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L Pletzova
10-10-2005, 08:47 PM
Hello all, I have spent a fair number of hours perusing these forums and I have to say that I am indebted to the wealth of information and opinion I have found here.

I have attended all of my schooling in the United States. The citizenships I currently hold are Austrian (birth), Slovak (request to embassy), and American (naturalized citizen). Fluent in English and Czech.
I am finishing my last year of high school, and plan to take a year off to work as a CNA and save up a bit of money, then take loans to enter into a European medical school 6 yr MD programme for 2007 -- looking at Jagiellonian, Wroclaw, and Poznan.

I have heard a lot of praise for Warsaw Uni, but after checking their website, I was unable to find any English medium programme information, just that this section of the site in under construction. Does anyone have any specific information about the quality of their English medium, and (very importantly) approximate tuition fees?

Thank you for your time.

Miklos
10-11-2005, 09:15 AM
Hello all, I have spent a fair number of hours perusing these forums and I have to say that I am indebted to the wealth of information and opinion I have found here.

I have attended all of my schooling in the United States. The citizenships I currently hold are Austrian (birth), Slovak (request to embassy), and American (naturalized citizen). Fluent in English and Czech.
I am finishing my last year of high school, and plan to take a year off to work as a CNA and save up a bit of money, then take loans to enter into a European medical school 6 yr MD programme for 2007 -- looking at Jagiellonian, Wroclaw, and Poznan.

I have heard a lot of praise for Warsaw Uni, but after checking their website, I was unable to find any English medium programme information, just that this section of the site in under construction. Does anyone have any specific information about the quality of their English medium, and (very importantly) approximate tuition fees?

Thank you for your time. I'm confused. Why would you consider Poland when you fluently speak Czech or Slovak (yes, I know all three are Western Slavic languages)?

Dr.Evil
10-11-2005, 11:06 AM
Tution fee for the 6 year MDprgm, starting these year 8700 EURO (paid in two payments)

The reason the curriculumn info site is down is because they have made some recent changes to it, mainly the examination procedure, it will probably be up again in a short while.

The english M.D prgm is very good, and I have always been satisfied with the instructors.

Worth mentioning is that all the department buildings are either newly built or renovated (except the polish instit. where u will learn polish...that one sucks.), and the university libary is very nice...nicer than any libary I have ever seen.

L Pletzova
10-11-2005, 11:26 AM
Miklos: I am considering a Polish University because I do not have the money for Charles University, and I haven't been very impressed with Masaryk in Brno. My hometown is Komorni Lhotka (in Moravia, near Frydek-Mistek) and I am much more familiar with the south-eastern sector of the CZR and Poland than Prague, and my experiences with capital dwellers have been a bit negative.

I actually haven't put any consideration into a Slovak university, but I'll read up on some.

Thanks much, Dr. Evil.

Miklos
10-11-2005, 11:40 AM
Miklos: I am considering a Polish University because I do not have the money for Charles University, and I haven't been very impressed with Masaryk in Brno. My hometown is Komorni Lhotka (in Moravia, near Frydek-Mistek) and I am much more familiar with the south-eastern sector of the CZR and Poland than Prague, and my experiences with capital dwellers have been a bit negative.

I actually haven't put any consideration into a Slovak university, but I'll read up on some.

Thanks much, Dr. Evil.
Where do you want to practice medicine and how do you wish to finance your education?

If you are fluent in Czech/Slovak, you may wish to consider a native language program in the CR or Slovakia (though Stafford loans are not available for Slovak schools (http://www.ed.gov/about/bdscomm/list/ncfmea.html#decisions)). [I've found that most lecturers do a better job in their native language than in English. In addition, licensure in the U.S. is easier than with English language programs.]

If you are financing your education from the U.S., you may wish to keep in mind that if you attend a school that charges in Euros, you will assume the currency risk.

L Pletzova
10-11-2005, 03:31 PM
I have not decided in finality in which country I wish to practice at first, but I know that during the span of my career I would like to work in two out of the three: US, UK and CR or Slovakia. The most probable course will be US first and later either of the two.

My education will be fully funded by loan programs, as I do not have familial support or contribution. I do expect to be defined as an "independent student." I'm looking at Stafford Loans and the IEFC. SallieMae and possibly another loan program are available in case I still need more money, which I'm not anticipating. Since Staffords aren't available for Slovak schools, that's kinda knocking them off the list.

