Last Updated on February 8, 2023 by Fola Shade
Caribbean schools are some of the most prestigious in the world. They offer a wide range of programs in a variety of fields, from business to engineering to art. Caribbean schools are known for their excellence in research and innovation, as well as their strong focus on student focus and engagement. This is why so many students choose to study abroad at Caribbean universities—they know that they’ll have access to some of the best learning opportunities available anywhere.
You may find it hard to access the right information on the internet, so we are here to help you in the following article, providing the best and updated information on Best schools in Caribbean. Read on to learn more. We at collegelearners have all the information that you need about Best schools in Caribbean.
Universities in Caribbean
Students who are interested in enrolling in a Caribbean college but want to ensure they are enrolled in one of the top colleges in the Caribbean will enjoy this ranking. While attending college in the Caribbean has many obvious benefits, it is important that students ensure they are receiving a high-quality education. This can be done by ensuring that the school they are enrolled in is among the top universities in the Caribbean.
Best Caribbean College Methodology
For students who want to earn a degree from an island college, we have compiled a list of our top colleges in the Caribbean. These programs have been selected for this ranking based upon a scoring system that takes into account the cost of tuition and the length of the program. The programs are ordered from highest to lowest score. All of these programs have been accredited by nationally recognized accreditation boards and have had their nonprofit status verified.
Note that tuition rates listed below are based on cost per credit, and individual programs may have additional fees.
Top 10 Caribbean College Ranking
#1. University of the West Indies
Located in Kingston, Jamaica, the University of the West Indies is one of our top colleges in the Caribbean. Originally founded as an extension campus of the University of London, the University of the West Indies is now a public university that serves students internationally. At this time, the University of the West Indies is home to a student body of over 50,000 students. While the main campus of the University of the West Indies is located in Mona, Jamaica, the University of the West Indies operates campuses across the Caribbean.
#2. University of Puerto Rico
San Juan, Puerto Rico
The University of Puerto Rico is the flagship university in the university system of Puerto Rico, and it’s one of the top colleges in the Caribbean. Founded in 1903, the University of Puerto Rico has been serving the people of Puerto Rico for over 100 years. Today, this college in the Caribbean operates eleven different campuses and enrolls almost 58,000 students. The University of Puerto Rico is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. In 2010, the University of Puerto Rico opened its largest campus. The Rio Pedras Campus plans to enroll 27,000 students by the end of this year.
#3. Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Located in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico is a private non-profit university and a top island college. The Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico primarily operates as an engineering and agricultural school. Currently, this college in the Caribbean has the unique distinction of being the largest private engineering school in Puerto Rico, as well as the largest Hispanic Serving Engineering School in the United States. It is also a top Caribbean college. The school offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate degree programs to its students.
#4. University of the Virgin Islands
Charlotte Amalie, U.S. Virgin Islands
Ranking highly among our top schools in the Caribbean, the University of the Virgin Islands boasts that it is located in one of the most popular vacation destinations in the entire world. Founded in 1962, the University of the Virgin Islands has the distinction of being a land-grant Historically Black College and University. This college in the Caribbean is made up of two campuses. The Albert A. Sheen Campus, which is located on the island of St. Croix, and the St. Thomas campus. About 2,500 students are enrolled at this Caribbean college. Almost fifty different degree programs are offered at this island college. The University of the Virgin Islands is among the top universities in the Caribbean.
#5. Santo Domingo Institute of Technology
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
One of the top schools in the Caribbean, the Santo Domingo Institute of Technology is located in the Dominican Republic. Founded in 1972, the Santo Domingo Institute of Technology is a non-profit institution. This college in the Caribbean boasts a beautiful campus that is located near the National Botanical Garden. Students at The Santo Domingo Institute of Technology study programs in engineering, health sciences, business, social sciences, humanities, environmental sciences, and more.
