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2017-2018 Psychiatry Interview Reviews / Insight

Discussion in 'Psychiatry' started by raisinbrain, Oct 3, 2017.

  1. raisinbrain


    Sep 12, 2017
    Interview season is starting up soon, so here is a place we can share our thoughts and hopefully help each other out along the way! I found last year's thread to be helpful in learning about programs; it can seem daunting to try to figure out where to start, and perhaps we can be helpful to each other and to next year's crowd as well.

    Here are some links to 2016-2017 reviews, 2015-2016 reviews, and a compilation of several old review threads. Shout out to clozareal starting such a helpful post last year and keeping in updated, and to those in prior years!

    Everyone is welcome to post their impressions after interviews, and multiple reviews per program are definitely welcomed. No pressure if you don't have time to write a novel (e.g., I hope nobody stresses about trying to find the precise salary and benefit package of every program just to post it here). Please keep in mind that these posted reviews represent a single individual's perspective from their interview day. Your mileage may vary. If you're worried about anonymity (and haven't already made a fresh account), you can message your review to me and I'll post them a couple times per week.

    Happy interviewing, everyone!

    You can use the following format as a guideline.

    1. Ease of Communication:
    2. Accommodation & Food:
    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    4. Program Overview:
    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    7. Salary & Benefits:
    8. Program Strengths:
    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    10. Overall Impression:

    Running list of this year's reviews:

    - Arrowhead Regional Medical Center - review 1

    - UCSF San Francisco - review 1
    - Yale - review 1, review 2
    - University of Central Florida - review 1
    - Emory - review 1
    - Loyola University - review 1

    - Northwestern University - review 1, review 2
    - Rush University - review 1
    - University of Chicago - review 1, review 2
    - University of Illinois, Chicago - review 1, review 2
    - University of Illinois, Peoria - review 1
    - Indiana University - review 1, review 2, review 3
    - University of Iowa - review 1
    - KUMC - review 1
    - BIDMC, Beth Israel Deaconess - review 1, review 2

    - Cambridge Health Alliance - review 1, review 2, review 3
    - Harvard, Brigham & Women's - review 1
    - Tufts - review 1, review 2
    - UMass - review 1, review 2, review 3
    - Michigan State University - review 1

    - University of Michigan - review 1
    - Mayo Clinic - review 1, review 2
    - Saint Louis University - review 1
    - Washington University in St. Louis - review 1, review 2
    New Hampshire
    - Dartmouth - review 1
    New Jersey
    New Mexico
    New York
    - Columbia - review 1, review 2
    - Cornell - review 1, review 2
    - Montefiore - review 1

    - Mount Sinai, Ichan - review 1
    - New York University - review 1, review 2
    - Stony Brook SOM - review 1
    - SUNY Downstate - review 1
    North Carolina
    - Carolinas Medical Center - review 1

    - Duke - review 1, review 2
    - East Carolina University - review 1
    - University of North Carolina - review 1, review 2
    North Dakota
    - Cincinnati Children's / University of Cincinnati - review 1
    - Cleveland Clinic - review 1
    - OHSU, Oregon Health & Sciences University - review 1
    - Penn, University of Pennsylvania, review 1
    - UPMC, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center - review 1
    Rhode Island
    - Brown/Butler Hospital - review 1, review 2, comment 1, review 3
    South Carolina
    - MUSC, Medical University of South Carolina - review 1

    - USC Palmetto - review 1
    South Dakota
    - Vanderbilt - review 1, review 2
    - University of Texas Southwestern, UTSW - review 1, review 2
    - University of Utah - review 1

    - Eastern Virginia Medical School - review 1
    - Virginia Commonwealth University - review 1
    - Virginia Tech - Carilion Clinic - review 1
    West Virginia
    - University of Washington - review 1
    Washington DC
    - Medical College of Wisconsin - review 1
    - University of Wisconsin - review 1
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2018
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  3. clozareal


    Sep 21, 2016
    Good luck everyone! These reviews really helped me decide which programs to apply to and how to rank them.

    Programs can change a lot within a year and I hope people post their reviews immediately after you interview at a program since it's very difficult to do later if you don't. If you're worried that programs will retaliate, then you're posting inappropriate information. It's always a good idea to review your post for professionalism and doxing info before you submit it.
  4. raisinbrain


    Sep 12, 2017
    Our first review, complements of anonymous!

    Carilion Clinic- Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine Program

    1. Ease of Communication:

    Via email. Easy, straightforward, quick responses. Coordinator seemed really good, they set up the hotel, transportation, etc.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    Hotel they provided was 1-2 miles from the hospital and much nicer than expected. Fridge, microwave, and desk all in room. Check out was early, but they’d let you store your stuff until the end of interview day. Food was adequate. Dinner the night before was a hors d'oeuvre buffet in the hotel. There were 4 residents and 8 applicants so you talked to the same resident for most of dinner, but then they made a point to move around near the end so everyone could meet. Breakfast was provided on interview day, again a buffet in the hotel. One resident met us at breakfast and answered last minute questions/gave an overview of interview day. Lunch was provided and fairly well attended by residents and a few faculty.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Met as a group for breakfast at 7:15 and took a shuttle over to the program at 8:15. We were split into two groups, one had interviews, talk from program chair, lunch and then the tour later in the day, the other had the tour/interviews switched. There were four 30 minute interviews with 3 faculty and the PD. Interviews were very conversational and primarily “what questions do you have for me” based. The only slightly uncomfortable questions I received were from residents asking me where else I applied, where I had interviews, if I was married, had kids, etc. Day ended around 3:30.

    4. Program Overview:
    As far as curriculum, I didn’t pay much attention since it’s listed online. Their training sites are all fairly close together, with the furthest being ~60min away, where they only spend a couple months and get reimbursed for travel expenses. They spend a decent amount of time at the VA, which is a beautiful new facility. They just rebuilt it to have a male inpatient unit, a female inpatient unit, and a geriatric unit. At the VA you work with med students from all over. The Carilion psych building is also pretty nice compared to where I’m coming from. Big call rooms, lots of space, everything in one place just separated by floors. They have an outpatient floor, then child/adolescent inpatient, step-down inpatient, and locked inpatient. The floors sound like they’re always full and get between 5-6 admissions a day. They have a decent turnover rate on patients since they have Catawba State Hospital to send anyone who needs longer term care. I was told the average LOS is ~3 days. I think they said they offer child and geriatric fellowships. They’re trying to expand the program and expect to take their biggest PGY1 class ever this year, which means less call for everyone.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    The chair of the department is very new and seemed enthusiastic about becoming a more academic and research based program and gave a lot of info about the direction he wants the program to go in. None of the faculty seemed particularly research-heavy, but all were friendly and approachable. Dr. Hartman is the first blind person to ever go to medical school and become a physician, which is cool. He wrote a book about it that was then made into a TV movie, so there’s that. A lot of the current faculty seemed to be graduates of the program, so for what it's worth, people stick around.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    Roanoke is a very small city in the mountains, so if you’re into that, it’s great. Beautiful area with awesome weather, no traffic, and easy parking. Low cost of living, cheap rent, cheap houses. I was told a lot of the residents buy houses as interns, but this could be largely because they are older and have families. There is an airport, but it’s expensive to fly in and out of and you almost always have a layover, so many people choose to drive to Richmond or DC to fly out.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    I don’t remember the salary, but it seemed average. You get 2 days off to take step 3, 2-3 days for conferences, otherwise 15 vacation/sick days. You get some money for food when you’re on night float, but it sounded like the residents didn’t think it was enough/the hospital food wasn’t that great. Free gym membership.

    8. Program Strengths:
    -Enthusiastic and approachable PD and coordinator.
    -Low cost of living, nice area, no traffic, nice weather.
    -Good facilities, probably see diverse patients given that it’s one of the only psych hospitals in Western Virginia.