I'm pretty set on taking an English medium program because I am already very familiar with medical terms and procedures (at the top of my CNA class and HOSA Competition 1st place winner) in English, and it would be disappointing to have to relearn everything in my native language.

I am aware of the Euro risk, but I'm not very concerned about it and it's not a deciding factor on where I wish to study.

m4ttjabz
10-11-2005, 04:07 PM
don't rule out the cr schools, just by graduating high school and attending full time, you are eligible for $18,500 in stafford loans and additonal funds (possibly up to $3,500) may be available through private sources... i started this year, straight from hs and recevied the full amount through IEFC, different schools do things differently, i'm not sure if the polish schools would certify you for the full graduate/professional student amount... plus the option of eventually going to school for free if you are able to transfer to the czech language program would be a huge advantage, there is one student in the first faculty that started this year trying to do just that... the average czech lives off 12,000 crowns a month (about $500), with stafford loans alone, you could easily live above the mean if you spend your money wisely and avoid expensive(ie. touristy) spots... speaking czech would certainly save you money!

school here is hard! way above american high school, in fact it makes it look like a joke! it would definitely be in your best interest to get a firm background in the sciences (especially chemistry) before coming here... to be honest, i don't really have any expectation of passing the first year, it'd be great and i'm studying as much as i can but i'm not counting on it... i do feel however that the experience, even for the very short time i've been here is worth the effort and debt regardless of what degree you receive in the end... (this could probably be said for going to school anywhere in europe)

oh and cna class is cool, but don't expect to use anything you learn for the next 3 years and it really won't be any advantage in applying to ce schools, you just need to pass the entrance exam! it could however, be a good summer job to save up some extra cash to supplement your loans... i worked as an emt last summer and plan on doing the same for the summers to come... actually, i can't wait to impress the nurses when i spit out some big vocabulary words in calling in a radio report to the hospital... haha

-matt

L Pletzova
10-11-2005, 04:19 PM
The program at Charles however, has a written and oral entrance exams. The poor quality and inexistent opportunities for advancement in rural Southern US high schools doesn't give me a good background to pass the exams, mostly on the part of physics (which is by no means my forté.) It's just something else that detracts from the possibility of attending Charles.

1st Faculty does seem to be the only English program that's okay for CA, including the rest of the schools in CR and PL. Is it the sole program?

m4ttjabz
10-11-2005, 04:24 PM
having also gone to hs in the southern us (virginia) i understand your frustration...

you can basically forget anything you've learned in physics, biophysics here is crazy, i swear the lecturer (Dr. V****) is speaking something other than english...

the entrance exam is only written and you can take it in the US, email Viera, [email protected] and she'll hook you up... you only need a 50% to pass, not difficult imo...

the first faculty, as of now is the only school in the cr approved by california for english language instruction but the hungarian schools also have approval... no polish or slovak schools as of yet...

-matt

Miklos
10-11-2005, 05:10 PM
I am aware of the Euro risk, but I'm not very concerned about it and it's not a deciding factor on where I wish to study.

Having been biten by the fall of the dollar versus the Hungarian forint while I attended medical school (along with very significant inflation over the years), I'd urge you to think about this. (Plus most programs in the region still denominate their tuition in US dollars.)

More to the point, some of my Norwegian classmates had significant problems during a couple terms, as their education was financed in Norwegian kroner. However, as tuition was denominated in US dollars; when the dollar to kroner rate was greatly in favor of the dollar, they suffered.

Having the tuition fixed in the currency you are using to finance your education can make a big difference.

Miklos
10-11-2005, 05:16 PM
Matt's made a couple of very good points. I'd like to add my 2 cents.

-Speaking Czech is a huge advantage in the CR. Not only in terms of being ably to live cheaply, but when it comes to clinicals. Especially as you are going for a six year program. Being able to communicate with patients (or professors/doctors/staff/administration) in one's language (even if you attend the English program) is a massive advantage. (Trust me on this, I know.)

-Admissions exams in the region are generally speaking not a problem.

L Pletzova
10-11-2005, 06:17 PM
Hmm...
From the IEFC (http://www.iefc.com) site

Stafford eligible schools (from my interests) are:
CR- 2nd fac, 3rd fac, and Hradec Kralove
POL- Jag, Poznan, Wroclaw and Warsaw (all)

ISLP eligible schools:
POL- Jag, Poznan, Warsaw [Wroclaw only seems to be listed under the Medical Students loan program, not avail under general Fully Enrolled loan]
There aren't any CR schools listed as eligible for the ISLP.

