Alba and Francesco visited this past weekend before heading up to Boston for TERMIS WC. We went tubing, kayaking, and also visited St. Augustine for the city’s 450th birthday celebration. After they left on Monday morning, I packed for my first interview at USF in Tampa and hit the road in the afternoon.
I didn’t know what to expect since this was my first interview day. The Dean talked to us about the curriculum. It’s more traditional, sticking to the 2 years of pre-clinical work and 2 years of clinical work. Students have the opportunity to get involved in clinical experiences during M1 and M2 through the outpatient center, standardized patients, and their simulation center. They also have a program in which students can specialize in a concentration of medicine (i.e. Medical Humanities, Business and Entrepreneurship, International Medicine, etc.). I think quite a few students use their concentration to do research, but if presented the opportunity, I’d try something outside of bench work. We had lunch and subsequently went on a walking tour with four current medical students. In the afternoon, we had two individual interviews with faculty; each interview lasted ~50-60 minutes. My interviewers were very friendly, and it ran more conversation-style than hardcore interview style. Overall, USF was very friendly and approachable.
There were several things I didn’t quite like about USF. Their main teaching hospital, Tampa General Hospital, is about 20 minutes from their medical campus, which means a commute (sometimes during rush hour) will be unavoidable. Their facilities including their library and some of their classrooms are outdated. (Duke really spoiled me.) Cars are necessary. I’m really tired of having to drive everywhere. Cars have a stupidly large carbon footprint, and requiring a car for transportation is definitely a downer. I’d love to bike, but the bike lane situation isn’t the greatest in Tampa either. Finally, I’m not sure if this is a legitimate complaint (guess I’ll have to see what it’s like at other schools), but the medical students share all of their facilities with the rest of USF Health (Nursing, Public Health, Pharmacy, Physical Therapy, School of Biomed Sciences, etc.), which means study spaces can be limited.
USF is rolling, so I should know within the next month. One down. Fingers crossed for more interviews, hopefully with some schools located in cities!