Announcing the publication of the best medical schools | Morse code: Inside the college rankings

As we continue to evolve our rankings to produce the best data available in a clear and easy-to-understand format for students considering applying to medical school, we are pleased to announce the upcoming publication of the Best Medical Schools of 2024. Based on data from the American Academy of Family of physicians, specialty rankings will be compiled on primary care practice, comparing schools in terms of their diversity of students and producing graduates who practice in rural and medically underserved areas. However, after significant evaluation of the submitted and publicly available data, the new research evaluation will not use any bibliometric data or award transparency credits. as previously reported and will not include evaluation of specialized areas of medical research.

While US News continues to believe that bibliometrics is a strong indicator of how influential medical school faculty have been in medical research, US News has been unable to verify all entities and affiliates where medical school faculty may conduct or conduct medical research. due to the complexity of reporting and legal structures. Therefore, this data could not be used in the calculations of the best medical schools in 2024.

On June 7, emails will be sent to medical schools that submitted a statistical survey to US News in fall 2023 and early 2024, asking the schools to review the data they submitted for the rankings. The emails ask recipients to verify and possibly correct any values ​​in enrollment data, numbers of medical students and faculty, and NIH and federal research funding amounts they reported in the winter. This information will be used to evaluate schools in primary care and research and to create profiles on usnews.com for prospective students.

Beneficiaries will be given the opportunity to update their data between June 7 and June 21. Based on this data, US News ranks schools using a similar methodology to that used in the current 2023-2024 rankings published in 2023, but excluding reputation factors and proportionally weighting the remaining ranking factors. The exception is that admissions factors may be considered a little more and faculty resources a little less in the primary care rankings.

Under US News’ usual policy, medical schools receive an embargoed preview of their rankings before the rankings are published; tentatively scheduled for late July.

Think like a doctor to avoid procrastinating in medical school | Admissions doctor at the Faculty of Medicine

The causes of procrastination are varied. Fear of failure, fear of success, perfectionism, and others can cause overwhelming anxiety that leads to procrastination.

It is critically important for medical faculty for students to be honest with themselves and regularly reflect on whether they are procrastinating. Consider what might be causing this problematic behavior and begin to reverse it.

A common reason for procrastination in school is the belief that every test, paper, or assignment must be absolutely perfect. People are not perfect! Students can try, but constant perfection will not happen.

Procrastination due to fear of a wrong result must be quickly attacked before a huge amount of time is lost. Waiting too long can actually fulfill the fear of failure. Students may begin to think that they have made a mistake and give up something that is very important to them.

Once accepted to medical school, try to combat procrastination by starting to think and work like a doctor. This is a time to learn for learning’s sake.

Many individuals believe that they must be motivated before starting a project. We try to teach action before motivation. Forget waiting for motivation or inspiration and start doing what needs to be done.

Baby steps are much more important. I’ve heard it said writing just five minutes a day, but writing every day can enable one to become an author in a very short time.

We also remind our students that Mark Twain once said that if you have to eat an ugly green frog every day, you want to do it first thing in the morning. Then it will be the worst thing you have to do all day. And if you have to eat two ugly green frogs, eat the uglier one first. Some of my students kept little plastic green flip flops by their computers, just as a reminder.

Doctors try to do their best for each patient. You can’t delay or people will die. If you need to ask a question or look up a dosage, do so immediately. At a critical moment, it will be necessary to do what is the best choice, even if the solution is not perfect.

Not completing a task like charting a patient means the on-call doctor won’t be able to figure out what you did or what the next step should be if the patient ends up in the emergency room.

Another cause of procrastination is unrealistic or unnecessary comparisons to your classmates instead of focusing on your own efforts. Ask your faculty and residents to learn – forget your pride for the sake of your future patients.

You will have the opportunity to do this during medical school research with their professors, often voluntarily. Students may be invited to watch procedures in the operating room that last for hours. Both sound nice and help your career.

But before you say yes, consider your other mandatory obligations. Prioritize if tomorrow’s exam matters to you – and it should. Do you still have time to hand in the patient examination that is required first thing in the morning? Can you really function well and remember what you need tomorrow if you haven’t slept?

Students may feel they can’t say “no” and instead of communicating this, they say “yes” without thinking, negotiating, or acknowledging that there isn’t time. Ask if the offer is valid for another week. Try to start with a plan that can work, don’t procrastinate and mobilize yourself to get started.

When I was intern, I remember having to complete dictations on 60 charts left by a resident who was dropped from the program. That was definitely a lesson I will never forget.

When hospitals stopped paying doctors if their charts weren’t completed on time, behavior quickly changed. That was surely a message not to procrastinate on your duties.

Fear, perfectionism, and feeling overwhelmed likely caused some residents to spiral into unfinished business. There were little or no resources to address this problem.

Currently, medical faculties and HOSPITAL offer help when a student or resident is in trouble. If procrastination is a problem for you, ask your institution what resources are available to you.

Waiting for inspiration won’t happen. Don’t put the cart before the horse; always think about action before motivation.

Most students will certainly not look forward to a difficult task and a long commitment, but breaking it into small pieces and starting with the first step will make each of the following steps easier. With each success you start to feel satisfaction.

Take those baby steps. Bite them one bite at a time, just keep going and don’t forget to eat that nasty green frog!

What Preschoolers Should Know About Emerging Fields of Medical Research | Admissions doctor at the Faculty of Medicine

Pre-med students aspiring to become physician-scientists will be tasked with navigating emerging areas of research and translating exciting discoveries into the clinical realm. Understanding the latest trends and breakthroughs in biomedical science is paramount for those hoping to bridge the gap between such cutting-edge research and clinical practice – the career goal of many budding physician-scientists.