However, International Student Loan (http://www.internationalstudentloan.com) says they will apply for Stafford and the Private Alternative Student Loan, yet the application link sends me back to IEFC.

All of this financing information is terribly confusing... :confused:

L Pletzova
10-11-2005, 06:23 PM
So if I'm looking at the CR schools, I can pick any of the Charles faculties or Masaryk (Palacky is out since it's not a 6 year program and requires the MCAT + entrance exam) though the only school CA certified is 1st faculty, which is also the only school that doesn't have financial aid.

Do other US states also abide by CA board... is there any chance of practicing in any area of the US if CA doesn't specifically approve or disapprove a school?

Miklos
10-11-2005, 06:52 PM
So if I'm looking at the CR schools, I can pick any of the Charles faculties or Masaryk (Palacky is out since it's not a 6 year program and requires the MCAT + entrance exam) though the only school CA certified is 1st faculty, which is also the only school that doesn't have financial aid.

Do other US states also abide by CA board... is there any chance of practicing in any area of the US if CA doesn't specifically approve or disapprove a school?
IEFC is a private company and its information is not complete. For instance, it only lists Debrecen in Hungary as eligible for Stafford loans; I know that this is not the case. The authority on which school is eligible or not for Staffords is the Department of Education Foreign Schools Team. The contact info can be found at the bottom of this page (http://www.ed.gov/about/bdscomm/list/ncfmea.html).

Regarding California, you can practice in plenty of states if the school is not California approved (currently only a couple directly or indirectly use the California list). However, I'd think about that twice.

Why?

You don't know where the future will take you. Carbon started an excellent post about why he wishes that his Polish school would have been approved before he started attending. I highly recommend reading it. You'll find it here (http://www.valuemd.com/showthread.php?t=27301).

L Pletzova
10-11-2005, 07:24 PM
I will write the DOE Foreign Schools Team tonight.

Carbon's post was very well written and does make me want to get an education at a California approved school, especially since I won't be entering until 2007.

Do you know anything about Pell/SEOG grants? A listing about SEOG says it is eligible for "study abroad" programs... does this just mean short-term or semester exchanges from US schools?

m4ttjabz
10-12-2005, 12:50 AM
when it comes to DOE (stafford) loans IEFC is really just a middle-man between you and the bank... they use citzens bank, bank of america and wachovia, each with different origination costs, but you can apply to any stafford eligble school. if you look, the first faculty isn't on their website but they got me my loan with no problem... they will also allow private loans to any school that is approved for stafford loans which approves additional funds but it's really up to the school how much money they'll allow one to get, the first faculty is pretty stingy in this respect.

imo, private loans should be avoided, the interest rates are higher and often you'll have to start paying on them a lot sooner than you would staffords...

as far as i know, you can not use PELL grants or any other need-based financial aid if you are enrolled full-time in a foriegn school...

CA approval for most 6 year english language programs in the CR and Poland is really just a a matter of the schools filling out the paperwork and paying the application costs, they're already approved for full EU registration and have long been established as relatively reputable schools.... that being said, it is certainly best to have the school approved before you attend but i wouldn't use CA approval to rank schools with the idea that non-CA schools are inferior in terms of education...


-matt

diogenes
10-12-2005, 03:24 AM
So if I'm looking at the CR schools, I can pick any of the Charles faculties or Masaryk (Palacky is out since it's not a 6 year program and requires the MCAT + entrance exam Unless it has changed very recently Palacky is a 6 year course. Also, their admissions procedures for Nth. American applicants were quite flexible. I don't know the specifics of the loan situation, except to say that U.S. students were getting some kind of loans, but I don't know which ones. If Olomouc is otherwise a good location for you it might be worth checking out these points.

L Pletzova
10-12-2005, 05:35 AM
it is certainly best to have the school approved before you attend but i wouldn't use CA approval to rank schools with the idea that non-CA schools are inferior in terms of education... The only reason I'm leaning towards a CA school is for the full opportunity to practice anywhere in the US. I have no intentions of ever going to Cali, but just in case other states decide to adopt the same or similar policies I'm going to be kinda screwed.

CA approval isn't retroactive, is it...?

m4ttjabz
10-12-2005, 01:40 PM
CA approval isn't retroactive, is it...?

it's totally up to the board, they can pick whatever date they wish to begin with... starting a program on the basis that they may get approval is probably a bad idea as no one, at least that i know of, has a crystal ball to predict such things...

