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SGU vs ROSS vs AUC

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Peaches727

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Hello,
I am posting this for advice. I hope to not get much backlash for IMGs. I am exploring my options and have exhausted some. I hope to recieve geniune advice. I have been accepted to AUC, rejected by SABA, interviewed at Ross expecting an acceptance to term or MERP, and SGU said retake MCAT.
What should I do?
 

DoctoOcto

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I don't want to sound rude, but if you're at being rejected from the Caribbean, I think they're just being predatory to you for tuition. You may not be academically mature enough yet to climb the mountains of obstacles presented by off-shore schools. Perhaps take a couple of years in the US to fix your studying habits/grades, retake the MCAT, and go to a US medical school.

If you HAVE to start Caribbean now, then I'd avoid SGU, since they had that whole accreditation debacle thing.
 
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Peaches727

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I don't want to sound rude, but if you're at being rejected from the Caribbean, I think they're just being predatory to you for tuition. You may not be academically mature enough yet to climb the mountains of obstacles presented by off-shore schools. Perhaps take a couple of years in the US to fix your studying habits/grades, retake the MCAT, and go to a US medical school.

If you HAVE to start Caribbean now, then I'd avoid SGU, since they had that whole accreditation debacle thing.
I truly appreciate the advice given. Unfortunately, I had a lot of personal struggles in undergrad. I have definitely fixed them my last 1.5 years. However, the damage is far done and irreversible. It kills me to undergo the process once more and not know if I will be able to quite be on par record wise and I do not want to continue wasting those years of just trying for waiting for more maybes or chances. I understand the risks and I am willing to take the chance. Thank you for making me aware of that SGU fiasco, I was not completely aware of that happening. That means it is AUC vs Ross then.
 
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DoctoOcto

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I truly appreciate the advice given. Unfortunately, I had a lot of personal struggles in undergrad. I have definitely fixed them my last 1.5 years. However, the damage is far done and irreversible. It kills me to undergo the process once more and not know if I will be able to quite be on par record wise and I do not want to continue wasting those years of just trying for waiting for more maybes or chances. I understand the risks and I am willing to take the chance. Thank you for making me aware of that SGU fiasco, I was not completely aware of that happening. That means it is AUC vs Ross then.

I'm not too knowledgeable on what's going on with the whole SGU thing, so also ask the Caribbean forum about that.
 

8jsi37

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I suggest you try a post bac/SMP before going to the caribbeans. Those two options are cheaper than failing out from a Caribbean school and esp that the rigors of medical school are tougher than undergrad. Just because it's easy to get in, doesnt mean it'll be easy to stay in, pass the basic sciences, then step, etc. Medical school is already hard enough but adding a third world country as your environment makes it even tougher.

I completely agree with doctoOcto, if you should choose to go, avoid SGU. They were on a probationary status for accreditation with one of the main accreditation bodies in the caribbeans. They decided to withdraw and go with their "new" accreditation body, which they claim their old one was their "back up" and this new one is their main one. It's full of BS. If their new one can't be recognized by ECFMG and WFME, then all SGU students who do not take step1 and 2, and maybe get into a residency by 2024 are screwed.

What is your gpa/mcat? Idk but if saba rejected you, there's something in your app that's worrisome.
 
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deleted1041819

I truly appreciate the advice given. Unfortunately, I had a lot of personal struggles in undergrad. I have definitely fixed them my last 1.5 years. However, the damage is far done and irreversible. It kills me to undergo the process once more and not know if I will be able to quite be on par record wise and I do not want to continue wasting those years of just trying for waiting for more maybes or chances. I understand the risks and I am willing to take the chance. Thank you for making me aware of that SGU fiasco, I was not completely aware of that happening. That means it is AUC vs Ross then.
It's definitely not too late to fix your record if it's a stats thing. If you bite the bullet and do the stats repair now and get into an MD/DO program when you're finished, then you're guaranteed a sound career, whereas you may get completely screwed over if you go to a Caribbean school, at which point it's really game over for your career and financials. Maybe PM some of the SDN adcoms (Goro, LizzyM are great resources) for some anonymous tips and feedback and see if you have another way out.

If not, just avoid SGU I suppose, for reasons already mentioned above. Good luck.
 

suzygroanberg

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SGU 4th year student here. I would not worry about the SGU accreditation thing. There is another thread somewhere that explains why it really is not a problem and the school absolutely has it handled, but I don't pretend to understand all of the ins and outs myself. What I can say for sure is that there is no chance in hell this school is going to let its accreditation lapse. As it stands right now, the change affects current students in absolutely no way. I would definitely never use the word "fiasco" to describe the situation.