What are these emerging fields that aspiring physician-scientists—including those applying for combined MD-Ph.D. programs – do you know about joining these fields and are there any pitfalls involved?

This is an extremely exciting time in scientific research with recent breakthroughs in areas as diverse as gene editing, immunotherapy, nanotechnology, precision medicine, machine learning and regenerative medicine. Highlights cover the entire biomedical spectrum, including evolutionary genomics, new neurotechnology, advances in cardiovascular imaging, cellular therapies, and therapeutic manipulation of the microbiome, to name a few.

Aspiring physician-scientists will undoubtedly be tempted to ride this wave of exciting discoveries and join laboratories moving the needle in these fields, many of which are still in their infancy.

Pre-med students should be aware of these emerging fields, as these advances are expected to increasingly contribute to health care in the coming decades and will undoubtedly remain important for a long time to come. a career in medicine.

These majors are likely to offer long-term career opportunities for students interested in biomedical research. They also represent opportunities to contribute to innovation, engage in breakthrough discoveries and help shape the future of science and medicine.

Many emerging fields are exciting in part because of new or newly appreciated applications in clinical practice with direct implications patient care. By understanding these emerging fields, premed students will stay informed and up-to-date on new treatment paradigms, new diagnostic tools, and various prevention strategies that could benefit their future patients.

Students’ research interests often develop during undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate education. Many fascinating fields of biomedicine are neither new nor well known and deserve serious consideration. You’ll have plenty of opportunities to switch fields if your interests diverge at any point, so you shouldn’t feel locked into the discipline of your first research experience.

However, if you have a genuine intellectual interest in a popular science field early in your training, feel free to join such a like-minded lab.

Finding a laboratory in emerging areas of research

If you are a pre-med student interested in an exciting field such as cancer immunotherapy, genomics, AI-powered precision medicineetc., you may struggle to understand which labs would be appropriate and beneficial to join and which would suit your career goals.

To get started, assess the research environment at your home institution through departmental websites and note which faculty in your field of interest are involved in active research projects. Connect with a few faculty members and discuss joining their lab.

When you learn about their research projects, you can also ask if they know of any other labs in the same area that might also be of interest. The research faculty themselves are often the best resource for understanding the university’s current research environment, as department websites and related resources may be out of date.

Department administrators or undergraduate research coordinators can also be quite helpful in finding a lab in a particular area that would be a good fit for an undergraduate. If you read a lay article in the press – especially from a local edition – about an area of ​​exciting, “hot” science, pay attention to which studies and researchers they reference or cite. These investigators are often the leading voices in the field.

Use PubMed to find the latest work in a field or by a specific researcher. Explore the “trending” section to see which articles have seen recent activity—a sign that the field is gaining widespread interest. If you find investigators doing work that is of particular interest to you, use the “saved searches” feature to get updates about their work delivered directly to your inbox.

Recognize that emerging fields are often the result of new collaborations across diverse disciplines, such as distinct subfields in biology and medicine, biomedical engineering or computer science.

Applying a known technology to a new field can also produce exciting advances. A recent example is the cryo-EM-mediated determination of complex structures such as ligand-bound receptors that previously could not be precisely determined.

Look for labs that work in an interdisciplinary way to tackle an important question in medicine or biology, and you’re likely to find stimulating research in an important emerging field.

Pitfalls to avoid

Do not assume that only well-known fields with significant popularity and press attention are the only interesting areas of scientific research. The greatest discoveries often come from unexpected places, and their genesis can be found in lesser-known fields.

Recent high-profile examples include prokaryotic genomics, which spawned CRISPR/Cas9-based gene editing, and nucleoside modifications, which improved mRNA vaccines. This is characteristic of biomedical research and should lead you to explore different areas and meet with different investigators to find the field, research and laboratory that interests you most.

Several extremely popular fields – such as microbiome research, cancer immunotherapy, etc. – you run the risk of oversaturation, with many excellent investigators trying to solve similar problems. These areas can thus become quite competitive with several associated challenges.

If you get involved in a competitive field, look for opportunities for new work that can separate your project from the rest of the crowd. A good strategy when choosing a lab is to assess which researchers are pushing the boundaries in these areas and try to incorporate interdisciplinary approaches, as they are more likely to work in their own lane, away from other investigators. Use the same approach when choosing a project in your lab.

How To Deal With Medical School Rejection | Admissions doctor at the Faculty of Medicine

Spring is when medical faculty close the interview period and send rejection letters to students who were not placed on the alternate list. This is disturbing for good students who are used to achieving their goals and do not understand why they were not accepted.

There are many ways that rejected students can deal with this disappointing news. Some give up when they shouldn’t but just feel too discouraged. What they should do is look for keys to improvement.

Check your thinking

There is a great TED Talk by Carol Dweck, a psychologist and college professor, who talks about two ways students respond to failure. The first way is disastrous and destructive because it has what Dwec calls a “fixed mindset.” These are usually students for whom success has become an expectation.

The second type of student has what Dweck calls a “growth mindset.” They know they are on a learning curve and believe they can develop their skills – they just don’t have the skills right now.

This “not yet” attitude, as Dweck calls it, is part of a growth mindset. If students with this attitude failed a test, for example, they would not describe themselves as failures and would run away from future challenges. Rather, they would say that they are not yet successful and embrace the opportunity to try again.

We all understand the difficulty people with fixed mindsets have when they perform poorly in an exam or fail to master a second language. But if they can’t transform their fixed mindset into a growth mindset, they will be crushed by rejection, including rejection from medical schools.

The good news is that they can change.

If you feel like you have a fixed mindset, you can work on developing a growth mindset. First, know that every time you take on a difficult challenge, as Dweck pointed out, you create newer, stronger neurons that boost your intellect and abilities. Second, be honest with yourself about getting into medical school. Take an honest look at your application and more conversations you had.

