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  1. #1
    shockandawe is offline Senior Member
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    True POSITIVES and True NEGATIVES of the Spartans

    True positives and True negatives.

    Positives:

    1- One of the oldest Carib. med schools

    2- One of the most affordable schools

    3- Good student to faculty ratio

    4- Hundreds of extremely successful grads. licensed in 44 states

    5- New and improved campus

    6- St. Lucia is a decent island. Has ClubMed, Sandals, etc..

    7- Students can qualify for Yale Aff. Rotations (the only other carib. schools that are affiliated are Ross and AUC. Sgu has a “limited” affiliation (according to their website) with Yale-Norwalk.


    Negatives:

    1- Foreign administration.

    2- Very little money spent on PR

    3- You will not be spoonfed

    4- Forget about California

    5- A very “do it yourself” attitude. Students need to plan their own white-coat ceremony. Some groups do it in the Hilton or Hyatt in St. Lucia. Still I believe it is the schools responsibility.

    6- The SGA (Student Gov. Association) should not be running the store, computers, etc. They should only act as the voice of the student body and set up a school party here or there, etc…

    7- No alumni club (the school needs to track down and unite everyone.) There has been talk about it, but until it is done, it will remain a negative.

    --------


    Unfortunately, in this forum, very few people ever mention the positives. Therefore, we hear gross exaggerations about the negatives and a severe underestimation of the positives. Generally speaking, people enjoy complaining...

    I have tried to balance the negativity with the positive but the chronic negative posters are way to powerful for the shock.. If you want membership, you gotta be negative.. However, I think that the students like and prefer to have smaller classes and thus to some degree, they would rather less people apply. That is how I felt as a student. 8)

    The culture has been like this since the beginning. After only 300 Spartans of Sparta had killed over 10,000 Persian troops, in the famous Greek-Persian war, one Spartan betrayed them by showing the Persians a secret way around the mountains to trap and get to the Spartans. His name translated from Greek to English was and still is the Greek word meaning "nightmare". Maybe by showing so many of you the positives, I am betraying the Spartans of St. Lucia? For like the great Greek Spartans, they too prefer to stay small... -s&a

  2. #21
    RajPatel is offline Member
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    ...

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    more ranting and raving by steph

    just kidding. spot-on as always

    S&A, you could learn a thing or two from her. ok, we all could.

  3. #22
    wolfvgang22 is offline Moderator 514 points
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    lol

    Teach me, teach me, lol

    Saba University School of Medicine, Class of 2009
    Diplomate, American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology

  4. #23
    shockandawe is offline Senior Member
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    Maybe we can agree to disagree...

    Stephew,

    I appreciate you taking the time to write and express what you feel about these things but I am sorry to disagree with you.

    1- I do not trust any Carib. med schools period. So they can give whatever pass rate they want, that never had any effect on me. And I think that it is a very dangerous thing to trust them. As a student, the only pass rate I was ever worried about was my own personal pass rate.

    2- An IMG is an IMG period. When I did my interviews, no one ever asked me why I went to Spartan rather than Ross or sgu. That would be stupid. However, I was asked why I went to the caribbean rather than to a USA school.

    3- Lastly, do as many USA rotations as possible. Especially, the cores.

    We obviously, disagree on these points. At least, we can agree to disagree. -s&a

  5. #24
    stephew is offline Moderator Guru 512 points
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    Maybe we can agree to disagree...

    Quote Originally Posted by shockandawe
    Stephew,

    I appreciate you taking the time to write and express what you feel about these things but I am sorry to disagree with you.

    1- I do not trust any Carib. med schools period. So they can give whatever pass rate they want, that never had any effect on me. And I think that it is a very dangerous thing to trust them. As a student, the only pass rate I was ever worried about was my own personal pass rate.

    2- An IMG is an IMG period. When I did my interviews, no one ever asked me why I went to Spartan rather than Ross or sgu. That would be stupid. However, I was asked why I went to the caribbean rather than to a USA school.

    3- Lastly, do as many USA rotations as possible. Especially, the cores.

    We obviously, disagree on these points. At least, we can agree to disagree. -s&a
    I have no problem with "agreeing to disagree" as you say. The one point only i will take issue with this the comment that no one at interview asked why you went to spartan over another school as it would be "stupid". I'm sure that rarely happens. what happenes more often is that someone from a school a PD didnt like merely wouldnt get as far as interview. Period.

