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To Cegepiens Who Are Attending/have Attended Sherby - Is It Grueling? Would You Choose Sherby Again If Given The Choice?


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I have had discussions with current cegepiens who will be applying to all Quebec Medical Schools this cycle. These students live in Montreal, are anglos although they have fluent French and they think that studying in Montreal is best and that having a premed year is the way to go. Additionally, they fear that the transition from cegep directly into medical school at Sherbrooke would be absolutely brutal and grueling and prefer to have a one year period of adjustment, and to leave Montreal.

 

This new crop of applicants realize that 80% of the class consists of cegepiens and that those accepted go on to success. However, they still fear the unknown.

 

It would be greatly appreciated if cegepiens who are presently medical students @ Sherby or who have graduated and moved on to residency would be willing to chime in so as to give a realistic viewpoint of the actual transition, difficulty and whether or not you would do it again if given the choice or if you would say, go for premed @ UdeM so as to have a good background as a springboard to start medical school.

 

Thank you very much for your comments.  :P

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I think that Cegepiens can do well at Sherbrooke. It can be a hard transition, but even pre-med is hard (at UdeM at least), I found that the pre-med year was the hardest actually, so the transition is probably kinda the same.

 

Sherbrooke has actually 2 and a half year of pre-clership and not a lot of vacation, so it is not that shorter than UdeM or McGill pre-clership. For me the problem is more with clerkship itself ; it is only one and a half year long and you have all of your elective when you start clerkship. This means that you may take electives if something, and then change your mind about what residency you want to do. Also, starting with your electives means that it's harder to impress because you don't have as much experience as a clerk as someone who did other rotations before.

 

That being said, Sherbrooke students can and do get in competitive residency. I just wonder if it's kinda harder. 

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Most people here would say thay we are very well prepared for clerkship (because of the extra 6 months of precleckship) so it is not harder at all to do well and impress. Also we usually know our attendings before starting clerkship because, chances are, we spend hours every week with them during tutoring and we probably have shadowed with them. The real disadvantage is that our clerkship is a few weeks shorter, so we need to be more selective about what interests us.

 

Also, I personally don't think it's a hard transition at all from Cegep at all. I would find it gruelling to habe to do a full year of premed knowing that it is mostly useless, but that is just my opinion.

 

We do get less vacation but because of the tutoring system we have more free time during school months (if you're disciplined).

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Having all of your electives first is a serious detriment - as it is absolutely impossible to impress due to lack of knowledge, and for sure, receiving a LOR for CaRMS would be virtually impossible. It is much better to do the core rotation first.

 

Capucine, thank you for this information.

Respectfully, you shouldn't use extreme language such as "absolutely/virtually impossible" with regards to any of the medical schools in Quebec, including Sherbrooke's.

Many many students go on to match to competitive programs across the province year after year. So unless these students magically appeared on the PDs' top lists, they must've impressed someone at some point and most probably had decent if not formidable LOR.

 

The unique format of the Sherbrooke program, including its clerkship schedule may not be optimal, but it remains virtually if not absolutely possible to succeed in it ????

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Point taken, you are quite correct. And I well know that Sherbrooke graduates make excellent physicians and are selected for competitive specialties. I know from my own experience how doing electives first, before the core rotation, did not do me any favors and was not helpful for CaRMS purposes.

 

Actually as I did not attend Sherby, but rather another, I have recommended Sherby as the number 1 selection if given a choice.

 

Would you recommend Saguenay campus? Is smaller better?

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Saguenay's campus is smaller (30-35 students per class), which means three things:

- You get a lot of time to know the mentors personnally, which very beneficial when doing clerkship rotations in Saguenay

- You know everyone in your class and the other classes in the first few weeks, which makes it more of a family than just people in the same class as yours. However, if you don't like some of your peers, you're stuck with them for 2 and a half years...

- Parties are not as crazy as in Sherbroooke :(... (except when we arrange to have all classes at the same party) But we do get to go party with the Sherbrooke campus in special occasions 3-4 times a year.