To be very honest, if you are getting rejected from the top-tier Carib schools, I would really recommend reconsidering a career in medicine. If you are going the Caribbean route you will already be fighting a very steep uphill battle when it comes to the match. I just finished my residency interviews and multiple program directors commended me for at least "choosing the best school in the Caribbean." Trust me when I say you do not want any more stigma against you than this. I say this also as a student with a "perfect" CV in every way other than the name of my school, and one who applied to an extremely competitive specialty and went on 17 interviews. I am an SGU success story but I also WORKED for it every single day of med school. The reason I chose SGU was because it is actually possible to work hard and get good outcomes here, which I truly do not feel is a viable possibility at any other Caribbean med school (potentially with the exception of Ross, but I chose SGU over them because I still thought it gave me the best possible chance at matching - and matching well - once I graduated).

Also consider that scraping the bottom of the barrel for residency positions (if you get one at all) after coming from "the worst of the worst" schools does not lend itself to a high paying career as an attending. I am very happy to be a physician in a very short period of time, but I do wish I had more seriously considered other career options in the medical field before jumping into med school. Truly, there are many better career options for someone in your position that I think you would be very wise to consider them. I do wish more Caribbean school would be more blunt with students like this instead of stringing them along when their future is guaranteed to be crap. If changing you career aspirations is out of the question, then the second wisest thing to do would be to take time to better your application/MCAT score for another chance at SGU.

I'd be happy to respond to any follow-up thoughts or questions.
 
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Peaches727

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SGU 4th year student here. I would not worry about the SGU accreditation thing. There is another thread somewhere that explains why it really is not a problem and the school absolutely has it handled, but I don't pretend to understand all of the ins and outs myself. What I can say for sure is that there is no chance in hell this school is going to let its accreditation lapse. As it stands right now, the change affects current students in absolutely no way. I would definitely never use the word "fiasco" to describe the situation.

To be very honest, if you are getting rejected from the top-tier Carib schools, I would really recommend reconsidering a career in medicine. If you are going the Caribbean route you will already be fighting a very steep uphill battle when it comes to the match. I just finished my residency interviews and multiple program directors commended me for at least "choosing the best school in the Caribbean." Trust me when I say you do not want any more stigma against you than this. I say this also as a student with a "perfect" CV in every way other than the name of my school, and one who applied to an extremely competitive specialty and went on 17 interviews. I am an SGU success story but I also WORKED for it every single day of med school. The reason I chose SGU was because it is actually possible to work hard and get good outcomes here, which I truly do not feel is a viable possibility at any other Caribbean med school (potentially with the exception of Ross, but I chose SGU over them because I still thought it gave me the best possible chance at matching - and matching well - once I graduated).

Also consider that scraping the bottom of the barrel for residency positions (if you get one at all) after coming from "the worst of the worst" schools does not lend itself to a high paying career as an attending. I am very happy to be a physician in a very short period of time, but I do wish I had more seriously considered other career options in the medical field before jumping into med school. Truly, there are many better career options for someone in your position that I think you would be very wise to consider them. I do wish more Caribbean school would be more blunt with students like this instead of stringing them along when their future is guaranteed to be crap. If changing you career aspirations is out of the question, then the second wisest thing to do would be to take time to better your application/MCAT score for another chance at SGU.

I'd be happy to respond to any follow-up thoughts or questions.
Thank you very much, I appreciate your insight. And, congratulations on your success, you truly deserve it. I am not sure what happened with SABA, they actually did not even receive any of my official transcripts or test scores yet, or really any major information for that matter. I believe maybe there might just be an error within the application submission. My MCAT score is not terrible, it is not the best either. Ross actually states I would be eligible for a scholarship with the score, haha. However, I know the score could use improvement. Nonetheless, MCAT dates are hard to obtain right now and SGU said they can check back on me in a couple weeks. If I am not able to obtain a test date, then they can repeal to the committee. However, I wanted to ask you this how do you think SGU holds up to other Caribbean schools curriculum-wise, and do you think the higher tuition of SGU (I believe almost $100k more than AUC) is worth it?
 

suzygroanberg

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An AUC alum resident at the hospital I did my 3rd year rotations at once said to me and a bunch of other SGU students, "you have no idea how lucky you are that you go to SGU over other Caribbean schools. You get so many more residency interviews than we do because your school has a much better reputation and you have so many more practicing doctors in the field that really help you out."

