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DrEvil

Israeli medical schools

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Hey everyone,

 

The 3 American medical programs in Israel are often overlooked by Canadians, mainly because they are not advertised like the Australian and Irish schools.

 

The Israeli schools include Sackler, the Technion, and Ben Gurion (in collaboration with Columbia medical center).

 

Students often choose the Israeli programs ahead of American programs in the States because in addition to virtually guaranteeing a solid residency in the States, you also get a unique cultural experience.

 

The Israeli programs are a better alternative than Australian and Irish schools if you want to do residency in the States.

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Hey everyone,

 

The 3 American medical programs in Israel are often overlooked by Canadians, mainly because they are not advertised like the Australian and Irish schools.

 

The Israeli schools include Sackler, the Technion, and Ben Gurion (in collaboration with Columbia medical center).

 

Students often choose the Israeli programs ahead of American programs in the States because in addition to virtually guaranteeing a solid residency in the States, you also get a unique cultural experience.

 

The Israeli programs are a better alternative than Australian and Irish schools if you want to do residency in the States.

 

What are the requirements for these schools? GPA? MCAT?

 

Thanks in advance.

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From what I have been reading on the SND/ValueMD forums, it seems as though a competitive GPA/MCAT(for Sackler, I am not as sure for the others) would be equal if not slightly lower than American low/mid tier schools. A 3.5 GPA seems competitive with a decent(29-30) MCAT, or a lower GPA with a stronger MCAT(33-34+). I have no idea what the exact requirements are, this is just what it seems from reading SDN(see link). Several accepted students have posted their stats if you scroll through...

 

http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=566280

 

It would be great if there was someone on this forum who has graduated from or is attending an Israeli school and could share their experiences from a Canadian perspective...

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DrEvil's right,

 

Israeli schools in particular have a strong reputation in the US. I know a bit about this as I did a lot of research on the schools. Many people don't realize the importance of alumni connections for matching. There is a large alumni network of Sackler grads and Technion grads, particularly from the North-East of the US. So, matching in New-York state, New Jersey, etc. is often quite a shoe-in. BGU is a newer school so the alumni connections are just being built up now. However, BGU grads also tend to have no problems matching. Canadians do have the extra issue of a visa requirement. However, from all the Canadians that I know, it wasn't an issue for them at all.

 

The programs are American programs so all the classes are in English and the programs follow American curricula. So, there is no problem studying for the USMLE. I've heard that the clinical training is superb...particularly in emergency and trauma care. Israel is a leader in these fields, partly due to the hostilities in the country.

 

Each school has it's strengths. Technion is known as the 'MIT of Israel'. It's a very research focused school and they offer MD-PhD's etc. Anyone interested in research after their MD would make a good choice by choosing Technion.

 

Ben-Gurion Medical School for International Health (in Collaboration with Columbia University Medical Centre) is a leader in global health studies. It's probably one of the best MD schools in the world to study global health. Students immerse themselves in global health issues from day 1. I know Columbia University was a large contributor in designing the program. Columbia also is responsible for admissions decisions. Columbia profs often teach at this school too.

 

Sackler is the oldest Israeli American program. It's very much similar to any American program in the US. Being in Tel-Aviv, a city with the largest modern hospitals in Israel, the training for high-tech specialties (ex. radiology) is superb.

 

That's all I know from my research. Hope this helps some premeds.

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For Sackler, clinicals are completed mostly in Israel, except for in 4th year when students can choose to do 16 weeks of electives at hospitals in New York.

 

Sackler offers hebrew courses in 1st and 2nd year, so there shouldn't be much of a language problem.

 

You can check the link for more detailed info

 

http://med.tau.ac.il/ny/program_of_studies.htm

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For Sackler, clinicals are completed mostly in Israel, except for in 4th year when students can choose to do 16 weeks of electives at hospitals in New York.

 

Sackler offers hebrew courses in 1st and 2nd year, so there shouldn't be much of a language problem.

 

You can check the link for more detailed info

 

http://med.tau.ac.il/ny/program_of_studies.htm

 

yeah ... i figured... but for somebody with no exposure to hebrew whatsoever i bet it would be difficult to gain a working knowledge of the language while trying to do med school at the same time.

 

... would make for a nice challenge though!

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In Tel Aviv (Sackler) , virtually everyone speaks English. You don't need to know any hebrew.

 

The hebrew classes are not even mandatory. If hebrew was so important, they would require you to have a little fluency before even applying or entering the program.

