View Full Version : Northern Medical School
12-03-2002, 11:16 PM
Although I know there was a post about this topic many months ago, I would like to bring it to the fore again. Does anybody have any inside info about whassup with the Northern Medical School, Canada's newest med. school slated to open next year?
The website, www.northernmedicalschool.com does not provide any details. It's very hush-hush. That said, I have heard through the grapevine that the school is going to be a lot like "Mac" in that no MCAT and/or no/minimal prereqs. This could be hearsay...Can anyone confirm?
At least our options open even more come next year! Good news for Ontario residents!
12-04-2002, 11:49 AM
There isn't very much information on what it will all
be about yet! (besides the fact that it will be a medical school)
There are having a meeting or have had one already about what will be implemented into the program I believe.
Information about pre-requisites won't be available until spring of 2003 for applicants.
You can also check out www.laurentian.ca (http://www.laurentian.ca)
for any more updates. Althought their updates are pretty much the same as the NORMS's website.
I'm running out of patience too! :)
12-05-2002, 12:10 PM
Looks like Laurentian has updated their website!!
A closer look at the possible curriculum is online!
Definately check it out!!
12-05-2002, 12:15 PM
I was having a look around the CaRMS website recently and it appears that there are some residency programs being offered by UofT (I believe it was) in Northern Ontario, to help buttress the Nothern Medical program.
12-05-2002, 12:43 PM
True! We do have residents working in the local hospitals here! I've had the luxury of meeting a couple in ER due to an unfortunate accident regarding my daughter. (whom of which is now fine btw!)
12-05-2002, 02:33 PM
I believe Mac and possibly other schools place residents up North. . . someone else can confirm.
12-05-2002, 06:11 PM
Hey everybody. There is an interesting link as to the consultation process for the new medical school. Check out:
12-07-2002, 02:21 AM
Hello there... I've been browsing through this forum for a few days now and I haven't seen any topics on what concerns me. Maybe I missed them and someone can please point me in the right direction after I explain my situation?
My college doesn't have a pre-med program, so I'm making one from scratch under a BSc-General major. I intend to apply to NOMS/LU for the 04 year. I don't intend to practice in the US- I plan on staying in Northern Ontario. I'm taking a nice mix of class types- accelerated, online, reg semester nights and reg semester days. I'm doing volunteer work at a nearby hospital as well. I enrolled in college in 1998, and I have never taken an SAT. I am literally cramming 3 and a half years of school into one and a half. No website, book, paper, etc... for those who wish to go to med school seems to have information for people like me. They list timelines & advice that I can't use, doesn't apply to me. What I'd like to know is how I'm doing in comparison to other non-traditional pre-med students. How do I figure out when to take my MCAT? Do I just pretend like 02-03 is my junior year and 03-04 is my senior year?
12-07-2002, 06:50 AM
you can take the mcat whenever you're ready, whether that's after 1st year or in your senior year. you can "pretend" to be in your junior year or senior year or whatever.
it may be difficult to apply to Canadian med schools if you're not a citizen and a resident, and those with rules against this may be very strict in this regard.
12-07-2002, 07:37 AM
Thank you for the help on the MCAT bit- allow me to clarify somewhat- if I plan to apply for the 04 year should I take the MCAT in April or in August of 03? See I'm *pretending* to be a pre-med student and I need to know these things in case anyone tries to catch me in a lie and force me to validate myself. :rolleyes
1. Americans can apply wherever they feel like. Just because it's generally understood that Americans aren't accepted doesn't mean that one cannot get a waiver of some sort. I plan on becoming a Canadian citizen, that would make me eligible for any Ontario school I want to poke my nose into, now wouldn't it?
2. How you you gather that I am Canadian going to school in the US in FACT? And what on earth possessed you to look down your nose and assume that people MUST take the SATs or they can't go to college? Guess what- I didn't graduate highschool either *gasp*. And guess what else? I know Canadians who pretty much walked over the border and signed up for college classes without an SAT or ACT as well. Will wonders never cease?
3. I thought I explained that my college does not have a pre-med program, so where would you infer that they'd have a pre-med advisor and don't you think even the stupidest of applicants would take these issues to their own school's advisor before anyone else? And yes- I called around to the other (traditional) pre-med programs around here and asked if I could come talk to their advisors and was told to @#%$ off unless I was enrolled in that college.
4. Bachelors of Science in General Studies. Oh my yes they exist. Go on, scoff in your oh-so-superior manner. They're generally found grudgingly in Lib Arts schools. Do Canadians REALLY live in igloos and take dogsleds to work every day?
I want to thank you for your time and effort in your thoughtful and helpful response. I really appreciate it.