#6. University of the Commonwealth Caribbean
The University of the Commonwealth Caribbean is among our top Caribbean schools. Located in Kingston, Jamaica, the University of the Commonwealth Caribbean was formed in 2002 after the Institute of Management Sciences was merged with the older Institute of Management & Production. Since then, this college in the Caribbean has grown to serve students across the Caribbean. Now, the University of the Commonwealth Caribbean maintains six campuses across the island of Jamaica. A total of 5,000 students are enrolled across this island college’s many campuses.
#7. Northern Caribbean University
Northern Caribbean University tops our ranking of the top schools in the Caribbean. A private liberal arts university, Northern Caribbean University is located in Mandeville, Jamaica. Currently, the Northern Caribbean University operates four campuses: its main campus in Mandeville, plus three regional campuses located across the island of Jamaica. Northern Caribbean University is one of the oldest island colleges in Jamaica and was founded in 1907.
#8. Caribbean University
Bayamon, Puerto Rico
A top Caribbean school, Caribbean University is made up of four different campuses located across Puerto Rico. Caribbean University operates campuses in Bayomón, Vega Baja, Carolina, and Ponce. The first campus was officially opened in 1969. The school system was renamed to Caribbean University in 1990 after it began offering graduate studies to its students. Caribbean University has received accreditation for its programs from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
#9. Inter American University of Puerto Rico
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Inter American University of Puerto Rico is one of our top universities in the Caribbean. Founded in 1902, Inter American University of Puerto Rico’s main campus is located in San German. Since its opening, the Inter American University of Puerto Rico has grown to become one of the largest private universities in Puerto Rico. The school operates additional campuses across the island in Aguadilla, Arecibo, Barranquitas, Bayamón, Fajardo, Ponce, and San Juan. Students at Inter American University of Puerto Rico can choose from academic programs offered across eleven different schools at one of the top universities in the Caribbean.
#10. All Saints University
Ranked highly among our top Caribbean schools, All Saints University is a school of medicine located in the Caribbean. Founded in 2006, All Saints University is administered from a different campus located in Toronto, Ontario. All Saints University focuses primarily on providing subsidized medical educations to its students. Most students enrolled at All Saints University receive scholarships that account for 50% of their tuition. Located in Roseau, Dominica, All Saints University is one of the top universities in the Caribbean.
Best Medical Schools in the Caribbean
Throughout the Caribbean, there are over 50 medical schools where people from North America and around the world go to get their medical degree.
Many Caribbean med schools also offer streamlined pathways to becoming a doctor that would normally be difficult to find in the U.S.
Whether it’s dual baccalaureate/MD programs or easier transferring from a local university to one in the Caribbean, these schools expand access to quality medical education, international exposure, and clinical opportunities.
Furthermore, a medical education in the Caribbean usually charges lower tuition and offers ample scholarship opportunities. The quality of curriculum remains high while being relatively affordable to most students.
Plus, it doesn’t hurt to enjoy warm weather and white sand beaches year-round.
For these and many other reasons, U.S. and Canadian citizens look to Caribbean med schools as an alternative or back-up option to med schools in North America.
Caribbean schools may even be better for those interested in working as a doctor elsewhere in the world, since the global perspective of Caribbean learning environments and global accreditation allow for a smooth transition from med school to residencies around the world.
This article will discuss 10 of the best medical schools in the Caribbean, including their state-of-the-art facilities, financial aid opportunities, program offerings, and curriculum structure.
Most follow a U.S.-style curriculum — two years of basic sciences followed by two years of clinical rotations — so graduates apply for residencies well-prepared for the unique challenges of the American healthcare system.
All Saints University School of Medicine (Roseau, Dominica)
ASU School of Medicine is a private medical school with a campus located on the coast of Roseau, Dominica and administered from an office in Toronto, Canada.
It’s a relatively new school, founded in 2006, but it is quickly becoming a hub for international medical students looking for a global perspective to medicine.
The school emphasizes its excellent academics and affordable tuition, especially compared to med schools in the U.S. There are generous financial aid packages that cover up to 20-25% of total tuition costs, and an automatic scholarship for Dominica citizens covering 50% of tuition.