Since I applied to a competitive speciality and was very often the only IMG at the interview, I can't really comment on the above statement with personal experiences other than what I said previously about PDs commending my school choice. Nonetheless, I do think you ARE paying for assurance in the match with your SGU tuition. You are also paying for guaranteed clinical rotation spots, which from what I understand can be extremely hard to come by at other Caribbean schools and potentially may set your graduation date back if you cannot scramble to get them all arranged in time. I watched how difficult it was for at least one student I knew personally from AUC to schedule all of her 3 year rotations and find somewhere new to live each time, while I had all of my 3rd year rotations assigned to me at 1 convenient location and never had to think about it. That also gave me way more time to focus on my studies and getting a killer step 2 score. And btw, not finishing your degree within the standard 4 year time period s a big red flag in and of itself. And yes, I do understand the controversies of this give and take with tuition/rotation spots...that is a conversation for a different time.

That being said, yes, this is education is very expensive. Be prepared in advance to go the public service loan forgiveness route (https://studentaid.gov/manage-loans/forgiveness-cancellation/public-service). After 10 years you will be able to get a lot of debt forgiven. This is also why I would really recommend a career change if you cannot start immediately. Every year you wait to start earning a real attending salary and saving for retirement puts your secure financial future at a much greater risk.
 

8jsi37

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Thank you very much, I appreciate your insight. And, congratulations on your success, you truly deserve it. I am not sure what happened with SABA, they actually did not even receive any of my official transcripts or test scores yet, or really any major information for that matter. I believe maybe there might just be an error within the application submission. My MCAT score is not terrible, it is not the best either. Ross actually states I would be eligible for a scholarship with the score, haha. However, I know the score could use improvement. Nonetheless, MCAT dates are hard to obtain right now and SGU said they can check back on me in a couple weeks. If I am not able to obtain a test date, then they can repeal to the committee. However, I wanted to ask you this how do you think SGU holds up to other Caribbean schools curriculum-wise, and do you think the higher tuition of SGU (I believe almost $100k more than AUC) is worth it?
I believe your mcat is not high enough to be given an award for the mcat at least from my understanding. You qualify to apply, but doesn't mean you'll get it. With that mcat, you might not be given anything. If you do, it's probably not that much. Keep in mind, a US MD/DO program >>> caribbean programs. You're pretty much guaranteed to match (even more than the big 3) if you matriculate into US MD/DO programs because they'll do everything in their power to help you match since they invested in you. There are a few occasions where some do not match but those are due to certain circumstances. Overall, there are more US residency programs that'll take US AMG over IMG no matter which foreign/caribbean med school you apply to. But that's not to say there arent IMG friendly residencies. It's just that there are more american medical graduates are more favorable in the match overall, especially if you're a US citizen. That's just my two cents. 99% match rate after soap in US MD/DO >>>
 

Peaches727

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An AUC alum resident at the hospital I did my 3rd year rotations at once said to me and a bunch of other SGU students, "you have no idea how lucky you are that you go to SGU over other Caribbean schools. You get so many more residency interviews than we do because your school has a much better reputation and you have so many more practicing doctors in the field that really help you out."

Since I applied to a competitive speciality and was very often the only IMG at the interview, I can't really comment on the above statement with personal experiences other than what I said previously about PDs commending my school choice. Nonetheless, I do think you ARE paying for assurance in the match with your SGU tuition. You are also paying for guaranteed clinical rotation spots, which from what I understand can be extremely hard to come by at other Caribbean schools and potentially may set your graduation date back if you cannot scramble to get them all arranged in time. I watched how difficult it was for at least one student I knew personally from AUC to schedule all of her 3 year rotations and find somewhere new to live each time, while I had all of my 3rd year rotations assigned to me at 1 convenient location and never had to think about it. That also gave me way more time to focus on my studies and getting a killer step 2 score. And btw, not finishing your degree within the standard 4 year time period s a big red flag in and of itself. And yes, I do understand the controversies of this give and take with tuition/rotation spots...that is a conversation for a different time.

That being said, yes, this is education is very expensive. Be prepared in advance to go the public service loan forgiveness route (https://studentaid.gov/manage-loans/forgiveness-cancellation/public-service). After 10 years you will be able to get a lot of debt forgiven. This is also why I would really recommend a career change if you cannot start immediately. Every year you wait to start earning a real attending salary and saving for retirement puts your secure financial future at a much greater risk.
Thank you so much, I appreciate your input so much. The only thing about SGU that is kind of scaring me is what is happening with their accreditation right now. Have you heard anything about that?
 