Check your essays

If you didn’t get any interviews, why did that happen? It was degrees, MCAT, little volunteering, lack of shadowing, or essays that weren’t helpful? Remember that less than half of applicants get into medical school. You have to have all the important ducks in a row. Yes, the screeners read your essays very carefully.

I was recently approached by a student asking for advice to consider why he might not have gotten an interview at his dream school. While not sure, I suggested we check out his essays because everything else seemed to be excellent.

When we looked at his essays, he chose secondary essay that was probably the concern. It sounded overconfident and a bit elitist. He looked at it and said, “That doesn’t sound very humble, does it?” Perhaps if he had read it with an inquisitive eye before submitting, he might have seen a different result.

Since most high school essays are written for a specific school, an oversight in one may not affect other applications.

Think about how well your essays are and activity descriptions are written. Let advisors and colleagues criticize them, and not with kid gloves. If you didn’t do well in a particular class or on the MCAT, is there enough data to indicate how you’ve improved since then? Do your essays show humility and a willingness to learn from others?

Seek feedback and explore yourself

If you lucked into interviews but still didn’t get into medical school, explore what might have gone wrong. After you look at the process, ask others for their input. This may include your premed advisor, staff in the medical admissions office, and others who might be able to comment on your interpersonal and communication skills.

Last month I was asked to help some students who were not responding. I specifically asked them to write down as many as possible questions as they could remember from their conversations. Each student wrote down how they answered the questions and then reviewed them individually with me.

The exercise was very revealing. One student had a way of turning conversations toward his gym workouts, which he was passionate about. I found his answers about people matter-of-fact or rather flat. Not that he’s a bad candidate, but he really needs a lot of coaching and practice interviews before the next round.

The second student started to see his mistakes as soon as he started writing down what he answered. During the interviews, he even saw that he had not learned from his previous mistakes and could have prepared much better than he did. This exercise alone seemed to help him and I would recommend it to anyone who has not had success with interviews.

Explore everything about yourself, from how well you communicate verbally with others to how well you show interest in everyone you meet.

There are many applicants asking for advice and many have taken advantage of it. Examples include a student actively taking a public speaking course, others seeking treatment for anxiety, some studying and he conquered the MCAT againsome who practiced interviewing with various faculty, and some who took a gap year to allow for additional science courses, volunteering, or shadowing.

I once spoke with a prospective student who demonstrated a fixed mindset. He wanted to talk to me about why he wasn’t accepted more medical schools. In reviewing his application and interview notes, I identified several points where I believed he had an opportunity to improve his chances for next year.

He argued every point and that’s when I realized he wasn’t really asking for help. He was trying to prove the admissions committees wrong about him. He simply couldn’t accept that he wasn’t ready for medical school yet.

If a candidate is not ready to learn from what didn’t work and try a new approach, they may not be ready to become a doctor. I will never be as good as I can be, but I will continue to learn from my mistakes. If applicants decide not to, it may be time to consider other career options.

In medicine, we are always striving to improve individually and as a group. Lifelong learning is a real joy once you get the hang of it.

Another student was advised to take a course to improve his interpersonal relationships communication. He knew he had to learn how to be a better listener, how to explain his ideas clearly, and how to demonstrate them passion for what really mattered to him.

The following year he was admitted to the Faculty of Medicine. But more important than that was his determination to improve in this area. He realized that his patients didn’t just want a diagnosis and treatment, but also honest communication. This is a great example of a growth mindset. As he continued to improve his skills, he became Chief Resident and later Head of Faculty.

Keep in mind that opportunities are many, even for those who are rejected by one, two, or even three or more medical schools. If I were applying to medical school, I would proceed to rewrite the application and interview next cycle and would be grateful for the opportunity to try again.

Besides, “What are you going to do if you don’t get into medical school this year?” is a frequently asked question I was asked many years ago and some still use it today endurance. During interviews, be respectful, humble—not fake humility—hopeful and enthusiastic.

People with a growth mindset are able to see opportunities, while those with a fixed mindset see defeat. Those with a growth mindset are eager to try again and will try harder. For them, a missed opportunity is not a reflection of their ability or intelligence. Rather, it is an invitation to embrace effort, hard work, and perseverance.

Special master’s programs can lead to medical school | Admissions doctor at the Faculty of Medicine

Get to the US medical faculty not an easy task. With only about 40% of applicants matriculating according to the Association of American Medical Colleges, applicants need to differentiate themselves and be as competitive as possible.

For some, the path to medical school is a direct trajectory from college, but for others the path is not so linear. Applicants may have graduated years ago, had poor grades, or embarked on a different career path before applying. To be competitive enough to gain admission, many consider a post-baccalaureate program, commonly referred to as a postbac or special master’s program.

Special master’s programs provide graduate-level courses and appear as separate GPAs on student applications. They last one or two years and are designed with advanced students in mind.

Schools that offer them understand that most students enroll to strengthen their application to medical school. As such, they design programs to replicate aspects of medical school, including having students take courses first year medical students and undergo national medical examinations.

Here’s what you should know about specialty master’s programs to help you decide if enrolling in one of them is the next best step on your path to medical school.

Type of degree obtained

Each program offers something different Master’s degree upon meeting the requirements. Students commonly earn a master’s degree in medical science or a master’s degree in medical physiology.

Keep in mind that medical school admissions committees are most interested in the type of course—the level of difficulty and whether the courses are similar to those taken by a first-year medical student—rather than the specific degree earned.

How Med School Admissions Committees View Specialty Master’s Programs

When you submit your American Medical College Application Service or AMCAS application, your undergraduate and graduate grades are added together as separate GPA. Each medical school has its own system for considering these GPAs, but in general, if an applicant has a low undergraduate GPA, it will help offset a high graduate GPA.

