Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Caribbean medical school review - American University of the Caribbean

Greetings! It's been a while since I've posted on this blog for a variety of reasons. First, even though I'm finishing up medical school and graduating in a week and a half, I'm busier than ever. I'm trying to tidy up loose ends with school, bills, the wife, etc. Let's just say I'm a busy guy! Anyways, I think all good things need a new direction once in a while. That why, for the next few posts (or more) I'll be reviewing most of the Caribbean medical schools out there. I don't know what it is about them, but I'm fascinated with them. I'd like to start one someday, in fact! Just kidding...but I'm not if it would go through because these schools make their owners large amount of cash! I'm talking hand-over-fist kinda cash! They probably make more in one year than I would my whole career as an internist! Anyways, The first school I want to review will be AUC - American University of the Caribbean. This school has been around like 30 years! It has catered to Americans who were unsuccessful in getting into the United States programs. It's a fairly descent school. I rotated with a girl who went there and she did alright I guess. I also know a couple practicing physicians in the area that went to AUC and are doing well for themselves. I know one is an OBGYN and the other is anesthesia. I think the bottom line with AUC like all the others is that you need to go where you will succeed. I mean, if you are gonna dump a load of money on medical school, do it where you know you will succeed, pass your tests, study for boards, etc. Luckily for the students at AUC, they are on the island of St. Maarten, which is a beautiful touristy island with similar amenities of the U.S. The student I rotated with loved it! She wanted to move back after her residency she loved it THAT MUCH! Anyways, because this is a review I have to bring the good with the bad. The bad - you are in the Caribbean and not in the States (which can be viewed as a good thing). But, for your education, it's best to try to stay in the United States. However, because they offer the below-average student a chance to attend medical school and they've been doing it for more than 30 years, I'd say you have to give them a chance! Their average admission stats look something like this: 2.8-3.3 GPA (roughly) and a 19-24 Avg. MCAT score. Granted, some people will have higher and lower values just because these are rough averages. I'd say if you had good letters of recommendation and some solid extra-curriculars, you'd be in good shape. AUC's website says "American University of the Caribbean attracts students with diverse backgrounds and high aptitudes for academic success". There are three entering classes per year.

90% are U.S. Citizen or permanent resident
4% are Canadians
6% are International

40% are Female students
60% are Male students

98% have Bachelor's degree or pending degree
7% have Master's degree
0% have Doctorate degree

Average Cumulative GPA: 3.2
Average Science GPA: 3.1
Average MCAT: 23

Tuition rates are:

Tuition Per Semester

Basic Sciences:

Semesters 1-4: $12,000/semester
Semester 5: $13,000

Clinical Sciences:

Semesters 6-9: $13,250/semester
Semester 9.5: $6,625

You can get FFELP loans through the University. Their residency appointments are really pretty good too. Their website says they have someone who match neurosurgery! That's not too shabby for a Caribbean School. If you went here, however, I'd plan on matching in one of the primary care disciplines such as FP, IM, Peds, (maybe) OBGYN - it's getting competitive again. Don't worry, if you did an IM or peds residency after your graduate from AUC, you can still be a cardiologist or a pediatric endocrinologist. What matters more for fellowships is where you did your residency and not as much where you went to medical school. AUC's alumni are listed on their website, so you can take a look for yourself. I hope you go and visit their website to learn more. I'll be back later on to review another Caribbean medical school.


Tom said...

If you have a couple of F' or D's, does that take away all your chances of getting in medical school, even if you are make up for it and get a GPA of 3.1?

DOClass2007 said...

It totally depends on the rest of the application. As long as you show improvement towards the end of your college career and do well on the MCAT, you still have a chance. Also, be prepared to defend the poor grades during an interview! Good luck.

Vanessa said...

It depends on where you got the F's and D's. If most of them are your premed reqs or an upper-level science courses...than yes it could potentially take away your chances for getting in a medical school.

John said...

Great Advice.. Doesn't This looks like an awesome place to begin your academic program! The True Blue Campus at St. Georges University.

Crystal said...

Is this school accredited in the USA or Canada?

idkadisplaynameyet said...

I'm wondering if you still update this blog, or even look at it.
But if you do... what are the average stats for AUC nowadays?

Any information would be helpful.

Unknown said...

I am really disappointed to read your below-average student remark below...makes me question your credibility. Did you ever consider that maybe US med schools like to keep pounding this ridiculous viewpoint into the minds of pre-med hopefuls all over the US in order to keep their extra cashflow up, genius? I say that we are currently experiencing an extreme shortage of physicians in the US & beyond, factor in the concept of being a "good physician" and that number plummets even further. I commend anyone who will make the necessary sacrifices & try this hard to get into med school...not a cheap or easy endeavor. We could certainly use more (good) physicians in this world.