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  1. #1
    VarnaMedic is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Current Medical Student at MU- Varna

    Hello everyone, I'm a current medical student at medical university Varna and I wish to make a contribution to this site over the next years of my course (and beyond). SO feel free to ask my anything you want about the university, I'm more than happy to help

  2. #11
    devildoc8404's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emperor View Post
    Do you reckon the quality of education/training has improved a lot since you left?
    I would be utterly shocked if that is the case. My PhD research project is partly based in Bulgaria, so I have been back a number of times. I have seen nothing to indicate that things are improving for/with students in the English program.

    There are a lot more malls in Sofia now, though. So, there's that.

    "When I haven't any
    blue... I use red
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    BA - Oregon MS - BYU MD - MU-Sofia
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    Quote Originally Posted by devildoc8404 View Post
    I would be utterly shocked if that is the case. My PhD research project is partly based in Bulgaria, so I have been back a number of times. I have seen nothing to indicate that things are improving for/with students in the English program.

    There are a lot more malls in Sofia now, though. So, there's that.
    That's kind of disappointing if true, I would have thought there would be some change after 10 year.
    Also what do you think of the Bulgarian health care system? I heard the health minister plans on revamping the entire system.
    Oh and how was your 6th year at university?
    Last edited by Emperor; 02-09-2018 at 12:17 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Emperor View Post
    That's kind of disappointing if true, I would have thought there would be some change after 10 year.
    Also what do you think of the Bulgarian health care system? I heard the health minister plans on revamping the entire system.
    Oh and how was your 6th year at university?
    I have not been gone for ten years.

    I think the BG health system is a frigging mess, and if the new health minister can manage a complete (and legitimate) overhaul then he deserves kudos and should probably be knighted.

    My 6th year was, generally, quite frustrating -- punctuated with some excellent learning experiences (most of which I had to arrange on my own with professors to take place in the hospitals during their shifts in the evenings or on weekends).

    Again, remember that in the English language program you are swimming hard upstream against a host of crappy factors, including (but not limited to):

    - dearth of organization
    - a significant cohort of students who are lacking the ethical, intellectual, or motivational wherewithal to actually study medicine
    - professors who frequently think that all foreign students belong to the above group and therefore treat them all like crap
    - almost no actual, hands-on, clinical experience
    - et cetera.

    The Bulgarian language program is far from perfect, but it has a number of distinct advantages over the English program and generally prepares (usually more qualified) students better for their residency training.

    It is the Balkans. It is going to take a hell of a long time for the Old Guard to retire and/or die off, and with the brain drain (lots of doctors leaving for greener pastures in the rest of Europe, etc.) there is a possibility that a significant portion of the New Guard will be steeped in the muck of the Old Guard.

    With that said, I know some very bright Bulgarians who graduated and stayed in Bulgaria, and I had some brilliant professors who were frequently offered positions in the West but stayed put out of duty to their homeland. If the country has a chance, it will be because of these people. But man, unless you are incredibly deeply invested in the place, who is going to do it?

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

    BA - Oregon MS - BYU MD - MU-Sofia
    Urology Resident; Clinical Research Fellow



  5. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by devildoc8404 View Post
    I have not been gone for ten years.

    I think the BG health system is a frigging mess, and if the new health minister can manage a complete (and legitimate) overhaul then he deserves kudos and should probably be knighted.

    My 6th year was, generally, quite frustrating -- punctuated with some excellent learning experiences (most of which I had to arrange on my own with professors to take place in the hospitals during their shifts in the evenings or on weekends).

    Again, remember that in the English language program you are swimming hard upstream against a host of crappy factors, including (but not limited to):

    - dearth of organization
    - a significant cohort of students who are lacking the ethical, intellectual, or motivational wherewithal to actually study medicine
    - professors who frequently think that all foreign students belong to the above group and therefore treat them all like crap
    - almost no actual, hands-on, clinical experience
    - et cetera.

    The Bulgarian language program is far from perfect, but it has a number of distinct advantages over the English program and generally prepares (usually more qualified) students better for their residency training.

    It is the Balkans. It is going to take a hell of a long time for the Old Guard to retire and/or die off, and with the brain drain (lots of doctors leaving for greener pastures in the rest of Europe, etc.) there is a possibility that a significant portion of the New Guard will be steeped in the muck of the Old Guard.

    With that said, I know some very bright Bulgarians who graduated and stayed in Bulgaria, and I had some brilliant professors who were frequently offered positions in the West but stayed put out of duty to their homeland. If the country has a chance, it will be because of these people. But man, unless you are incredibly deeply invested in the place, who is going to do it?
    Oh I meant 10 years since you were in first year since you graduated in 2013.
    Also damn :/ I heard from 5th year Plovdiv students that the quality has improved a lot compared to when they first came.
    More and more UK students are coming every year and the university is becoming pretty popular.

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    devildoc8404's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emperor View Post
    Oh I meant 10 years since you were in first year since you graduated in 2013.
    Also damn :/ I heard from 5th year Plovdiv students that the quality has improved a lot compared to when they first came.
    More and more UK students are coming every year and the university is becoming pretty popular.
    Well, I cannot comment specifically on Plovdiv, as I did not study there. I know that the challenges inherent to Sofia were not isolated to Sofia, but if they are making strides in Plovdiv then more power to them. That would be awesome.

    Remember that popularity in and of itself, however, is no particular indicator of program quality. The proof is in the final quality and residency achievements of the graduating physicians... not merely the number who attend/graduate (as many of them could be poorly trained and incapable of clinical work). If the students are getting great training and actual clinical experience, and the school is holding them to ethical and educational standards that are at a Western level, then fan-freaking-tastic!

    Pro Tip: Double check EVERYTHING in advance, though. And I mean, like, double check it all in person. Almost nobody does this, and I think it is utterly foolhardy to attend a school that one has never even visited or checked out.

    I would still make Balkan medical schools the options of last resort, though, regardless. I say that as someone with a degree from a Balkan medical school who is grateful for the opportunity I received to complete my medical studies there and become a doc... I just cannot in good conscience tell people to sign up for the slog when there are better educational opportunities available.

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

    BA - Oregon MS - BYU MD - MU-Sofia
    Urology Resident; Clinical Research Fellow



  7. #16
    Emperor is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by devildoc8404 View Post
    Well, I cannot comment specifically on Plovdiv, as I did not study there. I know that the challenges inherent to Sofia were not isolated to Sofia, but if they are making strides in Plovdiv then more power to them. That would be awesome.

    Remember that popularity in and of itself, however, is no particular indicator of program quality. The proof is in the final quality and residency achievements of the graduating physicians... not merely the number who attend/graduate (as many of them could be poorly trained and incapable of clinical work). If the students are getting great training and actual clinical experience, and the school is holding them to ethical and educational standards that are at a Western level, then fan-freaking-tastic!

    Pro Tip: Double check EVERYTHING in advance, though. And I mean, like, double check it all in person. Almost nobody does this, and I think it is utterly foolhardy to attend a school that one has never even visited or checked out.

    I would still make Balkan medical schools the options of last resort, though, regardless. I say that as someone with a degree from a Balkan medical school who is grateful for the opportunity I received to complete my medical studies there and become a doc... I just cannot in good conscience tell people to sign up for the slog when there are better educational opportunities available.
    Yes, you are absolutely correct. I know you're really busy so just want to thank you for your time.

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