Posted in Uncategorized

We are not rich, can I still go to medical school?

Of course, you can!

That’s my very short answer for that disheartening question. But read on as how you can still get that MD dream despite of financial limitations.

Sure, having money enough to send you to medical school is a big factor for you and your family to decide if you’ll do it or not. But I want you to know that there are legal, possible, and attainable ways that you can do if money won’t smile back on you or you weren’t born with a silver spoon.

  1. Get an admirable General Weighted Average (GWA) in College or PreMed
    I know grades won’t define one’s personality but hey! we are talking about medschool and having good grades will really become in handy in medschool. Most medical schools give out scholarships for those with LATIN HONORS. So if you are in college and planning to go to medical school? then study, study, study!
  2. NMAT is a golden ticket!
    Connected to #1, pair your latin honors with a competitive NMAT percentile score. That would be 90 above. This pair would most likely give you a high chance of landing into a medical school with the least expenses. I blogged about tips in preparation for NMAT here.
  3. Study in an SUC
    There are government schools or what we call State Universities and Colleges offering Doctor of Medicine Program here in the Philippines with FREE TUITION FEE. Yes, free matriculation for medical school. Excited already? An example is the West Visayas State University-College of Medicine in Ilo-ilo, you can read my blog about it here.

    However, you need to know the terms incorporated with this. Some schools ask for a return service (but why not? SERVE THE PEOPLE!) for several years after passing the Physician Licensure Examination (PLE).

    SUCs also offer Doctors to the Barrio Program (DTTBP) as a form of scholarship, too. This program is with stipend, clothing allowance, book allowance, transportation allowance, and many more! Good reads about the program are the following:
    a. http://doctorstothebarrios.com/about/
    b. https://opinion.inquirer.net/109110/doctors-to-the-barrios-2
    c. http://www.myfinancemd.com/wants-doctor-barrio/
  4. Sell stuff
    No kidding here! you can sell stuff while in medschool, earn from it, save your earnings, and pay your tuition. Believe me, you can. Sell something of your interest. Sell something that’s time saver when it comes to preparation.
    In my case, I sold puto pao and became a supplier in our school canteen. Some people I know, sell medschool stuff like highlighters, muji notebooks and pens, reprinted books, transes, notes, or even snacks of all kinds. You can even sell yellow paper hahahaha
  5. Try a part time job suitable in your schedule
    Before I started medicine last year, I researched if a regular medical student can apply for a part time job and most answers I got was “NO”. I thought I can teach (I’m a teacher by profession hehe) in nearby schools. However, I realized that the salary for a part-time teacher is not really that sufficient for my case. You can also try to be a tutor and peg for at least 350 per hour.

    So you might want to try looking for different part-time jobs in sites such as upwork.

    the
    Life is unfair. This is true. You might have classmates who doesn’t even need to experience things that you are experiencing just to pursue your dream. It might pain you to see them have all the things they have, have a good time, buy different things, and have a less stressed medschool life. But please see this hardship as a way of character formation because what you are going to achieve is something big and grandiose, you have to know and understand how to walk in a life with all sacrifices, inequality, and different shades of poorness to humble you and to value this life that you are given and the lives that YOU ARE GOING TO SAVE. Don’t give up with achieving your dream 🙂 Don’t give up on yourself and remember that above all, God is gracious and faithful ❤

    PS
    Just to give you a background 🙂 I don’t have a latin honor nor with an NMAT percentile score of 90 above (but I do have decent grades and NMAT score). I’m a daughter of a former janitress. My father died when I was 5. I don’t have siblings to help me and my relatives have their own daily life burdens to carry.

    So if you ask me, “We are not rich, can I still go to medschool?” my answer is
    “YES! YOU CAN!”

    Sincerely,
    Christine
    2nd Year Medical Student (Batch 2022)
    Metropolitan Medical Center- CAST

Posted in Let's talk Med!, Uncategorized

Metropolitan Medical Center-CAST College of Medicine

Hello future docs!  This time I’ll be highlighting my Medschool experience from the admission, interview, and the whole 1st year journey in METROPOLITAN MEDICAL CENTER-CAST COLLEGE OF MEDICINE.