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    -PD and Chair are very new
    -Not much research going on
    -Almost all current residents seem to be IMGs from Southeast Asia (could be a strength or a weakness depending on what you’re looking for)
    -No required psychotherapy. Training was available if you sought it out, but not a priority/most residents didn’t do it.
    -Didactics sound subpar, some telecast and described as ‘everyone just stares at their phones or works on their notes’

    10. Overall Impression:
    Has a lot of potential with the direction it’s headed in and the residents seemed happy. Probably not the place for research or psychotherapy training, but offers solid community based clinical training.
    saucin13 and Wounded Healer like this.
  5. Wounded Healer

    Wounded Healer

    May 23, 2017
    Oh, thanks for the post! I was wondering if the changing of the Pd of the program affects it negatively or positively way. People seemed to be delighted to have the old PD.
  6. DrSatan

    DrSatan 2+ Year Member

    Apr 16, 2014
    University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC)
    (from anonymous)

    1. Ease of Communication:
    Through ERAS for interview date. Can email with specific interests if you want your interview to be tailored to you. Received confirmation email ~3wks prior to interview. Dinner confirmation 2d before dinner. Specific schedule information provided morning of interviews.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    Dinner night before at nice Latino restaurant in SW Chicago. BYOB with residents bringing (enough) wine & told us to bring whatever we’d like. ~10 residents & ~8 applicants. Very casual. Residents from all years present (or basically). No hotel accommodation, but there were discounts possible at certain places. Parking free with provided voucher. No pen provided. Breakfast was fruit, yogurt, pastries, coffee, & water by Corner Bakery. Lunch was catered Potbelly’s.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    8-10 applicants. Day started at 8am with small breakfast & overview of program. 4x 30min interviews (PD, faculty, chief resident, & PGY4). 1 resident was sick (would’ve been 5x interviews). Lunch with residents was very casual. Tour until ~2pm of all the close facilities (also casual). Lots of “why psychiatry,” “tell me about yourself,” & “what are your interests?” Once asked about a time I failed. Had some borderline questionable questions about my parents & siblings & why UIC over other Chicago programs. Other interviews were great; residents were very chill & responsive.

    4. Program Overview:

    Good overview on their website. Take 10 residents/yr.

    PGY1: 6mos medicine – 2mos inpatient med, 1mo ambulatory, 1mo ED, 2mos neurology (general & stroke), & 2wk vacation. Treated as inpatient med resident, but can opt to have less responsibility (it sounds like). 6mos psych – 3-4mos inpatient psych (split with VA), 1mo urgent intervention team (CL + ED psych), 1mo psychiatric assessment clinic, 1mo night float, & 2x 1wk vacations + 4 floating holidays. Cheat sheet provided at interview said 5mo inpatient psych + 2mo ED psych. Process group weekly. Most take Step 3 at end of PGY1.

    PGY2: 6mos inpatient psych (1x mo at VA), 2mos CL, 2mo CAP, 1mo community, 1mo nightfloat, & 1mo vacation (half prescheduled 2x 1wk blocks, other half flexible) + 4 floating holidays. Process group weekly. Psychodynamic psychotherapy supervision & didactics begin. Weekly ECT while inpatient psych at UIC.

    PGY3: lots of outpatient with some PHP & inpatient. Addiction, women’s, neuropsychiatry, & geri rotations. 1mo elective of choice. Psychodynamic psychotherapy & CBT start (3hr/wk + 1hr supervised for both) + child psych or ADHD clinic instead. Nightfloat 1wk. 4wks vacation with flexible scheduling + 4 floating holidays.

    PGY4: 3mo selective (inpatient psych, CL, etc). 6mos electives. Continuity clinic with supervision in any modality. Vacation is 4wks flexible scheduling + 4 floating holidays.

    Tracks: clinician-educator (takes 2 residents), adult psychiatry/neuroscience research track (need substantial research experience), & integrated adult-child research track (6yrs). Fellowships: addiction, neuropsychiatry, CAP, & women’s health (4th year specialization). Subspecialty training in addiction, CAP, community, ECT, interventional (TMS, ketamine), neuropsychiatry, & women’s. Most residents go into CAP with a mixed bag otherwise. 1/3rd à ½ fellowships, 1/3rd community, & 1/3rd inpatient practices after graduation. CAP > addictions or neuropsychiatry.

    Emphasis in neuropsychiatry training/experience, though 2 big attendings just left for NU. Neuro didactics are strong. Sounds like community & treating the underserved is a big emphasis here; the population is largely Hispanic with Medicaid or without insurance (specific data provided on website). Patients acuity is high, especially in inpatient child psych. Those patients are wardens of the state & often stay for months; therapy training is done with them. Zebras are there if you look (easy to miss); had anti-NMDA, voltage-gated K encephalitis, PRESS, etc. Can give IVIG, steroids, plasmapheresis, etc. Lots of training comes from subspecialized psychiatrists.

    Call: PGY1 - 14x short call, 14x weekend calls, & 4x wks nightfloat (2x2wks) with 8 training calls before taking call independently; all done during psychiatry rotations (total 220hrs over 6mos). PGY2 - 14x short call, 6x Fri call, 10x weekend call, 1x 24hr holiday call, & 4wks night float (2x2wks) (total 285hrs over 1yr). PGY3 - 10x short call, 2x Fri call, 6x weekend calls, 1x 24hr holiday call, & 1wk night float (total 160hr over 1yr). PGY4 - no call. Call is front heavy. Cover only 1 hospital on call.

    Clinical sites: University of IL hospital & Jesse Brown VA (major); neuropsychiatric institute & institute for juvenile research (minor); & several community sites (OP VA, forensic, etc). Major sites are a couple blocks from each other.

    Psychotherapy: Starts in PGY2. 2hr/wk doing psychodynamic psychotherapy with weekly meetings with supervisor to discuss cases one-on-one. Plus weekly psychodynamic didactics. Shared offices between residents. PGY3s get their own office. Offices are fine. 3hr psychodynamic + 3hrs CBT + 2hrs child therapy (1hr supervised/wk for each). Didactics on DBT & family therapy. Electives in group, brief, & DBT. Get motivational during certain rotations that use it (i.e., addictions, eating disorders). No ITP (replaced by CBT apparently). Supervision varies by what you want; you can do 1-way mirrors, audio/video recordings, process notes, etc. Several residents described program as psychotherapy heavy. PGY4 therapy track. Said they only teach evidence-based treatment.

    Lots of research opportunities while being top 25 NIH funding. Can get a research mentor in PGY2, though most will do research in PGY3 (minority do research, though PD is pushing for residents to do more [not required]). Meetings to detail current research projects, but most research found out via word of mouth. Have a big poster presentation event once per year. Electives didn’t sound very flexible, but they do offer a good range of electives; lots of residents do neurology-related electives. Can do ECT, TMS, ketamine, neuroimaging, EEG, women’s, & telepsych.

    Medical students for teaching. Half day protected didactics per week except off service during PGY1. EMS is Cerner or VA. Most changes are resident-driven: used to do social scut work on night float, but changed due to demand. Social workers are great; often win employee of the year. Can get tuition-free MPH, informatics, & some other degrees. Some minor changes occurring in PGY2 & PGY3 year, mostly consisting of how long/short to make certain rotations. Facilities aren’t great. I really liked the majority of the residents I met; very personable & real.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    Unsure. Told faculty was very approachable about research. Faculty I met seemed very warm.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    West side of Chicago. Fair bit of crime, especially in Medical District, but residents denied any issues. Residents do bike & use public transport to get to & from work. Right by the United Center (basketball). Most live in Wicker Park. Cost of living sounds reasonable for Chicago. Most drive to work, through sizable minority take public transportation or bike. Half residents single & half married/SOs. Residents are good about switching call days & making it so you can use floating holidays. Night float described as not very busy. Call can be intense. Residents seem to be pretty cohesive within & between years.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    Salary: PGY1 $54k à PGY4 $60k. 4wk (20 weekdays) of vacation + 4 floating holidays to be used when desired; flexibility with vacation days increases after PGY1. Vacation & sick days roll over. Maternity & paternity leave at 44d (uses vacation & sick days). $750/yr for educational purposes. 3d PGY1 & 5d PGY2+ for educational leave. Provide 2 white coats that are laundered. Gym is a cheap monthly cost (~$30/mo) & facilities are pretty decent (track, squat racks) + access to UIC college facilities (busy). Parking is a monthly fee (untaxed) costing ~$60-100/mo. Food allowance provided for call that is fair & given as lump sum at start of year. Cafeteria was described as bad, though the medical school cafeteria is good & has diverse options. Previously had food trucks outside hospital, but the hospital was petty & forced them out. Still, food truck options & local restaurants are good. Once per year resident-only & resident-faculty retreats; team building exercise for PGY1s. Moonlighting starts in PGY3, but sounds like it’s a complicated process in IL so most residents do it in PGY4. Unsure about insurance, but it is at no additional cost (probably have a co-pay).