ASUSM offers two different MD tracks: the four-year and the five-year degree. The four-year MD follows a traditional curriculum structure — two years of introductory science courses followed by two years of clinical clerkship — that is open to applicants who have completed a bachelor’s degree and the proper pre-med course requirements.
The five-year MD is designed for recent high school graduates who want to study medicine right away. This rigorous program consists of four semesters of pre-med courses directly followed by the four-year MD curriculum. Students in this accelerated program take three semesters a year in order to finish within the five-year timeframe.
Students in either program have the opportunity to complete their clinical clerkships from a variety of institutions around the world, including U.S. hospitals in Chicago, Little Rock, and St. Paul.
They also have the option to study in other Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME)-approved teaching hospitals in Canada, the UK, and the Caribbean.
University of Medicine and Health Sciences (Basseterre, Saint Kitts)
UMHS’s medical degree is a 10-semester MD program that takes students from the beaches of Saint Kitts to the suburbs of Portland, Maine, to various clinical clerkships across the U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico.
The first four semesters are taught on campus in Saint Kitts, followed by a fifth semester in Portland to learn the foundations of clinical medicine. Then, students have the option to do rotations at UMHS’s affiliated hospitals.
UMHS has a 96% retention rate and 93% first-time pass rate on the USMLE Step 1. Students enjoy a scenic location right by the Caribbean Sea and state-of-the-art learning facilities.
Classes are held in large auditoriums equipped with multiple 56-inch LED monitors and high-definition LCD projectors. Multi-purpose labs feature these audio and visual capabilities as well as projection microscopes. The school is also home to high-tech anatomy, neuroanatomy, and human simulation labs.
The Anne Ross Library and Learning Resource Center provide further research resources and study spaces so students can learn to their fullest potential. Archives include physical books, multimedia sources, and journals in ebook format. Throughout campus, students stay connected with high-speed internet despite their island location.
The curriculum largely follows that of the best U.S. med schools, but UMHS’s tuition is relatively affordable, unlike its mainland counterparts. Furthermore, students can apply for various merit, government, and third-party scholarships.
Trinity Medical Sciences University (Kingstown, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines)
Trinity Medical Sciences University was founded in 2008 to address the shortage of doctors in the U.S. and Canada. To this day, its mission remains to educate and train tomorrow’s physicians to meet the healthcare needs of the communities they serve.
The school has administrative offices in Roswell, Georgia, and the curriculum follows the American model of med school training: two years of basic science instruction, then two years of clinical rotations. Students learn in hands-on, small group settings and get clinical exposure starting as early as the first semester.
Trinity is a growing school, which means that class sizes remain small in order to facilitate more student-faculty interaction. And its size doesn’t prevent it from getting involved in community health programs through local charity groups and homes for children.
The university has a partnership with Milton Cato Memorial Hospital in Kingstown, meaning that students can find clinical experiences well before years three and four. Milton Cato is a teaching hospital with 230 beds, and students participate in weekly rotations, health fairs, and triaging patients.
The clinical half of the MD program actually takes place either in Baltimore, Maryland or Warner Robins, Georgia. In Baltimore, students can take advantage of the city’s extensive teaching institutions, including the University of Maryland hospital system and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
In Warner Robins, Trinity students benefit from the school’s partnership with Houston Healthcare (HHC). HHC is a sprawling medical institution serving over 300,000 people annually.
Xavier University School of Medicine (Oranjestad, Aruba)
XUSM offers both a pre-med and an MD program. The pre-med program is for bright high school graduates who want an accelerated path to med school since it lasts only a year and a half. They can then transition to the four-year MD program, which consists of two years of basic sciences followed by two years of clinical rotation.
Xavier is dedicated to producing physicians who are socially minded, clinically competent, professional, and lifelong learners.
To this end, the school has established several pre-med programs in India, Jordan, and Ghana. This innovative program allows aspiring doctors to take pre-med requirements in an institution in their home country before pursuing their MD at Xavier.
Once they finish their pre-med requirements, they move to Aruba for the basic sciences portion of the MD, followed by clinical clerkships in the U.S.
