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Thread: Anyone studying at Plovdiv Medical School English Programme

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    ems
    ems is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Anyone studying at Plovdiv Medical School English Programme

    Hey

    Was wondering if anyone was studying at Plovdiv and if so what the course is like, what the city is like etc

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    Sir Vieta is offline Newbie 511 points
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    Yes, I'd say that nobody gets rejected.There are LOTS of students that don't even speak english(not that I'm any kind of fluent or anything, but I can think of classmates that probably don't know to respond to questions like "How are you?" or "What time is it?").These students are 99% kurds.But this won't stop you if you want to become a good doctor.
    Well, they supposedly require students to have more than 66% in Biology and Chemistry or something like that.But they really don't care.If you pay them their delicious 8000 euros/year, няма проблем.

    Anyway, to answer your other question: Bulevard Vasil Aprilov is safe, police's central offices are there.Another good place to live is close to Hotel Leipzig, because it's like 5-7 minutes by foot to the uni and another 10 mins to the Centre.It's hard to find a decent apartment there, because buildings are kinda old but there are also new buildings in some streets(for example, Dragan Tsankov, you can find it on google maps, it's right next to Leipzig and some friends have very nice places there).I don't know about you, but I STRONGLY believe that going to the university by foot is a BIG advantage.
    Check google maps for "Mladezhki Halm".A big part of this region is suitable for finding a good apartment.Some streets I like are "Lyule Burgas" , "Zahari Stoyanov" and "Dragan Tsankov"(mostly because of it's proximity to the uni AND to the centre as well).

    Another thing: Be careful with real estate agencies and DON'T be willing to pay more than you have to.This is Bulgaria, not the UK.250-270euros for a 1-bedroom apartment is enough for a very decent apartment in Plovdiv.I pay 300 euros for a 2-bedroom apartment and it is sweet.
    devildoc8404 likes this.

  3. #12
    the artist is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Vieta View Post
    Yes, I'd say that nobody gets rejected.There are LOTS of students that don't even speak english(not that I'm any kind of fluent or anything, but I can think of classmates that probably don't know to respond to questions like "How are you?" or "What time is it?").These students are 99% kurds.But this won't stop you if you want to become a good doctor.
    Well, they supposedly require students to have more than 66% in Biology and Chemistry or something like that.But they really don't care.If you pay them their delicious 8000 euros/year, няма проблем.

    Anyway, to answer your other question: Bulevard Vasil Aprilov is safe, police's central offices are there.Another good place to live is close to Hotel Leipzig, because it's like 5-7 minutes by foot to the uni and another 10 mins to the Centre.It's hard to find a decent apartment there, because buildings are kinda old but there are also new buildings in some streets(for example, Dragan Tsankov, you can find it on google maps, it's right next to Leipzig and some friends have very nice places there).I don't know about you, but I STRONGLY believe that going to the university by foot is a BIG advantage.
    Check google maps for "Mladezhki Halm".A big part of this region is suitable for finding a good apartment.Some streets I like are "Lyule Burgas" , "Zahari Stoyanov" and "Dragan Tsankov"(mostly because of it's proximity to the uni AND to the centre as well).

    Another thing: Be careful with real estate agencies and DON'T be willing to pay more than you have to.This is Bulgaria, not the UK.250-270euros for a 1-bedroom apartment is enough for a very decent apartment in Plovdiv.I pay 300 euros for a 2-bedroom apartment and it is sweet.
    wow, so i spent A LOT of money on something I could've got for free :/ gees wat a waste . I don't know Bulgaria very well nor speak Bulgarian, I haven't been either so I am quite concerned about finsding my way around and finding accomodation :/ Any suggestions on what i should do?

  4. #13
    devildoc8404's Avatar
    devildoc8404 is offline Ultimate Member 12699 points
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    I will second Sir Vietaīs thoughts on living within walking distance of the university. It is especially important in the winter, when public transportation can be jam packed and unreliable. I did not live within walking distance of MU-Sofia, mainly because I have a family and we wanted to be in a nicer part of town, but transportation was a huge pain in the butt sometimes (even with a public transportation student pass, it does not make the system more reliable).

    Also, yeah, AVOID AGENTS. There is no need for them, and many of them have screwed people over pretty significantly. The only thing I partially disagree with Sir Vieta on is his idea that having a large segment of terrible students does not adversely affect medical education. I am convinced that it does. For one thing, many professors will lump all foreign students into one amorphous, bumbling mass in their minds, and are simply unwilling to spend any time with their English Program charges. Not all of the professors are like this, but some certainly are. In addition, teaching can tend to settle to the lowest common denominator, and when you have people who cannot speak the language, and/or do not take their medical education seriously, and/or are immature, and/or cheat at every available opportunity, that lowers the level pretty significantly.

    In order to maximize the quality of a medical education as a foreigner in Bulgaria, I believe that it is necessary to do a lot of work outside of class. This includes clinical exposure in the evenings (i.e. at one of the EDīs), studying for challenging foreign medical licensing examinations (like the PLAB, the USMLE, or the MCCQE), and seeking clinical rotations outside of Bulgaria during the summers, or for a full semester/year through ERASMUS if you have an EU passport.

    Other than that, Sir Vieta is spot-on. Good luck to you!