    A healthy skeptisim is, well, healthy, (in your case regarding reported pass rates) I do however believe that some places are more reputable than others because of how they collect their information. and that arming the student with the questions is far more useful than shrugging your shoulders and saying you can't know anything about these numbers; I think often you can. But, while I stand by my assertions as I'm sure you do yours, I can at least respect the manner in which you chose to disagree with me at this point, so thank you.

  6. #25
    RajPatel is offline Member
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    ...

    Two cliches:

    If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it probably is a duck.

    Where there's smoke, there's usually fire.


    I think these could be applied to the ongoing "debate" here.

    Shockandawe is essentially claiming that everything that is known and disseminated about Spartan is wrong and he is right.

    According to S&A, supposedly all schools are alike.....usmle pass rates are fraudulent, schools' reputation and history are bogus and contrived, PDs only care that one went offshore, not where.....

    If this is so, why did Spartan lose its Stafford loan eligibility? If this is true, why are so few Spartan grads licensed in the u.s. over two decades and why is there only one spartan student defending his school here as opposed to literally dozens on the forums devoted to schools that were started at the same time as Spartan.

    This whole dialogue is just stupid. Everyone knows Spartan is a laughingstock, and S&A will apparently never tire of trying to dress it up as a real medical school. S&A, let me be the first to raise the white flag. You will have the last word, as far as I am concerned, because the school sucks, it's a well-established and supported fact and I see zero point in debating someone so disconnected from reality. So you win.

    This will be my last post on the Spartan forum and I strongly encourage others to follow suit. Anyone who wants to say there is no difference between SGU and Spartan is just not in touch with reality, period.

  7. #26
    neilc is offline Permanently Banned
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    Maybe we can agree to disagree...

    Quote Originally Posted by shockandawe
    Stephew,

    I appreciate you taking the time to write and express what you feel about these things but I am sorry to disagree with you.

    1- I do not trust any Carib. med schools period. So they can give whatever pass rate they want, that never had any effect on me. And I think that it is a very dangerous thing to trust them. As a student, the only pass rate I was ever worried about was my own personal pass rate.

    2- An IMG is an IMG period. When I did my interviews, no one ever asked me why I went to Spartan rather than Ross or sgu. That would be stupid. However, I was asked why I went to the caribbean rather than to a USA school.

    3- Lastly, do as many USA rotations as possible. Especially, the cores.

    We obviously, disagree on these points. At least, we can agree to disagree. -s&a

    my thoughts...

    on point one, i tend to agree with you. but, if you ask careful and specific questions, you should can get good information. maybe it is a lie, maybe not.

    on point 2 i strongly disagree. where i have done my stateside rotations, they won't even look at carib grads. however, they are more than happy with indian, european/uk, australia students and grads. for whatever reason, they have decided that a carib IMG is not ok. some PD's don't want any IMG's, some only want certain schools. going to a school with a good reputation and lots of practicing doctors will help a lot. it simply increases the chances that a PD will have worked with alumni from your school. going to a small, new school really makes this difficult.

    on point 3, people talk about this all the time. if you can do US rotations, great. but there are THOUSANDS of img's that do not spend 1 minute in the states before day 1 of internship. i think it is a great idea to do a few at least. if you go to the carib and don't have an affiliated hospital, do them, but be careful about the licensure issues. the statement that you should do all of your clinicals in the states is simply crazy. in fact, as steph mentioned, it can be a negative if you don't have the proper affiliations. people use this as a sales pitch for schools all over the carib. the fact is, most schools use the same sites. as an IMG, it is easy to get harvard or yale affiliate rotations. i have a stack of letters asking me to do them at prestigious places all over the US, and all i had to do was ask. you can get these same opportunities pretty much anywhere, and all you need are a few solid rotations. after that, you are on equal footing with any carib grad that spent a year in atlanta, or louisianna or chicago with all the other carib students.

    get good clinicals. learn medicine. pass your boards. do research. do whatever it takes. but, the best thing you can do to get back to the states is go to an established school that will not limit you in any way after graduation. people can choose to gamble, but it is important to realize that all opportunities are not equal, and that there is some increased risk involved.