12-07-2002, 08:00 AM
I don't know too much about the future requirements or restrictions regarding applying to the NOMS/LU; however, a caveat: even Canadian citizens can face restrictions in terms of applying to Canadian medical schools. For example, many universities favour applicants within their own province, e.g., UBC, Manitoba, or even region, as is the case with U. Ottawa who favour applicants from the Ottawa area or UWO who are supposedly implementing a similar strategy next year. These out-of-province/region applicants often must jump bars that are set a little higher than those for in-province applicants, and these may involve requiring a higher GPA (which is the case for Ottawa), or a higher overall assessment score, etc. Again, I'm conjecturing, but it would not be too shocking if this were also the future case for the NOMS/LU, given their mandate of trying to retain medical personnel up north.
If you are based at a US school, one Canadian school that you may wish to consider investigating a little further is McGill. They seem to have a mandate that is a little more sympathetic to US applicants as I believe that they have a some sort of yearly quota for students from non-Canadian schools.
As to the MCAT, take a look at some of the MCAT prep books that are available in a local, big bookstore. They may help to give you a flavour of the type and depth of knowledge required to be comfortable writing the MCAT. Generally, and as a rough guideline, once you have a bank of general chemistry, physics, biology and organic chemistry courses under your belt, you may want to consider writing it.
12-07-2002, 08:45 AM
honestly, i'm sorry if i jumped to some harsh conslusions (yeah, i know i did). it was an honest, ignorant mistake by my part. you DO get many kids around here though that come up with fake stories just to stir up @#%$. you'd be surprised at the stories some come up with (such as the overweight med student who was going to drop out).
it'll be pretty tough to get exempted from the canadian citizens and permanent residents only rule that most canadian med schools follow. i dont know about any "waivers of some sort". you may have heard how difficult it is for even foreign trained graduates to obtain residencies and liscences to practice.
even if you were to state your intentions on becoming a canadian citizen, you'd still have to become a permanent resident first (and live here for 3 years). it can be difficult, if not impossible, to obtain permanent residency status here as a student, especially if you want to get into the country within the next year. i'm sure a lot of canadian premed students would try to gain permanent resident status in the states as well if it were that easy, considering how much easier things are over there if one is an in-state applicant (i.e. admissions, tuition, loans, and scholarships).
Just out of curiosity, why do you want to move to northen ontario? is it because of the polar bears and igloos ;) ? i think it'd be easier for you to apply to an in-state school and then do your residency up here.
i hope you didn't take as much offense as your post implied. you have to remember that us canucks only make such comments with the best intentions. definitely check out mcgill's admissions, they take a lot of american applicants. best of luck with the admissions process.
12-07-2002, 09:38 AM
As you've already noted, part of the problem is that the Northern Medical School/Laurentian University program hasn't really "declared" itself. They don't have a website listing admissions criteria, application forms, etc. At this time, the NOMS/LU program appears (just my opinion) to be not much more concrete than a couple of websites.
As a result, it's going to be very difficult to apply to it. :) How can you when they haven't released the application criteria to the public?
If you were to approach it as just another Ontario medical school, chances are good that it'll go through OMSAS. With that in mind, having Canadian citizenship is a factor. If you are American, I would first contact the five Ontario medical schools now, and inquire about their admissions policies regarding non-Canadian applicants. Their websites can be found here:
As for writing the MCAT, the general rule is that you need to have written it before your application. Therefore, if you were applying for entry to start med school in September 2004, your OMSAS application would be submitted around October 15, 2003.
Therefore, if you had written the MCAT in either April 2003, or August 2003, you'd be okay in both circumstances.
The catch is that MCAT results used to take 60 days to be released, and in the past, that meant that you often had already applied to OMSAS before your MCAT scores were released. If your scores didn't make the cutoff for a particular medical school, it was too late because you'd already submitted and paid the application fee. That just means that you've taken that application fee for that particular medical school and flushed it down the toilet, because you will receive an automatic rejection letter for not making the cutoffs (they won't even bother looking at the rest of your application).
On the other hand, this year the MCAT folks have allowed people to access their MCAT scores on-line faster than 60 days, so you can still write the August 2003 MCAT, figure out your scores, and based on your results, decide whether you have made the MCAT cutoffs to apply to certain Ontario schools.
That might be one reason why this year applications to Ottawa and Mac are significantly higher than in past years; because these two schools don't require the MCAT.
UBC, Med 4
12-07-2002, 11:05 AM
For years, McMaster has had boxes on their application that states are you from a) Hamilton and region geographical area b) Northwestern Ontario geographical area c) rest of Ontario
d) rest of the world ---basically, I'm paraphrasing and since I didn't even get an interview there I could be a little off base. HOWEVER. It will be interesting to see with the next round of applications how the "preferential treatment" falls; it may be that they are not as restrictive in getting people to come north, because whatever curriculum they choose may reflect the practice concerns in the north and thus be better suited to people willing to stay and practice, or practice in a region that has similar work environments.