    "When I haven't any
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    BA - Oregon ° MS - BYU ° MD - MU-Sofia
    Clinical Research Fellow / Resident
    Fleet Marine Force Hospital Corpsman 1996-2003


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    Sir Vieta is offline Newbie 511 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by devildoc8404 View Post
    The only thing I partially disagree with Sir Vieta on is his idea that having a large segment of terrible students does not adversely affect medical education.
    I totally agree with you.Should have expressed my thoughts more thoroughly, I guess.Frankly, I was REALLY disappointed with the medical education of MU-Plovdiv in the first few months there, and I strongly suggest to anybody that can afford the tuition fees and living expenses of Hungary or CZ to consider these countries' universities before applying to a Bulgarian or Romanian university(although it seems that romanian universities offer a slightly better education when it comes to hands-in practice).
    But hey, if BG is one's last option to pursue medicine, I'd say "go for it".Problems are there, and self-study is absolutely NECESSARY as devildoc stated.Basically, what devildoc does in his 2nd paragraph is to describe EXACTLY what the situation is like in BG's universities.

    But I'm confident and I HOPE that a determined med student can overcome most of these obstacles to a good extend.
    ERASMUS!5th or even better 6th year in a foreign(=better, let's say German :P) university sounds awesome, doesn't it?


    PS. devildoc, you're talking about clinical exposure in the evenings in ED's, a prerequisite of which is a good understanding of bulgarian, right?
    And I hate to say that, but my teacher in bulgarian is AWFUL.She made us buy a crappy book and I don't seem to find anything better in bookstores, there are so little options.So I'm concerned about my bulgarian language skills and I would appreciate it if you recommended ways to learn bulgarian.Books or anything.

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    the artist is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Please let me know if u hear of any accommodation currently available near these areas, at least i could try contacting directly :/ (if they speak any english at all :'(. Gosh this is horrific!

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    the artist is offline Newbie 510 points
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    in fact if you don't mind sir vieta, is there any way I could contact u? please send me a private message

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    devildoc8404 is offline Ultimate Member 12699 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Vieta View Post
    But I'm confident and I HOPE that a determined med student can overcome most of these obstacles to a good extend.
    ERASMUS!5th or even better 6th year in a foreign(=better, let's say German :P) university sounds awesome, doesn't it?
    It is definitely possible to overcome those obstacles... it just sucks to do it, and it sucks to have to do it. From my graduating class we placed one student into Neurology in Germany, one student into Family Medicine in the US, and one student into Emergency Med/Surg in Switzerland. (We also have a ton of people who did not place into anything, and a couple more who are supposed to be going through the Match this cycle.) So yeah, you can come from a Bulgarian school and get a good position. It just means a hell of a lot more work, even more than it should entail, to try to overcome the institutional inertia and the system.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Vieta View Post
    PS. devildoc, you're talking about clinical exposure in the evenings in ED's, a prerequisite of which is a good understanding of bulgarian, right?
    Yeah, that is exactly what I am talking about. I do not have a great grasp of the Bulgarian language, but I could certainly muddle through most things, and I worked with some really cool docs who were willing to help translate the things that I missed. It was not easy... but it was definitely worthwhile.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Vieta View Post
    And I hate to say that, but my teacher in bulgarian is AWFUL.She made us buy a crappy book and I don't seem to find anything better in bookstores, there are so little options.So I'm concerned about my bulgarian language skills and I would appreciate it if you recommended ways to learn bulgarian.Books or anything.
    Ohhhhhh, I totally feel your pain. My first Bulgarian teacher was unbelievably bad. My second one, on the other hand, was simply excellent. In fact, that reminds me that I need to send her a postcard. See if there is a better teacher within your class and try to get into the other group if you can. Also, make some Bulgarian friends. Go to a Bulgarian church, or community group, or sports club, or what-the-heck-ever. Get a Bulgarian love interest (this was not an option for me as a married dude, but I saw it work for some people). The more you force yourself to interact with the Bulgarian people around you, the easier it becomes, and even if you never gain complete fluency, you will be able to get around and you will find yourself understanding more and more all the time.

    "When I haven't any
    blue... I use red
    ."
    - Pablo Picasso

    BA - Oregon ° MS - BYU ° MD - MU-Sofia
    Clinical Research Fellow / Resident
    Fleet Marine Force Hospital Corpsman 1996-2003


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    incogniito2308 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    hey the artist, did you manage to get in? Let me know please as I am planning to come there this year too (tho a little on the late side)

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    devildoc8404's Avatar
    devildoc8404 is offline Ultimate Member 12699 points
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    I am sorry to say that there is no "managing to get in" in most of the Balkan medical schools. If you apply, can pay the tuition, and are not a recognized criminal, you are almost assured acceptance. (With that said, I am relieved to note that some people do still get kicked out or held back, however rarely.)

    Acceptance and completion of the program do NOT make you a competent physician. You need to do a pantload of extra work to make the process worth your while and see success.
    Last edited by devildoc8404; 09-24-2013 at 01:25 PM.

    "When I haven't any
    blue... I use red
    ."
    - Pablo Picasso

    BA - Oregon ° MS - BYU ° MD - MU-Sofia
    Clinical Research Fellow / Resident
    Fleet Marine Force Hospital Corpsman 1996-2003


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    amy200 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    I'm hoping to come to plovdiv his year but have not submitted my application yet as I am waiting.h for copy certificates to arrive. It seems like the priority for the hi is money. Does that mean that ic mg app is slightly later than 30 September it will be accepted? Also, does anyone know exactly when lectures begin for 1st year students? Because I am so late I was planning ln using an agent but that will cost a lot . Getting the papers is no problem but I am worried about getting the papers legalised. The agent is not clear on whether there is an application fee for ghetto school anxious the website doesn't mention anything. I would really appreciate any help. One final question - are there many female foreign students? I can hold my own, but it would be nice!

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