Program Overview & Goal: The UC San Diego Bridge to Residency Clinical Research Fellowship Program (with USMLE Step 2CK and 2CS prep) is a certificate-based program that provides a highly-customized opportunity for international medical graduates to gain valuable skills and knowledge in preparation for participation in graduate medical education. All Bridge Scholars participate in didactic coursework aimed at preparing them for USMLE Step 2 Exams (if needed), acculturating them to healthcare systems in North America, enhancing their clinical skills, and preparing them for applying for and participating in Graduate Medical Education (GME). In addition, each scholar receives career mentorship from a UC San Diego Health Sciences faculty member.
The goal of the Bridge to Residency Program is to provide scholars with the skills and knowledge required to maximize their ability to pursue graduate medical education in North America. This is accomplished by delivering skills and knowledge in specific areas including: USMLE Preparation; Acculturation; GME Application Preparation; Clinical Skills Enhancement; Research Skills; and Faculty Mentorship.
Duration: The Bridge to Residency Program is 12 months long and is conducted in partnership with UC San Diego Extension. UC San Diego Extension provides the certificate of completion to program participants. The Program is geared towards recent medical graduates interested in gaining an overview of the clinical setting and research methodologies in a major U.S. academic medical center, as well as medical residency preparation.
Preparation: The Step 2 Preparation Component of the Bridge Program is a combination of didactic live instruction, engaging videos that are available for study on demand, and a current Qbank, diagnostic tests, and assessment tests. A faculty advisor monitors each individual's progress on a regular basis.
Much of the preparation for this component is "practical" and involves work with standardized patients, including data gathering and practice note writing. Scholars will participate in specific skill building workshops focused on key components of the Step 2CS Exam; these will be discipline specific and taught by expert faculty from UC San Diego.
The BRIDGE Program is unique in that it provides participants with:
- Acculturation to the US health system
- GME Preparation (application, interview skills, faculty advisement, etc.)
- Research Course and Experience – Class in basic research skills and practical hands-on experience completing research projects
- Accelerated English Language Enhancement to increase fluency, writing and speaking skills
- Clinical skills enhancement including working with standardized patients and coursework
- Clinical experience and faculty mentorship – scholars spend more than 20 hours a week in the clinical setting as visiting research scholars
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