    8. Program Strengths:
    - Supervised psychodynamic psychotherapy & CBT training
    - Research opportunities
    - VA experience
    - Socioeconomic, racial, & sexual diversity
    - Clinical tracks
    - Inhouse fellowships
    - Other treatment opportunities (ECT, TMS, ketamine)
    - Ancillary support
    - Patient acuity
    - Chicago

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    - Inpatient psych PGY2
    - VA experience
    - Call heavy - call & night float in PGY3 (though less substantial)
    - Breadth of psychotherapy training (ITP, motivational, couples)
    - No DBS, VNS
    - Facilities
    - Chicago

    10. Overall Impression:
    Solid program with psychotherapy emphasis but opportunities for research. Lots of focus on treating underserved, racially diverse, poor, high acuity patients. Focus on neuropsychiatry training as well. Good resident camaraderie. Not an area of Chicago I’d particularly want to work in. Not digging how heavy call is & how extensive inpatient psychiatry is. Would be happy to match here though.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2017
    Coupd'Cat and saucin13 like this.
  7. raisinbrain


    Sep 12, 2017
    Michigan State University
    Impression provided by: anonymous.

    Ease of Communication
    : Fine; communication via ERAS.

    Accommodation & Food
    : Accommodation was provided for people coming from out of state. They provided bagels the morning of the interview and a great, plentiful lunch from a local organic place. No dinner the night before (lunch was with residents and meant to take the place of a dinner).

    Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences)
    Started with a half hour presentation about things to do in Lansing. Then there were five half-hour interviews with one half-hour break. One interview was completely unstructured and started with some variation of, “So, what can I do for you?” One interview was more traditional with “tell me about a time when…” style of questions. The interview with the PD was basically, “What can I tell you about the program that you haven’t heard yet?” Another interview was very, very conversational and not really about the program at all. The interview with the resident was low-key and helpful.

    The morning went fast because of the interviews, but then we had an 1.5 hour-long lunch with the residents. There were almost the same number of residents as applicants. Since there is no dinner the night before, the lunch is meant to replace that and be a place where you can ask questions (they close the door to the room so the faculty can’t hear and they stress that we’re not being evaluated). I found it to have a weird/awkward vibe. A couple residents were helpful, but a couple residents also seemed to obviously have come for the free lunch and answered one or two questions and then were scrolling on their phones the entire time. I thought that was kind of weird and off-putting. The room setup wasn’t very conducive to the purpose, either (half of the applicants had to sit with their backs to the residents.)

    The rest of the day was touring the two hospitals that they rotate through (both very close to each other and close to the program’s home base), with a resident leading the tour. I appreciated the resident’s time and willingness to lead us on the tour, but it was pretty boring, to be blunt; a lot of waiting around for the rest of the group to meet up and for faculty who didn’t have much to say (but still talked a lot) once we met them.

    Program Overview
    - They are nice, nice, nice. Being nice is their whole ethos, which I think is great.
    - They’re also very flexible and expect residents to be flexible.
    - They do have a child fast-track (PGY-4 of residency is CAP fellowship year 1).
    - They just started a geriatrics residency.
    - Research requirements are lenient.
    - They stressed again and again how family-friendly they are. They are “a faculty-run service,” which means that when residents are on service, the residents do the work, but when residents are not on service (eg for maternity/paternity leave, sick days, vacation), then attendings step up and residents do not need to be covered. I can see how this would help lessen the stress when someone needs time off for whatever reason.
    - Clinic time starts in second year (I think--if not, third year). Psychotherapy is heavily emphasized, and I think they have a separate track that's even more psychotherapy-focused.
    - Moonlighting allowed starting third year.
    - Didactics are protected and occur one afternoon weekly; I think they last the entire four years.
    - On inpatient psych, there are two teams of one attending, one intern, and one senior; each team gets 6 patients, so each resident is responsible for writing notes on 3 of the patients, but you see all six.
    - They have a rural psychiatry track which it didn't sound like anyone had done in a few years, but they were eager to have someone do it again.
    - Opportunities for international rotations.
    - Willing to do whatever possible to help residents do what they want to do.

    Faculty Achievements & Involvement
    Not sure. A lot of child psychiatrists on staff. Faculty achievements didn’t seem very emphasized. I enjoyed talking with the faculty who did my interviews and found them to be engaging, intelligent people from whom I could learn a lot. The residents, if I remember correctly, have two faculty supervisors who they meet with an hour each a week all throughout residency and they seemed to find it helpful. They said the faculty generally liked to teach. A ton of faculty either completed residency there or went to med school and residency there.

    Location & Lifestyle
    : Lansing is whatever. Though it’s the capital of Michigan, it’s not a big city. The program values lifestyle highly. You work about 40-45 hours PGY2-4. The most psych call you’ll have is 5 weekends during year two, and it’s all done from home; you only have to go in if someone is “secluded or restrained,” which did not sound like it happened too often. You have an hour to get to the hospital once paged, if need be.

    Salary & Benefits

    Program Strengths
    • They are very flexible and are willing to accommodate their residents. If they don’t offer a rotation that you’re interested in, then they’ll help you find it at another institution (and they will pay you while you’re there)
    • They want the residents to be happy.
    • They stressed that their program gives you what you put in--it can be great for self-motivated learners, but those who are not self-motivated may experience less learning.
    • International rotation opportunities - long-term effects of cerebral malaria in Africa; can also make your own elective, too
    • Small classes, individualized
    • A lot of time for reading and self-study--residents emphasized that this was a program where you learn by having the time to learn, not by volume of patients. Of course, this could be a nice way of saying there’s not a lot of patients overall so you have to make up for it by reading.
    • They have a philosophy of family first--residents told stories of being able to care for sick kids, bereavement time for deaths in the family, etc with utmost support (as long as the privilege wasn’t abused)
    • Residents spoke highly of PD; said she tried to give residents the best experience possible

    Potential Weaknesses
    • Residents said there was very little exposure to addiction psych. Didn’t confirm, but I think no exposure to hospice/pall, sleep.
    • The faculty talked up a new forensics rotation, but the residents seemed less impressed with it.
    • Low census on almost all rotations, it sounded like.
    • No inpatient child psych.
    Overall Impression: I don't have much to compare it to, but it seemed like a nice, solid middle-of-the-road program where you can get a great education if you're motivated or a mediocre education if you're less motivated. They value having a personal/family life.
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2018
    Coupd'Cat likes this.
  8. raisinbrain


    Sep 12, 2017
    Impression provided by: anonymous

    Indiana University

    Ease of Communication: Very easy. The Program Coordinator (Jeanette Souder) is on top of things. Received my confirmation email within 30 hour of replying. Updates on hotel information, interviewers, and transportation were provided closer to interview day. Chief resident also sent an email closer to the day to open up communication for questions prior to interview day.

    Accommodation & Food: On. Point. Program sets each applicant up at the Omni Hotel downtown (takes care of all reservation-making). Weird note--hotel doesn't have free WiFi (take that into consideration if you want to do last minute research on the program). Right across the street from Harry & Izzy’s where we had our pre-interview dinner. Very well-attended by residents from all years (~10). Breakfast voucher provided at Omni Hotel, but there were also power bars and coffee at the interview day.

    Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Held at the IU Neuroscience Health Center which is 10 minutes driving from the Omni Hotel. Parking garage next door, reimbursed. Split into morning and afternoon groups for interviews/tours. Interviews were held with 5-6 interviewers. All interviewees met with PD and former PD as well as chief resident, with a mix of other faculty. Jeanette Souder is nice enough to fetch every interviewee from the waiting room and from interview rooms to guide each person to the next interview. Half of interviews were more along the lines of “Why Psychiatry?” “Why IU” “What do you want to do in 10 years?” followed-up with comments from interviewers on how your interests could fit in well with IU’s program. Two interviews were more conversational, more opportunities for you to ask questions. Break for lunch attended by so many residents I couldn't even count (Fridays are their days to all come together for didactics). Day ended between 3:30-4:00 depending on order of interviews and breaks.

    Shout out to the “comfort basket” in the resident workroom where you wait between sessions. It included static guard, lint roller, tylenol, a bleach pen, etc. Just thought that was a friendly touch. Tried the bleach pen. Didn’t work, but that’s alright.

    Program Overview: Early exposure to child psychiatry during PGY1 year. No scholarly project required, but there is an optional research track and plenty of elective time during PGY4 year especially to pursue it. All requirements for graduation done by PGY4 year so that those who choose to “fast track” can do it without trouble. PGY4 is currently all elective time, however PD is possibly thinking of introducing a requirement for PGY4s to spend some time as junior attendings to create more opportunity for mentorship of PGY1s.

    Varied training sites: Of note, VA, Eskenazi (Safety net hospital for the county, gorgeous new building), Riley Hospital for Children (with new child psychiatry inpatient unit), Goodman hall (outpatient referral clinics).

    Hospital systems run well without residents, which lends itself to residents being able to focus on education over more administrative tasks. Also supports ability to take appropriate vacations without adding stress to the team.

