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Doris Duke/CRTP/HHMI/Sarnoff Thread

Discussion in 'Student Research and Publishing' started by OptimallyPrime, Feb 6, 2007.

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  1. HarveyCushing

    HarveyCushing

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    I believe that the HHMI- Cloister's program interviews in early March according to their website. I also believe that the DDCF programs that require interviews do those sometime in early March. This might not even be an issue if you don't make the first cut. If you do make the first cut and go on to be interviewed, then you might have something to worry about since these programs also have deadlines to meet. Depending when in early March they interview, you might miss the interview and would basically be coming back right when the notifications were sent out. Can you cancel the trip if you were notified you had an interview?
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2009
  2. socmob

    socmob

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    Judging from the posts from last year, Cloister interviews were offered on successive weekends in the first half of march which unfortunately seems to conflict w/ your dates. DDCF phone interviews,if offered, seemed to be pretty random. Sorry I don't have better news! I'd recommend calling the programs and discussing your situation to see if they could make sure to call you before you left or even do the phone interview internationally. You could talk to HHMI to confirm the interview weekend dates - I don't know how you're going to get around that but maybe they have a solution (or maybe it's not a conflict at all). Best of luck.

    edit: arrgh, beaten by HarveyCushing. =)
  3. HarveyCushing

    HarveyCushing

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    I agree with socmob, give the programs a call to let them know your situation and see if something could be worked out if you were interviewed. Good luck!
  4. Dr. Paps Meer

    Dr. Paps Meer

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    I called HHMI. The Cloister program is sending out interview notifications on February 10th. Interview weekends are going to be March 5-6 and then 12-13.
  5. thesauce

    thesauce Senior Member

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    Rxnman, I think you made a serious error in judgement. First of all, in terms of cost of living, the Cloister is subsidized more than CRTP housing, so housing costs a lot less. Second, I'm not sure what "research focus" or "enrichment activities" you're referring to, but HHMI lets you do any kind of research you want, whereas CRTP, in theory, would limit you because you must choose a clinical or translational project. With HHMI, you can do basic, clinical, or translational or anything in between. If you're talking about the Monday night dinners with nobel laureates, I'm scratching my head wondering why you wouldn't be interested in that. If you're talking about the Thursday night dinners, with more free food, those have been a great opportunity to get to know each other and their research. I can't imagine those being a problem for you.

    This one I'm really stumped on. You can take the same classes as the CRTP if you want (god only knows why you'd want to) and HHMI will pay for them and the books. HHMI has just as much structure as the rest with the exception that you can choose any kind of research that you wish. HHMI is in the same city. Housing is cheaper and a 2min walk to work with HHMI. "Clinical focus" is a negative because you're limited in what research project you choose. And again, both have the same research opportunities (whatever exists at the NIH) except the fact that you're not limited with HHMI.

    Lots of bench experience with no structure? I'm not even sure where you're getting that. You can do as much bench work as you want. Some people do none, some do a lot. What structure are you talking about?

    Lastly, just to clear something up:
    "Cloister program" = HHMI Research Scholars Program
    "Med fellows" = HHMI Research Training Fellowship
  6. RxnMan

    RxnMan Who, me? A doctor? Moderator Emeritus

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    Well, why don't you tell me how you really feel? :laugh:

    I didn't know this, as I stated above. The CRTP brochure talks about required housing - I assumed it was the same as the HHMI required housing. My mistake.

    Again, I refer to the CRTP brochure. I wanted the classes listed in the CRTP academic program (IPPCR). I don't believe that HHMI offers the IPPCR class sequence. And the CRTP will pay for you to take additional classes through FAES if you want, just like HHMI.

    I went into medicine, in part, because I wanted to clinical research. Being 'limited' to translational and clinical projects just isn't an issue for me.

    CRTP folks are able to participate in the Nobel laureate dinners. The CRTP has it's own clinical research seminar/dinner too.

    Nearly every person who has posted about the HHMI has talked about doing basic science.

    With respect to structure, when I was looking at programs, the CRTP alums had experiences much closer to what I wanted - some clinic time, some lab time, some class time. I didn't get the same feel when I looked at HHMI. In fact, I felt that the focus was solely on the lab. You guys see that as a plus - I get it! - but my experience is that unrestricted lab time becomes lab time, all the time. I've been there, done that, and I wanted something different for my year out.

