It changes. Coming from the Caribbean, you are part of an institution that is outside of the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME). Almost all the medical schools in the US and Canada are LCME-accredited and this is the requirement to move between them as a transfer. Few schools elect to consider non-LCME students. To find out which schools accept non-LCME students, I went to the AAMC’s website for transfer policies by school. I asked to search by policy then narrowed my search by selecting ALL schools in ALL regions and selecting all the boxes accept for the first four (LCME-accredited applicant, Osteopathic applicant, Dental applicant, Oral and Facial surgeon applicant). This generated a list of 54 institutions accepting transfers into the second year and 73 accepting applicants into the third year. There is some overlap.
I then sat down and called every single institution to ask about their transfer policy for non-LCME students. This is important to do if you are serious about transferring and this level of effort will separate you from your peers. You will find out before applying if a school that has always accepted transfers has recently changed its policy, has no availability this year due to an oversubscribed first year class, or has recently begun to accept transfers. There have been cases where the school said “no” over the phone, the student applied anyway and was then offered an interview. The determined student will always have an advantage over the complacent student. Decide which one you are going to be and then plan accordingly. The programs that I contacted told me that the information on this site concerning number of available spots is inaccurate, so do not let a “0 spaces available” stop you from inquiring. Plus, it builds character.
There are several schools that often have spaces available nd are well known to those that frequent the discussion boards. These school are:
4. Northeastern Ohio University College of Medicine (NEOUCOM)
5. SUNY Upstate
In addition to this list, I was able to confirm that eight other schools would accept non-LCME applicants. I do not feel like I have given too much away with this list as it is available everywhere, but if you are willing to search for the remaining schools than you deserve to be separated from others for your effort. Do not forget to call the medical schools in the state where you have residence. Several state schools do not accept non-LCME applicants but do accept applicants that are residents of the state regardless of school affiliation.
As the information begins to pile, it is a good idea to remain organized. Open a spreadsheet with a space for the school, its application deadline, fee, email contact, phone number, application cost, number of required recommendations from undergraduate and medical faculty, required transcripts, etc. Happy hunting.