Understanding MSIH and the Medical School Application Process: Q&A


Applying to medical school can sometimes seem a bit overwhelming. Applicants often have many questions prior to and during the admissions process. At MSIH, we try to make the medical school application process as seamless as possible for applicants. While most information is available online, here are some of the most frequently asked questions:

Q: May I submit an application if I have not completed all the required coursework?

A: Yes, as long as the coursework will be completed prior to matriculation at MSIH, we encourage you to submit your application as early in the admissions cycle as possible. There is a section on the application to list all coursework that you are currently taking, or plan to take before matriculation.

Q: May I submit an application if I have not yet taken the MCAT exam?

A: Absolutely. When submitting an application prior to receiving an MCAT score, note the expected test date in the field where MCAT information is requested. After release of your score, forward your AAMC number and verification code to our Admissions office. Applicant’s files are not reviewed by a member of our admissions committee until all requested items are received.

Q: Where are interviews conducted?

A: Interviews are currently being conducted virtually.  Applicants invited to interview typically meet individually with two members of our admissions committee, as well as with the Assistant Director of Admissions.

Q: What is the average MSIH class size?

A: MSIH classes are typically between 30 and 40 students, enhancing the educational experience of our students. MSIH is a small medical school that is part of a larger university (Ben-Gurion University of the Negev). We take a special interest in each of our students and look forward to their successful completion of the program.

Q: Do I need to speak Hebrew to attend MSIH?

A: MSIH courses are taught in English. Students are evaluated upon arrival in Israel for their Hebrew proficiency and placed in Hebrew language classes to learn basic Hebrew and medical terminology needed for clinical work in Israel. It is not uncommon for students to arrive without any prior knowledge of Hebrew, although we recommend students learn some basics, just as they would if they were travelling to any foreign country.

Q: Are fourth year electives completed in Israel?

A: Typically, students return to North America to complete their electives. Students complete fourth-year clinical electives and sub-internships at highly selective medical centers in the U.S. and Canada, including Columbia University Irving Medical Center‘s main campus and affiliate hospitals, where our students are given priority consideration. Students also have access to clinical rotations at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra University, Mayo Clinic, and other esteemed institutions, due to our connections with these universities. Full time electives coordinators in both Israel and NY assist our students in obtaining electives at prestigious institutions around the country. There is also an option for students to complete fourth year clinical electives in Israel. 

Q: Will I be able to obtain a US residency after completing MSIH? May I complete residency in Israel?

A: MSIH is uniquely positioned to provide its graduates the opportunity to complete residency either in the U.S., Canada or Israel. Our 2021 match rate for students seeking US residency was 96%. Students who wish to complete residency in Israel are able to complete staj, a mandatory year-long pre-residency program, and then apply for a residency in Israel. 

Q. What support systems are in place to assist MSIH students?

A: Immediately upon admission to the program, applicants not only become MSIH students, but join the MSIH family. Prior to matriculation, incoming students are put in contact with current students individually and on group conference calls. Staff in New York and Israel guide the incoming students through the registration process and students are in contact with student liaisons upon arrival in Israel. Students are assigned host families so they will experience how the local population lives, and they may even be treated to a home cooked meal while at school. A research coordinator and academic advisors are available for each grade to address each student’s unique interests. All students meet with the MSIH Director who takes an interest in the success of all students. MSIH also has a clinical social worker who provides help to students in all years at MSIH.

Q: Is it safe to go to school in Israel? Beer-Sheva?

A: Safety and security are paramount in Israel and at our beautiful campus. BGU is in communication with the Israeli Office of Homeland Security in real time and should a situation arise requiring additional security measures, they are immediately shared with our students. The 2018 United Nations World Happiness Report which ranks 156 countries happiness levels places Israel in 11th place. With some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, historical sights and modern infrastructures, students are encouraged to explore not only Beer Sheva, but the rest of the country. With a train stop on our campus, access throughout the country is minutes away.

Do you have more questions? Reach out to our admissions team for a consultation. We are here for you as you navigate the application process!

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