    Faculty Achievements & Involvement: Residents liked working with PD Dr. DeMotte, who they described as a “goofy dad" who loves Star Wars and board games. Former PD Dr. Chambers also seemed warm and invested in resident education.

    Location & Lifestyle: Indianapolis is where all the training sites seem to be, which are within walking distance or within a 5 minute ride on the “People Mover” (monorail). Great city with lots of restaurants, a nearby art museum with nature grounds, canal walkway, music, etc. Very affordable. Most residents live in apartments downtown or in nearby suburbs 30ish minutes away closer to particular school districts. Residents seem very happy. They noted that they felt welcome even when off-service, were expected to leave most of days on-service by 5, rarely felt that they difficult peeling off to go to didactics/lectures.

    Salary & Benefits: Big stand-out is the free health insurance for both you and your spouse. Tons of moonlighting opportunities especially your fourth year. Educational stipend to cover books/laptops per year. Standard maternity leave. Free parking near all training sites.

    Program Strengths:
    • Flexibility & support for residents to pursue specific interests

    • Well-resourced health system and related social support systems

    • Very responsive to resident feedback (e.g. moved to intermixed block system for off-service/on-service as opposed to half years of each).

    Potential Weaknesses:
    • May be difficult to adjust to living in the Midwest if from either coast/far from family

    • CBT portion of psychodynamic/psychotherapy is in flux (faculty transitioning) but residents have told PD about wanting more structured CBT training and he is looking into hiring replacement faculty.

    Overall Impression:
    • Lovely gem of a program tucked away in an exciting but often overlooked Midwest city. Well-balanced, relaxed, education-focused, and family-friendly.
  9. Alemo

    Alemo Snowflake Millennial

    Oct 26, 2017
    The Lower 48
    Washington University in St. Louis

    This place was conspicuously absent from last year's review compendium. I think that's too bad.

    1. Ease of Communication:
    It was very easy to communicate with the program coordinator, although they were old school in that they sent a message from a dedicated email address (not Thalamoose-Interview-Genius-Broker) and had the applicant schedule by calling their office. The program coordinator sent me hotel information, driving directions, and a map of the campus. There was good email communication from the residents re: dinner beforehand.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    Stayed at a local hotel near the medical campus (sort of pricey at ~$120). The dinner was really fun; there were residents from a few of the classes and each of them seemed excited about the program and their experiences. Everyone was friendly and talkative. Around 6 applicants I believe, which was a good size for conversation between us and the residents. The dinner was at a pretty swanky spot in the Central West End with specialty cocktails and strings of lights hung over a patio; only a block or two from the medical campus. There was a very light breakfast in the morning, mostly coffee and baked goods. Lunch was from a sandwich place, also "on point."

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Barnes-Jewish seemed huge to me. Folks I haven't seen many hospitals thus far but my home institution is in a major city and this place just dwarfed it. Using the map that was emailed to us a brave applicant navigated the team through the labyrinth and we made it to the psychiatry office suite to get the rundown from the program director. There were six 30-minute interviewers, including the PD, aPD, and chair (two legs, not four). I was escorted to each site, which felt very much like an episode of the West Wing. The interviewers were laid back and asked pretty broad questions (why psychiatry, what are you looking for in a program, what are your career goals, etc.). No one asked about some (in my opinion) interesting tidbits in my application, so I wasn't sure if they had thoroughly reviewed it. These guys have to be busy as hell anyway. I did get asked to "tell me about yourself," and at this point in the season my response could use some polishing. The chief resident gave a good pitch for St. Louis after lunch in the form of a powerpoint presentation. She gave a tour, answered all questions well, and was generally good at what she did. Residents at lunch looked like they were having fun being being PGY-X's. Everyone answered my questions honestly. Meeting the head of the department Dr. Zorumski was enjoyable; he was very nice to speak with.

    4. Program Overview:
    WashU faculty developed the DSM-III, perhaps because the coasts at the time were stuck in the psychoanalytic mindset. Though the operational definitions are their "claim to fame," they did make a point to mention psychotherapy is integrated into the curriculum, mostly during session supervised by psychologists in the PGY-3. PGY-1 has 4 months of medicine (you can do 1 month of ER or Peds), 2 months of neurology, and 6 months of inpatient psychiatry (this is just you and the attending). Per one resident, "only the truly sick are admitted to inpatient." PGY-2 sounds like a shotgun approach to the specialty with 2 months of addiction, 2 months of C/L, 1 month of eating disorders, 1 month of PER, 1 month of geriatrics (apparently the Alzheimer's center at WashU is "great"), 1 month of interventional psychiatry (ECT, TMS, etc.), 2 months of elective time, and one month of "Quality Improvement" which seems like teaching/research/supervision time. PGY-3 involves ten months of autonomous work in the outpatient adult clinic, with attendings only using chart review to check your work. There is direct supervision in the 2 months of child clinic during this year. PGY-4 involves medical student and resident supervision of the inpatient unit, C/L supervision, and 4 months of elective time. Residents told me that residents are encouraged to be creative with elective time. There is also a newly-developed PREPP program that can prepare you for a research career, with the first year exposing you to the path while you commit in the second year. This has been well-received by current residents. Many faculty do clinical and basic research. The department appears to be ranked well nationally by reputation, but perhaps even more so by grant funding dollars. Residents went on to fellowships and appointments at all levels of "prestige."

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    I'm not the right person to comment on this. They have impressive amounts of funding, and faculty have published textbooks, editorials, journal articles, columns, etc. There's basic and clinical research ongoing. Seemed to be well-respected within Barnes-Jewish. The faculty I met were warm and laid-back.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    Residents seemed to enjoy living in the Central West End. I walked through the neighborhood and it's got a Whole Foods, bars, apartment complexes, new sidewalks, lots of trees, etc. You don't need a car after the first year. St. Louis seemed to be something to "make up for" as different people tried to sell the program, but it was like many other Midwest cities I have visited. Baseball, beer, a river, minimal topography...

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    Seemed standard. I can't editorialize salaries. I know St. Louis doesn't have a relatively high cost of living. Dental and vision included.

    8. Program Strengths:
    Great infrastructure, interfacing with other renowned departments of Barnes Jewish. Friendly residents, and friendly faculty (this was repeatedly emphasized). One interviewer told me the collaboration between the different departments is really special and (possibly) unique to Wash U. I think you'd see a lot of pathology.
    Autonomy is emphasized; forcing you to learn quickly (but does this come at the expense of teaching?)
    Broad, comprehensive exposure (geriatrics, ECT, rTMS, Child, eating disorders, addiction, etc.)

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    Minimal in-house fellowships
    How has the program fared with respect to leadership in the field since the development of the DSM-III?
    St. Louis may be too parochial for those not from the area

    10. Overall Impression:
    Solid spot. St. Louis is Midwestern, and it seems they may struggle to attract applicants from outside the central United States (Why?). There is a lot of opportunity here.
    heroesjourney, DrSatan and Coupd'Cat like this.
  10. Coupd'Cat

    Coupd'Cat Caught in Life's Washcycle

    Sep 17, 2017
  11. When is graduation again?

    When is graduation again?

    Aug 12, 2017
    Carolinas Medical Center
    1. Ease of Communication:
    Required a secondary application asking about why we wanted to attend residency at CMC. Afterward, communication was primarily with the program coordinator, Kimberly, via email who was very easy to communicate with.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    They pay for your hotel! Pre-interview dinner is at one of two places. My groups was at a fancy Southern restaurant called The Asbury. Breakfast morning of interview was pretty light. They provide lunch.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    This was my first interview so I didn’t know what to expect. There were 4- 20 minute interviews with PD, aPD, and two other faculty who were both great. They were all very conversational. PD interview was more on an informal one-on-one to gauge our fit for the program.

    4. Program Overview:
    Typically arranged program from curriculum perspective. Unique in focus on telepsychiatry and leadership. The program adjusts in real-time to resident feedback, which is amazing! Call is chill. Short call from 5-10ish when outpatient PGY1. Call PGY2 is 5-12 hour weekend shifts and 5- 24 hour weekend shifts and that is mainly just to have the experience. One rotation PGY2 is 7 on 7 off.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    Dr. Graham (PD) and Dr. Villanueva (aPD) have a clear vision of where the program is going and they have residents involved at every step to make the program perfect. Faculty is very involved with the program. They’re all very warm and seem very willing to help residents succeed in whatever they decide to do, as evidenced by the many changes they have made to their curriculum already based on resident feedback. Also with CMC’s merger with UNC hospital system, there is talk that residents will have opportunities to conduct research at UNC.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    Charlotte is a great city. COL much lower than other big cities. Food is great. Outdoor opportunities nearby. Sporting events everywhere. Traffic into and out of the city sucks.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    Salary starts at a little more that 52k. They have $1900 for CME each year!