8jsi37

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An AUC alum resident at the hospital I did my 3rd year rotations at once said to me and a bunch of other SGU students, "you have no idea how lucky you are that you go to SGU over other Caribbean schools. You get so many more residency interviews than we do because your school has a much better reputation and you have so many more practicing doctors in the field that really help you out."

Since I applied to a competitive speciality and was very often the only IMG at the interview, I can't really comment on the above statement with personal experiences other than what I said previously about PDs commending my school choice. Nonetheless, I do think you ARE paying for assurance in the match with your SGU tuition. You are also paying for guaranteed clinical rotation spots, which from what I understand can be extremely hard to come by at other Caribbean schools and potentially may set your graduation date back if you cannot scramble to get them all arranged in time. I watched how difficult it was for at least one student I knew personally from AUC to schedule all of her 3 year rotations and find somewhere new to live each time, while I had all of my 3rd year rotations assigned to me at 1 convenient location and never had to think about it. That also gave me way more time to focus on my studies and getting a killer step 2 score. And btw, not finishing your degree within the standard 4 year time period s a big red flag in and of itself. And yes, I do understand the controversies of this give and take with tuition/rotation spots...that is a conversation for a different time.
you're not really "guaranteed" to match even if you went to sgu. The assurance isn't 100%, thats the thing. That "assurance" is higher at a US MD/DO school than any caribbean schools. Your step 1 score holds a higher weight when it comes to residency (as of right now). A good step 1 score is what and still is what helps separates you from other applicants. I'd argue it's more than the name of SGU or any other non-US med school. Even if we were to compare caribbean schools to carribbean schools, I think the name doesnt matter as much as killing step 1 and 2 if we're to speak at an IMG perspective.

As for rotations, it's probably an auc thing/problem. If you look at ross (their sister med school), they have multiple established locations where you can do your core rotation in one place. They have around 5-6 locations you can do all your third year core rotations at one place and it spans across the entire country: CA, MI, FL, IL, NY, etc. That's not really a "sgu" only thing or that other caribbean schools lacking it.
 

spiritcat13

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SGU 4th year student here. I would not worry about the SGU accreditation thing. There is another thread somewhere that explains why it really is not a problem and the school absolutely has it handled, but I don't pretend to understand all of the ins and outs myself. What I can say for sure is that there is no chance in hell this school is going to let its accreditation lapse. As it stands right now, the change affects current students in absolutely no way. I would definitely never use the word "fiasco" to describe the situation.

To be very honest, if you are getting rejected from the top-tier Carib schools, I would really recommend reconsidering a career in medicine. If you are going the Caribbean route you will already be fighting a very steep uphill battle when it comes to the match. I just finished my residency interviews and multiple program directors commended me for at least "choosing the best school in the Caribbean." Trust me when I say you do not want any more stigma against you than this. I say this also as a student with a "perfect" CV in every way other than the name of my school, and one who applied to an extremely competitive specialty and went on 17 interviews. I am an SGU success story but I also WORKED for it every single day of med school. The reason I chose SGU was because it is actually possible to work hard and get good outcomes here, which I truly do not feel is a viable possibility at any other Caribbean med school (potentially with the exception of Ross, but I chose SGU over them because I still thought it gave me the best possible chance at matching - and matching well - once I graduated).

Also consider that scraping the bottom of the barrel for residency positions (if you get one at all) after coming from "the worst of the worst" schools does not lend itself to a high paying career as an attending. I am very happy to be a physician in a very short period of time, but I do wish I had more seriously considered other career options in the medical field before jumping into med school. Truly, there are many better career options for someone in your position that I think you would be very wise to consider them. I do wish more Caribbean school would be more blunt with students like this instead of stringing them along when their future is guaranteed to be crap. If changing you career aspirations is out of the question, then the second wisest thing to do would be to take time to better your application/MCAT score for another chance at SGU.

I'd be happy to respond to any follow-up thoughts or questions.
Hi there, I was just accepted to SGU and wanted to reach out to you for a few questions about your specialty choice etc. I would love to DM you and talk with you a little more!
 

