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Thread: MUA - Help!

  1. #1
    P-MD is offline Newbie 510 points
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    MUA - Help!

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    Hey everybody,

    I'm in Toronto, Canada and I'm planning to apply at SMU as well as MUA. I would be starting with premed, and then go on to the 4yr md program.

    1) I've heard many pros & cons to carribean med school, how is MUA?
    2) How are the exams, professors, step 1 practices?
    3) In addition to exams, do you write NBMEs for finals?
    4) Can you get most clinicals in NY, and Chicago?
    5) Is Residency all just doing well, LORS, interview, OR does school really matter??

    I will appreciate all help and feedback!

  2. #2
    don1 is offline Moderator 547 points
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    Hey,

    I went to MUA and am from Canada as well. I'm now a surgical resident.

    here are responses:
    1) I am happy with my time at MUA. Overall, I think is a real medical school that cares about education and it's students. Every school has things it does that doesn't make sense or seem like a waste of time, MUA is no different. I go to uoft now and I can say the same thing about being here. Overall the school will help you become a physician.

    2) exams are reasonable. some professors were great, some I thought didn't know how to teach or taught too much material. This again is a range you can expect from many schools. For step 1, when i was there they give you the kaplan course books, and lots of practice questions. Before you finish the 5th term, you do a comprehensive exam that you need to pass before being allowed to take step 1. if you fail this exam, they will make you write the comprehensive exam over on the island. 3 fails and you're kicked out of the school.

    also, lets be honest about the step 1 exam. google the pass rate. It is like 90% or something for north american trained students and like 50-70%pass for IMG's. There is no reason why someone should fail step 1. If someone does fail it over and over, they need to pick another profession; sorry but medicine is not for you. Going to another country for medical school is implying that you have what it takes and your local medical school should have selected you because you have what it takes to make it but didn't get in for some reason. I met some IMG's that sound stupid and don't know their stuff. Many others are very smart and know their stuff. The books and material are all the same wherever you study.

    If the person failed, it is because they:
    a) did not study the right material
    b) they did not do enough questions and were confused on what is being asked
    c) they freaked on exam day
    d) they got tired because the step 1 exam is long and mentally tiring

    After the exam when you are resident, you have to see real people/patients. you need to make decisions that change peoples lives based on stuff you read and your understanding. some of the exam material you will never use, but the process of learning the material is very applicable.

    3) yup NBME's. Not sure how many you have to do now.

    4) yes, you can get most rotations in NY or Chicago. By the way, I think Chicago has one of the worst rotations. NY experience can be dismal as well. Some medical students think that if they can get away with doing very little on a rotation (like NY or chicago) it is a good rotation, but learning stuffers. You get what you put in. I never went to NY or chicago so my opinion is based on talking to classmates.

    5) Residency is about doing well, LOR's, interviews. school matters a little, not much. Think that Canadian residency programs (if that is where you are planning on applying) think you are dumb for going abroad; it is upto you to prove them otherwise. Don't think that if you go to ST. George, for example, you will be in a better position. It is like saying you have the most expensive flat tire on your car....it is still a flat tire.

    huge advantage of MUA over other schools is that they would get their paperwork in fast that you need for residency. they know what needs to be completed and are on-top of their game. Other schools may not get the documentation you need in fast, which may pose challenges to completing things on time. Key is to be a good student; they will bend over backwards for you if you are good student. If you are nearly failing and suck, they won't, in my opinion.

    hope that helps.

    Quote Originally Posted by P-MD View Post
    Hey everybody,

    I'm in Toronto, Canada and I'm planning to apply at SMU as well as MUA. I would be starting with premed, and then go on to the 4yr md program.

    1) I've heard many pros & cons to carribean med school, how is MUA?
    2) How are the exams, professors, step 1 practices?
    3) In addition to exams, do you write NBMEs for finals?
    4) Can you get most clinicals in NY, and Chicago?
    5) Is Residency all just doing well, LORS, interview, OR does school really matter??

    I will appreciate all help and feedback!
    Last edited by don1; 12-14-2014 at 06:08 PM.

