Five reasons why you should study medicine abroad

Looking to train for a healthcare career? Here are five reasons why you should study medicine abroad.

The selectivity of US and Canadian medical schools has many aspiring physicians looking to international schools to further their education and realize their dream of becoming doctors. But attending medical school abroad is a big – and often scary decision. 

How do you know if it’s right for you? Here are five reasons why you should study medicine abroad.

1) You want to practice tropical medicine

Students who study tropical medicine deal with parasitology, infectious and noninfectious diseases geographically located between the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn. It encompasses diseases that result from poverty, poor sanitation, infrastructure, and inadequate health resources. 

Becoming experts in this field is possible in US and Canadian schools, and many of these schools have excellent tropical medicine programs. But by going abroad you will likely be exposed to pathologies and patients that are more relevant to the practice. 

2) You want to learn in a multicultural environment

Doctors must be willing and able to understand and connect with individuals from different backgrounds and different cultures. Studying medicine abroad will allow up-and-coming doctors to practice this skill naturally, to hone their cultural sensitivity, and to learn how to communicate about medicine with patients who may not speak the same language as them.   

3) You need a less expensive option for medical school

The average annual tuition of medical school in the United States can be as high as $60,000. For many potential students, this cost is a difficult prospect – and can have you looking for international options. That’s because international medical schools are usually less expensive than their American and Canadian counterparts, which can lessen the burden of student loans and financial stress.

Adding to the low tuition fees, many of the locations of these schools have a lower cost of living, further lessening the financial burden many students face.

4) You did not receive entrance into a US medical school

Only 41% of applicants who applied to medical school in the United States between 2018-2019 were accepted. That means a lot of qualified potential doctors are left out. Applying to an international option may be the opportunity many need to realize their career goals. 

5) You want to see new countries

One of the biggest benefits of attending medical school abroad is the opportunity to experience a different country and even travel — as long as you don’t let it interfere with your studies.