123ZYX

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Hello,
I am posting this for advice. I hope to not get much backlash for IMGs. I am exploring my options and have exhausted some. I hope to recieve geniune advice. I have been accepted to AUC, rejected by SABA, interviewed at Ross expecting an acceptance to term or MERP, and SGU said retake MCAT.
What should I do?
Would not recommend Ross U. In my 2nd semester, they switched testing style from 3 main exams to weekly mini-tests (block exams). This change has done nothing but cause insane stress to the students under the hopes it would have helped us retain information. Talk to any student, and they are working 3x as hard to maintain the same grades they were capable of previously. Administration refuses to acknowledge this, or, even better, believes that stress should be a part of vet school so we have no reason to complain. Yes, maintaining grades and becoming a doctor will be stressful, but this was an unnecessary change that increased stress levels for no reason, yet they feel proud of that.
Next, seeing as covid is probably never going to end at this point, online learning on an island with about as good wifi as a third world country can have is impossible. Even going to campus to use that wifi, it will randomly cut out if the wind blows too hard or it rains a little heavy. Not to mention the power goes out every so often as well. Lastly, nothing on island is reliable. Not the cars, not the people, not the food (everything expires in like 3 days from purchase and if you want pasta I hope you enjoy your side of worms/beetles). I thought that coming to a tropical island for school would have been amazing, and on the very few off days where you can actually relax, it is. The beaches are beautiful, the alcohol is a plenty, and the activities, like boating trips, night time kayaking in glowing pools of water, renting ATVs, and horseback riding are great. Unfortunately, that is not a pleasure you can afford often. They took away our ability to manage our own time schedule to cover material as we saw fit, forcing us to become masters of a subject in less than a week and expecting us to retain that knowledge every binge/purge cycle. I am retaining less and less information as the semesters progress, working harder than ever to maintain Bs and Cs. Constantly dealing with the unreliable elements of the island, and the disregard of the school to any student complaints. If you can, I would go to a state school. It may seem less luxurious, but trust me when i tell you, had I known this is what it was going to be like, I would have chosen differently.
 
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8jsi37

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Would not recommend Ross U. In my 2nd semester, they switched testing style from 3 main exams to weekly mini-tests (block exams). This change has done nothing but cause insane stress to the students under the hopes it would have helped us retain information. Talk to any student, and they are working 3x as hard to maintain the same grades they were capable of previously. Administration refuses to acknowledge this, or, even better, believes that stress should be a part of vet school so we have no reason to complain. Yes, maintaining grades and becoming a doctor will be stressful, but this was an unnecessary change that increased stress levels for no reason, yet they feel proud of that.
I'm pretty sure OP is talking about ross med school, not vet school.
 

Pxoxo

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I don't want to sound rude, but if you're at being rejected from the Caribbean, I think they're just being predatory to you for tuition. You may not be academically mature enough yet to climb the mountains of obstacles presented by off-shore schools. Perhaps take a couple of years in the US to fix your studying habits/grades, retake the MCAT, and go to a US medical school.

If you HAVE to start Caribbean now, then I'd avoid SGU, since they had that whole accreditation debacle thing.
Hey, I just got rejected by Saba and that is the only school I applied to. I plan on applying to SGU and Ross now. I have an mcat score of 494 and gpa of 3.2 do I have a chance?
 

8jsi37

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Hey, I just got rejected by Saba and that is the only school I applied to. I plan on applying to SGU and Ross now. I have an mcat score of 494 and gpa of 3.2 do I have a chance?
You're better off raising that mcat score higher to at least 500+ and doing a post bac, then applying to DO
 

lowstats2021

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Hey Peaches, I'm a current 3rd semester student at AUC and I absolutely love it. I only applied to AUC and SGU because I didn't have all of the course requirements for Ross. I was accepted to both AUC and SGU and I decided AUC would be the best fit for me due to significantly smaller class sizes, cheaper tuition, much more developed island, etc. After I declined my offer from SGU the dean of admissions actually called me and offered me a 60k dean's scholarship but I just felt like it was my calling to go to AUC, and I don't regret it one bit! There have definitely been a handful of my classmates who have failed out because they didn't understand the rigors of medical school, but if you come in with the mindset to work hard, there's no doubt that you can succeed. AUC's new curriculum started last semester, and I know it has been somewhat finicky so far with them constantly changing schedules and such but overall it's been implemented well. Also, I have spoken to several AUC students who are in clinicals/have already completed clinicals and you are most definitely guaranteed a spot for rotations. If you have any other questions feel free to ask!
 
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