  8. #27
    sean is offline Member
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    Just to add...

    Hi guys (again),

    I'm glad the tone has become more civil today .... (would love it to continue). Just to add some comments about this issue of residency placement. My experience has been that several factors go into this (many of the important ones were mentioned ...both by s&a and stephw). I want to add some that may not have been thought of, based on my history. I think regional factors also apply. For example, I did my residency in a southern state where the PD never heard of Spartan or for that matter any other specific Caribbean medical school. He knew that there were schools in the Caribbean and that many Americans go there for med school but that was the extent of it. Of course, there aren't any hospitals in or around the metro area I trained in where Caribbean med students rotate so this may explain this but just a point to note. In this instance, it wouldn't matter which Caribbean school you went to. Another point I wanted to throw out there is PDs sometimes may form impressions about a medical school based on experience with a resident who has graduated from that particular school. If their experience is good, they may be more inclined to take another person from that school in the future. Now I don't have hard data (breaking my own rule), but I think it is safe to say that many caribbean schools have a lot more students rotating in the US than Spartan does (I'm not talking percentages but sheer numbers). This may create an advantage for them in that certain residency programs (probably mostly in the metro areas of the Northeast, Midwest, and ?West coast) will be familiar with their students (for better or worse...I guess...depending on their experience with the students). Perhaps this will incline programs in thise particular places to be more accepting of these grads. I realize an individual student can do nothing about these points I noted but I just wanted to give some food for thought.

    Regards to all,
    S

    Staff Shrink
    Spartan Grad
    A State of the
    U :P S A

  9. #28
    shockandawe is offline Senior Member
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    ..

    During the interview process, I realized that none of the PD's knew much of anything about the carib. med. schools, other than, people who didn't make it into a USA medical school, went there.

    I don't think that I miss out on any interviews just because I was from Spartan because almost all the places that I had applied, didn't really have carib. med. grad. residents. I suppose that there are some programs that are very familiar with sgu, ross, auc, and maybe they try and only accept grads from those schools. All the programs that I had applied to, only had USA medical students that rotate thru their cores.

    As a medical student, when I had started doing my rotations with carib. grads from other schools, at first, they (Ross, Auc, sgu students) seemed to think that I come from a cheap, good for nothing school and that I shouldn't even be anywhere near them. Within the first few weeks, their attitudes, quickly changed. I remember them expressing a lot of angry towards their schools, for charging so much, when we were doing the same exact rotations, with exact same professors, in some of the same hospitals. I can understand their angry because I also feel that some of these schools are over-charging. On a positive note, they also have 50 or almost 50 state licensure and they have excellent PR. 70, 80 thousand grand is not that much... Unlike Dr. ******, they made the call and they paid the cash. -s&a

  10. #29
    theprofessor is offline Junior Member
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    ..

    Shockandawe: I am the professor and "I approve your massage"I was gone out of State helping building up new department and returned home and was just curious and opened valuemd ,again I see more non-sense.Spartan in my openion has and must resolve 2 issues the Stafford and California,but also remember everyone in bad shape in Colorado [as far as I know based on the article posted by the consrumors advocate guy.the FSMB also formed a committe to look at all foreign schools.I do not care about inducing or driving students away from Spartan,I do care about testifying to the truth when I hear a lie,someone here told us sean did family practice not Ob residency,I checked into that and people laughed at me because he is Univ TX grad Gyn/Onco and was chief resident in OB/GYN,someone posted an article about "banned in TX",well I am as we read this massage looking at my TX license,they said "banned in St Lucia"I called the PM office personally and told by his staff "they have grads at Mercy/St Jude hospital practicing as we speak,.....etc.,that was the main reason I came to express my openion here because I saw many lies.I can tell you based on obtaining 8 medical licenses that board members did not discriminate against me ever on the basis of medical degree.I also can tell you that there are hundreds of successful grads in the USA and abroad,here in Florida I am very happy successful alumni,going South a classmate is on AMA board of governers,FMA board member,Harvard grad[Roskin radiology site],CEO,and Florida best resident,another Graffin grad is national speaker with Berkely heart institute[S.Florida cardiology assocites site],the center for joint ds is Univ Penn grad,National author of pain managment[cypress pain managment or fortmyerpain.com brown grad and director,Sean is internationally known gynecology oncology and teaches in Florida *** *** ******,I was personally chosen based on my credentials to be a private physician to the royal family dozens of US grads applied [96-02],another classmate[cenntential med center Nashville]is assistant professor with vanderbilt univ neo,This is 6-7 of my classmate I gave as example .Stop fooling yourself by believing if you graduated from Romania or Prague of AUC you will be considered Harvard grad because you are not.

