Q&A With Kyle Alexander, a British 2nd Year MD Student

How did you decide where to study medicine?

The decision to study medicine initially came from being exposed to a hospital environment at a young age, and being a patient myself. Seeing first-hand the impact physicians made on people’s lives, made a career in medicine very appealing.

Through further understanding of a medical career I was aware that a doctor uses the combination of medical knowledge, diagnostic skills, and effective communication/team-work for the primary goal of treating and caring for patients. Not only was this an array of skills and traits I believed I possessed, but I saw that this would be a life-long career, that is dynamic and rewarding.

Work experience and volunteering confirmed my understanding of medicine, but also showed me the challenges facing healthcare and doctors, which was vital to consider when making a balanced judgement to pursue such a career.

Ultimately I decided the gratification of working in a multidisciplinary team and treating people, far outweighed the other challenges I would face, and that in the future, I could be helping people like myself when I was younger.

What were the requirements to study medicine in Europe?

To study at the University of Nicosia Medical School, many aspects of my application were taken into account. A certain set of attained GCSEs and A level predictions were required to be considered for an interview, and work experience, volunteering extra-curricular achievements were accounted for, to make my application stronger.

Studying a certain number of Science-based subjects is also needed. The interview for me was via a video call, and now takes the Multiple Mini Interview format, where candidates are required to show passion/understanding of medicine and a medical career, interpersonal skills, effective communication, and good situational judgement.

The admissions process is to determine who will be a good doctor, and also who would make a good student. The final outcome will also be based on the attained A level grades.

How long does it take to study medicine abroad?

At UNIC, the MD program takes 6 years to complete. The first year is predominantly setting the foundations, by teaching the basic sciences, which prepares students for upcoming years.

Years 2-4 are the main academic years, where a majority of the medical knowledge is taught. These years are clinically oriented, and have placements, clinical/communication skills integrated into them, to prepare students to become competent doctors. The years 5 and 6 are clinical years, which I will be spending in hospitals.

Is studying medicine abroad worth it and what do you enjoy the most?

Studying medicine abroad is one of the best decisions I have made. Not only do you get the experience of exploring a new country, but you also become part of a diverse and multicultural cohort. Alongside studying medicine, you also learn invaluable life skills through being abroad, which helps prepare you for your career, and life in general.

Cyprus as a country is incredible and is very diverse. From beaches to mountains, to cities, the small island has it all, which allows students the freedom to explore and enhance their student life. The Cypriot people are warm and welcoming, and always make me feel at home in their country.

Within my time in Cyprus so far, the most memorable moment was just following a final exam, where a group of us took a trip up to the Troodos mountains to catch the sunset. After all the hard work and dedication throughout the year, being able to enjoy an evening with such special people in a beautiful country is unbeatable.

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Q&A With Olivia Sophia Sondhi, a British 3rd Year MD Student

How did you decide where to study medicine?

University of Nicosia Medical School stood out to me the most, out of all the universities that I was going to apply to abroad, because of a few reasons: its affiliations with St Georges, University of London Medical School, the ability to acquire 2 degrees in the 6 years of training, the opportunity to do your clinical training in years 5 and 6 in the UK and the opportunity to live and experience the culture of a different country.

What were the requirements to study medicine in Europe?

Requirements varied from university to university. UNIC was asking for either ABB or 32 points at IB (2 points above the worldwide average). Some universities just wanted you to have a school leaving certificate and others wanted you to take entrance exams. The UK universities were all asking between the range of AAA* to A*A*A*. UNIC gave me the chance to prove that I was more than just my IB score and allowed me to extend my learning further.

Is studying medicine abroad worth it and what do you enjoy the most?

Studying abroad has been the best decision I have made so far in my life. It has given me the ability to: live independently, meet new people from many different countries, explore a beautiful island with many different hidden treasures (where else in the world can you ski and go to the beach with in a 30-minute drive) and has given me the inspiration to try and learn more languages.

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