Medical schools tend to recognize specialty master’s programs as more rigorous and representative of medical school than, say, an MBA or an online Master of Public Health degree. Therefore, a 4.0 from a special master’s program will most reflect your academic abilities as a future medical student.

Advantages of a special master’s program

Most special master’s programs offer different activities with regard to the objectives of the students. Many provide research opportunities, which is useful when it comes to potential area of ​​weakness in your medical school application. They may also have opportunities clinical experience and volunteer work.

In addition, many provide MCAT preparation and consulting to keep all application areas under control.

Disadvantages of a special master’s program

Special master’s programs are not for everyone. Programs can be expensive, with tuition at some universities exceeding $50,000 per year.

Additionally, you have to apply for these programs, and while they cater to premeds who have lower GPAs, acceptance is not guaranteed.

Students must also consider the timing of the application. For example, if the length of study in a special master’s program is one year, ideally you want to apply to medical school after completing the program – to demonstrate your success. This means you wouldn’t get into medical school until a year after completing the program.

In addition, you should have the entire medical school prerequisites completed before the special master’s program. This is because the program will offer term papers that may not meet requirements for general science courses such as organic chemistry or physics.

Who Should Consider a Special Master’s Program?

Let’s look at some real-life examples of students for whom a special master’s program is the ideal path.

One student graduated from college with worse grades. He completed medical school prerequisites, but his overall GPA was 3.4. In his case, if he does well in a special master’s program, he can show medical schools his true academic abilities by taking courses alongside current medical students.

Another student completed a field of biology but he took 10 years off school and did business. She has the prerequisites, but she lacks research and activities related to medicine. The special master’s program is ideal for her because she can provide admissions committees with a newer GPA and also has the opportunity to enhance her extracurricular activities through the program.

Finally, enrolling in a specialty master’s program can greatly enhance your application to medical school. If you’re trying to gain admission to medical school or want to boost your academic record before applying, a specialty master’s program may be the next best step for you.

How to decide where to go to medical school | Admissions doctor at the Faculty of Medicine

Imagine that after talking to a few medical faculty, you receive your acceptance letter—a huge accomplishment worth celebrating. If you’re one of the luckiest students, you’ll have more than one medical school to choose from, which presents a challenge: which one to choose?

Some medical schools are a better fit for you, your learning style, your career goals, and your resources. Here are 10 aspects to consider.

Students

Since you will be studying and possibly living with other students, it is important to consider which school you will feel most comfortable at. Are there students who share your values ​​in how they treat others? Are they kind and helpful or rather distant and self-centered? Do you enjoy the study atmosphere and how students study together or not? Do you feel at home with friends when you are among students from school?

If you connect well with the students you meet and don’t feel intimidated by them, you can feel confident that you will fit in, as the school will likely select students with similar characteristics for the next class.

It is useful to know how students in each of the current classes think about their choice. Try to catch them alone or for a phone interview later. Ask if they would make the same decision if they had to do it over again. The more people you talk to, the better.

If the students didn’t like you or felt uneasy about their interactions with each other, you might want to keep looking. On the other hand, if the students made you excited to be part of the school, that’s a positive sign. Liking your medical school classmates will help you study more effectively and perform better in the long run.

Wellness

Most medical schools these days have very robust curricula wellness. It will include mindfulness, exercise, healthy eating advice and a variety of other lessons offered to each student.

A key consideration is the type of wellness services and emotional support the school offers and also how easy it is to access them. The truth is that rates of depression and anxiety are high in medical school. While you may not have experienced these issues, you’ll want to know that support is there if you need it.

If students attending a school discover limited or delayed access to support services, this can be a serious red flag. What have they heard from classmates who may have fallen into depression or anxiety?

Finance

Sometimes, your best medical school can seem overwhelming too expensive. If this is the case, ask the finance office or ask about student employment for the best financial package they can offer.

Note that not all medical schools offer federal student loans, and it may be important to check before making a decision.

In the end, you won’t regret going to a school where you feel happy. If the school is unwilling to negotiate an aid package, you may have better options at other schools where you have been accepted.

Preparing the plate

To obtain a license to practice medicine, you must pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination, commonly called the USMLE. The first part is pass/fail, but it’s still a tough test. Part two, with his scorewill affect yours speciality selection a residence program options.

Some schools offer review sessions that begin many months before testing. They may also offer question banks and various resources for their students to describe.

You will definitely want to know what kind of preparation you will have at your fingertips and what are the options for further individual tutoring. Again, you may not have needed such services in the past, but it’s important to know they exist before you need such help.

Lack of support for national board preparation and insufficient study time are definite red flags to consider.

Counseling and tutoring

I’ve seen tutoring programs on paper that didn’t look solid as students struggled to keep up with the work. Peer tutoring is fine, but what is available beyond that? Sometimes peers are unable to provide the necessary support.

What is the depth and strength of the counseling program? Is tutoring expensive or not readily available for students? If you hear that the school was throwing up walls when students asked for extra help with the curriculum or help with reviewing tests, be wary.

Be sure to ask about the details of how the advising system works and whether you will have access to faculty and residents in the fields you are drawn to at the beginning of your training.

Ask for personal support if an unforeseen illness or emergency occurs in your family. How does it work if a student needs an absence and work?

Clinical rotations

If you have determined the specialization you want, it will be important for you to have close contact with the faculty and residents of that specialization. You’ll want to know how much decision-making power you’ll have in determining your ranking clinical rotations during the third year, then choose your electives and when you will be able to take them.

Are rotations crowded with too many students? Beware of schools that schedule too many students for one rotation and cannot provide broader learning opportunities due to class size or limited equipment. This is a more common problem than you think.