Often, these scholars hail from medically underserved communities that they come back to serve after getting their MD. In this way, Xavier educates not only Americans and Canadians but also a diverse international student population hungry to help the world’s current healthcare needs.
During clinicals, students go through a thorough 48 weeks of core rotations, after which they can choose elective rotations at affiliated hospitals in Illinois, New York, Maryland, Puerto Rico, and more.
XUSM faculty represent a broad range of clinical and geographic backgrounds. Most have established careers practicing in the U.S. Some bring perspectives from other industries, such as Jacques Odryzynski, a former process engineer for Valero who moved to Xavier to teach chemistry.
American University of Antigua (St. John’s, Antigua and Barbuda)
AUA holds 14 different accreditations and approvals that allow graduates to practice medicine in all 50 U.S. states, Canada, the UK, India, and elsewhere.
The curriculum follows the American model that balances basic sciences and clinical experiences, but its international program agreements separate AUA from other Caribbean med schools.
One of the programs is offered through the American International College of Arts and Sciences – Antigua (AICASA). Students who graduate with an associate degree from AICASA are guaranteed admission into AUA College of Medicine, as long as they fulfill eligibility requirements.
Another such program is for Florida International University (FIU) graduates who maintain a minimum GPA, complete pre-med coursework, and get a letter of recommendation from a university official.
Preferred admission to AUA is given to these applicants. If they get in, they’ll have the option two years later to return to FIU for the clinical portion of their medical education.
Furthermore, AUA med graduates will also receive preferred admission if they apply to pursue a Master of Public Health degree at FIU.
There is also a list of schools from which, if graduates meet GPA and letter of recommendation requirements, are guaranteed admission to AUA College of Medicine. They’ll also be eligible for a Preferred Program Grant in addition to any scholarships they receive.
Some of these scholarships can be very generous, including the $80,000 Provost Scholarship and the $50,000 Physician Diversification Initiative Scholarship. AUA also offers service and cultural awards to incoming medical students who can demonstrate a significant contribution to their community.
St. Matthew’s University (Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands)
St. Matthew’s University is home to a medicine and veterinary medicine program, conferring both MD and DVM degrees.
Students will reside in a two-story former hotel along a 7-mile beach on Grand Cayman island. The residence hall is located a few miles from campus and allows for a relaxing yet productive learning environment. There are a total of 80 single rooms, 29 standard suites, and eight deluxe suites.
The MD program is a 10-semester course of study divided into basic sciences (the first five terms) and clinical training (the latter five terms). After completing basic science instruction at SMU, students travel to rural hospitals across the U.S., Canada, or the UK to complete their rotations.
The MD program boasts an excellent 7:1 student-to-faculty ratio and 95% first-time pass rate for the USMLE Step 1 exam.
Students also benefit from SMU’s Center for Learning Enhancement (CLE), which is an integrated program that supports students throughout their studies.
Through CLE, students benefit from faculty reviews and tutoring outside of class time, peer mentoring, academic advisors, and academic development workshops that improve students’ performance in med school.
The DVM program is an accelerated 3-year course of study that features classes no larger than 20 and 10-20% more affordable tuition.
Students will work directly with a variety of species and gain clinical experiences in small-animal and large-animal hospitals. They also have the option of applying for year-long externships at partner institutions in Canada and the U.S.
Saba University School of Medicine (The Bottom, Saba, Caribbean Netherlands)
Students and graduates of Saba have particularly good outcomes. Between 2015 and 2019, the first-time pass rate for the USMLE Step 1 exam was nearly perfect — 99% — and between 2018 and 2019, 94% of Saba med school grads got residency placements.
Founded in 1992, Saba has a decades-long history of producing excellent physicians through its quality med school curriculum.
The school started as an international medical school to rival U.S. and Canadian med schools and continues to offer a globally competitive curriculum.
Saba is also the only med school in the Caribbean with accreditation from the Netherlands, which holds the school to high European standards as well as those of the U.S.
In collaboration with the University of South Wales, Saba offers the Pathway Partnership Agreement to qualified USW Medical Sciences graduates. This program will allow them to matriculate with advanced standing into year 2 of the MD program at Saba. Students will be able to earn their MD degree in eight semesters instead of ten.