    Folks, don't confuse a difference of opinion with an insult. I had specific and high standards in what I wanted for a research year out, and only the CRTP met them.
  7. thesauce

    thesauce Senior Member

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    Okay, so just FYI: only the HHMI RSP aka "Cloister" scholars live in the Cloister building on the NIH campus and it is well-subsidized. So is the CRTP housing BTW, just not as much. CRTP live in apartments off campus that are furnished and very nice. Housing is great with either program. With HHMI, it's nice having the 2min commute to my lab across the street.

    Anyone at the NIH can take the IPPCR sequence and get the certificate. Brochures for it are on every bulletin board in bldg 10. And yes, HHMI will pay for it and the books. Other classes on top of that can be approved.

    No argument there. I was just trying to clear up what "enrichment activities" you were talking about (I'm still not sure). The CRTP fellows can come to the HHMI dinners and if extra seminars are on your list of priorities, the NIH has a hundred per week outside of these programs that you are welcome to attend.

    Thats because that's what most people choose to do. 10-20% of the scholars this year are doing straight clinical or mostly clinical research. They could have just as easily chosen basic science.

    I think we're just experiencing sampling bias here. I definitely have a good mix. Most others in my program feel the same way. You can make it what you want.

    Relax, I don't take any of this as an insult in the least. What I hope to do is clear up any misinformation so that others get complete information regarding these programs.
  8. RxnMan

    RxnMan Who, me? A doctor? Moderator Emeritus

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    "Enrichment activities" means "anything the program provides outside of the lab." I mentioned the clinical research seminars because they are analagous to the ones you promoted as being an important part of the HHMI. I did not know that anyone can take the IPPCR course, so again, this is news.

    Maybe this is just me, but I sounds like you're trying to prove how one program is better than the other. But your posts show that the two programs are nearly identical - I mean, the CRTP also pays for extra classes and books.

    I'll admit it looks like I've been misinformed, but understand that I only have program brochures and this forum to go off of. You have been there for a year. If you're trying to inform current and future applicants, then starting a post with "I think you made a serious error in judgement" is counter-productive.
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2009
  9. thesauce

    thesauce Senior Member

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    Point taken rxnman. That didn't exactly open lines of communication did it?

    I admit I'm biased because I'm doing HHMI, but I truly like both programs. And regardless of what's been said, the similiarities are much greater than the differences.

    I like you rxnman. I hope you end up here in Bethesda. It's really a great time!
  10. socmob

    socmob

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    Given how similar the programs are, I'd actually love it if you (thesauce) could discuss what the real differences are between the programs? Beyond the fact that most cloisters students do bench work and technically live on campus?
  11. thesauce

    thesauce Senior Member

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    Socmob, I'm happy to:

    Let me preface with my advice to apply to BOTH programs. They're so much alike that you could overlook the differences and be happy with either, therefore it simple improves your odds of having a year in Bethesda.

    Housing:
    I'll try and mention things that I didn't in my previous posts. With HHMI, There's a lottery to determine who gets what room (unless you're with S.O., in which case you get a 1BR automatically) and depending on the room, you could pay $300-850/month which is taken directly out of your pay. Only HHMI scholars live in the Cloister. Each room comes with a computer, tv, kitchenware, and is furnished. There is a weightroom, free laundry-room, a ping-pong table, a pool table, a library, a piano, and a lounge at the Cloister as well. If you want to have a non-NIH employee come visit you, they must come through security which takes approx. 5 min (I only mention this because someone stressed this as a negative during my interviews...I couldn't give 2 sh#*s about it though).

    With CRTP, you live off campus in an apartment complex. The complex houses CRTP and non-CRTP residents. You share a 2BR with another fellow unless you have a S.O. in which case you get a 1BR. The 2BR costs 930 apiece or something like that. Not sure about the 1BR. They are furnished similarly to the cloister rooms, but you provide your own computer. They give you a computer allowance, but I think they've gotten rid of that now. Not sure about laundry. There's a gym less than a block away, but I don't know if that cost is covered. You get either a parking pass for the NIH or tons of metro money. Not sure about other recreation at the apt building.