12-07-2002, 12:25 PM
Kirsteen - aye .... unfortunately I know that despite the wide public knowledge that Canada needs more medical personel they seem to be reeeally fussy and restrictive and biased in favour of ther own. Fortunately i'm stubborn and I know that there is *always* an exception to every rule. I did look into other Canadian schools, and I really didn't have any interest in McGill or UoT or Queen. Thank you for the advice on the MCAt- I have plenty of study guides and such, my concern was not so much am I knowledgely(is that a word?) prepared, but is it a viable option considering how I am condensing my studies so much more than a traditional program. I *will* graduate with a BS by June 04, but in Aug 03 I will have only completed half of the degree.
Hey Bad- no real offense taken..just kinda miffed that I would get jumped on so fast. I always get odd looks when I explain that though I've been taking classes toward my BS since 1998 that the vast majority of them will be done during a 16 month period, whilst doing volunteer work and further padding my application. Yes, I'm certain I would get accepted to a dozen US med schools and even some European ones- but I want LU. Even if I have to apply every year I will get accepted. I intend to move to Sudbury July 04 whether I'm accepted or not anyhow- if I'm not accepted in 04 I'll get a job with the hospital and audit the classes and worm my way in so that people eventually start asking why why why have I not been accepted ;) As far as I know LU itself accepts International students, and I point that out every time I go up there to attend the lecture series NOMS has started this year. The next lecture topic is unknown but the brand new straight-from-Oz dean is going to be the speaker so you bet my chubby American butt will be front row center. Kissing ass...I don't think so. Proving my interest and my desire and my determination- yes. and yeah... it's the igloos and polar bears :D
Ian- thank you :) I know they haven't quite declared themselves but their FAQ does say to go have a gander at the Ont med school req's already in place for a good idea of what I need. My only concern is the non-resident status as hindering. My education and background is otherwise on the same level as any other applicant, I believe- if non-traditional.
Crackers- I was born right across the bay from Thunder Bay (unfortunately on the US side) and I really wish that I could check the N.Ont box. I'm hoping my enthusiasm and determination help. It's stated on the website that they aren't holding spots for people, but that they're encouraging those who will remain. I will remain. I *want* to be a country doc. I've been greedily reading what will be involved in the NOMS curricula and it appeals more than any other program I can find. As ar as I can see, NOMS is the only med school that will be including 'field work' where we as students get to interact with patients from day one. This is astounding and I'm sure it will make for lots of competition for acceptance.
not rex morgan
12-07-2002, 11:35 PM
Shanna, I wouldn't get too worried about not having a "pre-med" program at your school. That's pretty much an American phenominon. No Canadian schools have them. In fact, it was kind of a joke in my undergrad that the "pre-med society," (a club) should be re-named, "those with the intention to apply." All we do is take whatever undergrad degree we please, and make sure to have all of our prerequisites. As far as foreign applications, I agree with the statements above. There is really no loophole, unless the school has an open policy of accepting foreign students. I know of a girl who was a landed immigrant and she didn't even get considered for admission at UBC until she got her citizenship, despite the fact that she was brilliant, and a wonderful person. Memorial, on the other hand, admitted something like 40 Americans a few years ago. (the second time I applied to med school...their rejection letter was actually really kindly-worded). This was almost half of it's class. The only caveat is that if you are not a citizen, your tuition is not government-subsodized, and you pay through the nose. This is probably why they have taken so many Americans in the past. They need the money. As for the MCAT, I wrote it after my second year (sophmore...I think, we don't use that here either). It's good for five years, but that shouldn't be a problem for you as you are graduating soon. If you're somewhat of a slow reader, work on reading speed above anything. If there are places that offer MCAT prep courses in your area, you might want to look into whether or not you can sign up and pay for a sitting of a practice exam, and not take the course (unless you feel like paying for that too). You can do that at in at least one of the programs here. It costs people about 20 bucks, but it's a good experience to have a dry run at it, and get an idea of the timing.
12-08-2002, 11:31 AM
I've actually got the tuition covered :) real concern #1 is the non-resident problem.
I've signed up to take a few practice MCATs and I've been studying. Reading speed is great, math is another problem.
I'm cramming some 34 classes into 16 months, and that's real concern #2 because that, like #1 pertains to qualifications, I think.
12-08-2002, 01:44 PM
I'm thinking it's going to be wholly unfair if NOMS doesn't accept an american/int'l student or 2 because their Dean is Australian.
