First off, for someone in your circumstance, you are probably quite a bit too late to apply this cycle if you have not already. The programs you are trying to get will be starting early with interviews, and we are almost a month into the process. That stinks, but it is what it is. You did not mention whether or not you are a US citizen or Green Card holder... if not, your task just got infinitely more challenging.
Secondly, you need to do a lot of research about programs and apply broadly. "Broadly" means, in your case, several hundred programs, and only ones which have accepted foreign grads in the recent past. You will have time to research this if you are not applying until next September. Look, I know that this is expensive, so you need to get some credit cards, or sell some body fluids, or borrow from Uncle Stanislav, or sell your prized baseball cards, or do whatever the hell it takes to apply broadly. I would try to shoot for 300+, very seriously. Start collecting those cans and bottles now. You cannot go short on this process, especially with your scores. Your ONLY realistic chance is to bite the freaking bullet and apply to every single place that makes sense. Obviously, don't waste money on Mayo and Hopkins and Cleveland Clinic, because that would be ridiculous. Every place that makes sense and has accepted IMG/FMGs recently, though. What are you going to hold back for, so that you can do it again next year? And the year after that?
Looking at things very honestly, here, applying broadly is essentially your only real chance of getting some interviews, unless you know somebody. And if you knew somebody, I rather doubt that you would be posting this on VMD. With multiple takes on multiple Steps, you don't have the luxury of winnowing down the list to try to save on cash. That chance passed when you didn't attend a US MD or DO school, and took the boards multiple times. Sorry, and it sucks, but that is where things stand. (Also, make sure that your letters aren't going to foul you up if you are applying to multiple specialties. A pediatric PD isn't going to want to hear about how you will make an excellent psychiatrist, for example. Remember that you will need separate personal statements for each specialty, as well.)
Soooo, my six-step, eleven-plus-month recommendation: 1) Find/beg/borrow/don't-steal money. 2) Research the hell out of programs. 3) Apply AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE in September 2013, to like 300+ programs. 4) Get interviews (hopefully). 5) Interview in a most charming and impressive manner (hopefully). 6) Match (hopefully).
Last edited by devildoc8404; 10-10-2012 at 03:11 AM.
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