Do they offer enough time with residents and faculty? How much is observation and how much is practical? You will train in a wide range HOSPITAL and ambulatory facilities? Which patient groups visit the setting and what options are available for greater diversity?

Unfortunately, some schools have been able to afford to grow faster and add more students than they can accommodate in outpatient facilities and hospitals. They may have the capacity, but not the teachers. If funding is insufficient to support teaching, these physicians may move into direct clinical practice and away from students.

Don’t assume that because you will be affiliated with a massive medical center that teaches all doctors, or even most. Clinical demand may be so great that they decline the offer to train. On the other hand, there are some hospitals that require teaching from faculty who do not want to supervise students. Ask students where you want to attend medical school if their teachers are happy.

Active internships and optional rotations in your major will be required before applying for residency. Are students having trouble arranging this? Ask third year students or those starting fourth year.

Match of stay

Find out how the seniors were happy with the results of their residential matches in the second half. This is tricky because only the individual student knows how far they have fallen on their submitted residency ranking, as it is confidential. The results will be announced in mid-March.

Accreditation

Allopathic medical schools in the US must meet criteria set by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education, or LCME. For osteopathic schools, it is the Commission on Accreditation of Osteopathic Colleges, or COCA.

New schools move from provisional to provisional status before they receive full accreditation. Once fully accredited, they can be placed on probation if a regularly scheduled inspection finds them not meeting important standards, even after they have been given several months to rectify.

In these days of increasing regulations, there will almost certainly be things that need fixing. I recently visited a medical school that got the results about a month ago. The school had detailed plans on all the points listed and made progress on all of them. The timeline they set themselves to get everything done was impressive. Schools take this feedback very seriously and will move mountains to clear their name.

No one wants to be on probation, but in 2023 a few were. LCME and COCA maintain updated lists. If you find a school on the list and are serious about attending, ask about their plans to renew full accreditation without a probationary period.

New Faculty of Medicine

Between 2018 and 2024, 12 new allopathic schools appear to have opened. Three more are planned for 2025, and eight more are planned for the more distant future. Osteopathic medical schools jumped by 117 between 2018 and the 2024-2025 school year. Nine more are planned or proposed and may be added in the coming years.

If you are applying to a new medical school, there are many other factors to consider, such as the possibility of curriculum changes and the level of career support. New medical schools must show that their students can be successful doctors. Warning signs may include national board exam scores or failure rates and the number of graduates who could not match residences.

In general, new medical schools won’t get the necessary accreditation until they can demonstrate that they can do these things, but it’s always a good idea to ask. If they had provisional credit after their last LCME visit, ask what the issues were and how they are being resolved.

As someone who attended a new medical school and also helped develop another new medical school, I know that being a pioneer is both a joy and a challenge. I can safely say that both students and teachers have a lot of creativity and learning. I would do it all over again, but I certainly don’t speak for everyone.

Some students need more security and stability. Listen to your gut and consider how well ambiguity works for you.

Caribbean medical schools

Some students may wonder if there are benefits to studying medical school in the Caribbean.

There are a huge number of variations Caribbean medical schools. Classes can be quite large and student attrition can be problematic. You would like to know where students do clinical rotations and what choices students have over their rotations. You’d also want to know their residency match rate for at least the last three years, especially in the majors you’re interested in.

Since Caribbean medical schools often have to purchase clinical rotations for their students, tuition costs can be higher than you might expect. My position is that it is generally better for American students to attend medical school in the US

Another medical school is planned for the future at University of the Virgin Islands in St. Thomas for students from the Virgin Islands and other Caribbean islands who want to pursue medical training closer to home and where they want to work.

These 10 considerations and related questions are intended to help you get clear answers that demonstrate the level of medical school support for its students. If the answers give you pause, then beware.

Anyone who gets into medical school is a star. Remember, for those of you who have options, I wish you the best and hope you choose the school that suits you best. Whichever school you attend, know that all your hard work will pay off in the end.

How Team Activities Can Build Medical School Skills | Admissions doctor at the Faculty of Medicine

What does it mean to be a team player in medicine today?

A few years ago, our CEO sent each of the leaders in the hospital system a copy of “Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World” by retired US Army General Stanley McChrystal. This was in preparation for the involvement of the McChrystal Group to help us cut red tape and improve team functioning and efficiency.

Effective medical practice is more and more tied to teamwork, for which many people are responsible patient care. Humility, quick and timely communication, and the ability to do your job in harmony with others are absolutely essential.

When LeBron James was a star in Cleveland, he played with his signature headband for most of his basketball career, but ditched it for part of the playoff season. He explained in a televised interview that he wanted to feel even more like his teammates entering the playoffs.

Medicine is a team sport. Today’s patients are saved not by one superstar, but by a whole team. The Doctor no longer gets all the credit for success. Nursesmedical assistants, physiotherapistssocial workers and many others play active roles in helping patients succeed.

If you are not already involved in a team activity, choose a team whose mission you can accept. Choose a team that behaves honestly and does the right thing. Even as college students, you can find teams with missions and behaviors that you can support.

Avoid teams that do not behave honestly. For example, in the world of medicine, you wouldn’t want to pick a team that just wants to perform the most doctor’s officeregardless of what is in the best interest of patients.

Once you find your spot, go out and have fun with your team. Get inspired and be inspired! Being an active member of the team will make you a better doctor and a better person. i love reading medical faculty applications that include descriptions of activities where teamwork was key. Incorporate it thoughtfully into yours essays can inspire readers.

As a future medical school applicant, now is the time to become a team player. Your participation in team activities will help you function better in the small groups and group projects that are prevalent in most medical schools curriculum. Admissions committees look for indicators that a candidate will work well in a team environment.

Ability to share while playing with others

What matters in medicine today is being “all in” and helping each other to be the best we can be. Doctors don’t work in “The House of God,” a novel in which author Samuel Shem described doctors as cowboys who often didn’t work and certainly didn’t always focus on the best interests of their patients.

