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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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    amy200 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Ps apologies for dodge spelling- my mobile phone auto correct is a nightmare! Hope you get the gist of my query.

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    devildoc8404 is offline Ultimate Member 12699 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.

    Hmmm... that is REALLY late. Maybe it works out for you, and maybe it doesnīt. They might just tell you to wait until next year... or you could try one of the other BG schools (Pleven, I think?) that has a February start date.

    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?

    A significant priority is money, yes. That does not mean that you will be allowed to start late, however. As much as they want your money, they are also post-communist and could decide to implement draconian red tape measures at the drop of a freaking hat. That little treat is one of the operational hazards of studying in Bulgaria, and you either get used to it (sort of), or you lose your mind, or you say "eff this" and go home.

    Anyway, if you know you are going to get your paperwork late, the best way to manage it (IMHO) would be to get there and start attending classes so you are integrated and the profs know you as a student who attends and does the work. That way, when the papers come or if there are questions, you have someone from faculty on your side saying "Yeah, amy200 is attending my class and she is a serious student." (Of course, this all presupposes that you are actually a serious student.) That is what I would do, anyway. In my case at Sofia, I did not have a visa because my admissions papers were significantly delayed, and I got started anyway... I just left a bit early from my first semester, took exams early and the like, went back to get my visas over the holiday break, and then came back. No harm, no foul... other than having to pay thousands of dollars to fly a family of three back to the States, I mean. Barf.

    Also, does anyone know exactly when lectures begin for 1st year students?

    That would be a question for the Dekanatīs office. Or the website, if Plovdivīs is better organized than Sofiaīs... which it might well not be.

    Because I am so late I was planning ln using an agent but that will cost a lot .

    Agents for the Bulgarian schools are generally a waste of space, time, and money, but you have put yourself in a tough spot here. Frankly, I would go it without them, but it would take some craftiness, dedication, and temerity... not to mention actually being there, which you should be anyway.

    Getting the papers is no problem but I am worried about getting the papers legalised.

    That has to be done at the Bulgarian Embassy or Consulate. It is fast. Not cheap, but pretty fast.

    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.

    No idea what you are saying here. Ghetto school?

    Also, if your "agent" does know know whether there is an application fee, then your "agent" is a freaking moron and should not be trusted to get you a cup of coffee and a donut, let alone get you into medical school. Knowing a basic and fundamental detail like that (the APPLICATION FEE?!?!) is his/her damn job, isnīt it? Whatever... Sofia has an application fee, and it is usually paid directly at the Rektorat. I do not know about Plovdiv, but I would be shocked if they would miss out on that source of revenue.

    One final question - are there many female foreign students? I can hold my own, but it would be nice!

    I cannot speak for Plovdiv, but in Sofia we had females students comprising a significant portion of our class. They hailed from Kuwait, US, Canada, Greece, India, and... I think that is about it. Current classes seemed to have a pantload of Turkish students, both male and female, but there are misgivings between the Turks and the Bulgarians such that Turkey says they are not accepting BG diplomas any more... that could well stem the tide of incoming Turkish students.

    Good luck.

    "When I haven't any
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    - Pablo Picasso

    BA - Oregon ° MS - BYU ° MD - MU-Sofia
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    amy200 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    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.

    No idea what you are saying here. Ghetto school?

    Thanks for the advice Devildoc... I was typing whether there is an application fee for the school and the website doesn't mention anything. Anyhow, I am a serious student- way too old to be leaving husband and children to go abroad for the heck of it. To be fair, the agent did say that the application fee included the fee for the school but does not specify what the fee is. I have tried to call the Uni many times but have not managed to speak to anyone who knows anything. There are a number of telephone numbers on the website but when you call you get pushed pillar to post and mostly to people who can't speak English. I would certainly up sticks and go if I knew that they would give me a place but without being able to speak to someone in Plovdiv it is very difficult to decide how the land lies. If I could speak to someone in admissions I would most likely take a chance and go out there with the papers and find a place to stay, submit papers and get into the lectures. I'm still hoping to be able to fly out with the papers on Tuesday. Fingers crossed.

  5. #24
    devildoc8404's Avatar
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    I am crossing fingers and toes for you, as well. Been there, done that...

    Good luck! (I did it with a family, too. Not easy, by any stretch, but doable.)

    "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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    dela.suezi is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Hey,

    I'm from london and studying in Plovdiv. it's a decent city and very clean. can find anything you want round here. some stuff much cheaper than UK but some are roughly the same price. I'd advise you to choose plovdiv over sofia. plovdiv is much safer as a city and also much cheaper compared to sofia (which has more criminals, dodgy people and everything is more expensive due to being the main tourist and capital city). The course is okay. In first year you have the general medicine subjects (chemistry, biology, citology, anatomy) and latin & bulgarian. you have 1hr of latin a week to help you with some medical terms and 6hours of bulgarian a week to make sure you speak bulgarian fluently asap.

    any questions, feel free to get at me

    Abz

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    gonnabeagooddoc2012 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Hi everyone,

    I have been accepted to this school for the September 2014 start date. I am from Canada and am wondering if anyone else is Canadian? Secondly, I am wondering if anyone has any advice regarding the 6 year medical program. I wondering if anyone can please take the time to answer these questions for me:

    1. are you happy with the program?
    2. what is good/bad about the program?
    3. any unforeseen situations/circumstances about the program that you where not aware of in the beginning?
    4. do you know people who have completed the program?
    5. what are the clinical's like?
    6. what are the facilities like?
    7. do you know people who have graduated from this program and are now practicing in USA or Canada?
    8. are the facilities/teaching staff sufficient?
    9. has anyone done any exchange or ERAMUS in another EU country tied to this school?
    10. can you do other electives with other schools?

