Electives & Residency Programmes


Electives & Residency Programmes

Interested in completing clinical electives overseas?

Students registered on the BMBS programme can opt to complete clinical electives overseas. Completing a clinical elective in North America is essential to securing a residency in the United States or Canada.

The School of Medicine has entered into formal arrangements with McMaster University and Rutgers University to provide our students with clinical electives. In addition to our formal arrangements, strong links have been forged with a number of North American medical schools to provide our students with clinical electives in a variety of specialties. Feedback from North American institutions that have enrolled UL School of Medicine students on elective programmes have commented on their clinical proficiency and exceptional medical communication skills.

Students applying for an elective while on the programme are supported by members of the School of Medicine admin team, Stephane Pinson and Emmeline Searson.

Queries on electives to MedicineElectives@ul.ie

Visiting Student Learning Opportunities

UL School of Medicine is also a member of VSLO. The AAMC Visiting Student Learning Opportunities (VSLO) programme helps medical and public health students connect with institutions offering short-term elective opportunities that can enhance their medical education. These elective opportunities include observerships, summer research programmes, clinical opportunities, away rotations, away electives, clinical rotations and visiting opportunities.

Offered by participating host institutions in the U.S. and around the world, elective opportunities are available in teaching hospitals, community clinics, and urban or rural sites and are open to preclinical, clinical, or final-year students, as determined by the host institution.

 The VSLO Application Service (sometimes referred to as VSAS), which enables students to browse and apply to electives offered by host institutions.

The VSLO program includes

A collaborative network of US and international institutions.

Training, information and guidance for students and institutions.

Telephone and email support to students and institutions.

Elective student perspective

Laura Greene, BMBS Graduate

“I pursued a mini-fellowship in the Research department of the Rothman Institute in Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia for a four-week period in June of last summer. This was a fantastic opportunity for a medical student such as myself to get involved with research projects in a highly productive and internationally well-respected institute. The research department is made up of a friendly and motivated international team of research fellows, clinical researchers, database co-ordinators, statisticians and medical students, all working alongside one another. As a result of this fellowship, I’m involved with two research papers which, upon completion, are both likely to be submitted to high-impact journals. This fellowship provides a unique opportunity to be part of the very research that serves to improve current orthopaedic surgical practices and management with the possibility of having your own name attached to these wide-reaching publications. This was a wonderful experience which was made possible by the Department of Orthopaedics in the Midlands Regional Hospital Tullamore and one I would highly recommend.”

Dermot Murphy, BMBS Graduate

“Many different areas of orthopaedics are covered, including hip, knee, spine, and shoulder. There are medical researchers from all over the world working there. Before I went, I had little experience or knowledge of orthopaedic surgery, or orthopaedic research, but the time spent there was enjoyable and very enlightening. I became involved with two interesting projects which upon completion will be submitted to professional journals. This is an opportunity to strengthen one’s CV while also gaining invaluable research skills. I found everyone at the Institute to be both welcoming and helpful. The Institute is known all around the world as a leader in orthopaedics. It was a fantastic opportunity to spend time with some of the surgeons and researchers who have established the reputation of the Institute. As well as the research I participated in, I was given the opportunity to attend orthopaedic surgeries. The city of Philadelphia is historic and lively. The Institute is located in the centre of the city and near to Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. There are sporting events, historical monuments, cultural and musical events taking place regularly which provide great ways to spend leisure time.”

The School of Medicine currently has agreements with the following institutions

Michael G DeGroote School of Medicine,McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario

Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Thunder Bay

Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA

Additionally, students have completed electives at the following locations

Memorial University, St John’s, Newfoundland 

University of Toronto, Toronto

Lerner College of Medicine, Cleveland Clinic, Ohio 

Memorial Sloane Kettering Clinic, New York

Weill Cornell University, New York

Warren Alpert at Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island

Johns Hopkins, Baltimore

Morristown Medical Centre, New Jersey

University of Miami 

Wyoming Medical Centre, Wyoming, USA

UL School of Medicine continues to expand its network of partners overseas and encourages institutions looking to develop partnerships to contact the school at MedicineInternational@ul.ie

Looking To Complete An Elective In Ireland From Overseas?

The BMBS Incoming elective programme is facilitated through our network of overseas partners. We are happy to accommodate external students seeking elective placements over the summer months. In the case of summer elective placements the School only accommodates students from institutions that have an existing MOU with UL School of Medicine.