 

For BGU (situated in Beer Sheva), the population is much more diverse. Having a knowledge of clinical hebrew might enhance you're clinical experience. But most grads come out of the program not knowing much hebrew.

 

Ultimately, hebrew should not make or break your decision.

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The culture shock shouldn't be too bad, as the program has been made specifically for Americans. Not that I have ever been there or anything though...

 

I think I would definitely consider Israeli schools over the Aus/Ireland/Caribbean routes if Canada didn't work out. The only thing is that if you are competitive for an Israeli school, you should be competitive for several schools in the US as well, although Israel might be an interesting adventure.

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I am wondering how bad the culture shock is though. It might be a tempting plan to apply there if I don't get accepted anywhere the first two years I apply.

 

I think the culture shock, especially in tel aviv, is not as bad as you may be imagining.

 

Israel is a beautiful country and nothing like Canada, but most of Tel Aviv resembles your average big city.

DrEvil is right, in Tel Aviv, almost everyone speaks english... but I mean you would still feel like a foreigner for 4 years.

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if you are competitive for an Israeli school, you should be competitive for several schools in the US as well, although Israel might be an interesting adventure.

 

I agree. If the stats posted by DrEvil are true, then if you can get accepted to the israeli schools, you should be able to land an acceptance in the US if you apply broadly and early (check the US forum).

 

Don't underestimate the fact that it is four years of your life. That is a long time to spend half a world away from family and friends.... Some people care more or less about that, but I'm just saying dont see it as simply a means to an end because you still want to have a good med school experience.

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I agree. If the stats posted by DrEvil are true, then if you can get accepted to the israeli schools, you should be able to land an acceptance in the US if you apply broadly and early (check the US forum).

 

Don't underestimate the fact that it is four years of your life. That is a long time to spend half a world away from family and friends.... Some people care more or less about that, but I'm just saying dont see it as simply a means to an end because you still want to have a good med school experience.

 

Thats very true...the isolation from friends and family could be a big deal for some people, especially for those in a serious relationship or what not.

 

Conversely, on the plus side when comparing Israel to US medical schools is that Israel seems like it might be quite a bit cheaper than many American Schools(ie Wayne State) as tuition for Sackler is only 26000 US dollars. Although the living expenses are very high, it still adds up to only 45000 US$ per year.

 

Tuition $ 26,000.00

Living Expenses 16,000.00

Books and supplies 1,000.00

Transportation 1,500.00

Miscellaneous 500.00

 

(I got the above info from the Sackler website)

 

I think that if I don't make it into any Canadian schools after a couple tries, I will apply broadly in the US and also send an app. to Israel as a backup.

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Oh, I'm not applying...I'm going!!! I'm leaving for Israel in one month. I had interviews in Canada and the US, but Ben Gurion was my first choice.

 

These programs never used to be available for Canadians, so I think it's important to get the word out. It's only in recent years that the Technion and Sackler have allowed Canadians to apply. BGU has a different focus, so as far as I know, they have always allowed Canadians to apply.

 

MD with an adventure! :D

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Oh, I'm not applying...I'm going!!! I'm leaving for Israel in one month. I had interviews in Canada and the US, but Ben Gurion was my first choice.

 

These programs never used to be available for Canadians, so I think it's important to get the word out. It's only in recent years that the Technion and Sackler have allowed Canadians to apply. BGU has a different focus, so as far as I know, they have always allowed Canadians to apply.

 

MD with an adventure! :D

 

Thats awesome...you'll have to let us all know how it goes. Congrats on getting in. Speak any Hebrew?

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I don't speak a word of hebrew and I'm not Jewish.

 

Sackler actually has a video about the school on their website. It gives you a good idea what the program is like.

 

For Ben Gurion University, I would look on youtube. There were a couple of great videos last time I searched.

 

The Technion is a very researched oriented school. In Engineering, they were ranked top 15 in the world. A couple of chemists won a Nobel Prize there a few years ago. Just shows you the caliber of research going on there.

 

:D

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I've only heard great things about Sackler and BGU. I've talked to so many students about these schools (on Facebook, SDN, etc) and I've only heard great things. There's something to be said about the consistency of the good responses I get from these people. I've talked to others about their medical schools (schools in Ireland and Australia in particular) and I've often heard really bad things..such as bad clinical training, bad USMLE prep, etc.

 

About Technion, I've heard more mixed responses. With regards to USMLE prep, it's fantastic. However, I've also heard that the course is ridiculously difficult and with very long class hours. Even the smartest students have trouble. However, some Canadians I talked to were EXTREMELY happy with Technion. So, I've gotten more mixed responses about Technion. Also remember, that the TeAMS (Technion American Medical Students) program is only 2 years old. So, the bad responses may have been based on the old program which was based on the Israeli calendar and caused some difficulties in the US match due to time differences in the schedules. They have an MD/PhD program so for those interested in research, it seems like a great choice!

