Southeast Missouri State University student publication

SEMO and St. George’s University start partnership to support medical students

Wednesday, January 31, 2024
SEMO medical students practice injections.
Photo by Polina Kondrashova

SEMO students who are considering a career in medicine now have more opportunities for academic and personal development. SEMO has just entered a partnership with St. George's University, a school in Grenada, West Indies, that will allow outstanding medical major students to continue their studies and advance their progress.

SEMO executive director of International Education Kevin Timlin shared more information about the partnership and its benefits for students.

“St. George's agreement gives SEMO pre-medical students an automatic admission into their [St. George’s University] MD program, if they complete our pre-medical program with a 3.4 GPA and a 3.5 GPA in their science courses,” Timlin said.

This agreement was established to help students get a medical degree, which is usually challenging. The partnership aims to attract hardworking students to offer them financial and moral support.

“I think U.S. medical schools are very, very strict. They're rigorous, they're stressful, and they have a model in which people burn or weed out,” Timlin said. “In St. George's University, they have a much more student-centric model, in which they provide counseling, they provide support, they provide a different kind of environment where they're not trying to get people burnt out.”

St. George’s University is interested in recruiting and supporting students who are motivated to become qualified physicians or veterinarians. Their main goal is to help students successfully finish medical programs.

“They take care of their students, and they really monitor their progress,” Timlin said. “And what I would say is they've developed a process for their medical schools that helps them identify people who are going to be qualified and good physicians, and a model to support them in their program in order to get them through the medical school.”

For SEMO, this agreement means more opportunities for pre-medicine and pre-veterinarian programs. The dedication of SEMO students and staff became a fundament for building this partnership.

“I want to stress we are the only university in the state of Missouri that has an agreement with St. George's, and one of only approximately 40 in the entire U.S.,” Timlin said. “They vetted our pre-medical program and biological sciences program, looked at the faculty members, courses, qualifications, outcomes, and recognized our program as being one that successfully prepares people for this environment”.

According to the SEMO website, accepted students will receive a $10,000 scholarship to complete their studies at St. George’s University.

Sophomore biomedical science major Vanesse Mungate, who recently applied for the program, says that it will help her achieve her professional goals.

“I'm an international student here in the U.S., and it's very hard for international students to get placements. You need to have extremely, extremely high GPA, and medical school is expensive, so you need to have a good financial status,” Mungate said. “Compared to schools in the U.S., you're getting education, but at a more affordable price.”

Getting experience in and outside of the United States is another benefit of the program.

“The biggest factor for me is that a lot of upcoming doctors here in the U.S. can be coming from St. George's, which is a good thing because if you get into the medical field, you might need some references. And that would be a good start.” Mungate said.

According to the SEMO website, SEMO and St. George’s University entered the agreement in December 2023. As the partnership is new, a limited number of students are participating.

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