I learned about MMC when the Dean (Dean Habacon) sent us an email (yes, this is how hands-on our Dean was and still is) inviting us to see what MMC has to offer. Despite being a “baby medschool” (cause MMC College of Medicine started 2015), I think MMC-CM provides its students astute physician professors to ensure that the students will really be equipped oh and plus the facilities here are sufficient for us. During this time, the 1st batch of Medstudents are already in CLERKSHIP in the school’s HOSPITAL (Yup, we have our own hotel-looking hospital). I told myself to give it a try. So I went to the school (Masangkay St. near Bambang or Divisoria) and submitted my requirements (which are listed here) I think the admission fee was about 1,000 or 1,400 per student. I also applied for scholarship because that is the only chance that I have to pursue Medschool.

Before my interview, the Dean was about to leave but still entertained me and ask me the basic questions for medschool applicants. I got accepted and was a given a partial Go-Tong scholarship. At this point, I was thinking about how happy my mother will be ’cause heeeeyy! I got a scholarship! hahaha MMC offers scholarship  to deserving students so check their website from this link.

After that day, I prepared the things that I need since the class will start on August 3, 2018. Thankfully, a very generous Dra. Ables already gave me all her medschool books!

schools
forever thankful for your kindness, Dra. Ables!

Fast forward to August and the school conducted the FRESHMEN ORIENTATION.. ghaadd I was so excited!!!
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look at that! I got my lanyard already! ❤ I learned that we are almost 70 in our batch and hahahahaha I’m one of the oldest students like ahaha I was 27 when I started medschool haha my classmates were fresh grads or some just had a gap year.

Few weeks from this phase, I experienced battery of exams which appeared to be unbelievable.. it was hard 😦 our passing rate is 75% in each shifting (exam or quiz= shifting). I learned how to make a TRANS (like a reviewer that your class will make for everybody, got a chance to meet with PATIENTS (ahuh! we already meet with patients for our practical exams, we are just 1st year students) more of like the basics of how should we talk to the patients, get their bp, rr, hr, etc., But I think my favorite would be every cadaver day (hihihi) I get to see what’s really in a human body like how smooth the surface of the liver should be, how spongy the lungs are, how squishy the intestines are, how sturdy the heart should be, how complicated identifying the muscles -_-, nerves, and vessels, and how amazingly gorgeous the brain is.

First MedWeek Experience after the prelims! We had bunch of activities lined up such as zumba, Mr. and Ms. Medicine, basketball, volleyball, and medicine night.

We also had our NAME PLATE ceremony arranged by our student council as a reminder that no matter how hard Medschool can get, if this is your dream, you will do everything to finish this.

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As months go by, we finished our midterms, and finals exams. These were the hardest months of my life so far because I know that things will get really tough soon.

Second semester came and I guess few highlights are:

We had a Tuli Mission spearheaded by the student council, their friends from UST Med, and Dr. Desiderio (our Anats prof), Biochem Research Symposium which was a culminating activity of our Biochem class, and Anatomy-Physiology  AVP and Research Conference also like a culminating activity. In Medschool you will be doing studies or researches aside from the academic part of the subjects.

In Metro, you will be exposed to many things that can hone you to become the doctor that you dream to be. Imagine that’s just  1st year in a nutshell, what more in 2nd year? I’m really praying that our batch will make it through the promoboards.

Till next time (of oversharing) hahaha If you have questions, please feel free to comment and I’ll get back to you 🙂

 

 

 

Posted in Let's talk Med!, Uncategorized

Medical School Interview Experience(s) PH

Hello! For this blog, I’ll be sharing to you few important experiences that I had before and during my medical school interiewssss, quite a lot of “s” there because I applied to West Visayas State University College of Medicine (click the link to read my full blog about WVSU), Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health (ASMPH), Our Lady of Fatima University (OLFU), De La Salle Medical and Health Science Institute (DLSMHSI), and Metropolitan Medical Center (MMC) in hopes that I can finallly pursue my Medschool dream.

I’ll be including  a brief description of the NMAT requirement percentile score, admission fee, the contact number or email where you can further be familiarized with each school’s FAQs, and a little personal experience on the process ❤

  1. Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health (ASMPH)

NMAT Requirement: at least 90 percentile

Admission Fee: 3,000 php for local (Filipino) applicants and 15, 956 php for foreign applicants

Personal take: ASMPH offers a peaceful campus located in Pasig. The campus is just adjacent to the Medical City where the clerks and PGI’s can have their training. It is really a bright and warm (figuratively) environment. Before I decided to apply for the scholarship in ASMPH, I joined the open house event that the then-incoming 2nd yr students prepared (they are already in 4th yr now 🙂 ). It made me excited to enter medschool because of the caring environment that ASMPH cultivates. And they offer an MD-MBA program that you’ll just take for 5 years. During the interview, I was with two doctors ( a male and a female) and they asked common medschool interview questions like “Why do you want to become a doctor?”, “Are there doctors in your family”, or “who will support your education?” and  “What do you think about integrity?”. After the interview, you will be instructed on when to expect the date of release of the list of accepted students. So always update and check your email.