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Hey CAS,

 

The best route really depends on the person. If one likes 'uncertainty' then Aus is not bad. But personally, I'd pick Israel over Aus any day for several reasons:

 

1) USMLE focused curriculum from day 1 (American style)

2) Lots of organized clinical training at US hospitals - therefore no problem getting letter of recommendation from American doctors

3) Israel, to me, is a much more interesting adventure. Aus is like a sunny Canada. Israel is a different world.

4) Huge alumni network in the US virtually guarantees residency placement - and many of these residencies are top notch!

5) I've only heard good things from students studying in Israel. With regards to Australia, I've mostly heard bad ...with some good.

6) Israel will come to a lot cheaper.

 

I learned about Israel too late. This is because the Israeli schools get so many Americans that they don't need to get Canadians. However, my MCAT was too old for Sackler so I couldn't apply there. My stats are high, but it's touch and go at Israeli schools as the class sizes are small and the average stats at the schools are high. Also, BGU is a very focused school so anyone going there should have a certain maturity in knowing their medical focus. They tend to have an older class for this reason. If you're interested in working in underserved communities, primary care, and international health...there really isn't a school better than BGU. Technion is more science focused and I'm definitely not interested in scientific research in that sense.

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Aus, Ireland, UK, and Israel all have top tier medical programs.

 

But if your goal is to come back to US or Canada, then Israel is by far the most practical route.

 

The rule used to be such that, if you were studying in one of the Israeli American programs, you would not be able to stay in Israel to do your residency. You HAD to leave!

 

In recent years, they've made some leeway for people who really want to stay, but that just shows you how efficient these schools are. They do their utmost to get you out of the country! HHAHAA! ...That's not at all how it is in Aus, Ireland, and the UK.

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http://video.tau.ac.il/Lectures/Medicine/NY_American_Program/2007/American_Program/

 

Make sure you view it in Internet Explorer only..it wouldn't work in Firefox.

This is the video of the New York program for U.S./Canadian citizens.

 

I lived in Israel 11 years and I currently live (citizen) in Canada, and I am considering going to med. school in Israel because:

1) It is easier to get into being a Canadian citizen / US citizen because it is specifically designed for North Americans which allows you to skip a few of the bureaucratic steps, I believe you do not need to write the Psyhometry exam, it is like the Israeli version of MCAT, but a bit harder and there is a section of "Hebrew" there which wouldn't make sense for U.S./Canadian citizens, though you still need to write the MCAT I believe.

 

2) As for knowing the Hebrew language, forget about it, you will learn it as time goes, but not because you need to, you will learn it because you will live there for 4 years or so. Hebrew is not necessary there. In fact, about 80% of population speaks English there, yes, not academic English, but basic-intermediate English. People in Israel love North America, especially the U.S. because United States are helping Israel largely and very profoundly ever since.

3) There is no hatred there towards Canadians or Americans, it is a highly developed country, I don't want to say that, but Israel is more developed than a lot of the states / provinces in North America. You feel like traveling in time 5-10 years ahead once you step in at the airport in Tel Aviv.

4) Everything is automatic, robotized and highly technological. The medicine in Israel in considered one of the best in the world. When president of Ukraine was poisoned by diotoxine, he was treated in Israel by advanced dermatologists and surgeons. I live in Manitoba, Canada and I came here in 2005. To my surprise, the current Canadian health system did not have magnetic cards (like credit cards) which you can swipe to gather your information at special terminals across the clinics in Israel.

5) In Israel, computerized health system including elimination of excessive paperwork, was eliminated in late 80's!!! In Manitoba, we still have paper cards. Not saying it's bad, just saying Israel has a serious emphasis on Medicine. Weather is awesome too....there are 3 seas. The dead sea where you can float without sinking, the Mediterranean sea and the red sea. I am definitely considering it.

6) It is competitive but not as competitive as some US schools that receive over 10,000 applications a year.

Good luck to all of you and to myself :-)

 

 

Peace to you all.

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On 9/14/2019 at 9:44 AM, Stephanie Wu said:

Hi, I am trying to revive this thread by asking a question:" How can Canadians to match to a US residency after the completion of medical school in Israel?"

The same way from any other country. Do some clinical rotations in the US, get good letters of reference, and write the USMLE's (and score well).

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