 

Teaching is exactly the same thanks to videoconference and standardisation of mentors for PBL. Exams are the same. Rotations are the same (you have assess to all Sherbrooke rotations and also have priority to rotations based in Saguenay).

 

The city is not as full of students and young people as Sherbrooke is, but the setting is beautiful and it is the perfect place for those who like outdoor adventures (like me).

 

In short, it was an awesome experience.

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I think that Bambi meant that it is harder to impress your preceptor when you start with your elective first before core rotation.

In my first day of clerkship, my preceptor was quite disappointed by my lack of organization. After 2 weeks, my preceptor began to give me positive feedbacks and some good comments. I wasn't lacking the medical knowledge on my first day, I just needed some time to adapt to clerkship and to figure out how everything works :)

Having all of your electives first is a serious detriment - as it is absolutely impossible to impress due to lack of knowledge, and for sure, receiving a LOR for CaRMS would be virtually impossible. It is much better to do the core rotation first.

Capucine, thank you for this information.

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Yes, thank you LittleDaisy, it is the lack of experience in a clinical rotation too. I was unable to obtain references from attendings for an elective done before the core rotation. This certainly was not helpful for CaRMS and was frustrating actually. However, in 4th year, when doing an elective, which was my only rotation in this field, I received a fantastic evaluation/recommendation but I had been doing clerkship for over a year by this time.

 

I trust you are enjoying clerkship LittleDaisy.  :P

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  • 9 months later...

A little delayed, but I think Sherbrooke is a great environment for anglophones to practice their French because it is a true immersion vs Montreal where more people are bilingual. Knowing more languages is an invaluable asset. It's a shame that more people don't make an effort to become fluent in both English and French.

 

I know Anglophones that went to both Sherbrooke and Udem, and I found that the Sherbrooke ones improved their French way more. Also, Sherbrooke students are more united, most do not have friends or family in Sherbrooke so it forces you to get to know others.

 

There are advantages and disadvantages to smaller campuses vs bigger campuses.

Small:

- pro: teachers have more time to let you shadow them, you can be closer to your teachers, more opportunity for leadership since less competition

- pro: roll out of bed and you're at school

- con: Harder to participate in certain provincial/national/international leadership/ECA/conferences during the school year

- con: teachers are not specialists, often more med fams, who know enough for the knowledge that you need as a med student, but generally you won't get to learn impressive details/go as in depth as you would with a specialist. This also happens at bigger campuses too though, luck of the draw. However, especially true for smaller campuses

 

As for the electives at the beginning of clerkship, I know students who got into very competitive programs, beating home school students at Montreal faculties in a 2 seat program. So it's definitely not impossible to get into competitive programs... However, it takes hard work and forsight.. Or luck that you discover what you want to do and pick the right electives. Shadow during preclerkship to see if you're surg vs clinical, and see if you can narrow it down a bit more before picking electives.

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  • 1 year later...
On 9/27/2015 at 5:36 PM, Bambi said:

Point taken, you are quite correct. And I well know that Sherbrooke graduates make excellent physicians and are selected for competitive specialties. I know from my own experience how doing electives first, before the core rotation, did not do me any favors and was not helpful for CaRMS purposes.

 

Actually as I did not attend Sherby, but rather another, I have recommended Sherby as the number 1 selection if given a choice.

 

Would you recommend Saguenay campus? Is smaller better?

Why would you recommend sherby as the number 1 selection?

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On ‎2018‎-‎02‎-‎04 at 10:46 PM, Med Life Crisis said:

Why would you recommend sherby as the number 1 selection?

I am recommending Sherby, to apply as a Cegepien, while in 2nd year of undergrad - so long as the applicant writes the exams at the end of the first semester of 2nd year for 4 courses only (not 5). There is no downside as if the applicant is not accepted, he/she completes the undergrad degree and applies to all Quebec med schools, and others if so decided, when in the last year of undergrad. Applying to Sherby early on is just an option that is open if you know how to play the game. 

