this posts and they confirmed that its true.

Clearly, the counselor had tried to over-sell this program to me by giving false info and was urging me to enroll. Now I see why even the people that are conditionally accepted and M1s on here are not recommending this program. The transparency isn't there and I felt cheated by what I was told. I'm not trying to just to any conclusions here but this school's program did seem scammy to me from what I went through. Now I know for a fact that I won't be coming to RFU BMS program and will be looking into other SMPs. I hope you guys take this into account before you apply to this or any SMP because some of these programs are really out here only for your money. I wouldn't have ever decided to go in and visit/do more research if it hadn't been for these current students raising these issues. Thank you all sooooo much for taking your time to do this. Y'all saved me my money and chances for my future aspirations. Now I'm back on my SMP search so if anyone has any recommendations of good programs, please message me!

THANK YOU so much for posting this!!! I was also on the same boat about this program and this was really helpful. I was almost going to apply but won't be anymore!!
 
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Sep 23, 2017
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Medical schools where a graduate degree in a rigorous science (where you can even earn stipends and hardly pay anything) subject are good enough are DO and DPM. Even though of course they still look less ideal than an SMP.

I don't know why people take high risk high rewards SMP's when they are so costly. Even if you find one with 50k tuition, there is cost of living, transportation, etc. etc. and eventually you'll be paying closer to 100k+ by the end of it. If its an expensive SMP, the 150k+ for the overall experience by the time you pay back loans
 

bigloley

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Sad to hear, did BMS about 10 years ago and it helped me along the way. High risk, high reward, but it was relatively transparent.
 
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Kumorebi

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Medical schools where a graduate degree in a rigorous science (where you can even earn stipends and hardly pay anything) subject are good enough are DO and DPM. Even though of course they still look less ideal than an SMP.

I don't know why people take high risk high rewards SMP's when they are so costly. Even if you find one with 50k tuition, there is cost of living, transportation, etc. etc. and eventually you'll be paying closer to 100k+ by the end of it. If its an expensive SMP, the 150k+ for the overall experience by the time you pay back loans
My SMP was no where close to wherever you pulled those numbers from.
 
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My SMP was no where close to wherever you pulled those numbers from.

Even if you had a "cheap" SMP that was 40k tuition in total, you would still have living costs and interest that probably need 70k or so paid back ultimately.

I find most medical students don't understand money or interest until they are in the "paying back" stages.
 
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Kumorebi

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Even if you had a "cheap" SMP that was 40k tuition in total, you would still have living costs and interest that probably need 70k or so paid back ultimately.

I find most medical students don't understand money or interest until they are in the "paying back" stages.
40k SMP? :confused: lower please. Where are you getting your numbers from again?
 
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Can you work full-time while taking this degree? Money is tight, and I wanted to know if it's possible to work and take on this program.


Absolutely not! The program is quite rigorous and takes up a lot of time. Working while doing this program is strongly discouraged.
 
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Can you work full-time while taking this degree? Money is tight, and I wanted to know if it's possible to work and take on this program.

Work-study with the university such as working at their library or being a student IT tech. Full-time? Hecks no.
 

LizzyM

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Can you work full-time while taking this degree? Money is tight, and I wanted to know if it's possible to work and take on this program.

In essence, you are taking the first year of medical school curriculum, and on probation, so to speak. If you do well, you are permitted to advance to real first year of medical school. You'd be out of your mind to work while doing the first year of med school. Having a few hours per week for community service, and for family life, is reasonable but not a job of 40, or even 12, hours per week on top of what needs to be done to succeed.
 
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Phiona

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OP and potential future BMS students,

I'm also a current BMS student and I wanted to provide my own opinions on the OP's post. To start I want to say I was conditionally accepted to begin at CMS in 2020. So please read this post with that in mind. I do have a lot of friends who did not get in as well so I understand the frustration from their prospectives. While the OP is entitled to their own opinions, and is a classmate of mine, I disagree with the majority of their opinions voiced. I do not think this program is a scam overall and I do not think the staff/faculty are bad.

At the start of BMS the program director, faculty and advisors make it very clear what it takes to be admitted to CMS. As everyone who is reading this thread knows it is extremely high risk and high reward. They told us the first day we must have the the four "pillars" or "quadrants" that the AAMC is looking for in medical school applicants. We were told these pillars were 1. Academics 2. Health Experience 3. Community Service and 4. The MMI Interview. If we succeeded at those 4 things we would gain an acceptance into the CMS 2020 class. We were also told that our MCAT score and GPA were good enough to get us into BMS which means they were good enough to get into CMS with success in the BMS program. I know my stats were on the higher end of the program (maybe that contributed to my conditional acceptance) but I don't think it really matters, if what they say is true.