    8. Program Strengths:
    · The program is new meaning it still has the potential to be whatever residents and faculty want it to be. And the faculty treat residents as co-partners in curriculum changes.

    · The program is education-focused rather than service focused, so residents aren’t pressured to work long hours or miss important events in their lives.

    · Lots of CME money. All residents are able to attend CME events together because the system isn’t resident dependent.

    · CMC is a huge hospital system, so there are a variety of opportunities. Merger with UNC could bring further opportunities.

    · Great work-life balance. Friendly residents and faculty.

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    -The program is brand new, so doesn’t have name recognition
    -Also research isn’t a strength here.

    10. Overall Impression:
    This is going to be one of my top programs. I knew that going into my interview, but my stance was very much strengthened as a result of talking to faculty and learning just how much influence residents have over the program’s direction. Also the Charlotte community really pushed for this residency. Lots of Levine moneys and, even, celebratory parties featuring members of the community, so you feel like part of something bigger. I really think in 5-10 years this program will be a top destination for applicants if they continue their current trajectory.
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2018
  12. Coupd'Cat

    Coupd'Cat Caught in Life's Washcycle

    Sep 17, 2017
    Montefiore (Albert Einstein College of Medicine) - Bronx, NY

    Ease of Communication:
    Good. Information about the interview day is sent both through snail mail and as an email.

    Accommodation & Food: Big breakfast spread (yogurt, pastries, fruit) and a copious amount of lunch. Information about nearby hotels and directions provided in pre-interview information.

    Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences): No pre-interview dinner. Held in the residency administrative office which is a beautiful little brick house. Interview day starts with breakfast with the chief resident, who is actually a PGY-5 training in an administrative role. Very knowledgeable about the program, fun and easy to talk to. We were able to ask him questions throughout the morning as people were picked off one by one to have interviews. Cozy interviewing group (much like the program itself) of four people.

    Interviews themselves are three 30 minute sessions. Likable and warm interviewers all around (PD, APD, Vice-Chair Emeritus). Started with “Tell me about yourself” and meandered into other conversations. Interviewers all had read my application and taken notes on things they wished to ask about, including my hobbies. Some more personal questions about my childhood, difficult experiences, and parents that were asked gently/with curiosity.

    Lunch with residents, very well-attended. Afterward, hour-long meeting with the new chair, Dr. Alpert. Really liked him--seems like a quiet, humble guy dedicated to the department and the students/residents/faculty within it. Wants the work culture to be “high challenge, but also high support.” Thinks a lot about his role in the department, as well as the ethos of the hospital system itself. Sees Montefiore as historically being a hospital integrated within the community. Dedicated to working with the community in an ethical way where patients feel that they have ownership in their hospital and have a say in what goes on. Notes that psychiatry is a well-respected by the rest of the hospital system (“You can tell a hospital’s values by how they view their Psychiatry Department”). I was such a fan that I google-stalked him and came across an address he once gave to the medical school (here).

    As a side note: In contrast to medical school, starting to put more stock into how I feel about the administration and leadership while on the interview trail. Residents come and go (and hopefully influence the program for the better), but the long-term character of a place seems to reflect what values the leadership has.

    Program Overview: In sum, all the core subspecialty rotations + solid psychotherapy training in multiple modalities (lots of weekly supervision from 4-5 attendings/psychologists from different subspecialties during outpatient years) + lower call (roughly ~1/month call per year it sounds like, with 0-4 patients admitted) + focus on education (Thursdays are completely free of clinical duties and only dedicated to didactics, sites can run without residents).

    Note: Option to rotate through Pediatrics instead of Medicine during off-service half year as a PGY-1 (hello to all y'all interested in Child Psych).

    Would be particularly a good fit for someone interested in community psychiatry or forensics psychiatry, in my opinion. In terms of the former, seems like Monte was founded on the principle of serving the community based on what the members of the community themselves say--not being an academic silo in the Bronx. They were all about social justice before it became a “popular” thing for departments to look into. Many community-based settings to learn from (Southeast Asian Refugee Program, school-based mental health program, medical student mental health clinic, etc). As for the latter, residents rotate for 4 months (used to be 6, changed based on feedback) at Bronx Psychiatric Center (state hospital).

    New changes coming up per Chair--”beautifying” of the outpatient psychiatry clinics (“It looks like it’s from the 1950s...we should show more respect to the people who come here.”). Starting a research institute for the department to provide more infrastructure support such as research assistants and statisticians, etc.

    Faculty Achievements & Involvement: Most of the faculty (and non-medical staff) seem to have been here for decades and decades, because they love it. On our tour, we ran into a few other attendings who seemed happy and eager to talk with us.

    Location & Lifestyle: Two subsidized housing options--Monte II (near the hospital, apartment that we visited had a nice balcony and lots of room for only $600-700 per month) and Riverdale (more suburban and family-friendly).

    I actually really like the area of the Bronx that Monte is in. It’s surprisingly green (a small park near the hospital and another bigger park nearby -- Van Cortland), quieter & less gentrified than Brooklyn (at least around the area we were in), and still only a 30-40 minute train ride into Manhattan.

    Salary & Benefits: They will feed you until one cannot be fed any more. $16 for meals per day, to be spent at hospital cafeterias. Honestly, I was too busy thinking about that fact to take note of other benefits.

    Ah wait, here's one. Free (?) or low-cost weekly therapy for residents themselves.

    Program Strengths:
    • Psychotherapy - heard this multiple times from faculty & residents. Built into program w/ didactics and lots of weekly supervision.
    • Well-being of residents highly valued, education-focused.
    • Community psychiatry
    • Forensics

    Potential Weaknesses:
    • Research - Only as far as not having as strong a support system yet, but this may be changing w/ the new Chair wanting to start a research institute. Sounds like several residents still ask interesting questions throughout their training that can then lead to more formal research & investigation. Perhaps a good fit if you like QI research. Not sure about basic lab research.
    • Lower patient volume (compared to other NY programs)?

    Overall Impression: The program is focused on resident education and wellbeing, with particular strengths in psychotherapy training, forensics, and community psychiatry. Less call and lower patient volume than other NY programs, the philosophy seeming to be that one will still meet very sick patients but also have the time for self-cultivation and learning to grow. Faculty and residents seem happy and dedicated. Overall, a warm & family-like environment.
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2017
  13. LimpSpatula

    LimpSpatula 2+ Year Member

    Mar 26, 2015
    Arrowhead Regional Medical Center:

    Ease of Communication:
    Good. Information is sent via regular email from PC who is super friendly.

    Accommodation & Food:
    No dinner. Hotel about 7 mins away at a decent rate.

    Morning spread included fruits, coffee, yogurt, pastries in conference room in psych building. Lunch were sandwiches.

    Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Day started at 8:00AM. Parking was easy and relatively close to the psych building. It starts out with an overview of the program by the PC which lasted about one hour, with an additional hour of questions. She's very down to earth and seems to genuinely care about the program as she's been there for a while.

    A second year resident then took us on tours of the psych facility. It's a huge county facility with over 100 beds and multiple pods. We didn't spend much time in them but we're given the basic rundown. The hospital itself has an underground tunnel running to the psych building, which would be clutch when the inland empire is 115+ during summer months.

    Interviews were unorganized. We ended up waiting in the conference room for an hour before anyone was picked up by an interviewer. They were 2-30 min interviews and it was apparent no one had read your app prior to the interview. This made them conversational, which was nice because there were no robotic questions. The faculty seemed approachable and to care about where the residency was going.

    Lunch with residents was well attended because it was their didactics day. This involved a PGY-2 going over an article and discussing it afterwards. They're in the process of redoing their didactics curriculum. Their chief resident was taking on that issue and he seemed genuine. Residents came off as overworked. One said that they had 18 admissions on NF This was a general theme, in which they talked about how it would make them prepared for anything. I don't think many applicants were impressed.

    Program Overview:

    Malignant. There's no other word to describe it. Call is Q-4 as an intern. The current interns have 2 months of NF as opposed to 3, as they've added 2 more slots.

    They do 6 months of IM where they claim to be the hardest working in the country. The PGY-2 said he got no weekends off during those months.

    Their residents have recently been pulled off neuro because there is no in house attending- it's Teleneuro. The PD said he was fixing this.

    Year 3 is done at outpatient forensics or county. There's talk of adding ECT, TMS at Loma Linda.

    Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    There's not much to say here as it's not listed on their site and we didn't meet many. The PD seemed like a nice guy who was at Stanford and was brought in to keep accreditation with the ACGME merger. I'm not sure how involved he is as he did not introduce himself to all the interviewees.

    Location & Lifestyle:
    In San Bernardino. This is a really rough area which appears to be the meth capital of the west coast. It gets incredibly hot here during the summer months. LA is an hour drive, as is Palm Springs.

    Salary & Benefits:
    County benefits.

    Pay is on the low side, as is vacation.
    Program Strengths:

    PD seems to want to take the program in the right direction.

    Potential Weaknesses:
    Everything else.

    Overall Impression:
    Former AOA program with initial accreditation status. The people were nice but it's a very brutal schedule that did not seem conducive to learning or having a healthy life. Would rather soap into FM- going unranked. I know this sounds harsh but it is embarrassing to me that my profession's leaders have their affairs in this state.
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2017
    claypigeon, Coupd'Cat and DrSatan like this.
  14. EmpathMan

    EmpathMan 7+ Year Member

    Nov 9, 2009

    University of Central Florida/HCA

    1. Ease of Communication:

    Coordinator is prompt, friendly, and professional.

    2. Accommodation & Food:

    $99 discounted hotel at the Townhouse Marriott suites, very nice hotel room, free breakfast in morning, and shuttle to the hospital provided. Lunch was catered from Moe’s Southwest Grill (tex-mex fast-ish food chain, pretty decent spread, vegetarian options too, plenty for second and third helpings)

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):

    Day begins at 8:15 with a program overview from the program director. She’s a very charismatic, friendly, and upbeat lady. Mildly funny occurrence was that she didn’t introduce herself before beginning, so hopefully you saw her picture on the website and realized who she was! She was very transparent about the program and discussed strengths and weaknesses upfront.

    Interviews and tours of the hospital are next, 8 interviewees split into 2 groups.

    4 interviews, 20 minutes each with the PD, lead psychologist, and 2 faculty. All standard questions, nothing from left field, everybody was very personable and easy to speak with. My one quip is that I felt like a couple of them didn’t know my application very well. I had several comments of, “oh oops that’s right, that was on your application.” I had no specific questions about any of my accomplishments.

    Day ends after lunch around 1 PM, shuttle back to hotel.

    4. Program Overview:

    This is a brand new program that just started in July. There is currently one class of 8 interns, and then one PGY-2 who transferred in. The hospital system, North Florida Regional Medical Center, has been around in Gainesville, FL for a long time. It is the only other hospital in the city, besides from the University of Florida academic hospital system (was called Shands, but now UF Health). It is not a research heavy institution at the moment, but is striving to improve in this regard. I felt like it had more of a community focus; however there is a research team that will support you if you’d like to do research. The program is relatively even in terms of a biological vs. therapy training model. They will train and support you in whatever focus you would like. No fellowships currently, with no plans in the near future (per PD). I briefly asked about call schedule, and don’t remember the exact response, but it’s not bad at all. Residents look very awake and say their hours are great (outside of IM rotations of course).

    There is a weekly group processing session, which also includes well-being checks. Residents have carved pumpkin and played laser tag with the faculty. They talk about what is bothering them and work through countertransferance, ethical problems, e.t.c.

    Half day Tuesday protected didactics.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:

    There are about 6 psychiatrists signed on as faculty currently. They are all relatively young, friendly, and enthusiastic about teaching. Most come from a forensics background. I believe they all graduated within a few years of each other from the University of Florida. The PD used to be the assistant PD at the University of Florida, and head of the consult service. She is also fellowship trained in forensics. One of the other faculty is fellowship trained in brain stimulation and leads the ECT treatments in the hospital. They all have a number of academic research published, though I would say at a mild-moderate level. The psychologist in charge of psychotherapy training is also very involved and earnest to make sure residents will be prepared to provide therapy if they would like after training. There is a current plan to apply for a grant from a psychoanalytic institute in New York I believe, in order to improve therapy training for the program.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:

    Gainesville, FL is located in north-central Florida. It’s a college town, with the University of Florida and Sante Fe College. Population of ~140,000. Not too small, but also not a huge bustling city. Cost of living is pretty good, and residents can stay in houses if they would like. Food scene is not bad, with many recent advancements, though definitely not as good as food from bigger cities. Warm weather year round, with some dips in the fall and winter, coldest it gets is probably 30-40 degrees at night. There are plenty of surrounding areas within 1 hour drive if you care more about outdoorsy activities like hiking, nature trails, tubing down rivers, e.t.c. Crescent beach is 1 hour away as well.

    7. Salary & Benefits:

    PGY1-4 is $51-55k. Standard benefits. 15 days paid time off as an intern. Moonlighting during 2nd year.

    8. Program Strengths:

    - Enthusiastic, friendly, young, and easy to work with faculty

    - Location (depending on you)

    - Open to as much therapy as you’d like

    - New program (residents have a huge say in how program develops, faculty are apparently extremely receptive to feedback and make changes quickly)

    - Large emphasis on resident well-being (they get an afternoon off every week to chill and decompress with faculty basically, which I think is great)

    - Protected didactics (attendings are used to working without residents, they will cover you no problem)

    9. Potential Weaknesses:

    - New program (not an academic powerhouse, you will help pave the way)

    - No fellowships

    - Location (depending on you)

    - Not a strong research emphasis

    - No TMS, only ECT (if you care about brain stimulation stuff)

    10. Overall Impression:

    This is a brand new psychiatry program located in central Florida. The faculty are younger, upbeat, and ready to train the best residents they can. They are quick with making change, and are led by a PD who really cares about resident well-being and training. Although there is a lack of research and academic prestige at the moment, the training seems more than adequate and the lifestyle of the residents is totally manageable and even chill a lot of the times. I believe this program will be a popular choice and have a big enough name soon in the future.
    Coupd'Cat likes this.
  15. doggums

    doggums 5+ Year Member

    Oct 25, 2012
    Eastern Virginia Medical School (EVMS)

    1. Ease of Communication:

    Via email. Easy enough. Coordinator is nice, but my impression during interview day was that she’s not super on top of things.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    No accommodations. Dinner at a cool restaurant in downtown Norfolk that is inside a historic church. Two residents showed up and both were very open to questions and honest about their experiences. Lunch was typical boxed lunch.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Day started at 8:15. Coordinator made small talk until 8:45 when the PD did a program overview. Then three 45 minute interviews back to back. Lunch with a couple residents, then tour. Day ended super early, around 1:30. No unusual questions, everyone had read my application and asked specific questions from it.

    4. Program Overview:
    I didn’t write it all down, fairly typical, with less flexibility/elective time in 4th year than most programs. Call sucks. With only 4 residents per year call ends up being 8AM to 10PM in the hospital and then “home call” the rest of the night (you don’t usually have to come in, but will get phone calls and have to put in orders, etc). Home call is basically how they got around duty hour restrictions before they were lifted. Technically you’re at home so you don’t get a post-call day. Child psych sounds lacking, instead of a month they do a half day per week with a child psychiatrist in the children’s hospital. Between that, didactics, and psychotherapy, they have 3 afternoons per week they have to leave their rotation. Psychotherapy does start in PGY-1 and continue all 4 years. Lots of VA exposure.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    From what the residents said faculty is all very approachable and into teaching. PD is brand new, but super friendly and I can’t imagine there will be any issues there. The C-L attending does a ton of research and publishing.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    Norfolk is a cool area with a huge military presence. Slightly dangerous in some parts, but getting better. For the most part it’s a small city with the opportunities of a larger city. Being so close to Virginia Beach people go there for anything they can’t find in Norfolk. Cost of living is cheap, most people live within walking distance to the hospital, and traffic/parking isn’t a problem. It does flood with both hurricanes and random tidal flooding, so that sucks, but overall the weather is good.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    Both sounded pretty average. No one mentioned vacation, sick days, parking, etc. Someone did say they get a stipend for food when they’re on call, but none of the residents seemed to know how much it was. Interestingly, we were not provided with a sample contract and there is not one available online. I was under the impression that every program is required to provide one.

    8. Program Strengths:
    -Small program where you work closely with faculty. Residents seem to get along well and be happy.
    -Faculty are all really approachable and enjoy teaching.
    -Tons of military in the area if that’s a population you’re interested in. Also very underserved area, lots of addiction and homelessness.
    -PD sounds receptive to change, talked about wanting to increase program size to 6 per year to lessen call
    -Values psychotherapy, starts with supportive therapy in PGY-1

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    -Norfolk— if military, beaches, and flooding aren’t your thing.
    -Small size, rigorous call schedule
    -Not much research going on, no fellowships

    10. Overall Impression:
    Decent program where you would get solid clinical training, but may be slightly miserable on call all the time for the first two years. Norfolk isn’t the best place to live, but not the worst either.
  16. Coupd'Cat

    Coupd'Cat Caught in Life's Washcycle

    Sep 17, 2017
    BIDMC - Boston, MA

    Ease of Communication: Good. Very detailed directions from Program Coordinator.