-matt

L Pletzova
10-12-2005, 08:15 PM
Thanks for all your help guys, I think I really only have two questions left.

Assuming financing was taken care of, and I passed the entrance exam, do you think I could get accepted to 1st faculty if I have a crappy overall GPA but scores of 89 in sciences? (Dunno what it is, just happened to get an 89 in every sci class) My unweighted H.S. GPA is currently 2.326 (weighted 2.493) and probably only set to go down.

And do you know anything about what CE and/or EE schools think of a GED? (with 4-year high school transcript) Accepting/non-accepting?

I ask this because I am suppossed to be class of 2006, but because I suddenly switched school systems halfway through my junior year, the new system 1) did not recognize some of my credits, 2) demerited some of my credits due to inequivalencies in their schools, and 3) completely messed up my schedule. Thus, I am not graduating this year due to one credit.

I'm not going to attend an extra semester because I would have to take a minimum of 3 classes at the school facility. Instead, I would like to do an at-home degree program (where unfortunately I have to take 4 classes) and complete it as soon as possible. Link- JMHS (http://www.jmhs.com/about/) But if this doesn't work out for some reason, I may just get my GED.

Miklos
10-12-2005, 09:10 PM
Thanks for all your help guys, I think I really only have two questions left.

Assuming financing was taken care of, and I passed the entrance exam, do you think I could get accepted to 1st faculty if I have a crappy overall GPA but scores of 89 in sciences? (Dunno what it is, just happened to get an 89 in every sci class) My unweighted H.S. GPA is currently 2.326 (weighted 2.493) and probably only set to go down.

And do you know anything about what CE and/or EE schools think of a GED? (with 4-year high school transcript) Accepting/non-accepting?

I ask this because I am suppossed to be class of 2006, but because I suddenly switched school systems halfway through my junior year, the new system 1) did not recognize some of my credits, 2) demerited some of my credits due to inequivalencies in their schools, and 3) completely messed up my schedule. Thus, I am not graduating this year due to one credit.

I'm not going to attend an extra semester because I would have to take a minimum of 3 classes at the school facility. Instead, I would like to do an at-home degree program (where unfortunately I have to take 4 classes) and complete it as soon as possible. Link- JMHS (http://www.jmhs.com/about/) But if this doesn't work out for some reason, I may just get my GED.
I can't speak for Charles, but it is my impression that seats in CE usually exceed applicants (as long as you pass the exam and apply early). Schools here are more than happy to take your cash (and fail you).

However, a low high school GPA may be a warning sign. If someone has not yet acquired solid study habits, that could lead to academic problems here.

Mr Cool
10-13-2005, 12:11 PM
Miklos: I am considering a Polish University because I do not have the money for Charles University, and I haven't been very impressed with Masaryk in Brno.


No joke, but the university in Brno is supposed to be really good. Thats what the czech students have told me. All new facilities. How come u not impressed.

Mr Cool
10-13-2005, 12:14 PM
Listen to the people on this thread. There can help loads.

Also the language factor you have is a major advantage. I said that I would really commit to teh language once I got here. That was before I realised I have to memorise all the two 700 page gross anatmoy and neuroanatomy exams next year. Gee........ Looks like the czech language will have to come 2nd for now.

Good luck

m4ttjabz
10-13-2005, 12:40 PM
And do you know anything about what CE and/or EE schools think of a GED? (with 4-year high school transcript) Accepting/non-accepting?

I ask this because I am suppossed to be class of 2006, but because I suddenly switched school systems halfway through my junior year, the new system 1) did not recognize some of my credits, 2) demerited some of my credits due to inequivalencies in their schools, and 3) completely messed up my schedule. Thus, I am not graduating this year due to one credit.


although the schools in CE will probably accept you with a GED, i think you'd totally be cutting yourself short... everyone i know who has gotten a GED has regretted not completing high school... stick it out, not sure about your school district but mine allowed students to take classes at community college for credit while being concurrently enrolled in high school, look into it, this could possibly allow to graduate on time... plus the fact that your school didn't recongize credits from another high school, especially if your old school is acreditted, sounds unfair and may be worth the effort to formally dispute... judging by your posts, you seem like a pretty smart guy who didn't do too well in high school, maybe it isn't your cup of tea but finish up and do well in your next step in life, whatever it may be...

-matt







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