STAFF/FACULTY/COMMUNITY SERVICE - The majority of students in this class had the Health Experience required but were lacking community service. I felt the program did a good job identifying this gap for its students. I would be aware though if you are considering this program of your community service hours. I received an email in July (1 month before starting the program) about how I needed 150+ more hours of community service added to my application. This was required to be done prior to the interview in January. With the help of the advisors, I was able to complete the hours, but I wish I would have gotten a heads up a little early than July. Something to be aware of.

ACADEMICS - The next thing I want to touch on is the Academics. This program is tough. But it doesn't get easier after this when you matriculate into medical school. From everything I've heard from previous BMS students, CMS is the similar material (both content and difficulty) but at a faster pace and more of it. So I think if you want to take the risk on yourself to be able to succeed, it's worth it. If you think you can succeed in medical school, you better be able to succeed in the BMS program. I do not think the classes are so incomprehensibly hard but I do think they could be organized a little bit better. A lot of times I had to use outside resources (pretty much YouTube) to succeed but I don't think there was any conspiracy from an academic standpoint to limit students from succeeding.

SCHOOL REP - As far as the school's reputation goes, I think the CMS match list speaks for itself. I would not have applied to this program if the match list was not competitive with other US MD schools. Take a look at the match list and if you see places/specialties on there you would be comfortable matching at, I don't see why you can't match there, assuming you succeed in the BMS program first. RFU/CMS are also investing a ton of money into research resources so that should help with school rep in the future, maybe not for me or you but in the future for sure. As far as STEP 1 goes, we have no idea how that's going to impact anything yet. It sounds like it could negatively impact people who don't go to Harvard or Hopkins but I really don't know and neither does the OP. No one does unfortunately so I don't want to speculate.

STAFF/FACULTY/INTERVIEW - Now, I cannot speak for everyone, but I can speak from my experience and I found that the advisors and staff helped me reach all 4 of those pillars which is why I think I received the conditional acceptance. In early November they start offering MMI (interview) prep for students to get practice. I went into my first one and didn't know what an MMI was but thankfully they prepared me well and clearly it paid off. I know the core group of people I study with also utilized the resources provided to them by the BMS program in the same way I did and that, in the end, led to their acceptances as well. On the flip side there were a few students who seemed to prepare well for the interview, had the grades, but did not get the conditional acceptance. I do not know their situation in full and was not there with them while they interviewed so I will not suggest reasons as to why they did not get in. Like I said, the core group of people I practiced interviewing with got in. That might be luck because there was only a few of us but it could also be because we utilized the resources provided. Again, I do not know how every other student prepared.

LINKAGE - I knew the data going into the program for the 2017-2018 class was about 60% and the 2018-2019 class was around 60% too. This year it does seem to be a little lower but that data will not be out until the summer/next fall. I'm not going to guess on the overall class % that made it because that doesn't help anyone if it's not true.

Overall I think the BMS program, faculty and advisors kept students best interests in mind throughout the program. While I agree some of the curriculum was not organized very well I don't think it limited me from succeeding. I have had thoughts throughout this program that these types of classes were simply put in as roadblocks to our success but at the end of the day I don't think they're the reason some people didn't get into the program. In the end I thought it was worth the risk and I thought there were plenty of resources available for us to succeed.





Please direct message me if you have any other questions. I hope this helps you with your decision regarding the program.

EDIT: This is my first post and I clearly do not know how to insert a quote. Sorry about that.

Agree with this 100 percent. I did the BMS program because it was literally my last resort. I had given up on med school (multiple failed app cycles, including DO) and didn't even apply to BMS until they sent me the email inviting me to apply. Fortunately it has worked for me and I received a conditional acceptance, but I realize it could have gone in the other direction. The decision to do a program like this is an individual one, but I wouldn't have done it if it were not my last chance. You probably should not do it unless you know what your weakness is and have a plan to address it. In my case, I was diagnosed with ADHD two years ago (after finishing UG in 2015) and that knowledge + medication completely changed my study habits, which were pretty much non-existent before.
 
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