    Research:
    CRTP can do clinical or translational. Often in the same lab as HHMI scholars.
    HHMI can do any kind of research. Often in the same lab as CRTP :)
    You choose your mentor after you get here with both programs (this is an unbelievably great thing in my opinion). HHMI requires a 9 month commitment and CRTP is 11 months, I believe. Both programs pay you to present at conferences.

    Interviews (lesser issue):
    CRTP = fly you down and stay at a Double Tree. Pay you per diem for food. Interview itself was very conversational.
    HHMI = stay at HHMI headquarters. Food and meals are provided. Interviews are at the Cloister. Interviews themselves tear you down and make you feel like you don't know what you're talking about and then question your motives.

    "Enrichment Activities":
    CRTP has Clinical Grand Rounds, optional Monday night dinners at the Cloister, and possibly other stuff. HHMI has required Monday night dinners with guest lecturers and Thursday night dinners with scholar presentations. Each program participates in the Clinical Investigator Student Trainee (CIST) Forum which is several days of lectures where all the 1 year off students (Sarnoff, DD, Fogarty, CRTP, NIH GPP, etc.) come to the NIH. HHMI has 1 additional meeting with all the HHMI fellows and scholars in Bethesda (haven't done that one yet).

    If you want to throw a party at the Cloister, for instance for the super bowl, barbecue, etc. HHMI will give you money to do it (they don't pay for alcohol though). Not sure of CRTP's policy on this.

    Classes:
    No classes are required for HHMI. They will pay for classes and books if you want them. A series of Clinical Research Courses are required by CRTP, so you leave with a certificate in clinical research.

    Wrapup:
    As you can see, they are quite similar programs. It would be hard to hit on everything here and I feel like I've missed a lot. I hope this was helpful on some level. I'll try and field additional questions as needed.

    On a side note: I thought only law2doc was ever called to post. I feel flattered!
  12. socmob

    socmob

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    Should have replied earlier b/c I read it when it was posted, but thanks so much thesauce! Only 8? more days...
  13. RxnMan

    RxnMan Who, me? A doctor? Moderator Emeritus

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    This post went from diplomatic:

    ...to downright weird:

    :hungover: :eek:

    I kid, I kid. :laugh:

    Thank you for the side-by-side comparison. Some follow-up questions:

    Do you mind if I add your comparison to the forum FAQ?

    Does the CRTP housing have a name or other Google-able identifier?

    Can CRTP fellows (or other NIH program fellows) do a clinical rotation at the NIH while they are there? Given that I'd already be at the NIH, with the time commitment and the research I'd like to do, it would be easy/fun to follow-up with an elective clinical rotation.
  14. RxnMan

    RxnMan Who, me? A doctor? Moderator Emeritus

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    Same here - the wait is killing me. Oh well, at least I have a Psych final to focus on. :rolleyes:
  15. diosa428

    diosa428 SDN Angel

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    Ok I'm going to try to address some of the things on this thread that need more info re:CRTP.

    The CRTP fellows are housed in 2 different apartment buildings - about half the fellows are in each building and both buildings are walkable from the NIH. You cannot find either on google (if you want them I can PM you the addresses but I feel kind of uncomfortable posting on the web). They are pretty large and very nice for what you'd get in Bethesda (although the ones that haven't been renovated don't have the prettiest bathrooms). Most of the IRTAs in my lab live in Bethesda or other DC suburbs and pay $800-1300 a month and all have roommates, so our rent is not out of proportion to local rates. The apartments are furnished and some of the furnishings are nice and some are not but they will replace things if something is seriously wrong with it. I personally haven't lived in a dorm since my freshman year of college so the thought of moving back into one was really unappealing to me, but I guess the expense may be worth it to some people.

    As for research, as already mentioned the CRTP and Cloister students often work in the same labs. There are no restrictions on the type of work you do - you CAN do basic science if you want. The only thing that I believe *may* be enforced is that you're supposed to work under an MD (and I was under the impression that the Cloister students were supposed to work under a PhD) but I'm really not sure... I have a feeling if you really had a good reason for wanting to work under a PhD they probably wouldn't stop you.