Queries to MedicineElectives@ul.ie



Many Canadian and US students aim to secure residency placements in North America after completing their medical programme. Our medical school is committed to facilitating the application process and examination requirements for our North American students to help them secure residency posts. All graduates and final year students are supported through the residency application process by dedicated staff in the school. Our recent graduates enjoy an enviable reputation in securing competitive residencies throughout North America.

Below is a sample of the residency locations secured by recent graduates, both in the US and Canada

McMaster University

University of Toronto

University of Manitoba

University of Saskatchewan

Tufts University

Johns Hopkins University

New York University

New Jersey City University

University of Michigan

University of Illinois

University of Arizona


In Ireland, the 'Internship' is the first year of medical practice following graduation from Medical School.  During the Intern year, medical graduates are provisionally registered with the Medical Council.  Full registration with the Medical Council follows successful completion of the Intern year.   
To date there have been sufficient Intern places available for Irish/EU medical school graduates. For International students in all Irish medical schools, the future is less certain to the extent that Government policy is to advise all overseas students that for them, INTERNSHIP PLACES CANNOT BE GUARANTEED.  However, UL will do everything in its power to optimise the employment prospects and opportunities for further training for all of its students following their graduation.  For example, in the case of North American students, we support students seeking elective placements in teaching centres in Canada and the US, so that students can form relationships that will later help them to secure good residency training programmes.


Students are also supported in their preparation for licensing or board exams (USMLE, MCCEE) is recognised as essential for students applying for North America residency training and is carefully scheduled around the official academic timetable. GEMS supports students with bespoke tutorial programmes delivered by senior academic and clinical staff. In addition to academic-led experiential teaching, access to online resources, including QBank, diagnostic examinations and simulated testing, is provided. Our students are consequently well prepared for their professional exams as attested by their high USMLE pass rates. To date, GEMS students’ USMLE first-time pass rates have averaged over 90%.

For any queries regarding residency applications please contact MedicineInternational@ul.ie


Early and extensive clinical exposure, emphasis on patient care and a dedication to professional development were aspects of the University of Limerick’s BMBS program that attracted me to apply. The unique problem-based learning (PBL) approach required students to employ a strong work ethic in addition to adapting the skills required to become valued team members. Moreover, the enduring support from faculty, hospital consultants, tutors, administration, and fellow medical students were integral to my experience at UL. With the help of faculty and administration, I arranged multiple clinical electives and sub-internships across Canada and the USA. This enabled me not only to gain North American experience but also to establish connections with well- regarded institutions, which is central to applying for residency. Furthermore, I felt well prepared for my electives and was able to make seamless transitions between the different health care systems. In addition to the abundant opportunities for travel and experiences in living abroad, I was most fortunate to meet my fiancé in Ireland, and both of us will be starting our residencies in the USA this summer. From the moment I interviewed with UL, I felt an instant connection with this institution, and I will be forever happy with my decision to attend medical school here.


I graduated from the University of Limerick Medical School in 2013, and I can wholeheartedly say that I had a fantastic experience throughout my four years at UL. The problem-based learning (PBL) approach was an invaluable way of learning. I am now an internal medicine resident in Ontario, Canada, and I can say with full confidence that the clinical knowledge and physical exam skills that I acquired in medical school have made me a competent, responsible resident. I also feel that the emphasis on group learning and public speaking through PBL was incredibly helpful in making me an effective and confident team member, which is so important for residents. The emphasis on a collegial, welcoming environment that has been created there is like no other; as students, we never felt that we couldn’t approach our professors with questions and concerns, and the focus on tailoring the program to students’ needs is unparalleled. Looking back, I truly feel that both my educational and overall life experience at UL was one that I will never forget; it has provided me with the tools to succeed as a physician.


The University of Limerick Graduate Entry Medical Programme in Limerick, Ireland is a new and developing program so it offers many unique and exciting opportunities. The teaching staff is world- renowned and their worldwide connections are invaluable when applying to electives in the United States and Canada. UL School of Medicine understands the needs of its foreign students; it offers students a weekly USMLE training course and supports them to organise electives overseas.The office staff and teaching staff are supportive and approachable. With their help I was able to participate in my first elective in South Africa after my first year of medical school and in many Canadian electives after that. The excellent training I received from my teachers gave me the confidence, skills and knowledge I needed to excel in my electives in my chosen field. With only a few graduating classes, UL GEMS has an excellent record of residency matches to the United States and Canada. Attending the School of Medicine offers a balanced work-life. I have travelled all over Europe and I have lived in different communities across Ireland, all while participating in research, presentations and lecture series. The last four years have been great, and I highly recommend a medical education at the University of Limerick School of Medicine.