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Thread: UNIBE Medical program

  1. #1
    UndercoverDOC is offline Newbie 515 points
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    UNIBE Medical program

    Hello,

    I came on here because there is not enough current information available about what UNIBE in Santo Domingo is really like. I am no longer a student in UNIBE and leaving the school was by far the best decision I ever made. I am taking the time to write this post, because I want to prevent prospective students from making a decision to enroll at UNIBE, without have a real perspective on what it is like.

    First of all, I would like to say to anyone that is researching this school and considering applying, please note that any positive information you find is from UNIBE students that graduated many years ago, or faculty. The school has undergone many changes and the new program that began in 2010 is a nightmare. They changed the curriculum and have made it near impossible for students to take their boards and become physicians.

    UNIBE is a sinking ship. The administration is composed of individuals that are not qualified to run a lemonade stand, yet, they are entrusted with using US Federal Loans to operate and manage a "medical school". The medical program is completely unorganized and comprised of a culture that assumes that all the students are stupid and incapable. From the dean down to the faculty, the culture is abusive and counterproductive to students.

    Everything involved with UNIBE is a fight. Whether it is registering for classes, seeking information about changes, etc., the school makes EVERYTHING a nightmare. They will not give you information and they make critical changes to their curriculum mid semester with no regard for students.

    I could spend hours going on about how twisted and disgusting this institution is, but I will just cut to the chase about why UNIBE is not a feasible option for studying medicine.

    They create schedules that keep the students in class for hours on end. Although this may seem normal, when you are trying to study for your boards, which is all that matters, being in class with a completely incompetent professor that does not show up on time from 9am-7pm every day, is not ideal for studying. Numerous students have tried to explain this to the administration, but their response is "you are just lazy and not managing your time". Mind you, the geniuses designing this schedule, are not physicians, nor do they have any clue about what really studying medicine and passing the USMLE is about. Even the good students that kill themselves studying, are struggling to prepare for exams, because they are forced into attending classes that are pointless at best, and following insane schedules.

    UNIBE is a trap and the school is aware of it. Once you take the federal loans to study there, you are at their mercy and they know it!! The school has raised the tuition every semester. Incoming students now pay $9,000. First of all, how can the school justify this?!! They are literally the only Caribbean school that does not have US clinicals. They say they do, but this is FAR from the truth. They offer a few positions in the states to top students, which is mind boggling. Why? Well, the school makes the exams which have nothing to do with the course. So, you can only rotate in the states with a high GPA, but you cannot get a high GPA because the courses are designed for failure. So, for example, Jose in the Spanish section lives at home, goes to class, has all the information handed to him, does not take his USMLE step 1, and has a 3.7GPA. On the other hand, Doug is in the "english section", came from another country to study, takes exams that are translated from Spanish to English using google, passes USMLE step 1, and has a 3.0 GPA. Guess who is getting the rotation? Jose, who knows absolutely nothing about medicine but has a high GPA.

    There are numerous other caribbean schools that are cheaper, offer US clinicals, and do not have an abusive culture that treats all their students like trash. Why people still go to UNIBE, I do not know.

    As of right now, there have been rumors from UNIBE students that many of them are unable to take their USMLE. . Per ECFMG.org "Additionally, for the purpose of ECFMG Certification, credits earned on or after January 1, 2008 that are transferred to the medical school that awarded or will award your medical degree must meet all of the following criteria:
    • Credits must be transferred from one IMED-listed medical school to another IMED-listed medical school.*
    • Credits must be for courses taken at one medical school within seven years of the date of graduation at the medical school that accepts the transferred courses.
    • Credits must be for courses that were passed at the medical school at which the course was taken.



    What is the significance of this you are wondering? Well, UNIBE has been accepting students and transferring their credits from both high school and college. High school and colleges are not IMED listed schools. So, the majority of students transferred credits from after 2008. Now, many students have applied to take their boards only to discover that their transfer credits are not accepted by the ECFMG, aka their degree is useless because they cannot take their boards. How does a medical school on US Federal Loans allow students to transfer credits that will not be validated? All of the students in this situation are now waiting to see how this will be handled and their future is in the hands of these incompetent imbeciles. What this means, is that students who completed their basic sciences and some clinical semesters, may have to go back and repeat pre-med courses. The question is, did UNIBE admit students and transfer their credits knowing they would not be validated for financial gain? I cannot say for sure, but I would like someone to show me some compelling evidence against this.

    The bottom line here people, is that UNIBE is not an option for studying medicine. They will put road blocks in your way that make this hard career near impossible. If you think that I am lying and are considering this school, please, I beg you to fly there and speak to current students. They are trapped and miserable. Numerous students (those with brains), are transferring out. DO NOT GO TO UNIBE.