  3. #3
    P-MD is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by don1 View Post
    Hey,

    I went to MUA and am from Canada as well. I'm now a surgical resident.

    here are responses:
    1) I am happy with my time at MUA. Overall, I think is a real medical school that cares about education and it's students. Every school has things it does that doesn't make sense or seem like a waste of time, MUA is no different. I go to uoft now and I can say the same thing about being here. Overall the school will help you become a physician.

    2) exams are reasonable. some professors were great, some I thought didn't know how to teach or taught too much material. This again is a range you can expect from many schools. For step 1, when i was there they give you the kaplan course books, and lots of practice questions. Before you finish the 5th term, you do a comprehensive exam that you need to pass before being allowed to take step 1. if you fail this exam, they will make you write the comprehensive exam over on the island. 3 fails and you're kicked out of the school.

    also, lets be honest about the step 1 exam. google the pass rate. It is like 90% or something for north american trained students and like 50-70%pass for IMG's. There is no reason why someone should fail step 1. If someone does fail it over and over, they need to pick another profession; sorry but medicine is not for you. Going to another country for medical school is implying that you have what it takes and your local medical school should have selected you because you have what it takes to make it but didn't get in for some reason. I met some IMG's that sound stupid and don't know their stuff. Many others are very smart and know their stuff. The books and material are all the same wherever you study.

    If the person failed, it is because they:
    a) did not study the right material
    b) they did not do enough questions and were confused on what is being asked
    c) they freaked on exam day
    d) they got tired because the step 1 exam is long and mentally tiring

    After the exam when you are resident, you have to see real people/patients. you need to make decisions that change peoples lives based on stuff you read and your understanding. some of the exam material you will never use, but the process of learning the material is very applicable.

    3) yup NBME's. Not sure how many you have to do now.

    4) yes, you can get most rotations in NY or Chicago. By the way, I think Chicago has one of the worst rotations. NY experience can be dismal as well. Some medical students think that if they can get away with doing very little on a rotation (like NY or chicago) it is a good rotation, but learning stuffers. You get what you put in. I never went to NY or chicago so my opinion is based on talking to classmates.

    5) Residency is about doing well, LOR's, interviews. school matters a little, not much. Think that Canadian residency programs (if that is where you are planning on applying) think you are dumb for going abroad; it is upto you to prove them otherwise. Don't think that if you go to ST. George, for example, you will be in a better position. It is like saying you have the most expensive flat tire on your car....it is still a flat tire.

    huge advantage of MUA over other schools is that they would get their paperwork in fast that you need for residency. they know what needs to be completed and are on-top of their game. Other schools may not get the documentation you need in fast, which may pose challenges to completing things on time. Key is to be a good student; they will bend over backwards for you if you are good student. If you are nearly failing and suck, they won't, in my opinion.

    hope that helps.

    Thanks a lot, Don! That was very informative. In regards to Canadian residency...what exactly would be the process to eventually work in Ontario? From what I researched, you need the MCCEE, MCCQE1+2. After that I'm confused because I've been told that after all this you would work in an underserved area for 5 years, OR you can contact HFO for family med, psych and that would increase your chances etc. I'm just looking for the right path as a canadian citizen. I'll appreciate your help once again. Sorry for all of the questions. I'm old as it is (lol) I just hope the journey/process won't take too long.

    Thanks again!

  4. #4
    don1 is offline Moderator 547 points
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    I should say that out of all the professions, medicine is the longest by far.

    yes, you need ee, q1+2. you can't work in Toronto or Ottawa unless at an academic centre. I haven't looked into the details; it is not a big draw back. Unless you are in family medicine, or internal medicine the job market in Ontario is very bad. It will hopefully change by the time you are done.

    when you do your residency in Canada you are back in the system. There is a return of service, but it is not a big deal.

  5. #5
    P-MD is offline Newbie 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by don1 View Post
    I should say that out of all the professions, medicine is the longest by far.

    yes, you need ee, q1+2. you can't work in Toronto or Ottawa unless at an academic centre. I haven't looked into the details; it is not a big draw back. Unless you are in family medicine, or internal medicine the job market in Ontario is very bad. It will hopefully change by the time you are done.

    when you do your residency in Canada you are back in the system. There is a return of service, but it is not a big deal.

    Ahh, I guess it would take a while to secure a position in the GTA, but atleast it's doable to be back. Thanks don, I wish you continued success!

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