    Accommodation & Food: Tiny breakfast--coffee, a few pastries/bagels, fruit. No accommodation. Pre-interview dinner at La Morra, a cozy three-course meal sort of place. Many interviewees brought significant others, which was nice. 4-5 Longwood residents attended and answered all our questions.

    Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences): Interview day held in the BI outpatient Psychiatry offices. A windowless and dreary land with narrow hallways and no discernible intention in floor planning.

    Day starts with the PD and APD introducing the program. Followed by the Chair, Dr. Greenberg. Got odd/eccentric vibes from him. Lots of digressions and “Where was I going with this? Ah yes…” that some might find charming, but I found difficult to follow. Personally felt uncomfortable when he started stroking the seat of the chair (furniture) next to him for a solid half-minute. Several awkward silences as he searched for words.

    Five half-hour interviews sprinkled throughout the day. Very thorough questions about my interests in college and medical school. Questions about my childhood, career goals, and personal challenges. Questions about what questions I had.

    Lunch from au bon pain with a few more residents. They seemed...content.

    Tried to get a sense of the personality of the program itself. Got as far as the fact that residents like being part of a Harvard program with all the mentorship/research connections that it brings, while being less “snooty” than other Harvard programs. “Harvard with a heart” as someone put it.

    Program Overview:
    • Strong psychodynamic therapy. Affiliated with psychoanalytic Institute.
    • Connected to Fenway Park - opportunity to learn more about LGBTQ psychiatry
    • Connected to Massachusetts Mental Hospital, a partial hospital program (though no longer called a partial hospital program for “administrative reasons”) and community health center. Residents spend a good amount of time there and can choose to develop their skills in CBT and DBT.
    • Many residents go on to Child Psychiatry fellowships, got the sense that they are all happy with where they matched

    Location & Lifestyle: Most residents live in Brooklin, Fenway Park, or Jamaica Plains. Many walk or bike to work. Boston is Boston. Quaint, less crowded than New York (but probably about as expensive).

    Salary & Benefits: Dropped the ball on asking about this. Nothing mentioned in particular, except that PD noted the MH insurance covers 3 urgent MH visits for residents in a part of the hospital that is somehow independent from the rest of the hospital for confidentiality.

    Program Strengths:
    • Psychodynamic psychotherapy
    • Community Psychiatry
    • Consult Liaison
    • QI research - very encouraged, sounds like residents split into groups to work on a semi-required QI project.
    • Harvard affiliation & all the potential research/mentorship that comes with it.
    • Boston is neat.
    Potential Weaknesses:
    • Seemed a bit stuffy and impersonal.
    • Not super diverse.
    • Boston is cold.
    Overall Impression: Good training in a fancily-named program while being “less snooty” than other fancily-named programs. Residents seem to graduate feeling well-prepared for future careers.
    syvian., Amygdarya and DrSatan like this.
  17. splik

    splik Professional Cat at Large Physician Faculty 7+ Year Member

    Nov 30, 2009
    the bit about the seat stroking had me laughing out loud lol. unfortunately otherwise you appear to be describing a textbook case of alzheimer's :(
    Coupd'Cat likes this.
  18. DrSatan

    DrSatan 2+ Year Member

    Apr 16, 2014
    Loyola University
    (from anonymous)

    1. Ease of Communication:
    Interview invitation through ERAS. Reminder about dinner the week before. Coordinator is very nice. Schedule for day provided at dinner the night before.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    Didn’t use a hotel; not sure if they offered one. Dinner the night before at a nice Italian restaurant. Family style eating with drink allowed, though had to pay for own drinks (I think a resident ended up paying for them). Residents switched places every 20min or so. Probably about 10 applicants & 5-6 residents total were there from PGY1-4 years. Parking is free at hospital with a pass they give you the day of the interview. Breakfast at hospital is fruits & pastries basically with coffee & water. Lunch was decent pizza with time to talk to residents.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Early day, started at 715am. Ended around 230pm. Had program director presentation about Loyola to start the day, then 5 interviews. Each were 15-20min, which was really too short for an interview. Had to wait 20min between several interviews & 5min between others. Met with the program director, 3 faculty, & the chief resident. They were all pretty relaxed & easygoing. No questions were out there. I thoroughly enjoyed all of my talks & was always left wanting to ask more questions or just talk.

    Then had lunch around noon. It was some decent pizza with the residents. We had an hour to ask questions to them. Then Grand Rounds, which was actually pretty interesting, though I was starting to run out of gas. Then a tour of the VA & Loyola hospital. Madden could not be toured, but we saw it. Takes ~5-10min to walk to VA from Loyola, which will suck in the winter. Then a final meeting with the department of psychiatry. Basically just asked us why we wanted to go to Loyola; this bothered me because I had to listen to other applicants’ canned responses. Then he talked about why it was unique & opened it up to questions.

    Everyone was very nice. Residents were nice & open to questions, though I suspect they sugarcoated answers.

    4. Program Overview:
    6 positions per yr (I think). PGY1 year is IM 3mos, Neuro 1mo, EM 1mo, emergency psych 2mo, inpatient psych 4mos, & night float 1mo. Time for psych is basically split with the VA & Madden. Sounds like psych residents are not really a part of the IM team when rotating there & are usually given typical psych pts for the most part. Of note, PGY2 has 1mo neuro & 1mo night float. Call is crappy early on, but pretty good PGY3 (couple weekends/yr) & none PGY4. 2nd half of PGY2 you start psychotherapy with 2hrs/wk of 6pt/wk (early PGY2 if motivated). Get a little CBT & DBT training if you want to do it. Sounds like most residents in past haven’t cared much for psychotherapy & tried to do more. PGY3 is outpatient, but a 6mo research rotation is required. It sounds like its 2hr on Fri every week. You can do a lot of research if you’d like, though it’d probably have to be more clinical if you don’t have prior training. Moonlighting begins PGY3 & is like $1-2grand/weekend. PGY4 is electives. They are open to electives that aren’t available, though they seemed hesitant about this. They have ECT, TMS, & tele-psych.

    VA experience is thorough. They told me the psych diversity is great, but everyone says that. Many graduates go on to do Child/Adolescent or C/L. Apparently the C/L training is very good, as residents have won awards in this field. There are many interesting cases that can be written up (apparently). There are elective tracks in women’s health, neuropsychiatry, integrative psych, & addiction. There are fellowships in geriatric & addiction med. They are trying to add more, but it depends on resident interest.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    The faculty seemed perfectly legitimate. I am not good at gauging this. Very research oriented, though one I met was more psychotherapy based. I really liked all the faculty I met. One resident said the faculty was the strongest aspect of Loyola.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    Call doesn’t sound great early on, but that may be typical. Night float for 2mos total is pretty ****ty. Going back to neuro on PGY2 sounds kind of ****ty too. It’s on the west side of Chicago, but you can live in the suburbs or western Chicago. Commute sounds like it’s 15-30min for most residents. Everyone drives. It’s Chicago, so you get all the perks of Chicago. Sounds like the hours aren’t really that bad, even during PGY1; tends to depend on chief resident. Residents have free time typically & live normal lives. One resident described his time on IM as more of a scribe than a resident. Probably very resident-dependent. Residents seem to be friends & hang out frequently. They go to movies, watch GoT together, etc. Attendings will have parties or attend happy hours.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    I can’t remember salary & can’t find it in the packet provided. Probably typical. They have a very, very nice gym for $30/mo connected to the hospital. Health insurance, vision, & dental is free, but requires some yearly fitness test that I forgot to ask about. I suspect it’s a checkup/drug test probably. Money for food is given for call/night float that rolls over. Parking is ~$25/mo & can be taken directly out of paycheck; residents said that they think they weren’t even being charged for it lately. Cafeteria is decent. There is a 24/7 Subway. Starbucks is somewhere, but the coffee in general didn’t sound great.

