St George Medical School is one of the largest and best known medical programs in the Caribbean. It has been around for many years and graduates very big classes. Lets get you some insider information on who they are and what they do.
If you have not done so, check out the advantages and disadvantages of Caribbean Medical Schools here.
These averages are for those students who matriculate into their medical school program, not applicants. Those with numbers that are very low are often still accepted but are required to do a Master of Public Health (MPH) or start in their Foundations program. Both of which have a required GPA necessary to receive acceptance into the medical school.
Beyond their admissions numbers, during school numbers are just as important. 96% of their students pass the USMLE on their first attempt. And 98% of their students receive a residency position within 2 years of entering the match. The pass rate of the USMLE is fine, they wouldn't tell me about the average, but passing the test is what makes you a doctor so that is good. The residency position shows you what I was talking about on the general Caribbean Schools (above) that it is much more difficult to match into programs as a foreign medical graduate than a graduate from the USA. It is not impossible, of course, just more difficult.
Admissions to the Grenada medical school is on a rolling admission basis, just like other schools, but with 2 possible starting points, January and August. As with all medical schools, the earlier you apply the better your chances.
One interesting thing about the admissions process for St George medical school is the interviews. Instead of traveling to the school for interview, this Grenada Medical School has alumni give their interview on a volunteer basis in whichever city they happen to practice. That being said, if you are worried about your admissions into St George medical school, I would consider going all the way down there, if at all affordable. Why? Well, you get to see the school, you get to meet the admissions people and you get to make a good impression on the people that are making the decision. The interview process is for three things, finding your best match, selling yourself to the school, and letting the school know who you are. A 1v1 interview with one person's opinion may hinder your ability to accomplish those goals. (come see my interview help page here for more information on preparing for and doing well in interviews)
As with most medical schools now days, St George is using technology and better teaching practices in their curriculum. Their lectures are not required and their labs are (this is similar to most schools in the country). They have a system where you can watch your lectures after they happen and take notes and study on your own.
They have a Problem Based Learning and a Small Group Learning platform that is built into the more traditional curriculum of lectures and labs. They, like many schools, are slow to move to a more inclusive problem based learning atmosphere and instead just add it on to the curriculum
The anatomy lab is by prosection, meaning you will not actually be DOING the dissection. This is up for some debate as to which is more effective, but with the class size at St George (sometimes up to 500) dissections would likely just be impossible.
Once your first two years are done, you will return the USA for your last two years. This can often be done in a single hospital (one of their approved hospitals) so you don't have to move several times over the two years.
St George Medical School's approved hospitals are mostly in New York and New Jersey with a few in other states. Most all their hospitals are in the midwest and on the east coast, though they also have a few in California as well. So that would be where you would spend you last two years of medical school.
Most people I talked to that go to or went to St George talked about a culture shock as being the number one thing that people hated most about the school. And you can see why. A small island that is full of people of a different culture, different food, and different lifestyle is very difficult to get used to, especially if you have never spent time in other cultures before.
Some other people talked about how off of campus it was necessary to use bars and dogs to ward of potential thefts. Some even went so far as to use razor wire. This seemed to only be the case for those living off campus, and does merit some further investigation if you plan to live off campus.
There are many organizations, clubs, sports, and opportunities at St George Medical School that can help you become acclimated to your new environment and stay sane while studying all the time. Be sure to check those out as well.
The best thing I found to help understand life at this Grenada medical school is a forum post (it links to a blog that is pretty entertaining) found here. He talks a lot about some very interesting things that you should think about before going to school there so you know what is coming.
All in all, you can't go wrong with St George beyond the inherent problems with going to a Caribbean school in the first place. You will get a solid education, and have the foundation you need to be a competent doctor. Just make sure to look at this and any other school you are applying to, from a lifestyle and culture standpoint as well, those things will be important as you move through your medical education.
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