User can't play nice.
There are a lot things I am disappointed with, that I don’t know what to start with.
Let me begin by emphasizing the fact, that this is my personal opinion about Medical University of Lublin (MUL) – the school I attended. I am trying here to warn future applicants, make them aware of things that I was not aware of and maybe motivate them to a deeper or alternative search for their educational path.
In a few bullet points, which I will expand on later, I want to show the main downsides of this institution
- Very expensive
- Generally not good teaching staff
- High expectation of students vs low standard of teaching and working of university staff
- Not student friendly
- Badly organized class schedule
- Barely anything related to NBME or USMLE preparation
- Hard to get any administrative issues fixed
- Anatomy department as a worst department in the whole etc.
- poor organization of clinical ratations, (uncaring staff, badly organized)
HMI (Hope Medical) is a recruiting agency for MUL and couple of other medical schools in Poland. They claim, they represent students' interests in MUL and associate hospitals in the US in which their students can do clinical rotations.Their affiliated school are recognized by California and New York medical boards, and have illegibility for financial aid. I am not going to go into details about all these stuffs, but I will present some things what I was not aware of before deciding to take my studies.
It is easy to see tuition cost for MUL and HMI on the HMI website. These are solid numbers which are relatively lower in comparison to the tuition cost of US medical schools. That was one of my biggest motivators. Although, first look at tuition makes one lean towards HMI and MUL, but it is not so pretty as it looks.
The cost of rotation seems quite high. Most of American medical schools and other Polish medical schools other than associated with HMI have their clinical rotation cost included in general tuition. So in comparison to other polish med school HMI prices are extremely high.
There are graduates from MUL and HMI, as well as graduates from other polish medical school practicing in the US. Advantage of going with HMI is to pay tens of thousands of dollars toward possibility of being able to do clinical rotation in America. The reality is, that majority of students completing their required basic science course are not ready to take any type of tests (NBME and USMLE step 1) that allow them to do clinical rotation in the US, so they end up doing them in Poland – with slightly less cost, postponing exam time and continuing costly living abroad situation. This phenomenon is related to very poor academic standards (teaching staff, curriculum etc). Generally students completing their basic science (either 6 or 4 year program) can be divided into 3 groups. The first and very small group (estimating – less than 10%) pass their USMLE step 1 after 4 or 2 years respectively and proceed with education as they would do this in a US med school . It is possible, highly unlikely, but it is. Remaining student can be further divided into two categories. One of them takes break to study for USMLE back home for about a year hoping to pass and continue clinical rotation in the US, which in most cases end up going back to Poland to do clinical part and taking another break to study afterwards. The second group stays in Poland for clinical rotations and takes the NBME and USMLE step 1 right after basic science or takes a break to study for mentioned exams. The group that ends up doing rotations in Poland does not take an advantage of a main thing offered by HMI – associated US hospitals, and end up paying similar amount to the cost of the US rotation (housing, home travel etc)
One can say that it all depends on a student’s motivation and determination to get things done on their own. And it is true. There are people out there who did all that despite everything what is wrong. The problem is that school brings students down to its level. And if there are people who are strong enough to do everything by themselves, they don’t need the middle institution – HMI and pay them to help became certified US physician. They can do it anywhere in the world and pass the USMLE
HMI and associated polish universities are the perfect examples of a great marketing strategy that sell idea. The key word 'hope' in their name. I saw too many good people earning medical diploma and HOPING to make a US certification. This is well oiled machine focused on making big bucks. Accepting students from Caribbean’s, other Europeans medical schools to overcrowd facilities and staff, give them HOPE and packet their tuition.
As there is so many foreign students (American, Europeans, Asians, Arabic) with highest tuition cost in Poland they have class schedule on Saturday and sometimes on Sundays, because administration is not able to accommodate all these people to the amount of teacher and facilities available. Polish students (on polish language programs) for whom education is free do not have any classes during weekends.
The last paragraph is about anatomy department. It is, and it has always been the worst department in the entire university (cause of its management). It is separated from the dean's office which makes it very difficult to get anything done; eg. schedule changes, requests etc. As a "seprate" part of the MUL it feels very important and independent and creates its own ridiculous rules and regulations. For example, curriculum is set up without coordination with other departments, and its main priority is to accommodate BIS (begin in summer) program. What is more, the studies program is organized in a cunning way to unable dissatisfied students to switch the university (it differs from the other Polish medical universities ), but MUL exepts all the students transfering from other schools. Brilliant solution for the school but students have to pay their price for it. Not to mentiot the fact that the university has not enouh space and teachers. As a result groups are big, classes are shorter than scheduled and totally unorganized. There is barely any time with cadavers ( less than an hour a month in a group of 10 - 15 students ). There is ONE thing that the University performs in a flawless and organized manner. It has mastered the way to benefit and profit the school by ripping students off to get additional money in every possible way.