Times have changed and medicine requires teamwork. From discussing plans and the pre-operative checklist to planning for discharge and the patient’s needs after leaving the hospital HOSPITALthere are many other teams in between and many with different roles in the dispensaries.

When filling out medical school applications, students should be sure to demonstrate how team activities have fostered a willingness to share. For example, if you played a sport, think about highlighting a moment when you thought about the good of your team and the end result of the game rather than your individual stats or performance. This will show medical schools that you can be humble and have no problem accepting help or opinions from others.

This is more complicated than it seems. Here is a current example.

Let’s say you are a resident or fellow on the service and your faculty has asked you to do something for a patient. The attending physician will tell you that what you have been asked to do is her job and she will do it. How do you manage to stay honest with yourself, your teacher, your teammate, your nurse, and your patient?

Patients are very observant and do not like to see conflicts between team members. With so many different roles on teams today, it can be hard to keep our lanes clear.

There is something called “practicing to the limit of your license” that has changed medicine dramatically. This, along with training, indicates what one can do. Due to the need to have many team members, without very respectful and clear communication, it can be unclear who is doing what.

Ability to follow coaching instructions

When you are a medical student, you will receive guidance from basic science teachers, general practitioners and many others. To get through four years of school, you have to learn to listen.

The number one reason I see students fail in medical school is because they think they know better than what their teachers and advisors are trying to tell them. Following coaching instructions does not mean you are not intelligent. On the contrary, it means that you can learn from others.

A medical school interview is a good opportunity to talk about these coaching experiences. You might consider getting a letter of recommendation from a coach, team leader or lab leader where you work who can speak to your ability to take direction and follow instructions.

Good time management skills

When there are many things to do at once and many responsibilities, how do you manage them? When you have to choose between free time and team responsibilities, which do you prefer? If that decision isn’t crystal clear, you won’t be on the team long. Every team member has to sacrifice for the team, and that certainly applies in terms of time, if nothing else.

Medical school interviews are a good opportunity to discuss time-management skills. You can reiterate that you understand that medical school and medicine require juggling multiple responsibilities, and that you have already experienced this choice on your team.

You can also talk about how you are prepared to use your team experience when it comes time to make personal sacrifices for the good of patients.

Have discipline and put in the extra effort

Discipline goes beyond time management. Being disciplined means taking the time to prepare. For example, your band or choir may only practice once or twice a week, but if you really want to contribute, you’ll probably practice every day yourself.

Discipline also involves focus and often courage. The team may need something specific from you, and you need to deliver something, even if you’re a little nervous.

Ability to adapt to change and contribute

If you’ve been part of an engaged team for years, and I hope you’ve had the opportunity, you’ll see change after change. Other players, coach, strategy and competitors may have changed. The only thing in life you can predict is change.

Through it all, you can count on the team family to see through and make these transitions possible. Soon you will begin to look at failures and losses and plan how to cope with them even in the most difficult times. You will build on your strengths, change your strategy and move forward. Developing this ability is excellent preparation for lifelong learning.

Medical School Recommendations: How to Get the Best References | Admissions doctor at the Faculty of Medicine

Like a pool medical faculty applicants and competitiveness for limited places v MD and DO programs continue to grow, admissions committees rely heavily on letters of recommendation when assessing applicants’ potential as medical students.

The objective opinion of a doctor, researcher, educator or trainer on the student’s abilities and prerequisites for a career in medicine is of great importance for the evaluation of candidates for committee members. That’s why the art of choosing the right letter writers—and preparing your writers to deliver strong and supportive letters—is paramount to the success of your medical school application.

Letters of recommendation should highlight your unique qualities and identify the qualities that make you a good fit for the medical profession. Ideally, you will be able to choose multiple referrers who are able to speak to different personal attributes. However, if the referrer needs more information about you, which is likely, it is your responsibility to provide them with reference materials.

What should I provide with my referral?

At least include current curriculum vitae and personal statement that you expect for your application. It may also be helpful to include a list of strengths and any other background information, such as your motivation for entering the medical field, your aspirations or career goals, and any specific information you would like them to highlight in the letter.

Don’t be embarrassed about sharing information in this way. Writers will still be responsible for the content of the letters, but it will help them create specific and relevant letters and make their job easier.

Who should I ask for a strong letter of recommendation?

There are four main categories of letter writers to consider: science or non-science professor, physician, research teacher or a superior who can comment on your management, such as a long-term employer. Except in rare circumstances, it is best to stick with these types of recommenders because they are the most valued by admissions committees and will generally have the most influence.

Currently, many medical schools specify the exact type of letters they want, such as a letter from a science professor, a non-science professor, a physician, and/or a research mentor.

Get letters from professors who gave you A’s. In general, science professors are usually preferred, given the range scientific rigor course of the Faculty of Medicine.

Look for letters from doctors who know you well. If possible, avoid the doctors you have overshadowed for a short time. They won’t be able to talk about you in depth, and you’d be much better off investing your time in getting to know the doctor through a long-term clinical experience before you ask for a letter of recommendation.

Choose research mentors with whom you have significant experience. If your main researcher is not in the laboratory often, but a postgraduate student or postdoctoral fellow works with you frequently, you should still ask the PI for a letter, noting that a graduate student or post-doc will likely write the first draft. This is common and nothing to worry about – just make sure the closing letter is signed or countersigned by the PI.

Make sure writers can comment on important features

When selecting recommenders, make sure they are prepared and able to highlight the appropriate qualities in their letter. Committees expect professors to emphasize your intellect and academic ability, doctors to discuss your passion and motivation for a medical career, research mentors to compliment your critical thinking and problem solving. skillsand employers emphasize your leadership potential and ability to work well in a team.

