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Applying to and attending medical school in the Caribbean is a big decision. There are over 50 Caribbean medical schools and no two schools are alike. Students pour in from all over the world with different motivations and ambitions. For some, it’s an opportunity to fast track their medical career while others seek the adventure of life on an island or another country.
Whatever your reasons, attending a Caribbean medical school sets you on a different path than your average residency candidate, and it’s important to understand the big picture of Caribbean medical schools.
Fast Facts: To give you an idea of how certain Caribbean medical schools stack up, here are some fast facts about four of the most well known Caribbean medical schools.
Accreditation is very important to consider before you attend a Caribbean medical school. Some schools’ accreditation will allow you to be licensed throughout all 50 states, while others are more limited. Below is a list of the top 7 Caribbean medical schools based on accreditation. (Source)
Caribbean medical schools pride themselves on successfully transitioning their students from medical school into US residency training. However, with only 58.5% average IMGs becoming Matched every year, it’s important for medical schools and students to work together. Some ways medical schools and their students can work together are:
There are many ways medical schools and their students can work together to achieve greater USMLE® results. It is the responsibility of the school to educate students in the material they need to know to pass the USMLE® exams. Students can also ask their school for a potential schedule with the best suggested times to take the exams prior to residency application.
Medical students should work together with their medical school’s clinical rotations coordinator to put together clinical rotations that will best prepare them for residency. Helpful clinical rotations will not only put students in hospitals that may potentially give them interviews but also help them make further connections.
Previously called the Dean’s Letter, MSPEs tell the story about a student from the perspective of their medical school. These documents outline the student’s time in medical school and what the medical school knows about the student’s performance. Typical sections include unique characteristics, background information, a rotations summary with comments, and a conclusion about the student. Students should request to see the MSPE before it is submitted to ensure all the information is accurate.
The Residency Application is extensive and confusing. Medical students should begin learning about the residency process as soon as possible to better prepare themselves for when it’s their turn. It is never too early to communicate with your medical school about your steps towards residency.