Saba also offers generous scholarships to incentivize U.S. and Canadian students to study on the Caribbean island and return to practice in their home country.
American merit scholarships start at around $25,000 and can go up to $110,000. Canadian applicants are eligible for the Loyalty Scholarship ($65,000) or Merit Scholarship ($25,000-55,000).
In addition to the American Medical Student Association (AMSA), student organizations include the Women’s Medical Student Association, Indian Students Association, Muslim Students Association, and more.
American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine (Sint Maarten, Kingdom of the Netherlands)
Since 1978, AUC has produced nearly 7,000 graduates and significantly boosted the number of physicians in the U.S. and worldwide.
The school delivers an American-style curriculum through international learning experiences and nurturing social accountability.
The St. Maarten campus features technologically advanced classrooms, labs, and a medical library. MD students complete the fundamental science portion of their studies here before going off to clinical rotations in the U.S., where AUC has administrative offices in New Jersey and Florida.
AUC is also branching out to reach aspiring physicians outside the U.S. The new UK-Track medical degree program allows non-U.S. citizens to earn an MD from AUC by studying at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).
Within this track, interested students can either apply as a graduate (bachelor’s degree holder) or undergraduate.
Graduate entry into the MD program takes four years, whereas undergraduate entry leads students to a BS in Medical Sciences and an MD within five and a half years.
At UCLan, one of the UK’s largest universities, students will benefit from the school’s vast resources, diverse perspectives, and intricate student networks on top of a world-class medical education.
Another international program offers a gateway for students with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) degree from an institution approved by India’s National Medical Commission.
These students can apply to transfer with advanced standing to AUC’s MD program. Once there, they must complete at least two years of medical study.
AUC offers scholarships that fund up to $80,000 of tuition.
Ross University School of Medicine (Bridgetown, Barbados)
Up until January 2019, RUSM was located in Portsmouth, Dominica, where the school suffered extensive damage from Hurricane Maria. Its new location in Barbados allows the school to continue educating physicians to address the growing global shortage of medical practitioners.
The school has graduated over 16,000 doctors eligible to practice in all 50 U.S. states. As one of “The Big Four,” Ross has an established reputation among Caribbean med schools.
Unlike many mainland U.S. med schools, Ross accepts three new cohorts of students per year in September, January, and May. This keeps the student body population dynamic and thriving.
Even though 86% are American citizens, students represent many different cultural and ethnic backgrounds.
Clerkships are completed in the U.S. or the UK. After graduation, RUSM graduates have a first-time residency match rate of 92%, comparable to the mainland U.S. match rate of 93%.
Ross is dedicated to expanding access to quality medical education. One of the ways is through generous scholarships that cover partial to full tuition, which totals $250,000+.
Another way is through new partnerships with a number of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), such as Dillard University, Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science, Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, and Tuskegee University.
These partnerships allow students from these universities to gain easier access to quality medical education and increase physician diversity in the U.S.
St. George’s University School of Medicine (St. George, Grenada)
For the past 12 years, SGU has produced more doctors for first-year U.S. residency programs than any other med school in the world.
Part of why it’s been a leading producer of physicians is its large student body population, which totals about 6,500.
These students have the option to earn an MD in four (or more) years, and they can pair the MD with an MBA, MPH, or MSc.
Two-thirds of students are U.S. citizens, but the total student body represents over 150 different nationalities, and graduates practice in more than 50 different countries.
SGU’s goal of educating future doctors spans the globe. Right now, interested applicants can start their MD from Grenada but also the UK and India.
SGU’s longstanding partnerships with Northumbria University and the Ramaiah Group of Institutions allow med students to learn in their home country before spending a year in Grenada to finish off their basic science studies. It’s almost like being able to study abroad as a med student.
SGU is also committed to the scientific research and development of the Caribbean region. The Windward Islands Research and Education Foundation (WINDREF) promotes health and sustainable development through interdisciplinary research and community programs.