Choose recommenders who can objectively assess your potential as a medical student. Make sure your recommenders know you well academically and, if possible, personally.

Follow this next tip

Create relationships

Spend time with the professors you want to ask for a letter. Go to office hours, ask more questions and show a genuine interest in their subject. If possible, give them the opportunity to ask questions and discuss your goals. Professors were once students, and discussing their career motivations and goals can help unlock yours career aspirations or expose you to ideas and opportunities you might not otherwise have known about.

Request letters early

Your letter writers lead extremely busy lives, and to respect their time, ask as soon as possible to give them the time they need to write a thoughtful letter. Be sure to provide your resume and personal statement when you inquire.

Remind recommendations

It is your responsibility to remind letter writers of the due date. Tell them the date you need the letter back by and don’t be shy to remind them by email a few times before the due date.

Follow each school’s instructions

Visit each school’s website and follow all instructions carefully. Submit the number of letters of recommendation they request in the format they request. Find out this information before you ask your writers so that you can give them all the information they will need to write your letter. Do not send more letters than required as many schools have a hard cap.

Nurture relationships

Remember that these recommenders are doing you a significant favor by volunteering their time to write you a letter. Writing great letters can take a significant amount of time, so thank them in the future and repay the favor.

If possible, maintain some contact with your referrers, especially if you feel like you have a real connection. Be aware that you may need letters from them again in the future. More importantly, these individuals can be a valuable source of advice for years to come during your medical career.

The Opioid Epidemic: What Premeds Should Know and How to Help | Admissions doctor at the Faculty of Medicine

Since the late 1990s, there has been an increase in opioid overdose deaths in the US, resulting in an epidemic. The opioid crisis is serious public health an issue pre-med students should be aware of.

Premeds can see patients who are on opioids or who are overdosing on opioids. Premeds can address the opioid epidemic in a variety of ways, such as through public health interventions and research. This article will be a good introduction to the opioid epidemic and how you can get involved as an award winning student.

What are opioids and why can they be dangerous?

In general, opioids are a class of drugs used to reduce pain. Opioids target opioid receptors in the brain, which block pain signals between the brain and the body. As a result, users experience pain relief.

Doctors often prescribe opioids for pain after surgery and severe pain caused by trauma and illness. They can be given during hospitalization or as an outpatient prescription. Examples of prescription opioids include codeine, oxycodone/OxyContin, hydrocodone/vicodin, morphine, methadone, and fentanyl.

There are also illegal non-prescription opioids that include heroin.

Recently, fentanyl use and fentanyl overdoses have made headlines. Fentanyl is a synthetically produced opioid that is approved to treat severe pain, such as pain from advanced cancers.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention fentanyl it is 50 to 100 times more effective than morphine. Due to its extreme effectiveness in reducing pain, fentanyl is sold illegally through illegal drug channels and is sometimes mixed with other drugs such as cocaine and heroin.

Higher doses of opioids can significantly slow a person’s breathing and heartbeat, which can lead to death.

One of the causes of opioid overdose is that individuals develop a tolerance over time while using opioid drugs. As a result, individuals use increasingly higher doses and/or increase the frequency of opioid medication use to achieve the same satisfaction of pain relief. This can lead to drug addiction or death from an overdose.

Another reason individuals die from opioid use is because they combine opioids with other substances. For example, it is extremely dangerous to combine opioids, which are depressants, with other depressants such as alcohol, tricyclic antidepressants, and benzodiazepines.

Fortunately, there is a drug called naloxone that can quickly reverse an opioid overdose. Naloxone also binds to opioid receptors, which block the effects of other opioids in someone’s body. Naloxone is extremely effective in rapidly reversing respiratory depression in opioid overdoses, saving someone’s life.

What is the opioid epidemic?

According to the CDC, the opioid epidemic began in 1999, following an increase in the amount of opioids prescribed by doctors in the 1990s. In 2010, there was an increase in heroin-related opioid deaths. In 2013, there was an increase in fentanyl overdoses. In 2021, there were about 107,000 opioid-related drug overdose deaths in the US, more than six times the number in 1999.

How Pre-Employed Students Can Get Involved in the Opioid Epidemic

Common clinical experiences where pre-med students may encounter patients using opioids are in primary care clinics and emergency rooms. However, premeds can engage in other activities to help fight the opioid epidemic.

Work in rehabilitation facilities and drug addiction clinics

There are drug and alcohol treatment centers and rehab centers across the United States where premeds can volunteer to participate in a variety of activities. These include the distribution of supplies such as clean needle syringes, food, clothing and educational brochures; assembling harm-reduction kits with sterile single-use injections and inhalation devices; connecting individuals with medical, legal, social or behavioral health services; assistance with overdose response training; support and spending time with participants.

Public health initiatives

Pre-med students can participate in health education campaigns educate the public on the harmful use of opioids, opioid overdoses and naloxone. Premeds can also partner with nonprofits and local health departments to lead community interventions to combat the opioid epidemic.

Research

Premed students can engage in a variety of opioid-related research projects, from bench biochemistry research to public health research and public policy strategies to clinical trials for the treatment of opioid use disorder.

Emergency Medical Technician

A common preclinical extracurricular activity is to serve as an emergency medical technician. EMTs see many opioid overdose emergency calls. As EMTs, premeds receive extensive training in recognizing the signs and symptoms of opioid overdose in order to diagnose and perform life-saving interventions, including administering naloxone to patients in the field.

Support people facing addiction and homelessness

Julia Baranová, medical student in Sidney Kimmel School of Medicine from Thomas Jefferson University in Pennsylvania is passionate about helping individuals suffering from substance abuse.

