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View Full Version : An SMU Alumnus checking in... (visiting dorms today!)



MDMBA999
09-19-2011, 11:38 PM
Hi Guys,

I'm currently visiting Grand Cayman for the 2nd time since I graduated a few years ago.

Some background about me: SMU grad a few years ago (part of the Hurricane Ivan crew who ended up evacuating to Maine), did an FM residency and ended up practicing mainly EM. Now I'm faculty at a major hospital's FM Residency program and I'm also a Medical Director of an Emergency Department at a different hospital.

I walked into the dorms (original dorms..next to Captain's) and came across 3 eager medical students (2 were 4th semesters and one guy was a 5th)... they all seemed pretty eager to know what "it's like after leaving the island" and what to expect in clinical rotations and residency and the USMLEs Step 1 and 2 (told them about Step 3 being much easier than the other 2 and they seemed amazed)...

It was definitey nice seeing them, I gave them a booklist for USMLE Step1 and some advice about what to expect in clinicals and beyond.

I will tell you this though..the dorms have changed. There's much less people there as compared to before (because the loan situation is non-existant), but there's always the same concerns.... what to know for Step 1, clinicals, California issues...

One piece of advice is this:
SMU trains you well for a career in medicine. They will give you the resources you need in order to do well. What you do with the resources is what counts. I've rotated with students from all over: US med students, Ross, AUC, SGU, AUA etc....there's no major differences. What separates you from anyone of them is how bad you want to do well. If you really use your resources wisely and study hard as you go through your Basic Sciences and Clinical rotations, and make good impressions during your clinicals....you can land any residency you want. Do well on Step 1 and 2,and just work your hardest in your rotations. I was on a selection committee for residency applicants, so we know what to look for in candidates.

Good luck with everything everyone. Those who are at SMU right now, I give you all a lot of credit, doing this all without school loans (besides Davenport's..which does help). Hang in there, try your hardest. Don't give in to all those rumors..they've been around since I can remember. IF you work hard, it'll pay off.

If there were any of you at the dorms today that wanted to ask me a question and didnt, feel free to private message me. For those that have my contact info, feel free to contact me with any questions that you might have along the way. I feel it's the least I can do.

Good luck

docblin
09-20-2011, 08:20 AM
Great post! As for my son, he graduated SMU in 2010, did 1st year in prelim surgery, was asked to stay as a categorical. But he chose to switch to FM, restarted at a university associated program. It is what you make of the opportunity.
Just to be clear, I'm 34 years in private practice surgical subspecialty after med school at U of Miami. intern GS at Jackson Memorial. Residency at Beth Israel NYC, specialty residency George Washington University Hospitals. Finished in 1980.

Melissa AP
10-10-2011, 05:31 PM
Great post with advice!

unhappyrentered
10-12-2011, 09:51 AM
Question for MDMBA, why have you been back to the Cayman's twice since graduating from SMU, and specifically back to the dorms, did the school pay you? You sure like to toot your own horn.

docblin
10-13-2011, 06:03 AM
WOW! "unhappy" I read MDMBA's post a few times since you posted your comment. I CAN NOT see him tooting his horn at all. If he was in Maine after the hurricane, than it pre dates 2004. It is 2011, so maybe he was just vacationing to GC, but who cares. He just posted his story and how he succeeded. I wish him the best.

unhappyrentered
10-13-2011, 09:22 AM
I dont wish anyone anything other than the best. I'm just trying to be the voice of reason and practicality. Someone needs to, there's an awful lot of back patting here.

MDMBA999
10-23-2011, 12:27 PM
Question for MDMBA, why have you been back to the Cayman's twice since graduating from SMU, and specifically back to the dorms, did the school pay you? You sure like to toot your own horn.
It's called a VACATION! What does matter to you anyways! I wish the school would've paid for my trip... I wouldnt mind a free vacation! I wasn't always happy with SMU administration because there was always more that I thought could be done, so I doubt they would pay for it anyways! I would've visited more, but something called "residency training" occupied most of my free time since med school ended!
I visited the dorms because I've had good memories of the school and island. My class was the first class to have been in the dorms (started in Jan 2004), the dorms used to be the old "Sleep-Inn" hotel before SMU bought it over the locals said. It's always nice to see familiar people and see how things look nowadays. We never had SMU alumni give us advice back when I was a student (mainly because there were so few alumni at the time), so I know those honest hard working students would appreciate any advice and actual experiences of alumni who've completed residency.

People like "unhappyrentered" have been trolling forums like these for a long time. Back in my time, us VMDers use to be able to spot them as soon as they started posting on the forums with random usernames (some of the old school moderaters know the more common trolls). But people like you are usually either those who have 1. Failed out; 2. are failing out. 3. Didnt get accepted. 4. A student at another Carib med school (by the way...those Carib med school "rivalries" are STUPID and don't exist once you actually get into the real world). So which one are you? Well, it doesnt really matter because everybody knows you're here just to be a downer...

SMU is a medical school just like others. Its not the greatest or the worst. Being successful at becoming a physician is a lot of work and it depends on how hard you work to get there. SMU was a route to get there, but it's just one small part of it. Doing well on your boards, rotations, interviews, etc are very important too. Some of my friends and classmates are now board certified Internists, Family Physicians, Emergency Medicine physicians, etc. Most are still finishing up residency and will be the best at what they do. They'll all agree that it wasn't an easy road. But the fact of the matter is is that we all made it, and its VERY doable

. Any students from SMU or any other school are more than invited to send me a message through PM or on here. I'll try to do a better job of getting on here to check the messages. Those who I gave my contact info to while I was on the island or dorms have been very appreciative for the advice. Good luck.

unhappyrentered
10-24-2011, 11:34 AM
I'm actually neither of these options you mentioned. I have a doctorate in another field. I've seen an inordinate amount of my family's money wasted on this "dream." Thus, my disdain for the back patting. I don't wish anyone ill will, but as I stated before someone needs to be the voice of reason.

GuitarHeroMD
11-05-2011, 11:39 AM
I've been wanting to go back and visit Cayman for sometime now too. My fiance and I have been talking about taking a trip after I finish residency. I always wondered if SMU would pay alumni to come and speak? I'm sure we can all give the students down there a better idea of what residency is truly like.

MedMan87
11-06-2011, 05:36 PM
I've been wanting to go back and visit Cayman for sometime now too. My fiance and I have been talking about taking a trip after I finish residency. I always wondered if SMU would pay alumni to come and speak? I'm sure we can all give the students down there a better idea of what residency is truly like.

Most students would love to have an Alumnus come and speak to us, the last person we had was an Anasthesiologist a few semesters ago, he was great.

babooshka
11-06-2011, 09:13 PM
Curious, but who would you suggest we speak to? I e-mailed the Alumni folks after residency and fellowship and never heard back. Would love to come down and give some PEARLS on residency, fellowship, licensure, etc.

MedMan87
11-07-2011, 04:46 PM
Curious, but who would you suggest we speak to? I e-mailed the Alumni folks after residency and fellowship and never heard back. Would love to come down and give some PEARLS on residency, fellowship, licensure, etc.

try emailing the Dean of medicine







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