Wednesday, January 28, 2009

No, I do not have any more #@*$&! questions about the program, or anything else

Interview season has come to a close for me. My interview season was relatively very short and painless; with my husband having a spot at a nearby university for residency, I only applied locally. Let's not talk about what that means for my matching chances, especially given that I am attempting to match in dermatology. We will pretend that this is NOT the scariest thing ever, and move on. Very well.

In any case, I only had five total interviews, and had to travel for exactly zero of them. Given how ecstatic I am that I am all done, I have to wonder--how do people DO this? Most people have 10-25 interviews, all over the country. I was ready to stab myself in the eye after just five. Plus, I actually liked all of the places I interviewed, which makes it even less painful.

However, there is something weird about interviewing only where you have done rotations. It leaves a lot more blank space where there would have been questions, and as anyone who has gone through interviews can tell you, there is already a lot of blank space where they expect questions that don't exist. After you've gone through two or three lectures about the place and met with residents and faculty both formally and informally, there just aren't. Any. More. Questions. But yet they ask, at some point during every individual interview: "Any questions for me? Anything you'd like to know about the program?"

It is especially tough for derm interviews, where you have to meet with essentially ALL of the faculty individually, typically at least 10 or more people. It's nice in these situations to have a Blue Ribbon Pony of a question all picked out that you can parade in front of any faculty member, especially if you care about the answer. My personal Pony was: "What do you see as the most important goals for the future of (fill in name of residency program here)?" Interviewers love this question, and it gives a lot of helpful information to you, too.

That is my one useful tip for today. I have been heavily engaged in recruiting for our MD/PhD program, which is fun but busy and stressful. It is also very weird to have just finished being on the interviewee side of things, and then being on the interviewer(-ish) side of things. Now I have been chained in the garage by my husband to help him sort through the mind-boggling amount of ridiculous crap we have in there. It's nice, but now I need a nap.

I had something else to say, but it's gone now. Will post more when brain working again. Unless I inadvertently put said brain in one of the to-donate boxes in the garage... hmmmm....

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