The purpose of this post is to give you all some helpful tips and tricks for following up with residency programs after your interviews. Coming fresh off the interview trail, I thought I would share my experiences with you, especially the ones from which I received positive feedback.
The pager on my hip beeped at 1:22 am with a call from the ICU. The nurse on the other end asked if I would please come down and pronounce a patient who had passed away. “I’ll be right there,” I responded, put down the admission note I was writing, and set off toward the ICU. This was my first inpatient medicine rotation as an intern, so I was embracing this task with a mix of overconfidence and not knowing what I didn’t know. I was also trying not to disturb my senior resident who was either addressing some important tasks or sleeping. Hitting the wall plate to open the double doors to the ICU, a nurse behind a desk pointed in the direction of one of the patient rooms. As I approached the room, I realized that I didn’t actually know how to pronounce a patient and had never been taught how to do so in medical school.
Click here to read more at the Harvard Macy Institute blog.
Ted O’Connell, MD
The topic of thank you notes following residency interviews gets a fair amount of attention, so I thought I would weigh in and offer some advice. The questions, as well as some key information that selection committees tend to talk about, fall into just a few categories.
When should you write thank you notes after an interview?
This one is pretty straightforward. Thank you notes should be written as soon as possible after your interview day while your thoughts are fresh in your mind and so you stay on top of the process. You will visit a lot of residency programs during interview season, and you don’t want to fall behind or start to mix up details from different programs. Getting the thank you notes out in a timely fashion will also send the message that you are professional, organized, and efficient, all qualities that you want residency programs to associate with your application.
To whom should you write thank you notes?
The residency personal statement creates a lot of anxiety for applicants because of the perception that it can make or break your application. The truth is that it is very unlikely to make your application but can potentially break your application. The personal statement should briefly summarize who you are as a person and physician in training, highlight one or two important experiences in your personal or professional life, and discuss why you have chosen the specialty to which you are applying and some of your career goals.