This is Gily, reporting to you live from 25,000 feet in the air, on a plane from Barbados to Grenada, and subsequently St. Vincent. It has been a long, exhausting day full of airport security checks and connecting flights, but the adrenaline rush of finally arriving at Trinity is overpowering my fatigue. Instead of worrying about my luggage (which has been lost somewhere en route from Miami to Barbados), I have been busying myself with writing down the scope of everything I want to ask the Dean, Chancellor, professors, and students during my preview visit.
In a way, for me it’s sort of symbolic that my luggage has been lost in transition; for you see, that is exactly the kind of thinking I have in choosing Trinity as the school for me: minimalism. I am ready to cast aside the comforts of everyday life, the high heels and HDTV, and focus solely on my ultimate goal: my MD. And what better place to do it than on a beautiful Caribbean Island? The calm ocean-view outside the window, the distractions of life back home far away, and nothing but medicine and me for the next 20 months.
I spoke with my friend Rachel (a current 4th year student at a US medical school and future OB/GYN resident) just before boarding my flight in Atlanta, and she suggested I investigate as much as I can about Trinity’s residency match. As she is currently undergoing the US residency match, she knows what to look for in a medical school that will prepare you for residency, and so she shared her thoughts with me.
Essentially, as I see it, medical school may be triaged to two primary aspects: Board scores and residency. The first two years of core curriculum are intended to prepare students for the Step 1 exam. The next two years of clinical clerkships and the Step 2 exam, prepare students for their residency. Thus, I too will tackle my search for medical school as a two-pronged investigation, reporting to you my findings in the coming days.
I will present to you here the questions I have formulated which I plan to ask the faculty and students of Trinity. My hope is that some of you out there are wondering the very same things, and so will be able to garner insight about Trinity alongside me as I visit the school for the first time. The questions I have thusfar are as follow:
- Does Trinity adhere to more of an advocacy curriculum, or one of global health? (Note: most US medical schools adhere to either one or the other)
- Are the clinical clerkship rotations already established, or must we apply for them like some of the other Caribbean Schools?
- Is there an option to apply separately for Away Rotations during the 3rd and 4th year, that may be at hospitals / private clinics back home (ones unaffiliated with Trinity -- i.e. with my primary care physician)?
- Typically, US medical students have a break between 1st and 2nd year of medical school. Trinity, being based on a trimester system, does not. If a student is interested in pursuing medical research (i.e. applying to one of many Research Institutes that sponsor summer research for medical students), could Trinity work with that student to allow them to conduct research?
- Is Trinity considered an off-shore US medical school, or an international medical school?
- How are the exams structured? Specifically, how much emphasis is placed on Clinical Vignettes?
- Although the residency match for 2012 has not yet occurred (it will in March 2012), can you possibly tell me the ratio of number of residencies applied for versus number of interviews received? Also, is there an available list of residency types for which your 2012 graduating class applied?
I encourage you to leave a comment on this blog if you want, with a pertinent question you have, and I will ask your question to the faculty and students in person, and report back on my blog their answers verbatim.
If you notice, I haven’t included any questions as of yet about Island life. I figure that will come naturally once I arrive on the Island... so stay tuned! I must go, as the cabin is preparing for landing in St. Vincent now. So goodnight to all, and I will be in touch soon.