    The CRTP classes that RxnMan is talking about are twofold, and not available to anyone else at the NIH. We have clinical teaching rounds, probably twice a month on average, in which a doctor from some branch of the NIH presents a patient case (usually with the patient present). The format varies from presenter to presenter, but sometimes it will be a patient presenting with a problem and we have to figure out what they have, and sometimes it will be more of a lecture on a certain disease. Usually it's a combination of the two. They do do a good job of getting a variety of cases from a LOT of the different institutes. The second class we have is our "journal club". We typically have it the weeks that we don't have clinical teaching rounds, also about twice per month. For this class we have a book about clinical research and each lecture covers a chapter of the book. Two students present each chapter in a format of their choosing and they also pick a journal article somehow relevant to the chapter which we discuss. These classes are from 5-7, with dinner from 5-6 and the talk from 6-7. As already mentioned, you can attend the HHMI dinners if you want but most people in the CRTP aren't particularly interested in basic science and usually don't attend (at least in my year). Also, as mentioned, if you want to take the FAES courses (which are just courses offered by the NIH) you get a certain allowance for courses/books per semester.

    Our program requirement is 10-12 months.

    The NIH offers clinical rotations but you cannot do one while you are in the program (at least for CRTP). So during that time you would not be getting a paycheck or be allowed to live in NIH housing, but you could do one after the program was over if you wanted to.

    The amount of time you spend in clinic DURING your research year really depends upon who you work for. My lab has inpatients and does outpatient evals on a regular basis, so I see patients every day. Other students I know spend at least one half day a week in clinic. Some don't do clinic at all.
  16. batchild39

    batchild39 Professional Sloth

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    Another CRTPer here - Just to clarify, IPPCR is different from what we do. Anyone can take the IPPCR (I don't think there's even a charge, except maybe for the book). No one in the program takes it.

    Also, no one even really encourages us to do clinical research. I think most people have some basic science component. As above our PI isn't supposed to be a PhD only. For example in my branch there is an excellent PhD who we're not supposed to work with and who the HHMI kids work with. At the same time HHMI folks do not work in the clinical and translational division of my branch. Apparently this has come down straight from the institute director.

    Obviously this does not apply to every branch, but just realize that these (minor) limitations work both ways. Both programs are excellent. For future students, apply to both and see the differences when you come for interview. The only exception should be if there is someone specific who you must work with and only works with students from one program or the other (which was my case).

    Also, I only go to clinic when the fellows specifically ask for help or I don't have any experiments running. So maybe one morning a month. You'd be shocked at how much autonomy we are afforded during patient care.
  17. RxnMan

    RxnMan Who, me? A doctor? Moderator Emeritus

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    I thought housing was part of a corporate apartment complex. Since it's not, your reluctance makes sense.

    Huh. What's with the brochure and IPPCR? I'm not complaining, it all sounds good. :cool:

    Very cool. I want my future career to include some clinic and some lab time. These flexibile schedules sound exactly like what I want. :thumbup:

    Thanks for your posts. Do you guys mind if I put the information in these posts into the FAQ?
  18. kapMD/PhD

    kapMD/PhD T-1 yr

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    Does anyone have the contact information for these programs? I'm trying to get in touch with the program directors to invite students/ fellows to the annual APSA annual meeting - it's a great opportunity to present research, as well as network. Here's the link in case you're interested too.
    http://www.physicianscientists.org/meetings/annual/2009
  19. thesauce

    thesauce Senior Member

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    On an unrelated note, I forgot to mention that students of any sexual orientation are welcome to apply ;)


    No problem, go ahead and add it to the FAQ. Some schools (Cleveland Clinic, for instance) require that you get a certain amount of clinical exposure during any research program so several HHMI students have taken time off from their lab to do rotations at the NIH. I'm sure that I could do the same in my lab. However, it would just be for the experience or to appease your school, students don't get university "credit" for them as far as I know.
  20. thesauce

    thesauce Senior Member

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    This shows just how much misinformation is out there. I didn't know that CRTPs can do basic science research. And I know for a fact that HHMIers can work under an MD or a PhD. I work under an MD. My program has never suggested that I choose one or the other.

