~ Lublin has signed with HMI (Hope Med Inst), therefore, the school CANNOT admit people into the American program directly
~ HMI is the ONLY way to get into the American program... therefore, everyone IN said program has gone through HMI
~ HMI knows this, and thus charges nearly (if i remember right) as much as the school, basically doubling what you'd be paying per semester, plus forcing you to pay a whopping $10,000 seat fee, before you even get there (non-refundable, of course)
~ Even with their fees, you'll end up paying ~1/2 of what you would at a US school
~ HMI is an agent... by def, they don't do much past getting $ from you. So long as you pay them, you won't hear from then, and you'll be happy.
~ Only thing they do for us, once we're in, is get us US rotations and keep the stateside hospitals content to take us.
On the last point, i've heard mixed feelings from older students. One thing to give kudo's to them for is them getting Lubling CA accredidation, but that's as much a scuccess of the school as their lobbying efforts with the CA medical board. You do have to tripple check everything they tell you, since their perogative is to fill as many spots as possible and not so much you having a good time once you arrive.
One friend came here because they offered Canadian rotations, only to find out THIS would be their last year after getting here. They've been talking for a while about getting a hospital in California where we can do rotations, but I'm not exactly holding my breath that it'll be ready by the time I want to take rotations there (2011/2012), if ever. And if it will, chances are it'll be somewhere I'd rather not be.
Bottom line, take everything they tell you with a grain of salt, check everything, etc. They're not the devil, though some on these forums claim they come close, but their #1 concern is getting your cash. If you apply, you have a very good (almost certain) chance of getting in, despite what they will tell you about only having a couple spots left, etc, etc. Almost everyone gets in, and if our profs are to be believed, they'll make as many spots as they can find applicants to fill. For a med school, it actually has a TON of incoming students each year (over 30 for the 4yr Am program alone, which if my friends are to be believed is the total incoming class for many US institutions). This forces us to have annoying schedules, but you learn to live with it. Just get into the habit of being in a lec hall at 8am, if not 7:30 >_< ).
The dorms aren't so bad as they are unequal. Most are refurbished apartments, meaning that while your friend gets a huge room, you might be stuck with little more than a closet even tough you share a bathroom and kitchen. The friend will pay more, so at least there it's fair. Things break and it takes a while to fix, but I'd say that's more due to a lack of permanent maintinence staff and the 'do it yourself' concept people in PL are used to. The ones our year got are quite near the lecture halls, so no complaints there. The school is also building more dedicated dorms, though it's not certain if those will be for international use or that of the PL students (they're used to far smaller dorms, so if they are, don't begrudge... trust me).