In today's episode, Ryan talks with Dr. Deborah German, the Dean of The University of Central Florida College of Medicine (UCF COM). UCF COM was the first, built from the ground up, allopathic medical school in the US in almost 30 years.
Before we dive into the discussion, the show begins with a question we got in the email forum from Laura, a 3rd-year biomedical PhD student, where she asked about how to shadow on weekends if your schedule is too full during the week.
Ryan answers this by saying that while not ideal, there are opportunities on weekends. Hospitals are open 24/7 so you can probably shadow in a hospital ER if they let you. It's a matter of reaching out to your local hospital. Also look around for doctor's offices that may be open on weekends in your area as well as some walk-in clinics which fill in where other offices are closed.
Back to the interview, Ryan talks with Dr. German where they discuss about Lake Nona Medical City, the types of students UCF is looking for, and having that passion to really do what you love to do which Dr. German has reiterated for a number of times.
Here are the highlights of the conversation with Dr. German:
Types of students UCF looks for:
- Strive for excellence
- Heart for medicine
- Pioneering entrepreneurial spirit
- Spirit of inquiry and curiosity about medicine
- Professionalism – Willing to put themselves aside for the needs of another
More about Lake Nona Medical City:
- 7,000 acres of land (700 of which becomes the new medical city)
- Adjacent to the Orlando International Airport
- Approved in 2006, the medical school serves as an anchor along with other partners like:
- Nemours Children’s Hospital
- Veterans Affairs Medical Center (second largest VA hospital)
- Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute
- University of Florida Academic and Research Center
- University of Central Florida Health Sciences Campus
UCF's current progress:
- UCF did better than half of the medical schools across the country on USMLE
- Students doing international trips
- New online medical journal Cureus
- UCF won the global competition for student research for medical students, residents, and graduate students
- Full accreditation https://today.ucf.edu/ucf-college-of-medicine-achieves-full-accreditation/
Curriculum at UCF:
- Integrated curriculum
- Clinical work starts in the first year
- Basic and clinical science throughout all 4 years
- Research required of every student (First two years)
- Use of technology to assist the education for students (simulation, virtual patients, standardized patients, live patient interaction, assessment system)
Admitting 120 in the Fall
Reasons for the rise of new medical schools:
- To address healthcare nationally
- Scarcity of physicians
- Economic driver for communities
3 Categories of dreamers that lay the foundation of UCF:
- Mother Teresa – Taking care of people
- Nobel Prize Winners – Curing cancer, eliminating obesity, or eradicating infectious diseases
- Sergeants General – Global health, healthcare reform, and health disparities
Dr. German's advice to those struggling with poor grades:
You have to show that you're committqed and it has to come across in your grades in your last couple of years. Otherwise, take a Master's degree if you have to to really show that you're committed to it.
Some pieces of advice for high school seniors and premed students:
If you love it, give it everything you have. If you can't, then think about that.
Links and Other Resources:
Call in and leave a question like Laura did at 617-410-6747 so we can play it here on the podcast and share it with everyone. This is not a competition. We're all in this together!
If you need any help with the medical school interview, go to medschoolinterviewbook.com. Sign up and you will receive parts of the book so you can help shape the future of the book. This book will include over 500 questions that may be asked during interview day as well as real-life questions, answers, and feedback from all of the mock interviews Ryan has been doing with students.
Are you a nontraditional student? Go check out oldpremeds.org.
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