is it an English teaching institute and how long is the program, cost, other things ?
is it an English teaching institute and how long is the program, cost, other things ?
It is a private university in Italy(Probably the best)and they are now teaching medicine in English(They began the English programme last Year),it's a 6 year long course for high school graduates.In Italy there's no 4 year programmes.
The fees are € 18k a year and You have to pass an entrance exam which is tough but not impossible if You are good at maths,physics,chemistry and biology.
The university is located in Milan which is an awesome city,expensive as well but not as expensive as London or Paris and Italy is lovely.
You don't need to speak Italian in order to be admitted,but You have to learn Italian during the first 3 years in order to talk to patients and medical staff when You do Your practicals etc...
I'm interested in MD programme as well, but was wondering if current undergraduates/graduates from Canadian Universities are eligible to apply as well?
The International MD Program at Vita-Salute San Raffaele University
- also known as -
Università Vita-Salute San Raffaele
Located in Milano, Italia or Milan Italy on the campus of San Rafaele Hospital and the Italian medical school and Psychology school.
If you are having a hard time finding information about this program and school, look no further. My name is Benjamin Flom and I am currently enrolled in the school in the International MD program. I will be happy to try to answer any questions you may have about the school and the program and help you try to make a sensible decision as to whether or not to apply to this school and whether or not to attend here. I will be happy to share my opinions with anyone who asks and do my best to inform you. If I do not know something I will be happy to tell you that as well. There is a lot of information given during the process of applications for the test and matriculation to the school, some of which is true, other parts not so true. I am not a representative of the school and other than being a student I have no part or stake in the organization and do not represent San Raffaele in any official capacity. Also, I am an American who came here to study, so I can impart a bit of the perspective of an outsider going to school here. Therefore I will do my best to answer any inquiries honestly and truthfully.
I can communicate in a number of languages, English being my native tongue. Please feel free to message me here as forum rules do not allow me to post my email address at benjaminflomdotcom.
We have one Canadian in our class who applied as an undergrad from a Canadian university. Both American students were admitted with at least a Bachelors and the other student has a Masters
Last edited by BenjaminFlom; 05-04-2011 at 03:12 PM. Reason: added info
The classes/tests are in English. Among the professors, facility with English is varied, where most use it as a professional language to read and maybe write but not communicate. Everything else is in Italian. Course of study is 6 years. Course for last years class was 16,000 euro a year, this years class looks like 18,000 euro a year.
Great thanks for the information.
And how has your experience been there so far?
And how do you manage financially? Is there some sort of financial support?
The experience for the most part has been pretty good. The level of teaching and quality of the teachers has been for the most part beyond expectation. There are some very qualified people who have taught us so far in this program and I hope that will continue. Facility with English breaks so far by semester among the instructors about 1/4 excellent, 1/2 good, and 1/4 poor, about what I would expect from any university program.
There are 2 different styles of teaching. One is among the instructors who come form outside of Italy, the other is among the Italian instructors. The non Italian method of teaching will be familiar, the Italian instructors teach very differently and was a major adjustment for me.
Outside of academics, from the university perspective, I have pretty much been having to manage on my own. Luckily my wife is Italian and I have had some help from her and her friends in managing. For example, the university only has residences for single individuals, and not for married couples or families, so I spent 4 months homeless moving between couches and guest bedrooms. Living in the dormitories in any case would not have been a good option and I would recommend finding accomodation off campus.
Surviving in Italy without family helping you is very difficult and actually goes against the grain of society. There are 2 concepts, 1. guaranzia - financial guarantor/ee 2. Busta paga - pay stub or pay receipt. Life in Italy revolves around these 2 things. A financial guarantee must be from someone with assets in Italy of sufficient quantity relative to what you are attempting to buy or receive in a loan. Pay stubs show your "stable or secure" monthly earnings, which sometimes is coupled with a work contract which the best of which in Italy is a work contract for life. These items are crucial for many things, not just taking loans, but enter into many aspects of everyday life, that one may not realize. Renting an apartment, buying a house, buying a microwave on finance/payments, getting a free cell phone as part of a service subscription, buying a car are all extremely difficult if not impossible without these items in place.
Also, credit cards are tricky here. If you open a bank account you get a debit card. If you want a credit card you need to have sufficient assets at the bank whereby they feel sufficiently comfortable issuing a credit card to you. Debit cards take the money immediately from your account after you enter a pin code. Credit cards do not allow you to revolve a balance and they take the funds to cover charges from the previous month from your account on a designated day each month (it would technically be a charge card, not a credit card). Credit cards are important for example if you want to rent a car because othewise you will have funds held in your bank account for a deposit. These funds that are held can be substantial. Also any transaction that is not face to face whereby you cannot enter a pin code on a pin pad such as ordering internet service to your house. International credit cards are not always accepted at locations that in general do accept credit cards in Italy, for example at many gas stations.
