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SGU Withdraws Accreditation - Future Students May Not be Eligible for US Residency


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I'm not sure how this works with applying for a Canadian residency in the future, but I know a lot of Caribbean applicants look to a US residency as a safety net, so anyone considering should follow this situation closely.

Basically, to write the STEP exams and apply for US residency, IMG graduates must have their school accredited by a body recognized by the ECFMG. Up to now, SGU has been on provisional accreditation with the CAAM-HP which accredits Caribbean schools. SGU has now withdrawn from this accreditation, likely because they would have had to meet requirements that they did not or could not want to. They have sent a letter to all their students that currently, as of 2024 SGU students will not be able to sit the STEPS or apply for residency. They are also accredited by the Grenada accrediting body, however this body is currently not recognized by the ECFMG. SGU's plan is to get the Grenada accreditation recognized by ECFMG prior to 2024. It is unknown how difficult this will be or if it's possible, but the continued operation of SGU will rely on it.

The take home point is that if you are considering SGU (don't, but still), please follow this situation very closely, because if you apply now you are gambling even more than the big gamble with the Caribbean you would be otherwise.

See these threads for more info:

https://forums.studentdoctor.net/threads/sgu-withdrawing-caam-hp-accreditation.1431909/

R3ddit: /r/premed/comments/ku23kn/st_georges_withdraws_from_caamhp_effectively/

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I know many SGU grads, and given that SGU has placed about 1000 Canadian/US residents each year, I would think as a very successful business...they probably know what they are doing - and expect things to transition smoothly for 2024.

If they are willing to go through this process, they probably have a very high suspicion it will go in their favour. They would not risk their golden goose medical admissions process on it.

That said, attend a mainland US school before attending any carribean school.

That, or there is something seriously insidious behind the scenes, and they are relying on their reputable brand name to ride through the process. 

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It seems extremely unlikely this is a smooth planned transition if they are withdrawing prior to Grenada certification. It would make more sense to have Grenada certified, which they have been working on for some time, then announce withdrawal of their other accreditation and having no possibility of interruption and not having to send a letter to all their students explaining what is going on. The CAAM-HP is seen as a more strict accreditation group, and the theory is that after a prolonged provisional status with issues that needed to be addressed, they gave and ultimatum and SGU could not, or it was not financially viable, to address the issues, so they withdrew prior to having their accreditation officially denied, which would look much worse.

I agree that SGU thinks Grenada will be approved which makes it likely, as their whole business relies on it, but I have to wonder what accommodation for their students they were refusing to do that made them take this risky option!

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even if they have some plan they would at least have a marketing issue now because there is no longer any certainty. If the board already have issues with SGU, and Grenada certifies them, then by proxy you would have to think that the board would also have issues with certifying Grenada directly. Accreditation programs aren't a fan of back door style approaches to bypassing things.  

Plus paying a ton of money riding on that working out perfectly? Doesn't seem logical (plus you of course would have to wonder why is certification so hard for SGU in the first place - maybe there are serious issues with the program for instance). 

 

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  • 3 months later...

Yikes. This is the problem going to these foreign medical schools. Even at a 'good' school like SGU, you just can't predict what will happen. I'm 99% sure this will work out okay - not rectifying this would literally destroy what is one of the biggest medical schools for the US - but it still creates a lot of unnecessary stress for the students there.

I went to Saba when they were transitioning to officially joining the Netherlands , so they had to become accredited by the Netherlands instead of this caribbean group. They ended up getting accreditation, but it was somewhat stressful at the time not knowing if I'd be able to write the USMLEs. 

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