30 Things to Accept Before Coming to the Caribbean for Med School

Here are things to understand and accept before coming to the Caribbean for med school. Please understand that…

  1. …power and water goes out more than you’re probably used to.
  2. …there will be hurricanes.
  3. …there will be earthquakes.
  4. …there will be flooding.
  5. …there will be potholes on the road.
  6. …there will be power outages (though in recent semesters, the power’s been pretty good).
  7. …there will be waiting in long lines.
  8. …there will be ways of saying things you consider rude that the others may find just normal talk.
  9. …you’ll probably get homesick at times.
  10. …you’ll probably get culture shock at times.
  11. …you’ll probably be comparing everything on the island to what you’re used to back home. It’s ok. It’s natural to do so.
  12. …when you get off the island, you’ll probably miss the island, especially coming home to freezing temperatures during winter break.
  13. …you will initially feel ripped off with the inflated prices, but then you’ll get used to it and once you come back to the states, everything will seem cheap.
  14. …you are a foreigner.
  15. …you are the one with the funny accent.
  16. …you may or may not carry stereotypes. Please don’t exacerbate them.
  17. …there are much poorer countries out there.
  18. …you’re here probably because you couldn’t get in anywhere else. No need to think you’re better than everyone else.
  19. …just because you went to an Ivy League school doesn’t mean you’ll do better than everyone else.
  20. …you may meet some classmates who you’ll be shocked are going to become doctors. Some of them may eventually drop out, or med school will shape them up.
  21. …you will be the new kid on campus… don’t think you can come and change how things run.
  22. …getting accepted into medical school is not the hardest part of the process of becoming a doctor. And frankly, I bet neither is Basic Sciences.
  23. …medical school’s no cake walk.
  24. …you may (or may not) be looked down on by your US-graduated colleagues and residency interviewers. Show them good reasons why you should instead be looked up to.
  25. …most problems you’ll complain about is neither unique to the island or the school.
  26. …you’ll make lasting connections with some people here. Some other people you may never want to see again.
  27. …you’ll discover your weaknesses in med school. But you may also discover your strengths.
  28. …you may not agree with everything on this list.
  29. …your experience is what you make it.
  30. …you’re in the Caribbean with 365 days of summer and the beach just a step away… enjoy it!