    So it sounds like either program can do any kind of research and work under either an MD or a PhD. Once more illustrating how similar the programs are.
  21. HarveyCushing

    HarveyCushing

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    So is one difference having the HHMI name behind your fellowship and the doors that can potentially open?
  22. thesauce

    thesauce Senior Member

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    If you're hoping to contrast the "prestige factor," I would refer you to page 3 where several people chimed in. I'd rather not go there again.

    In terms of residencies, all of the programs have very impressive match lists. HHMI only by word of mouth, CRTP posts their matches in the last page of their brochure: http://www.cc.nih.gov/training/crtp/CRTPBook2008.pdf, and Columbia DD posts their alumni matches here: http://dorisduke.cumc.columbia.edu/residency.html

    I challenge you to find a non-academic program listed on either site.

    I'm not sure where to find info on professorships or funding besides the fact that HHMI has early career grant awards that are only available to HHMI alumni.
  23. diosa428

    diosa428 SDN Angel

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    So, based on the brochure, the "journal club" I was talking about is the "clinical research seminar" that was described. Our clinical rounds don't seem to be included in the brochure but I doubt that they plan on doing away with them... the IPPCR course sounds like an FAES course that is offered by the NIH. We were allowed to take it this year but not required; they may have decided to change the requirements for next year. But thesauce is right, you can take that course if you are an HHMI student as well, since is an NIH course, not a CRTP course.
  24. RxnMan

    RxnMan Who, me? A doctor? Moderator Emeritus

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    Yeah, the top- and middle-third of page 2, respectively.
    It was described in the letter from the director.
  25. RxnMan

    RxnMan Who, me? A doctor? Moderator Emeritus

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    For the CRTP, check with the contact page.
  26. HarveyCushing

    HarveyCushing

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    I was not trying to start a flame war by any means with my statement. Just thought I would throw it out there as a way to decide between HHMI-Cloisters and CRTP since they are both at the NIH.

    In the HHMI brochure they have some information on past fellows and their residency/academic position. It wasn't a list, rather on the side panels like a brief intro to past fellows.
  27. HarveyCushing

    HarveyCushing

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    I'm curious if there are any MSII's applying, or are most of you MSIII's?

    BTW, should we start hearing about interviews sometime next week do you think?
  28. Dr. Paps Meer

    Dr. Paps Meer

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    Cloister interview invites go out on February 10th. Don't know when other notifications are.

    I'm a second year. I am anticipating nothing this year with the hopes that it is a learning experience for next year, assuming I still have an interest in doing so.
  29. Brooke12

    Brooke12

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    So how does applying for these programs as 2nd year med students affect the timeline of studying and taking Step I after MS2? Do you take Step I before starting these research programs (given that you're accepted)? Is it a big distraction studying for Step I and organizing a move to start these programs?
  30. diosa428

    diosa428 SDN Angel

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    You cannot apply to the CRTP without having completed your clinical rotations, so it's only available for people who are current MSIIIs or MSIVs (unless you go to Duke and do rotations as an MSII).

    Also, wrt to prestige: the majority of people who chose my program over the Cloister did so for the following reasons:
    1.) They wanted to have an emphasis on clinical research/training.
    2.) They wanted to live in apartments and not on campus.
    3.) They felt they fit in better with the CRTP fellows (if you are invited to both the CRTP and Cloister interviews, you will notice that the two groups have somewhat different personalities).

    Quite a few of my colleagues didn't even bother applying to the Cloister program because they didn't feel the program was as interesting to them wrt their interests and career goals. However, everyone obviously has their own priorities and if you need something "prestigious" on your residency application, then the Howard Hughes name *may* give you an extra push. The CRTP fellows I've spoken to, however, seem to be doing very well on the interview trail in competitive specialties and people are impressed at a year off on at the NIH regardless of the name of the program, so if you feel you fit in better with one group or the other, I personally think you should choose based on fit.
  31. diosa428

    diosa428 SDN Angel

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    The programs all have different start dates. I believe the Doris Duke programs start in July, although I'm not sure if you can apply to them as an MSII anyway. The Cloister program has multiple start dates, and you can start as late as mid/end of August, so you should have plenty of time to take Step 1 before you get here (or Step 2 if you are finishing your third year).
  32. HarveyCushing

    HarveyCushing

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    Yes you can.
  33. socmob

    socmob

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    Anyone know the Cloisters & CRTP start dates/range? (I'm actually more concerned with the earliest you can move down rather than the latest just in terms of my apt lease and deciding when to take step II)
  34. Miss Alyssa

    Miss Alyssa Member

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    This thread has been really helpful. It's really picked up since I've last been on and I have some catching up to do, but it has been great so far. Please keep posting as you all go through interviews get your acceptances and experience the programs. I'd love to hear more if I decide to apply in a future cycle. I wish you guys the best!

