Dr. Malik Soudah explains medical school admission policies

Tonight, we bring you part two of our coverage on the American Global University School of Medicine (AGUSM) press conference. Yesterday, Dr. Malik Soudah, the school’s chief administrator and President of American Academic Services, addressed multiple topics on the history and practices of AGUSM. One of his sore spots is the alleged “smear campaign” he believes his school is being targeted with by a rival, Central American Health Sciences University (CAHSU). He made multiple allegations against them but had to address how his school was fooled, briefly, by a “phantom” by the name of Sergio Mendez. He was a plant allegedly of CAHSU and a local television station to expose AGUSM in 2010. The story never aired but Soudah told the story at the press conference and Dr. Soudah responded that the school followed its procedures to the letter.

Dr. Malik Soudah – President, American Academic Services:
We accept unofficial transcript.  That’s our policy. Unofficial transcript, till you bring the official transcript.

Jules Vasquez
He said I got a C in Human Biology and I got a D in others.

Dr. Malik Soudah – President, American Academic Services:
vlcsnap-2013-05-03-20h01m01s122This is why we followed up in three days with phone calls and the guy disappeared. Someone can’t put on application, we have to investigate.   After three days the guy disappeared, we just pulled the file, and say put it on  the shelf.  It’s as simple as that.  We never issued a degree for him. He’s not a practicing physician.  Anyone can fill an application.  You can fill an application. We cannot discriminate.

Reporter:
He gave you his transcript by mail, and you said OK you’re in the first year.

Dr. Malik Soudah – President, American Academic Services:
Provisional.  We have to get the official transcript.

While “Sergio Mendez” showed up only once when the school was in Belmopan, the school figured out pretty quickly that he was no legit medical student. In any event, the school says, the medical boards in the U.S. and elsewhere make it tough for fraudsters to perpetuate hoaxes like this one. Later he spoke of his own personal issues, revealing that he had to declare personal bankruptcy in the midst of a messy divorce. How does this relate to the school? Not at all, and Dr. Soudah has a problem with that and other public records that he says has been used to unfairly indict the school.

Dr. Malik Soudah – President, American Academic Services:
Have I ever filed for bankruptcy? I did with my personal divorce.  I did but that’s a personal divorce.
You have to understand one thing.  This is part of those things I really don’t understand, and I think it’s very low for anyone.
In the States they have different laws.  My private life is my private life. What I’m saying is, it was part of the private life divorce. I mean, that’s how it is.  There’s a separation of two things here.  One thing you need to understand.  There is bankruptcy private, and company.  We never filed any bankruptcy on the company.  It’s a personal decision I made with a divorce issue.  That’s personal.  It’s got nothing to do with corporation.

The company pays U.S. taxes as a foreign corporation and Social Security here. As for the clinical residencies which Florida law says must be approved by the Department of Education, Dr. Soudah says his clients have a personal relationship with AGUSM and so it is not necessary.

Dr. Malik Soudah – President, American Academic Services:
We don’t deal with the Department of Education.  These hospitals, they are privately owned.
We get permission from the ECFMG, the Education Committee of Foreign Medical Graduates.  We have a number.  The schools are registered with the Education Committee of Foreign Medical Graduates. Meaning they’re giving permission for our students to take the exams and practice medicine in the States.  Also, we are recognized by the VA (Veterans Administration) Department. People who served in the US Army can take loans to continue their education here. We’re recognized by them too.   But mainly we’re recognized by the ECFMG in Philadelphia.  So she cannot just go and sit for an exam in the States because she feels like it. She can’t do that.  She has to go through a process with us and this committee in Philadelphia.

We are pursuing a response from CAHSU on yesterday’s allegations.

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