I could elaborate more on things mentioned above, but it would take another few pages. I can answer some questions here on the forum or you can try to contact Facebook groups of the school you are interested in.
Big support to hmilie member!
User can't play nice.
Last edited by Doc; 06-27-2016 at 01:36 PM. Reason: pending review
hi, I would like to mention couple points regarding your post. As far as expense is concerned, Cost of living in Europe is by far cheaper than Caribbean. As far as rotations are concerned , HMI is the only school that give you one year rotation schedule and they book all your rotations, vs AUA and other Caribbean school in which students have to book their own rotations and go through hassle of moving from state to state. I agree that most students graduates of foreign medical may take 6 months to one year to pass USMLE but this is something entirely student dependent, most people while living in Europe do not take medical studies and passing usmle seriously and they suffer the consequence later on.
Last edited by sono; 04-19-2016 at 07:43 PM.
While it is true when students take the USMLE depends on themselves, it's quiet ludicrous to shift the blame for the expense in time (6 months to more often a year) to the students since no real preparation for the Step 1 is provided in the school. I'd have to agree with gpdrpat's note on "High expectation of students vs low standard of teaching and working of university staff". You can't expect students here to be on time with their US medical school counterparts when the way in which they're taught here isn't even remotely comparable to that of US medical schools. I know students who're definitely hard workers and take their time here seriously, yet they are the ones who take close to a year to review. Not from a lack of them preparing but because yes knowledge is knowledge but the way in which we're tested is drastically different than in the US and therefore those many months aren't only dedicated to review the info but also adjusting ourselves to be able to tackle very different types of questions.
Well I agree the standards of US teaching is not comparable to most schools around the world. If you think silesia standards is not comparable to what you want it to be and you think they don't have high teaching standards and less time spend for USMLEs then I think its better for you to join a US Medical school. Medicine is medicine, no matter where you go in the world its same information you learn, I agree that maybe the way they test is different but all these foreign medical schools are testing students based on there standards and at silesia its based in european standards. If you wanna practice in US , then US will test you based on there standards and protocol. If teaching standards for foreign med schools are so low then why some students repeating same classes and others are doing well and succeeding???. I have people in my class who took steps within 2 to 3 months of leaving Poland, including my self, then you have other students who took longer. 6 months to 1 year. So its all based on how you prepare and how serious you were about school from the beginning
I think you also asked me question about my residency, so just over view that I went to 6 year program, took STEP 1 in 3 months after leaving Poland, I am in internal medicine residency in new York city.
Physician careers and salaries in Europe vary a lot depending on location (and some of them do suck), but where I live and work one makes more in salary than a US resident, has more humane hours, and actually is pushed to fully utilize one's vacation time each year -- which for me as a family man is a pretty damn good deal.
Look, I understand that for a lot of people the US is the end-all-freaking-be-all for their medical careers... but it's silly to act like living and working in Europe is some sort of hell. In some places it is, but there are some very attractive options as well.
(Oh, and FWIW, my two friends out of Lublin passed their Steps... and they are looking for work in Europe.)
Last edited by devildoc8404; 08-11-2016 at 03:15 PM. Reason: General Politeness
"When I haven't any blue... I use red."
- Pablo Picasso
BA - Oregon ° MS - BYU ° MD - MU-Sofia
Urology Resident; Clinical Research Fellow
Thanks so much for your comment! I genuinely believe you since I have had the exact same experience in UMED (Medical University of Lodz)! Check my posts on the UMED threads and by blog: they are eerily similar to what you wrote!
As far as the USMLE Step 1 goes, do students have to do NBMEs during their time at MUL? These are US subject exams for Anatomy, Biochem etc..or do they just jump to the USMLE?
Are there many Americans and Canadians at MUL?
What is the average intake for 1st year, and what are the general demographics ?
What is the dropout/failure rate?
The OP is basically full of pooh pooh. I'm graduating from Lublin this June. There's nothing wrong with the place. I would come here again. Bottom line - if you study, you learn. The teachers are fine, especially if you show a little bit of respect and common courtesy. It's cheaper than the carribbean schools and they don't weed people out. Again, if you study, you learn. You want to jerk around for four years? Yeah, you can do that's too, but then you'll be like the OP, complaining about not being able to pass the Step, or go back to the States. Bottom line, go to Lublin, study then you can become a doctor.