After graduating from Barnard College in New York, Baran volunteered for a legal syringe exchange program in an opiate-plagued neighborhood. On weekends, she served food and distributed clothing to people affected by substance abuse and homelessness.

Through getting to know the individuals in the organization, Julia saw the interconnectedness social determinants of health and addiction. For example, she has witnessed how poverty and unaddressed behavioral conditions hinder access to health care and leave the most vulnerable to struggle with addiction alone. In a cycle of self-destruction, each loss—whether of work, home, or friends—fuels the next loss, plunging deeper into the abyss of substance abuse and depression.

As she interacted with many individuals suffering from opioid addiction who felt isolated and ashamed of their decline, Julia deepened her understanding of the indiscriminate power of addiction. She learned that patients need not only clinical care for their bodies, but also compassion. The doctor’s office may be the only place where some individuals are treated kindly.

Aries is inspired to become a doctor who advocates underserved communities and provides compassionate support to individuals suffering from addiction.

“Decide in what ways you want to help,” she advises students interested in the opioid epidemic, advising. “There are various opportunities to contribute and make a positive impact. Want to get directly involved in the community, conduct opioid-related research, or work with stakeholders to advocate for equitable policies? If there is a harm reduction program or homeless shelter nearby, explore ways to get involved.”

Communicating with Patients: What Premeds Should Know | Admissions doctor at the Faculty of Medicine

Communicating with patients in an honest, empathetic, and informative manner is an essential part of being an excellent physician. As a pre-med student, you will encounter patients in their various clinical activities. Here are five tips for communicating effectively with patients:

  • To introduce myself.
  • Bring a helping attitude.
  • Hear patient stories.
  • Educate patients about health.
  • Communicate with patients’ families.

To introduce myself

It may sound obvious, but sometimes pre-med students get intimidated and forget to introduce themselves when they first meet patients – especially sick ones.

When you enter the room to meet the patient, state your name and position, such as hospital volunteermedical assistant etc. Many elderly patients are hard of hearing and hospital rooms have several beeping monitors so speak loudly so patients can hear you.

Bring a helping attitude

It’s hard to be a patient, and being a patient can be a scary experience. Hospitalized patients may be being treated for cancer or undergoing major surgery.

Remember to be empathetic when interacting with patients. I think a good attitude to hug is: How can you help the patient and make their life easier?

Below are some ways you can offer assistance to patients, allowing you to interact directly with the patient while assisting the medical team.

Hospital volunteer

As HOSPITAL volunteer, you can bring a warm blanket or water to the patient. Additionally, if you volunteer on the hospital floor, you can help improve patient mobility and strength by walking the patient around the hospital unit. You can also support nursing staff or physiotherapists with exercises for patients.

Hospice volunteer

As a hospice volunteer, you can listen to patients tell stories about their lives and keep them company. Some advanced students record the patient’s stories in a journal and then compile them into a memoir. It is a nice gift for patients and their loved ones.

Advocate for disadvantaged patients

Many disadvantaged patients they do not have full insurance for medical services or drugs. You can help patients and their medical teams call out-of-hospital providers or pharmacies.

For example, many expensive drugs have discount programs, and you can help patients make phone calls to find cheaper drugs. Additionally, some patients’ families may need to remain in the area for an extended period of time while the patient receives treatment; you can help families find cheap accommodation.

Supporter of patient discharge

Many patients may not be able to go home directly after a hospital visit, and you can help the medical team find options for discharge plans.

For example, some patients may need placement in skilled nursing facilities or rehabilitation centers after the hospital. You can call different facilities to check in, the health insurance plans they accept, out-of-pocket prices and services available. You can then share your findings with patients and help them compare options. These events will be of great help to patients’ families and medical teams.

Patient Supporter at Children’s Hospital

On Children’s Hospital, many sick children miss school. You can offer tutoring or play games with child patients to ensure they stay happy and not fall behind in academics.

Hear patient stories

Simply listening to patients often helps improve their mood. As a premed, you can listen to details that affect the patient’s health. As a doctor, you will need to listen to learn about the patient’s illness social situation and background that may be contributing to his health problems.

For example, a patient’s financial and socio-economic situation can affect their access to health care and the ability to afford physical therapy, healthy food and medication. The patient can specify details about their family and you can find out if the patient has social support to help them cope with the disease.

Finally, listening to stories can help you understand how busy a patient’s life is and provide insight into how to create realistic health goals such as weight loss.

Teach patients about health

Patient education is an important part of patient care, regardless of your specialty. As a pre-med student, you can play an important role in patient care by educating patients.

Here are some tips for communicating with patients while teaching about health.

Use simple language

Many patients do not have medical training, so it is better to use simple language and not medical jargon. Even saying “stomach” instead of “abdomen” helps patients more easily understand the health information you’re teaching them.

Use multiple teaching methods

Patients have preferences and different learning styles. Some learn best with written materials, while other patients learn best through discussions. Still other patients learn best with visual diagrams.

As preschool educators of patients, you may want to ask your patient if they learn better with a certain style. Or use a combination of teaching methods such as speech and drawings to explain your point.

One effective teaching method is to ask patients to teach you how they understood what you taught them. Hearing patients struggle to explain their understanding allows you to see if there are any misunderstandings or gaps in their medical knowledge.

Communicate with patients’ families

Families play a key role in a patient’s hospitalization and health outcomes. Family members drive patients to appointments, serve as points of support, and are sometimes responsible for the patient’s health at home.

Some premed students serve as translators for patients and their families who do not speak English. As a doctor, you will hold many family meetings and may work with parents children’s patients or adult children geriatric patients. You will be responsible for breaking bad news and having difficult conversations.

Effective communication with patients is a learning process. Don’t be too hard on yourself if it’s uncomfortable at first. Constantly strive to improve your communication skills with patients and you will have an excellent bedside manner by the time you are a doctor.