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IMG Residency Match Forum International Medical Graduates (IMGs) discussing the residency matching process.


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Old 12-20-2014
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Default FAQ for a medical student(first year)

Hello, guys. I am 21, in my first year of medical school in Romania(Eastern Europe). I have a very big dream: to move permanently to the USA after I graduate and I started reading about the subject, but I don't understand everything and I hope you could please answer me some questions:

I understand that I have to take the step 1 and step 2(Q: what is the highest score?), be ECFMG certified. Until now, all good. The problem is with the hands-on experience. How can an IMG who does not live in the states get that(because I understand that it is not paid). How did you guys manage? Who supported you? Where did you stay? Did you work as a waiter, mcdonalds, something like that in the meanwhile ? Is an internship the same as transitional year? Or you can do a paid internship so you can get hands on experience then go to a transitional year or the first year in a residency program?

And the last question: If you were to give an advice to yourself at the beginning of med school about -going to the states-getting a residency process- easier, what would you say to yourself?

Oh and if it is not too personal: how much money did you spend from the beginning of this journey to your first paycheck ?
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Old 12-20-2014
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Originally Posted by BlackArt View Post
Hello, guys. I am 21, in my first year of medical school in Romania(Eastern Europe). I have a very big dream: to move permanently to the USA after I graduate and I started reading about the subject, but I don't understand everything and I hope you could please answer me some questions:

I understand that I have to take the step 1 and step 2(Q: what is the highest score?), be ECFMG certified. Until now, all good. The problem is with the hands-on experience. How can an IMG who does not live in the states get that(because I understand that it is not paid). How did you guys manage? Who supported you? Where did you stay? Did you work as a waiter, mcdonalds, something like that in the meanwhile ? Is an internship the same as transitional year? Or you can do a paid internship so you can get hands on experience then go to a transitional year or the first year in a residency program?

And the last question: If you were to give an advice to yourself at the beginning of med school about -going to the states-getting a residency process- easier, what would you say to yourself?

Oh and if it is not too personal: how much money did you spend from the beginning of this journey to your first paycheck ?
I'm not sure if this is the correct to ask this, I'll help you out though.

There are several ways to get experience in the US. the best way is to do a clerkship (one of your 4th year rotations, like Internal medicine) in the US. You would have to contact your university and see what can they do to help you.

My university has treaties with several US places to do this. There are lots of small details about this so you will probably need the help of a senior, in your particular case.

If you are on a tourist visa, you can't legally work in the US. So no, we didn't work at Macdonalds.

There is no maximum score for the evaluations, although I believe theoretically it's 300. You won't get close to that number though.

Internship is the first year of a categorical program (a full program of 3,4 or 5 years)

I have worked sparingly but most of my money came from my parents and sister. I believe it is the same for most people. Expenses range from 5k to 20k, for people in my country.

Obviously if you want to have a really good application, you are gonna need more money. Cause rotations are not cheap.

My advice is start NOW. Not tomorrow, today. If you really really really want it, you gotta work for it. You should do Kaplan lectures/videos alongside your main courses and read first aid like the Bible. You should aim to take step 1 during your third year and CS and Ck during your fourth.

Ask seniors who have completed the process, they are your greatest asset.
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