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  1. #1
    medstudent1004 is offline Newbie 511 points
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    AUA Experience/Review 2017

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    I just wanted to post a quick review for those that may be considering going to AUA. I just recently graduated from AUA and have just also matched. I would like to start off by saying that if you consider going to a caribbean school, AUA is just as good as the other big 4 schools. Many would now say that AUA has become better than some of those that were the original top 4 schools (SGU, SABA, AUC, Ross). The opportunities to make it through AUA are there. Whether or not you work hard to get what you want, is up to you. The school itself is about 4.5 years in length if you go straight through and don't take much time off for the steps. I would also highly recommend not taking much time off either because you really don't need it.

    Basic sciences on the island is just what you make of it. You can attend class and learn what you need to know. However, on top of classes you have to be smart and supplement with a textbook/main study tools that you need for the steps. It all comes back to being a smart student. If you ask US med students, they'll tell you that most of their learning comes from independent studying and not from the classes. With that said, you have to be on top of your work. The exams are very fair and the professors take a lot of time to make exams. There is no cheating your way through the system. Take the time to learn the material and you'll do well. On top of that there are many opportunities to get involved as teaching assistants, tutors, etc.

    Clinical years are the last 2 years of your medical school training. The clinical coordinators are there to help you schedule all of your clinicals. I don't care what anyone says, if you need your clinicals back to back, the school is there to help you. Not only that, if you ever find yourself in a jam, the clinical dean is very much willing to stick his neck out to help you. As with any school, there are some sites that are better than others. You have a choice to pick which rotations/electives are most important to you to do at a certain location. Most of our rotations are green book which are good.

    Please do not listen to the negativity from the students who failed out. AUA is what you make of it. It can be a great experience if you work hard and really give it your all. It can also be a negative experience if all you care about is going to all the parties, going to the beach or just not studying that hard. AUA will give you the opportunity to do well, match at a great program and fulfill your dreams. The island of Antigua itself is beautiful and has all of the amenities that you need. Our match this year has been the best one yet and it continues to become better. We are 50 state approved which is amazing as we keep expanding our match numbers in California.

    All in all, I went out to AUA, put in all of the blood, sweat and tears that I could give and I made it. I don't regret coming to AUA and am so grateful for the opportunity. Because of AUA, I've lived out my dream and I couldn't be happier with my future.

  2. #2
    mariyasmith is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Thank you so much for this post! I'm applying to AUA for Fall 2017 and am excited to start my journey. I was wondering if you would mind sharing your fav resources, study schedule, and what an average day looked like for you during your journey? I've read lots of different opinions, but since you're familiar with the AUA curriculum and performed well on your exams I feel like you would be a great person to ask Thank you very much!

  3. #3
    DOC.p's Avatar
    DOC.p is offline Super Moderator 7191 points
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    It's been a long time since I posted, I'd just like to second the review. Firstly, I graduated in 2011 which is quite a long time ago. I started my journey in 2007, back when we were on the trimester schedule. I have been back to the island three times since graduation so I have seen the progress. When I was on the island, our campus and resources were basic. You can still drive by the overgrown Friar's Hill Road campus and see what I am talking about. Our classes were held in metal warehouses that were updated as best as they could be and construction on the new campus you guys are in was started my last semester. We had no education enhancement department, no simulators, a shaky tutoring program and had an inconsistent 5th semester program. What we did have was some of the best professors that, to this day, I have ever had. What we lacked in infrastructure we excelled in education. This is why my class succeeded as well as the next couple of classes and really paved the way for future students today. Now that AUA has the infrastructure in place, the approvals, federal loans as well the education you receive, there is no reason a student may not succeed.

    Although I am not a current student, from my three trips back to AUA since graduation, I have seen the evolution of the school. The campus is amazing and continues to expand. The resources available, especially for the struggling student, are probably better than I had in my US undergrad. The simulators and labs mirror that or are better than some US medical schools. I have also witnessed first hand the faculty and teaching methods which are still top notch and rival US programs. I matched in a residency that historically did not take many IMGs and majority those matched were US grads. I was the first AUA grad in their program. Now there have been multiple AUA grads since and knowing my PD, this is his trust that AUA is paving quality grads. This again was back in 2011. I am currently a Hospitalist in a teaching hospital and spend half of my time between two different outpatient offices.

    When I started, going to the Caribbean was a bit of a gamble, especially with AUA being so new. I took a risk but I felt confident in the administration as I saw how dedicated they were with improving the school. Now, with all that AUA has to offer, there is no reason not to consider AUA as your #1 choice outside a USMD program.
    M.D.

  4. #4
    vnukala is offline Member 516 points
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    Where do I even begin; its seems like it was just yesterday. I was once a student researching medical schools online and ran across this site. Going back to Feburary 2007 I met other current students online and discussed about their experiences about island life and school life. Of all the schools I looked at, AUA stood out because they were a young school but already had so many achievements. It has taken other Caribbean schools over a decade to achieve. When I was on the island AUA had a trimester system but over the years they have modified this to better mirror the US schools and their curriculum. I had the opportunity to visit the island and talk to the 5th semester students back in 2014 and was surprised at the beautiful campus that is built and the resources to students has greatly improved.

    After graduation I started my Internal medicine residency in 2012 and finished in 2015 at a AUA clinical site, and have continued to work at the same site since. I currently interview for our residency program, and teach AUA students and US students in an elective clinical rotation and honestly see that AUA students are on par if not better than some of the US students. This is mainly because of the well revised curriculum during the first two years of basic sciences, and the excellent rotations that they have throughout the US. Another thing I appreciate AUA does is the comp exams during the rotations and prior to taking the USMLE. This helps ensure and give confidence to the students that they will pass the USMLE the first time and with high scores since competition for residency is fierce.

    If I had to do it all over again I would not change one thing about my experience at AUA as it has helped me become a successful doctor.
    Last edited by vnukala; 05-23-2017 at 09:20 AM.

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