website: http://www.ateneo.edu/aps/asmph/application-requirements

2. Our Lady of Fatima University (OLFU)

NMAT Requirement: at least 40 percentile

Admission Fee: 500 php for local (Filipino) applicants

Personal take: Though I got accepted here, what I’m really after for is their scholarship because we really cannot afford paying the matriculation. The interview will be easy in a way that the Doctors that will interview you will scrutinize your grades in undergrad and asked you what happened but in the end will give you a ray of light that in medschool you have the chance to renew yourself (at least that’s what I heard from the applicant before I had my turn). They will give you few tips during your 1st year stay in OLFU. If you have an NMAT percentile lower that what they require, there’s a good chance that they will accept you PROVIDED that you will sign a paper stating that you will retake NMAT until you get a 40 percentile.

It’s best to call them and ask for update regarding your applicatoin 🙂

website: https://www.fatima.edu.ph/welcome/
contact number: 366-1249

3. De La Salle Medical and Health Science Institute (DLSMHSI) 

NMAT Requirement: at least 80 percentile

Admission Fee: 2,000 php for local (Filipino) applicants

Personal Take: The campus is located in Dasmarinas, Cavite (far from the noises of Manila). During the application process, you be having quite a tour in the campus and it’s very wiiiiddee, a lot of trees, fresh fresh fresh air, and spaces for  you to unwind. The campus is BEAUTIFUL! I got a chance to walk around the hospital and I felt like I will be soon there studying. hahahaha but then again, I only applied to see if I can have a scholarship. During my interview, the Dean together with 2 other doctors asked me basic medschool  interview questions, but I think what highlighted in the interview was when the Dean asked me “who will support your studies?” and I admittedly told them that I’m looking for a scholarship and cannot pursue medschool in DLSMHSI without it. They cut the interview short and I guess it made me realize that I have to have a sturdy financial support while in Medschool.

Website: http://www.dlshsi.edu.ph/academics/college-medicine

 

for Metropolitan Medical Center (MMC), I’ll be saving and sharing it to you in another blog because it is where i’m studying at and will include few highlights during my 1st year stay there 🙂

If you have questions and hopefully I can answer them just leave a comment. Don’t lose hope with your MD dream 🙂 There will always be a school waiting for you ❤

**photos in the featured image are from the school websites and google images**

Posted in Let's talk Med!

1st Year in Medical School Survive and Thrive (Part 2)

Hello again!

So from the previous post I made, I described how to prepare your self in case you are planning to enter Medical School. In this part I will bend into few study tips and survival tips as well 🤓

Let’s start!

1. Connect with other medical students in and out of the country

This is important in creating connections and possible sources of TRANSES, SAMPLEX, EBOOKS, AND A LOT MORE.

trans is like a reviewer made from the lecture of your prof. High yield trans will be really helpful.

Be nice with these new found friends not just because you’ll get something from them but because these people will be your future co-workers and it is so peaceful to work when you are friends with (almost) anyone. Also, sometimes your professors are or were the professors of your friends from other medical schools and this can help you in many ways.

2. Invest in office equipment

*these are not required but will help you a lot!

  • a continuous-ink printer (it’s up to you which model actually)
  • a ring binder machine (your transes should be kept well)
  • HIGHIGHTERSSSSS
  • pencils (for the lab manual)
  • color pencils
  • clip board

3. Ebooks or actual books?

Since I don’t have money to buy books, ebooks work for me. I just print the chapters I need and bind them. But if you want to buy books, C and E Bookstore (in Q Ave.), UST Bookstore, or Recto will be there for you. There are fb pages offering reprinted books for a lesser price 🙂

4. Build your confidence

Yeah, cause there will be so many times in your medschool life that you’ll be asked to stand in front for a clinical case report. Mind you that you have to be as snappy as how doctors should be. Old school style of reporting (like reading from the ppt) is not welcome in medschool. This also comes with exploring more how powerpoint presentations work. Know the basics in making a powerpoint presetation (or prezi).

lastly,

5. Think of research problems

hahaha because there will be subjects that requires you to create a thesis workable for a semester.

