Dermalicious123

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Oct 18, 2014
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hello, ms2 here.
what would you have done differently in your preparation to apply to derm in 20/20 hindsight? things like "that was a waste of time" or "should have focused more on that" and so on and so forth.

also, what kinds of thank you gifts do dermatologists like? as an aside rant, the a**-kissing never stops in academia does it...:penguin:
 

DermViser

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Apr 4, 2009
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I don't think there is anything I would have or could have done differently that I can think of at the top of my head. I think one thing students realize well into medical school is that their home school's dermatology dept. is either excellent, good, average, or poor when it comes to mentoring their home students in applying for the match in Derm. Remember, your home Derm residency program is not obligated to take anyone at your school that year and sometimes if a lot of people in your year are applying for Derm at your state med school, for example, that can affect the number of interviews you get since programs can only interview so many.

If you go to a school that doesn't have a great Derm program where you can build up your CV, this that can sometimes effect how well you do in the match. Some derm programs have faculty that really go all out for their students. Some are the exact opposite and won't do anything. I think applicants don't realize how "connections" based Derm can be, so sometimes depending on what your academics are, where you go to school, how much you've gotten published so far, it might help for you to take a year off and go somewhere where you can make that good connection and also be productive.

There are some really good programs out there that aren't NYU, UCSF, UPenn, Harvard, etc. which have awesome faculty, great experiences in all areas of Dermatology, and prepare their residents well, and to top it off, a normal lifestyle in residency where you have time to read. And no the ass-kissing in academics never stops bc academics always has some political forces at work and certain faculty members can be very full of themselves. LOL. :pompous:
 
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FIREitUP

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Jul 31, 2007
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I don't think there is anything I would have or could have done differently that I can think of at the top of my head. I think one thing students realize well into medical school is that their home school's dermatology dept. is either excellent, good, average, or poor when it comes to mentoring their home students in applying for the match in Derm. Remember, your home Derm residency program is not obligated to take anyone at your school that year and sometimes if a lot of people in your year are applying for Derm at your state med school, for example, that can affect the number of interviews you get since programs can only interview so many.

If you go to a school that doesn't have a great Derm program where you can build up your CV, this that can sometimes effect how well you do in the match. Some derm programs have faculty that really go all out for their students. Some are the exact opposite and won't do anything. I think applicants don't realize how "connections" based Derm can be, so sometimes depending on what your academics are, where you go to school, how much you've gotten published so far, it might help for you to take a year off and go somewhere where you can make that good connection and also be productive.

There are some really good programs out there that aren't NYU, UCSF, UPenn, Harvard, etc. which have awesome faculty, great experiences in all areas of Dermatology, and prepare their residents well, and to top it off, a normal lifestyle in residency where you have time to read. And no the ass-kissing in academics never stops bc academics always has some political forces at work and certain faculty members can be very full of themselves. LOL. :pompous:
what programs are you impressed with other than the ones you've listed that are obviously academic powerhouses?
 

DermViser

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Apr 4, 2009
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what programs are you impressed with other than the ones you've listed that are obviously academic powerhouses?
I thought Iowa, Emory, and UNC were examples of excellent programs. I think it also depends if your intention is to subspecialize further in Mohs/Procedural Derm or Dermpath. If that's the case, it's helpful to go to places where that fellowship is readily available at the program, but that's definitely not necessary, as I know those who published with Mohs surgeons' on staff (but no fellowship at their home program) and matched somewhere else for fellowship. I know some people who wanted great Pedi Derm exposure in residency initially, so in their case, Northwestern was an excellent choice, bc the Chairman of the program, Dr. Paller, is the top of Pediatric Derm, as is Dr. Beth Drolet at MCW.

I think people will want different things when it comes to a Derm programs - some want to be pushed to the limit and go to academic powerhouses (in that case you will be putting in much longer hours) with eventual goals to become stellar academicians, some want to be physician/scientists, some want a more relaxed program atmosphere where you learn but lifestyle is much better bc people are starting families. I don't think one reason is wrong over the other.

Part of the problem is the moment you click and send your application to all programs, you don't know which part of your application will catch the eye of someone on faculty at a program, which will cause them to offer you an interview and say, "Oh! I want to meet this guy/girl!". Interview day won't tell you 100% how life will be like, but you'll notice things like faculty demeanor, do the residents get along w/eachother or not, are the residents exhausted or not, certain amenities offered to residents, etc. It's quite eye-opening.

No matter how many interviews you get, more than likely you'll be attending all of them anyways, and even then you'll only be switching around positions on your rank list, but not dropping them.