  11. #30
    TrueDoc is offline Junior Member
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    ...

    Okay, S&A, your post was quite an interesting one. I get the feeling that you are kinda fed up with all the 'punching and counter-punching', so you're opting for a more diplomatic approach to things here.
    Anyway, If I understood you right, absolutely nothing in your post attributes success by a Spartan grad to anything offered at the school, but to personal effort put in by the individual student. This is exactly the case. Spartan's classes are rushed (and syllabi are hardly ever covered), terribly taught, by poorly-qualified faculty, capped by as much as '20-point' curves in non-usmle type exams. Is this the case in every class, and every exam? no, but in a solid 90%of them it is. Point in focus: Spartan contributes nothing other than providing a 'legal' basis (i.e medical school under which you can register for the boards, and subsequently be licensed) for you to become a doctor. The rest is up to the individual student. This fact is obvious in the conscience of every Spartan student, in as much as it may not be expressed in this forum. That said, students should just maintain the 'good-buy' status of Spartan, and not try to create a hilarious "big 3/5" impression. The administration is grossly unconcerned about very evident flaws in the system, 'little wonder they maintain with strict form their 'for-profit-only' mentality, while caring less about the impression that it's grads have courtesy of this attitude.
    It's a no-brainer that not everybody is cut out for medicine, yet in a bid to maximise profit, every ****-and-Harry is given admission. Show me just 1 person who has a college degree, but was refused admission at Spartan, and I'll show you a liar. Therefore the reason Spartan's classes have remained small is because many people read between the lines and choose not to attend, versus Spartan being 'selective' in it's admissions process. (Besides, the Small student : faculty ratio loses it's use because 'faculty' are literarily inexistent). This 'open door' policy gives even people who are clearly not cut for a medical career a shot at it. This in itself is not a crime, but at least some kind of policy should be put in place to 'seperate the weed from the chaff'. On the island, that is hardly achieved thanks sub-standard exams coupled with all-encompassing 'curves'. If Spartan made it mandatory for the Step1 to be passed before it's Students moved on to rotations, this will at least serve the purpose of knowing that some measure of the basic sciences is fairly understood. yet, Spartan rathers it's students continue to pay their semester dues, by starting, and continuing their rotations without haven passed the step 1. the effect of this is 2-fold: 1. For the set of people I mentioned earlier who are just not cut out for medicine, they end up bringing utter shame to the school by their lack of 'basic medical knowledge' during clinical rotations. this only further degrades the school's reputation 2. Spartan ends up with quite a few good-for-nothing M.D's who haven't passed the boards and so, can't practice. They also end up with an inexistent USMLE pass rate, a poorly accounted for alumni, but FULL POCKETS!. Crazy, wicked fraud. While the administration still proudly strut their Indian degrees (which funnily enough [ECFMG dependent] are registrable in probably all states in the U.S)
    When the 'spartan associate' begins to see these issues as real, and relevant to their future (if only for 'impression' sake), they would address it to the Admin unapologetically, instead of thinking that people are 'beefing' them. The intent (at least mine) is to sensitize the awareness of the Spartan student (ex and current) to Spartan's administration's selfish, wicked and money-sucking antiques. My guess is that Spartan's students are made to feel like 'family' by the administration, and so they ignorantly defend their alma mater while in reality the administration couldn't care less about them, 'long as their fees are paid!
    ..So it really doesn't change these issues by a post reading "Spartan alumni now president..bla, bla..". All (excepting spartan's legal role)that a succesful Spartan grad achieves in life is a function of him, and him alone. Stop the 'alumni propaganda'. It's blatantly ignoring the point in focus.
    "In an unjust society, silence is a crime"
    ..Aluta Continua, Victoria Acerta! (..the struggle continues, victory is sure!)

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