There could be a lot of things I can share but I guess these are the things that are important in my 1st year experience. I hope this can help you as you prepare ❤️💖

Good luck, Doc!

Posted in Let's talk Med!

1st Year in Medical School: Survive and Thrive Part 1

Few months ago, I was a hopeful dreamer that bends myself to squeeze in the world of becoming a Physician. I really wanted to enter medicine.

And now, 1st year level is almost over 😍 can you believe it? well, I got blessed with a partial scholarship from our school that’s why I was able to push through with this and also through the help of my mother. She applied to loan from different government services that she can.

Now, allow me to share to you here the things that you have to take note if you are about to enter medical school.

ready?

Alright, let’s begin!

1. How prepared are you?

Let me break this down to:

A. YOURSELF

See, entering medical school is one of the toughest journeys that you can choose. You have to be prepared fo the gruelling long hours of lectures, countless PPT slides, transes, school works, and of course sleepless nights. It’s like the emotional drama from highschool plus the academic demands from college all over again but times 10. Medial school is no joke. N O J O K E.

B. YOUR FAMILY

Ask your family for a bunch of support specially during the days that you are presently at home but they can’t talk to you because you have to study. You can’t even attend the birthday of your closest relatives because you have to study. Let them know what you are about to go on, so that once you are on the rough roads, you have your fambam to walk with you.

C. IMMEDIATE FRIENDS

This specially goes along with your non-med friends. Yeah you’ve been friends since who knows when, but you are now building yourself to become the doctor you are dreaming to be. Talk to them too, but reassure them that no matter how medschool get in the way of your usual friday gimik, they will still be your friends. Even if you are studying somewhere and they are all catching up.

Also, you’ll definitely have new friends in medschool. But choose wisely. Avoid drama, toxic friends, clingy friends, those type of friends you encountered in highschool! those who likes open forum all the time that instead of reviewing lesson, you review issues in the group😂

D. FINANCES

ka-ching, ka-ching!

When you are in medschool, you most probably don’t have the time to work and earn because your 24 hours won’t be enough for you to finish all the transes you have to master. Use your allowance wisely. Don’t over spend on things you really don’t have to buy like that 3rd starbucks iced coffee you got. Or those sets of sticky notes that you only plan to display on your ig account and not realy use them.

You’ll be hanging around broke for at least 4 more years, so rethink your expenses. 😉

There are a lot of things I’ve been meaning to share, but I have to cut this till here and continue on my next blog post. We’ll catch ASAP!😘

-end of part 1-

thumbnail photo is from Pinterest

Posted in Let's talk Med!, me-time, Uncategorized

My hanash while in medschool post #1

  1. Sana alam ng mga classmates ko kung paano pahalagahan yung chance na binigay ng parents nila para makapag medicine sila. Kasi sa totoo lang? Naiinggit ako dahil baka isang sem lang ako. Takot na takot akong magstop at bumalik sa dati kong buhay. Kahit may scholarship ako ay di pa rin sapat para mabayaran ng buo yung tuition fee ko for four years. Kaya sana alam nila na may mga kagaya ko na gustong gusto mag aral ng medisina pero di namin kaya. Kung pwede lang at kung gusto na nila himinto ay ako na lang oag aralin ng parents nila eh. Aba! Wala na yatang mas sasaya pa sa balitang yan. Lord, praying pa rin po ako sa provision at yung person na mag ssponsor ng tuition ko. Alam niyo po kung gaano ko kagusto itong ginagawa at gagawin ko pero di ko maiwasan na matakot kahit konti dahil pag walang pera walang tuition tapos po wala na sa medschool. Nakakaiyak. Nakakalumo.
  2. Sana naappreciate nila yung daily allowance nila na di sila namomroblema kung kulang na ba o hindi dahip andiyan si Mom at Dad. Ako kasi kailangan ko mag benta ng puto pao sa canteen para may extra budget. Lord, dumadaing na ako sayo please po. Sana naappreciate nila lahat ng meron sila. Di patas ang buhay.
Posted in Let's talk Med!

My West Visayas State University-College of Medicine Experience.

