Greetings! At the risk of taking the backlash of everyone's prejudices (mostly rightfully so) I present my issue in desperate hope of some advice that can put me back onto the right path.
Here is my story...
I majored in economics in undergrad and it wasn't until my junior year that I realized I wanted to go to medical school. From there I quickly enrolled in all the pre-reqs for medical school... and long story short I ended up in the Caribbean (AUA) at the end of my senior year.
My first semester was ROUGH!!!!! I was there with essentially NO anatomy, physio knowledge and essentially was really clueless (remember I was an econ major...) I struggled mightily this semester and ended up failing anatomy. I really needed to learn how to study correctly for medical school, which economics had not prepared me for.
From here the story turns brighter... I went on to get straight A's several semesters, and was a solid 3.5 gpa + student for the remainder of my time on the island. I really improved my study habits and actually became an above average medical student. My NBME shelf grades were also always towards the top of the class (after that dreaded first semester anyway.)
After this, I took ~2 months to study for step 1 and ended up with a what I consider to be respectable 226 (my exam indicated that the average US/Canadian first time taker for that exam was 220... so I beat the mean for US students at least.) I know this score isn't a world beater, but it's also not too bad.
Right after this, my girlfriend and I whom I met on the island at AUA (she also got a 226, and we took the test on the same week) got married. So that was another great thing in my life... having just got a step score I was happy with and then getting married. Life WAS good.
Then the story turns dark... Right after this, our school tells both of us we A. Can not be placed into rotations until July 2012 (we took step 1 and got our scores in Nov. 2011) and B. Will not be placed together in rotations in spite of the fact that we are married.
This was obviously ridiculous by ANY standards, after all, family is more important than being at AUA of all places.
To make a long story short, we made the VERY VERY tough decision to transfer. We obviously had to go transfer over to another Caribbean school. The new school is definitely a breathe of fresh air, none-the-less it's a transfer on the record... That can't look good.
Now for the BIG problem... So we can't take step 2 at our school until we have taken all our core rotations, which is 48 weeks worth of cores. On top of this I am sure there will be gaps between rotations here and there.... which will certainly extend the core rotation duration beyond 52 weeks. Which means if I start rotations in early July, I won't be done with cores until July of 2013. And that leaves me with EXACTLY 1 month to study for step 2... take the step and then get all my applications in for residency by early Sept.
I suppose my first question is... as a Carib student, is it suicide to not have my applications in until say November or December? I would like to think that early July end date on cores is possible, but realistically I don't think it's likely.
Secondly, does the fact that I have a F and a transfer preclude me from doing anything beyond family or internal? My ultimate goal has been surgery or anesthesiology, however with all these new hurdles it seems less and less likely to me. Also, let us assume I get a 235+ on step 2.
Last, if something along the lines of the current trend continued and I missed the 2014 match due to delays in clinical rotations, is it possible to do research in the time off that I have after graduation to improve my chances of matching in a more competitive residency. In other words, what do people do that miss match because of the timing of their graduation dates.
I've showed steady improvement all along my medical school career and expect to continue to do so with step 2... I anticipate scoring at least 240+...
Thank you VERY MUCH to anyone who can lend advice to this debacle that is my life