EDIT: I thought I was replying to another thread about what I recommended re Sherby. It is an excellent medical school where, from Cégep, you are thrown in at the deep end, and after a brutal first year, especially if you come from the Anglo educational system, you come out bilingual and just fine. Many graduates are accepted into highly competitive residencies. I believe it is an excel9ent medical school and know graduates who excelled in their careers thereafter. 

Definitely, in my opinion, smaller is better! :P

 

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  • 1 month later...

I did not get in from cegep but If I may, I will give my two cents.

By no means is sherbrooke a school that once you get in you have won. The reality is we started with something like 200 med students and finished with like 147 ish. So that means the rest either dropped out, failed a year, did a masters, took a year off or e.t.c. I do know of 2 of them who were anglo's who had a hard time adjusting, 1 of which ended up failing a year and subsequently dropping out the year after. A few of them ended up failing a year and eventually finished the program. Personally I was fluent in english and french (more so in english) and found the transition to be difficult. If I had to do it over again I think I would apply to McGill or UdeM, not because I think they are easier, but I believe the programs to just be better in general (from comparing notes with current med students at those schools). I just want to add that this is simply my opinion, people have gone through sherbrooke and liked it or done well, but i just want future candidates going there to know that its not all sunshine and rainbows.

In the end a medical diploma is a medical diploma, but I feel like the experience you go through also matters.

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5 hours ago, a1b1 said:

I did not get in from cegep but If I may, I will give my two cents.

By no means is sherbrooke a school that once you get in you have won. The reality is we started with something like 200 med students and finished with like 147 ish. So that means the rest either dropped out, failed a year, did a masters, took a year off or e.t.c. I do know of 2 of them who were anglo's who had a hard time adjusting, 1 of which ended up failing a year and subsequently dropping out the year after. A few of them ended up failing a year and eventually finished the program. Personally I was fluent in english and french (more so in english) and found the transition to be difficult. If I had to do it over again I think I would apply to McGill or UdeM, not because I think they are easier, but I believe the programs to just be better in general (from comparing notes with current med students at those schools). I just want to add that this is simply my opinion, people have gone through sherbrooke and liked it or done well, but i just want future candidates going there to know that its not all sunshine and rainbows.

In the end a medical diploma is a medical diploma, but I feel like the experience you go through also matters.

Wow 147... c’est quand même élevé le nombre de personne n’ayant pas terminé leur formation dans les temps requis... effectivement, je n’ai jamais entendu parlé d’un tel écart à UdeM, on a environ 2 à 5 étudiant par année qui ne suivent pas leur cohorte, mais les 4 que je connais de mon année font des maîtrise et/ou complément de deuxième cycle... 

avez vous une idée de la raison pour laquelle c’est comme ça? Comment fonctionne l’encadrement des étudiants en difficulté? Chez nous, i, y a un suivi assez rapproché, dès que tu es à 2 écarts types de la moyenne pour une évaluation, on entre en contact avec toi pour te rappeler les divers centres d’aide et de soutient aux études. Je crois que les étudiants qui sont en difficulté (comme si tu as coulé un bloc ou autre chose) on te place avec le responsable du cours en APP pour s’assurer que l’apprentissage et le suivi est étroit. Sûrement toutes des modalités qui permettent de garder les gens pendant toute leur formation. UdeM a ses défauts par contre la (pas mal en plus lol) mais disons qu’il y a un minimum de structure en place pour rattraper certains étudiants...

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Dans ma cohorte, je dirais qu'environ 7-8 personnes ne finiront pas en même temps que le reste du groupe. Sur ça, 3 font une maîtrise, 2 ont simplement réalisé que la médecine n'était pas fait pour eux, 1 personne reprend la 1ere année pour des raisons de santé et 2 autres n'auraient probablement jamais dû êtres admis (question de professionnalisme et d'aptitudes) mais reprennent la 1ere année.

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