12-08-2002, 02:19 PM
From what I've heard about the Northern school, it is going to be very small (about 40 students) and there will be a definite preference for Northern Ontario students (especially status natives). I think that your biggest obstacle will be your non-resident/non-Canadian status...and after that your non-region status. I wouldn't worry about the MCAT, because I don't think that we even know that the Northern school will require the MCAT.....
The northern school will likely participate in OMSAS. The OMSAS application makes you declare your status in Canada right after your name...and this information is forwarded to all of the schools that you apply to. They also want to know what your 'province of residency' is as well. It is often very difficult for Canadians that are from outside a school's region to get into that school...I know that Laurentian University takes international students (there are no universities in Ontario that don't) but, the problem is that not all programs at the school are open to international students or even Canadians from other provinces. As an example, the University of Guelph accepts international students by the thousands, but the Ontario Veterinary Colllege (which is at Guelph) doesn't accept anybody except for Ontario residents. (So, if you are from Manitoba you aren't eligible to even apply). This is often similar at med schools, except they usually have OOP quotas or bonus points/lower cut-offs for in province or in region applicants.
I know that UWO has discontinued their international or visa student seats (as seats are heavily subsidised by various levels of government). As far as I am aware there is ZERO chance of waiving this requirement at UWO...(ie your application goes through a shredder before it is read if you are not a Canadian or permanent resident). And for the record, UWO is giving preference ('bonus points') to applicants who are legitimate residents of southwestern Ontario....this was done last year (ie applied to meds 2006) and will be done again this year.
12-08-2002, 06:08 PM
I'm thinking it's going to be wholly unfair if NOMS doesn't accept an american/int'l student or 2 because their Dean is Australian. This is something that will be decided by a whole host of parties, including the admissions policy committee of NOMS, Laurentian U, and probably the Ontario government to a limited degree.
Unfortunately, these sorts of restrictions are pretty prevalent in Canada, and generally once a provincial residency policy is in place, it has to be very strict in order to remain consistent. I doubt there'd be any room for "exceptions" to such a policy. The best thing to do would be to contact them once the med school is up and running.
In the meantime, I'd highly encourage looking into the other Canadian and US med schools. If your end goal is to work in Northern Ontario, you certainly don't need to do med school or even residency there in order to end up as a physician in that community. Investigating other med schools as an option can only improve your overall chances of getting into a med school, and perhaps you'll find one that fits your interests and career goals even more than NOMS/LU.
UBC, Med 4
12-08-2002, 08:03 PM
Actually, NOMS is the only school that fits my interests and career goals due to their(possible) curricula. It's been hinted at, and I've read up on the curricula implemented by the new Dean at the last school he directed the same type of program at and it suits me to perfection.
So if they don't take me in 04 I'll move up there and get residency and work on citizenship until I DO qualify. I'd go right now except that I have some prior commitments.
12-09-2002, 11:38 AM
I don't really know if you'd like to come up here in Sudbury right now, we are having below 20 degrees C weather right now! BRRRR! ;)
Been here all my life and still can't get used to it! :)
12-09-2002, 03:20 PM
Hey Almond :)
I was up north in Tbay last New Years and in Sbry this summer for vacation, and I was born on lake superior across the bay from Tbay... I LOVE snow. The more, the better. Gimme 6 foot drifts and igloos and sleds :D Long as I have a fireplace and snow tires I'm in absolute heaven. I did a week in one of the Ice Hotels in FInland once and was in raptures.
I'm coming up there (Sudbury) for another visit mid-Jan barring any sudden problems. I can't wait.
12-11-2002, 05:42 PM
Right from the proposed school itself, here is the new website:
Good news for anyone wanting to work in Northern Ontario. It appears that the prerequisites / admissions criteria can not be posted at this time, but will likely take on a very "McMaster" oriented appearance as you may judge for yourself. I for one am happy at their proposed curriculum.....
Check it out...:eek
12-11-2002, 08:58 PM
I am trembling with happiness over the proposed curriculum. And I went and had a read through of Dr. Strasser's methods & curriculum from the program in Australia... now if they only decide to take on an Int'l student or 2... /pray
12-11-2002, 09:45 PM
Looks good, eh? I too am interested in rural medicine in northern ontario. You should simply call and ask if they will accept international students. From the wording on the website, it appears that they may. Take care, macdaddyeh
12-12-2002, 12:52 AM
I did.. they can't release that information yet.:\
12-12-2002, 01:41 PM
Well, I guess that there is not much else you can do now except wait.
12-12-2002, 05:09 PM
/nod Student catalogue out in June. Probably website will have more info before then though.
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