    I know that I have a lot of questions, but even if you are only able to answer a few, I would really appreciate it. I also do realize that some of these answers can be obtained from the school, but i just wanted student/people who know students, honest opinions. Thank you kindly.

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    devildoc8404's Avatar
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    There are a ton of threads answering these very questions, and probably many more that have not crossed your mind yet. Note that these comments refer to Medical University of Sofia, and not Plovdiv, but it seems that the differences between Bulgarian schools are rather minimal, overall. In brief (more details are easily available under the Bulgarian Medical Schools section):

    1. No, I was not satisfied with the program itself on a day-to-day basis, although I was able to turn it into a very good position after graduation.
    2. I will punt that one to the threads, where you can read up on it at your leisure. There is just too much to repeat.
    3. Good Lord, yes. Again, the threads. The biggest ones: 1) Organization is NOT a Balkan strong point. 2) Overall quality of student cohort matters. Et cetera, ad nauseam.
    4. Yes, but completing it is not the point. The point is learning enough to get a good job afterward. FWIW: I completed it (Emergency Surgery/Urology in Switzerland)... one of my American/Canadian classmates completed it (Family Medicine in the USA)... another Greek classmate completed it (Neurology in Germany)... another American from our group finished it and matched last week (Family Medicine in the USA)... one student who finished this year also matched last week (Pediatrics in the USA). HOWEVER, that nice little list of success stories completely ignores the vast majority of graduates who did not get jobs after graduation, and/or were forced to stay in Bulgaria and continue paying tuition for specialty training (which may or may not be accepted elsewhere). Completing the program is nothing, I am sorry to say. Completing the program while learning enough to function as a resident in a decent training program is another issue entirely, and it is a hell of a lot harder.
    5. Some are good. Many are terrible.
    6. Some are good. Some are fair. Many are terrible.
    7. See above. From the last two years of students (English program) there are three graduates who are in residency or are accepted for residency in the US. There are none in Canada, and it would be silly to make that a top priority given the single-digit percentages for the CARMS match. The one grad we had who is already training in the US is a dual US/Canadian citizen, and elected for the US Match because the Canadian Match is even more brutal.
    Furthermore, the US Match is expected by the ACGME and AAMC to tighten up considerably post-2016 (at some point), making it much more competitive for foreign medical graduates to get training positions in the US. Bear that in mind, and read up on it before deciding on where you will complete medical school. It matters.
    8. Depends. A few are excellent. Some are middle-of-the-road. Far too many are either terrible, or have no interest in teaching foreign students (because they think that they all suck... and far too many do), or are still old-school communists at heart and just want to bust people's testicles/ovaries.
    9. Lots of people.
    10. Only through ERASMUS, to my knowledge. If you want to do some US/Canada clinical rotations (highly recommended if you plan to try your luck in the North American match), then you need to schedule them during summers or vacation times. They will not count as clinicals for the awarding of the medical degree, which is actually a good thing in some ways.

    Hope that helps a little. It was more than I intended to write, but do check out the threads, there is a ton more information there. Good luck.
    Last edited by devildoc8404; 03-28-2014 at 10:34 AM.

    "When I haven't any
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    - Pablo Picasso

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


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    Xylocaine77's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by devildoc8404 View Post
    and/or were forced to stay in Bulgaria and continue paying tuition for specialty training
    Are we on the same page here mate? Because as far as i am concerned, you are getting paid while you are doing your specialty training... Please explain what you mean, thanks!

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    devildoc8404's Avatar
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    Nope, not in Bulgaria... or many other Former Bloc countries for that matter. In the West, you get paid as a resident. Makes sense, right? You work your butt off and get paid a (usually somewhat meager, but at least livable) salary in return. That is not always so, elsewhere.

    If you are a foreigner and you want to complete specialty training in Bulgaria, they charge you tuition, just like a medical student. That's right, you pay THEM thousands of Euros per year for the privilege of being abused as a resident. (Um... hell no, thanks.)

    Even native Bulgarians going through residency there receive only a token stipend, literally usually not even enough to pay rent, so they are forced to live with parents (or shack up with attendings, in some rather icky cases) in order to survive the years in residency.

    (Soooo no, we were not on the same page... because it is sometimes impossible to extrapolate Western norms across cultural and national borders. It is important information to know, though, before making any decisions.)

    "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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    gonnabeagooddoc2012 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Hi devildoc8404,

    Thank you for taking the time to inform me about the Bulgarian Medical schools. So, I take it that you are not a fan of the schools in Bulgaria all that much and your general recommendation would be to not go. Would you say your opinion is in line with the majority of other students who also attended the university. Is there any advantage(s) of going to Bulgaria - was there anything that was decent about the medical program that you attended. I mean the school (Plovdiv) is California state approved and is recognized by all the other EU countries. Surely, they must be doing something right if they have the establishment. I am just trying to get a holistic picture here. Thank you.

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