  2. #31
    vmd28 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    just…wow. i have a serious headache after all of this. my story is that I was going to consider switching into the English program, but after this conversation and various opinions i feel disheartened and so displeased with this school. my goal is to become a doctor and this is the path i've chosen. my family has invested time and money in me being here, but i'm unsure whether i should continue or even what to do now. i could have done this back home and applied to medical school there, but time and money were the issue. now, i would completely throw time out the door and am reconsidering money as an issue. my questions to anyone familiar with the system at UNIBE are, should i bust my booty and attempt the Spanish program or should i go back home, take my MCAT and attempt medical school there? in four years, will my medical degree here be valid in the states?
    Last edited by vmd28; 09-13-2014 at 11:31 PM.

  3. #32
    MedStudentMD is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdtrivkar View Post
    Well, apparently she's right. I just called ECFMG offices and ask about this issue and a lovely lady clarified some of our doubts. Regarding the issue of expired credits... I asked her if she could email me the response of what needs to be done. Here it is, for the benefit of everyone with this problem:

    "August 22, 2014

    Dear Doctor,

    I am writing in response to a request during a customer service call

    In addition to meeting the current eligibility requirements, students and graduates who transferred credits from undergraduate institutions to their current IMED-listed medical school must provide ECFMG with a letter from the medical school that awarded or will award their medical degree, confirming that the credits earned at the undergraduate institution were transferred to the pre-medical portion of the curriculum only. This letter must be submitted in conjunction with the application for a USMLE examination and must accompany the Certification of Identification Form (Form 186). Applications received without this letter will be rejected.

    I hope this information is helpful to you.

    Sincerely,
    Info @ ecfmg . org
    DMA"


    I think some of you already posted this... but I just wanted to clarify that even ECFMG says that with just a letter from UNIBE saying it was transferred to the pre-med portion you'll be okay. Now, I think there's got to be something else going on with those students, maybe some basic science transferred credits? (And I know all of you know this, but still I want to clarify that basic sciences courses are med school credits already, they're not pre-med... for those who didn't know this, but I'm pretty sure all of you know this). Or they just forgot to apply with the letter? Whatever it is, I hope they figure it out.
    You completely blew off the first line of their response. That's your answer.
    Last edited by MedStudentMD; 09-12-2014 at 07:13 PM.

  4. #33
    MedStudentMD is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by vmd28 View Post
    just…wow. i have a serious headache after all of this. my story is that i am an American born and raised Dominican/American (have double-citizenship, my parents are Dominican. i grew up speaking Spanish with family, Spanglish at home; i studied Psychology in New Jersey, graduated Aug 2013 and am now here, in the Dominican Republic, enrolled as a medical student in the Spanish program. I chose this thinking that the Spanish i knew was sufficient. To my unfortunate realization, after only two classes, lets just say i don't feel very competent. I was going to consider switching into the English program, but after this conversation and various opinions i feel disheartened and so displeased with this school. my goal is to become a doctor and this is the path i've chosen. my family has invested time and money in me being here, but i'm unsure whether i should continue or even what to do now. i could have done this back home and applied to medical school there, but time and money were the issue. now, i would completely throw time out the door and am reconsidering money as an issue. my questions to anyone familiar with the system at UNIBE are, should i bust my booty and attempt the Spanish program or should i go back home, take my MCAT and attempt medical school there? in four years, will my medical degree here be valid in the states?
    Listen. This is what your gonna do. Your gonna edit your post and remove personal information so the school administration cannot pinpoint who you are. Stay in the Spanish program, befriend ALL the Dominicans. At semester 9 decide if you wanna finish or transfer to another school. I am not telling you to run and never look back simply because you already made a significant investment.

  5. #34
    MedStudentMD is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    *UPDATE*

    One of the reasons UNIBE is so messed up is that there is a conflicting interest between what is good for the program and what the administration really wants. The school is run by a cabal of anti-American women who blame the US students paying triple tuition for the school's ills and undermine the male component of the administration. They play the US student body and are not embarassed to telling them in a meeting that the administration had no idea that the clinical science portion of the English program is in Spanish. If the collective grades of US students are bad they will tell you in your face that you are lazy and/or dumb, if the grades are really good then it's an investigation for cheating because American students could not possibly be studying and doing well. Nothing makes sense in this school, they will repeatedly make policies that negatively affect your education, GPA, and STEP score. If something in the syllabus is worth 3 points and you dont do it, they substract 10 points. If you can miss a certain amount of classes, they will threaten to fail you even when you have not passed your limit. You dare open your First Aid in class, you get kicked out of class. You have this great hookup for rotations? Can't go because the hospital would have to enter into a contract with the school. I could go on forever, overall the school administration treats you like a twisted evil stepmother.

    Oh and listen to this one. UNIBE must be at the cutting edge of education since they have purposedly started disabling electric outlets so students cannot use them to charge laptops because, who uses that in class anyways right? The school is a joke.
    Last edited by MedStudentMD; 09-12-2014 at 07:41 PM.

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