    Lys
  35. diosa428

    diosa428 SDN Angel

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    Sometime around the beginning of June.
  36. thesauce

    thesauce Senior Member

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    The first 2008 move-in date for HHMI was July 7.
  37. diosa428

    diosa428 SDN Angel

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    Yeah actually I have to take that back; I believe it was July 1 for CRTP.
  38. HarveyCushing

    HarveyCushing

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2005
    Messages:
    1,379
    SDN 7+ Year Member
    Found out today that I did not get accepted to the Sarnoff. Hopefully one of the DD or one of the HHMI fellowships works out. :xf: If not I'll give it another try next year.
  39. Brooke12

    Brooke12

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2009
    Messages:
    54
    You're currently a second year? If so, when are you planning taking Step I? I ask because I'm just curious how an applicant juggles this process, 2nd year, and Step I.
  40. Gabujabu

    Gabujabu Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
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    526
    Location:
    CA
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    SDN 7+ Year Member
    Most people in my class apply for these kinds of programs after second year. However, notifications for the program come around March, while people take Step I around June.
  41. socmob

    socmob

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    Jul 14, 2007
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    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    Yeah, most ppl take step 1 in may or june, perfect timing for starting a research fellowship in july. There's a similar issue w/ Step 2 - some take it before they start while others take it sometime during the research year.
  42. sigmaDX

    sigmaDX

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
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    9
    Location:
    Wards & Lab
    Status:
    Medical Student
    Has anyone heard back from cloisters yet this year? If not, anyone know when they're sending out interview notices?
  43. RxnMan

    RxnMan Who, me? A doctor? Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2006
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    Location:
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    Exactly. My school demands that students take Step 2:CK within the first 3 months of MS4. Our year starts in Aug, so taking Step 2 at that time would delay when I could move down to Bethesda, which is already at the end of the CRTP start window.
  44. RxnMan

    RxnMan Who, me? A doctor? Moderator Emeritus

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2006
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    Somewhere in time and relative dimensions in space
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    :rolleyes:
  45. Dr. Paps Meer

    Dr. Paps Meer

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2006
    Messages:
    30
    Status:
    Medical Student
    SDN 2+ Year Member
    For those who are interested: University of Iowa DDCF interview offer via email today.

    Interview dates: February 26th, March 6th, March 12th.
  46. sigmaDX

    sigmaDX

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    Wards & Lab
    Status:
    Medical Student
    Oh... thanks! Gahh, another 24 hrs of waiting :scared:
  47. HarveyCushing

    HarveyCushing

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2005
    Messages:
    1,379
    SDN 7+ Year Member
    I just got an interview for UIowa DDCF today as well. I am excited to interview there. :thumbup:
  48. diosa428

    diosa428 SDN Angel

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Messages:
    2,666
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    For those applying to Iowa DD... they seem to have not filled in years past, so you'll likely get a spot! Good luck!
  49. HarveyCushing

    HarveyCushing

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2005
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    1,379
    SDN 7+ Year Member
    That is good news if true. I noticed that just about every year they have ~7 fellows and this past year, 2008-2009, they have 9. So it seems that they have extended more spots for the program.
  50. diosa428

    diosa428 SDN Angel

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
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    2,666
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    Well I do know that when you do the Doris Duke application, you have the option of checking a box that allows you to be contacted by programs that still have available spots after the acceptance period is over, even if you didn't apply to them. Iowa did contact me and my friend (neither of us had applied there), and I know that they had done so with other students in years past. So I'm not sure how big their program is supposed to be; perhaps they ended up filling it with students who hadn't applied.

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