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Study Abroad w/ pre-med?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by ayne, Jan 24, 2001.

  1. ayne

    ayne New Member

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    Hi. I'm a freshman in college, taking all the pre-med classes, etc. I'd really like to take a year to study abroad during undergrad, but I don't know how to fit it in with all the pre-med requirements. One option would be to study abroad in England or another English-speaking country so I could still take my science classes. But what year would be best to do that? (sophomore? junior?) The other option would be to take an extra year for undergrad and go after my junior year, take the MCAT before I left so I wouldn't have to worry about it, and then go and take "fun classes" like history, etc, which could possibly fit into my major (I'm thinking about history, International Relations, etc). Any thoughts?
    Ayne
     
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  3. Mango

    Mango Very Senior Member

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    Hey, I cut and pasted this from a message I wrote on a different thread concerning the same topic. It is my belief that every student should study abroad if they can! It will change your life, and give you perspectives on so many things that you would otherwise never have. It can also (I think), substancially benifit your chances of med school acceptance, due to the fact that you will stand out from other applicants, as well as be a more well-rounded individual. Not to mention the excellent conversation starter it will be during interviews! So anyway, read this:

    Many people will tell you that pre-meds can't afford to take a semester abroad, or that it will only delay your admissions, blah blah blah! To hell with them, if you get the chance to spend a semester abroad, TAKE IT! It will be the best thing you've ever done for yourself, and your personal growth. And you CAN do it with a premed major. My program in Denmark was called DiS, and it offered courses (in English) in Marine Biology. I was therefore able to get two full course credits(8 hours) toward my major! Plus the classes were awesome; there's not much marine biology going on in Indiana, if you catch my drift! And Copenhagen is AMAZING!! The people are wonderful, the city is beautiful, and the night life is some of the best in the world (If you're in to that sort of thing)! Also, DiS gives you the opertunity to spend a week in Russia, so I got to see Moscow, St. Petersberg, and even Estonia! Plus we took numerous study tours (the bio class), including a week touring Denmark, and a week at the Sea Fisheries intstitute in Gdansk Poland. They took us to castles, and even to a concentration camp (which was aweful, as you can imagine). I also traveled with friends through Germany, Holland, Prague, Sweden, and the Fjords of Norway! Now do you see why I have said that studying abroad will change your life?

    Incidentally, DiS also recently introduced a program called Medical Practice and Policy, that is designed specifically for premed students! I am not sure how that would work with your major course credits though. Check it out at http://www.disp.dk/


    One last thing. Yes, you may have to rearange some course to fit the MCAT in, but it can be done if you opt to go off campus during your first semester of your junior year. Plus you can always take the MCAT your senior year, and then have a free year after college to gain some clinical or research experience!

    Bottom line: GO GO GO GO GO!!! It can be done, and believe me, you will not regret it!

    Mango
    MS-1



    [This message has been edited by Mango (edited 01-24-2001).]
     
  4. Simul

    Simul Member

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    I agree with everything Mango says... I fit all my pre-reqs in before junior year, and took the MCAT the day before my flight to Denmark. I will graduate on time, too, this coming June. And every admissions officer asked about it. Hell, I got two acceptances, and I owe it to the study abroad trip. And I did that DIS Medical Practice/Policy so if you have questions, holla back...
     
  5. Mango

    Mango Very Senior Member

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    Hej Simul, Hvordan got de? I'm happy to hear that your admissions keep rollin' in! That's great. We need more DIS docs in the world! [​IMG] Maybe someday we can have a reunion in Copenhagen. A sort of Danish/American medical conference. On second thought, maybe we could all just go drink Carlsbergs down at Ny Havn! God, I'd love to be there right now. Even though it's probably freezing cold!

    Well, I'm all nostalgic now, so I am going to have to go look through my photo album and scrapbook from my semester abroad. It makes me smile just to think about how amazing DIS was. We are so lucky to have had such a unique experience!

    Good luck deciding which school to go to. And let me know where you end up!

    Vi ses, Mango
     
  6. numinous

    numinous Member

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    You seem to have gotten some excellent feedback already, but I wanted to encourage you in the same direction. I spent all of last year studying in Spain. I didn't take any science abroad and I will be in school an extra semester and then take the MCAT after I graduate. Yes, it will take loinger to get where I am going, but I am loving the ride. I took a year and traveled in Europe before I started college, too. We can't look so intently towards some far-off future that we forget that this part of our life is just as important. We are doctors in formation, not transition. Enjoy!

    ------------------
    fourth year
    religious studies/pre-med
    McGill University
     
  7. ayne

    ayne New Member

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    Oh, don't worry, it's definitly not a matter of "should I study abroad or not?" I've already caught the travel bug and unless some huge unforseen force stops me, I'm definitly studying abroad. It's more a matter of how other people have done it, etc. I'll definitly look into the DiS program, I had a friend who studied in Denmark in high school and he loved it. Thanks for the info, and anyone else who has anything to add, please do!
     
  8. BioAggie

    BioAggie Member

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    I think study-year abroad programs can only improve your chance of getting accepted to med school. I studied in Stuttgart, Germany for my entire junior year, after taking an intensive language course in Trier. I took courses in engineering, along with the same final exam the other students took, all in German.

    Looking back, that was one of the best years of my life and something I wouldn't trade for the world. Nearly every interview I had this year wanted to talk about my experience in Germany and how it affected my decision to apply to medical school. One of my interviewers even had a wife who was a German national (she even showed up during my interview)---major bonus points [​IMG].

    Bottom line - take the opportunity and make the most of it. Med school will still be here when you get back, and you'll be better qualified for it.
     
  9. Stephen Ewen

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    Intercollege of Cyprus awards degrees in conjunction with the U of Indianappolis--the degrees are the same, the materials are the same, but the environment is of course highly cosmopolitan. http://www.intercol.edu/

    They have a strong A.S. pre-med degree. http://www.intercol.edu/intro/courses.htm

    Pretty low tuition, too.
     
  10. Simul

    Simul Member

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    Hey Mango
    (sorry, everybody else, this is a personal one)...

    I decided on going to Tulane (as of now, it is winter in Chicago and I am tired of dealing with it). Other than that, I have been denied a decent amount of places, and not heard from a bunch more (especially wanted to at least interview at your school, UC). The whole thing is a crapshoot... hope your first year is going well...
    Simul
    Jeg savner Danmark ... (I miss Danmark...)
     
  11. joseph-arveson

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    Sorry to bring this post up from the dead, but I wanted to Thank Mango for the link... I am seriously looking at the Icelandic Summer program. Thanks...and good luck...

    JA
     
  12. mvalento

    mvalento Senior Member

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    ayne-

    i spent the fall of '99 in fremantle, western australia. while i was there i took no pre-med classes. and i was already a year behind in my major (biology). i did, however, have the most fantastic 5 months that i can remember. i was able to fit in all my requirements and get home with enough time to study for the april 2000 MCAT. personally, i think studying abroad should be a requirement- everyone i have met who has done it has had a great time. and almost every interview that i have been to has asked me about that semester. good luck!

    bud
     

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