Coming from the US and from a US university, there are some substatial differences. There are many services that exist universally at US universities that do not exist here. There is no financial aid that I am aware of, there is not even a financial aid office or questionaire when you enroll. There is no meal "plan" but there is a food service that runs a number of cafeterias on campus where a student receives a 30% discount. If you do not have Italian residency or citizenship, I am not aware of any provisions for healthcare or health insurance. There is no academic advising. Instructors do not keep scheduled office hours. There is no designated text book for a class but a suggested list from which you can pick. Syllabi are spartan with no correlation to readings, so it is virtually impossible to read ahead or prepare ahead of class. You are always reading behind here.
There is also a culture shock in general. The computer facilities here close at 6 pm and are closed on weekends. The library closes at 7 pm. There is very little facility for studying on campus even during the period prior to final exams. This is a culture issue because the research labs also generally end work at about 6:30 pm or 7 pm. You will need your own computer to survive here, because the campus computers are severly hindered as to functionality to at times be unusable (keyboards and some defaults are also in Italian even on the English computers), and beyond that internet access even from your own computer on campus is severly hindered to at times be unusable. Study rooms on campus are technically open till 7 pm, but if you are nice to the guy who closes you can push it to maybe 8:30 pm or 9:00 pm.
You will bump into Italian for all university functions outside of the classroom and also life in general. You must have an openess to learning the language and trying to communicate in Italian. If you are not quick picking up Italian you will be at a disadvantage not directly academically, but in general. For example, I do not know how communicating within the hospital will be handled, as the patients, nurses, and doctors there all speak Italian. I have never heard English spoken at the hospital in either a casual or professional context. I have been able to communicate with some of the doctors there in English. I do not know if there are any or how many native English speakers there are at the hospital. Even within the International MD program I could count 2 and now only 1 person that I am aware of that would have English (UK English) as their native/mother tongue.
Access to campus is good. You can live here without a car. There is train service (metro) that stops near the school. From the metro station you can walk or take the bus to campus for free. There is also a tram/shuttle that operates from the metro stop to the center of campus which costs 1.30 euro per day. The shuttle service ends at 8 pm I am not certain what time it starts up in the morning. The metro also connects to the national train system directly at a variety of metro stops so you can travel to the airports or anywhere in Europe using public transportation with feet/legs and a suitcase.
Public transportation is the most economic way to travel and is fairly efficient unless you travel after hours (after 7 or 8 pm) where the train frequency drops dramatically (from about every 3 - 5 minutes to every 7 - 12 minutes). Keep this in mind if you are making a connection. Metro shuts down completely from 12 am to 5 or 5:30 am. The national trains and shuttles run on a fixed schedule which you can check on the internet in advance (trenitalia.com is one site) and in English.
Interestingly, no one here has ever asked me your question. Managing financially has been difficult. Initially we spent through our savings. Now I am working nights and sometimes during class to find money to cover expenses. You cannot reasonably expect to earn sufficient money in Italy to cover living expenses and pay tuition. A regular Italian, college graduate working a 9 - 5 job makes about 24,000 - 30,000 euro a year here and families live on that. Rents in Milan and around San Raffaele are also among the highest in Italy. One would have to live about 45 minutes out by train or in an area not serviced by train to save on that expense.
I am not aware of any financial support. There is a scholarship/grant that is offered by the Regionale Lombardia but all information on that is in Italian. Also, you and your family must make less than about 20,000 euro a year and you must be studying for your first college degree. There are other conditions - all in Italian. There is also a lot of documentation that must be assembled - all in Italian - and some of which may seem strange. You would have to educate yourself and navigate this process on your own. From the US to transfer to an Italian university there may be a requirement that you have a university degree already, so I really do not know how much of a use this would be to American students. Also, most importantly, I am not an expert or in any way qualified to speak about this grant/scholarship so if this factors into your plans, get the information, verify your ability to receive it with the Regione directly, to the point of being certain (in writing). I do know that even with this aid you must make the first tuition payment out of pocket which would later be reimbursed theoretically, so keep this as part of your calculation. Other than that it seems to be pay as you go with 1/3 payments due in October, January, and March/April paid via wire transfer.
I pay less than 1500€/year for an english program in europe giving an european MD recognised the same ...
I wonder how is the teaching in a new english section , here it took several years before all teachers to be perfectly capable and efficient in their job , as for any new program anywhere in the world ...
18000€ is just a shame from my opinion , if I'm still free to give it... I can't believe admission procedure is making any additional selection than beeing able to afford this amount , can you provide admission stats from last year for curiosity please? usual admission procedures in Italy give around 1 chance/5 to be admitted