West Visayas State University-College of Medicine is in La Paz, Ilo-ilo. It was one of my dream MedSchools because if I pass there, financial burdens wouldn’t be that much of a concern for my Mom. Why? It has the cheapest tuition fee (or 2nd to the cheapest)!! A couple of years back and the total matriculation falls under the range of 20 to 23,000 pesos per semester (compared to 109,000 to above your roof tf here in Manila) and according to a friend, last year tf was actually free 😀 Aside from that, the DOH partnered with WVSUCOM to provide scholarships for the students and this is the DOCTORS TO THE BARRIO program. Wherein the students get to have a scholarship to study medicine, and financial support as well but the catch is, the student should comply with the return service. Oh did I mention that WVSUCOM PLE rating was really impressive?😅

Going back to my WVSUCOM experience, I will share to you my journey during my application process, interview and the day that they released the list of accepted students. So please bear with this lengthy entry! 😊😁

Application:

  1. Like the usual preparation of requirements, everything has to be ready before I mail my application form to them. I downloaded the form from their website and followed the procedures indicated. Since the school is located in Ilo-ilo, a friend of ours (Hi Sir Perry and Fam!) paid the 400 peso application fee directly to the cashier and sent me the receipt here in Manila. But payment can be done also through bank deposits.
  2. I submitted my application form together with the receipt and other credentials 1st week of February so I can make it in the 1st batch. After three days, I emailed the registrar to follow up if they received my papers.
  3. So now we wait..
  4. The list of 1st batch of applicants for the Interview was released around 2nd week of April. And yeah, I got in for the interview. I was so nervous because I know there was an initial screening done 😭
  5. I immediately booked a flight since my interview was set on April 27. I was hoping to get a cheaper flight from Cebu Pac but boy, everything was above 4k per trip. So I tried Air Asia and got around 3,900 pesos for a roundtrip ticket.

Interview:

  1. I arrived at Ilo-ilp Airport on April 26 around 4pm. Thanks to Sir Perry and fam again for fetching me from the airport and to the place where I will stay. Since my Mom has a lot of friends in UP Visayas, I got free accommodation in UP High School (thank you, Sir Jules and Ma’am Sydna😀)
  2. I woke up (or maybe I wasn’t able to sleep) at 4am and prepared myself for my 9am interview. I was rehersing my answers to the common questions an applicant will hear.
  3. I arrived at the school around 8 to 8:30 AM and there were a lot of students and parents waiting. Most are freshgrads and some are like me, young at heart 😂 Initially, in the list for April 27 interview (because there were 2 sub-batches that were already interviewed; we were arranged alphabetically) has only 80 students. But on that day there were 160 students 😂
  4. There were quite a lot of instructions posted. We have to go to the 2nd floor first for us to fill out 7 pages of basic info sheet, answer a couple of essays and get our name tags. We were divided into 6 groups (surname basis) and we went back to the 1st floor where the rooms were located.
  5. I was included in the 1st seven students to be interviewed in our group. Wew! There were also 7 doctors inside waiting for us. They seemed friendly and welcomed us with warm smiles.
  6. After the introductions the first question was “how can you sell yourself to us?”. So avoiding the “bida-bida” and “bibo kid” in me, I let another bibo kid answer first ahahahaha each of us got a chance to answer and the doctors will ask a follow up question if needed. I think 3 out of 7 lives outside region 6 and this means a lot for a hopeful student residing far from Ilo-ilo because WVSUCOM only gets 20% of the total accepted students from outside region 6. Anyway, other questions asked were “what was your biggest regret in life? And given the chance, what would you do to correct it?”, “who will support your schooling?”, and the craziest was when we were given a situational question about seeing our dad in the cinema with some girl watching Avengers. It brought out answers on how we value the truth and our family. After 30 mins. we were told that we’re done with the interview and we just have to wait for the list of applicants who are accepted for SY 2018-2019.

The dreadful weeks of waiting for the result came out.. and nope, I didn’t make it 😅 out of 540 applicants for batch 1 (and I’m not sure with the total number of applicants for batch 2) only 120 students were accepted. 80% were from region 6 and the remaining was comprised of students from other regions in the PH.

Honestly, I was really sad because I mentally prepared myself to live there like it will be my first time to be away from my Mom (it’s just the two of us na lang kasi so kinda hard even mag dorm) it will be my first time to live alone. But that’s life, there are more people that are better than me, but it won’t be the sole basis if I can be the best doctor that I aim to be. Time to move forward and check the next opportunity. 😊

Speaking of that, I got a Scholarship from another Medschool here in Manila before I had my WVSUCOM interview so maybe that school is where God will plant me and mold me. 😊

Sorry for the lengthy post 😅 It’s never too late for that MD dream as long as you are decided and you want to achieve that despite the hardships included in the package. 😊❤