    8. Program Strengths:
    Biologically-oriented, many research opportunities
    Very friendly faculty; residents are friends
    Chicago (obviously a strength/weakness depending who you are)
    Strong VA experience
    Flexibility for electives/psychotherapy

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    Psychotherapy (have to want to do it, CBT, DBT, etc.)
    Lots of VA experience
    Have to walk to 3 different hospitals (but they’re next door)

    10. Overall Impression:
    Seems more biologically-oriented. Research opportunities are great. Should be good disease pathology. VA is a pretty interesting place to work. Residents seem to do well post-residency. Sounds like it is a pretty cushy lifestyle in a great city.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2018
  19. Doctorows


    Nov 2, 2017
    Quick question to whomever interviewed at IU: Is getting a rental car necessary/helpful in going between the airport, hotel, and the interview sites, or is the taxi system easy enough in this city not to miss the return flight at the end of the day? Please pm me, thank you!
  20. okokok

    okokok 5+ Year Member

    Apr 12, 2012
    I drove my own car, but I'm sure Uber would work just fine in this and every other large city. One applicant who had a flight to catch on my interview day was driven to the airport by a resident.
    Doctorows likes this.
  21. Coupd'Cat

    Coupd'Cat Caught in Life's Washcycle

    Sep 17, 2017
    Now that you mention it... :(
  22. Amygdarya

    Amygdarya 7+ Year Member

    Feb 14, 2009
    University of Washington - Seattle (Seattle track +/- research track)

    Ease of communication: Interview invitation and scheduling are by email; you fill out a form listing your 3 interview date preferences from all the available dates, your interests etc. My interview date was confirmed promptly. A few days before the interview I received an email with my interview day schedule, UW maps and directions, and information about the resident dinner. In addition to this, I also received a snail mail package containing a confirmation of my interview, UW maps and directions to the interview site, hotel info and a magazine on Seattle attractions/dining.
    Post-interview communication is encouraged to clarify any questions, but we were told that it wouldn’t have any impact on ranking.

    Accommodation & food: A list of nearby hotels was provided by email with interview confirmation, as well as by snail mail. I stayed at one of the recommended hotels, which was OK. Interestingly, the regular rates at the hotel I stayed were lower than UWMC negotiated ones, and you can get even lower rates online, so I would recommend checking out the hotels on the list online. Most of the hotels on the list have their own shuttles to UW and/or UW-Harborview free shuttle stops close to them, but I ended up taking a Lyft to my interview.

    The resident dinner the night before the interview was at a cute place in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, which is a funky/artsy/LGBT-friendly area of the city (I don’t think I saw as many rainbow flags in Castro, SF J), which is also the most popular neighborhood for residents to live in because it’s convenient to commute to the main training sites by public transportation from there. The dinner was well attended by PGY2-4 residents (about 6-7 of them, almost as many as applicants). We were all seating at one long table, and in the middle of the dinner residents sitting on one site of the table switched with those sitting on the other side of the table, which was a little weird at first but provided an opportunity to speak with more residents/hear more points of view. Alcohol is not paid by the program, and nobody ordered, so neither did I, though it was the kind of place to enjoy your beer at. Some of the applicants went to a bar after dinner but I was too old for this sh (scratched out) too jet lagged to join.

    Day of the interview food: a standard light breakfast of coffee/juice, pastry, fruit and yoghurt to be consumed during the chair’s and PD’s presentations. Pizza lunch with residents at their noon(ish) conference at Harborview; given that there was plenty of time from our arrival to the beginning of the presentation, we got to talk with several more PGY1-4 residents eager to answer our questions.

    So bottom line is, I got to talk to *a lot* of residents across all years. I don’t know if the program administration reads SDN or what but they certainly took measures to address previous years’ complaints of the paucity of residents during the dinner and the interview day.
    Residents were all friendly, down to earth people who were all happy with the program. In contrast to the previously reported issue of residents not being close within and between classes, I got a feeling that residents knew each other fairly well and spent quite a bit of time with each other. One of the things that help inter-class cohesion, in my opinion, is teaching call (see below). In addition, the PD, Dr. Susan Murray, seems to encourage organization of inter-class events, such as hiking trips etc.

    Interview day (schedule, type of interviews): the interview started at UWMC at 8:00 am with introductory talks from the chair Dr. Jurgen Unutzer and the PD Dr. Susan Murray. Both of them were proud and enthusiastic about being part of UW Psychiatry, talked about the strong community and integrative/collaborative focus of the program, innovations in mental health care delivery pioneered by UW Psychiatry (collaborative care, telemedicine, mobile applications for psychiatry), the almost overwhelming range of opportunities available at the program, the beauty of the Pacific Northwest and the advantages of life in Seattle.

    After that we took a shuttle to Harborview, the main training site, for a tour. Dr. Murray accompanied us on the shuttle, and we all had an informal and fairly easy-going conversation on topics ranging from life in Seattle to pets to TV series. Just like pretty much everyone I met during my UW visit, Dr. Murray is a very warm, approachable and down to earth person. She is dedicated to providing the best possible training and helping residents pave their future career paths; she also cares about her residents as people – I’m not going to divulge the details, but one of the residents told me about some issues (s)he had during his/her training, and how helpful, supportive and accommodating the program administration was. In addition to this, I was told that the program was family-friendly, though I didn’t get into any details on this.

    Harborview Medical Center, a large public hospital, is one of the program’s main and most beloved training sites. (see below re: training sites) The tour was lead by a PGY-4 resident who showed us one of the 3 psychiatric units (which include “regular” inpatient psychiatry beds with mostly involuntary patients, some med-psych beds with patients followed by Medicine and receiving a higher level of medical care than typical psych inpatients, like IV infusions, and psych ICU for the most acute, most often psychotic involuntary patients who are serious threat to self and/or others), inpatient and C-L resident workrooms, an outpatient resident office (shared with another resident, so no personalizing), the ED and the cafeteria. Harborview as a whole looks better than pretty much any other public hospital I’ve ever seen and features beautiful views of Mt. Rainier etc.

    After the tour, the interviewees (7 of us that day) had individual interview schedules with interviews taking place at Harborview, UWMC or VA (those who had interviews at the VA were taken there by car by a member of the administration). I had five 30-min interviews, but I think the typical number of interviews is four (one of mine was a research interview) and included an interview with the PD Dr. Murray, two faculty interviews and one resident interview throughout the day with a break for lunch/resident conference (see above). The day ends around 3:30ish pm unless you expressed an interest in seeing Seattle Children’s and meeting with the child psych fellowship PD, in which case it could go till 4:30ish or so.

    All of my interviews were conversational and included the typical questions about why psychiatry and why this program, as well as specific questions about my application. Most of my interviewers thoroughly read my application (Dr. Murray made some notes on a hard copy of it, and my resident interviewer came prepared with a list of questions); one told me he didn’t get a chance to read my application because of clinical responsibilities, and I appreciated his honesty; we ended up having a good conversation anyway. For all of my interviews, we spent about half the time discussing my application including some benign questions about my background/childhood and the other half discussing the program. Definitely have some questions ready, as you will be asked if you have any. I actually prepared a whole list of possible questions for my interviews but ended up spontaneously asking questions about things that piqued my interest during the morning intro etc. We also discussed general topics related to psychiatry, like the funding of mental health services, involuntary commitment, differences in psychiatric training and practice in the West coast vs. the East coast etc. Quite thought provoking and relevant to my ranking decisions.

    Program overview: A lot of the information is available on the program’s website, which is one of the best psych residency program websites I’ve seen: University of Washington Psychiatry Residency Training Program Some information there is out of date though, so in my brief overview I’ll try highlighting the unique aspects of the programs and important things that are different from what the website says.

    Training sites: Harborview Medical Center (public, 3 psych units comprising 66 beds that include med-psych beds and psych ICU, PES, C-L, psych and collaborative care clinics, including an HIV/AIDS clinic), UWMC (tertiary care academic, a small psych unit of 10 beds for mostly voluntary patients, inpatient and outpatient C-L strong in oncology, transplant and obstetrics, and outpatient psych and collaborative care clinics), VA (24 psych beds, 4 beds devoted to acute detox, strong in addictions, also C-L, emergency psych and outpatient clinics including PTSD, addictions clinics and consults to primary care clinics), Seattle Children’s Hospital (41 psych beds, C-L and clinics), a residential treatment program for children and adolescents at a nearby state psych hospital (where you can get experience with young offenders), and multiple community outpatient clinics including clinics focusing on Hispanic population, immigrants/refugees, LGBT, adolescents etc.

    Off service requirements: 6 months in two 3 months blocks alternating with psychiatry. Starting 2018-2019, you will have an option of doing either all adult (2 months inpatient medicine, 2 months inpatient neurology, 1 month ED and 1 month medicine consults which is apparently a light rotation) or a combination of adult and child (2 months inpatient peds, 1 month adult medicine, 1 month adult neuro, 1 month peds neuro, 1 month ambulatory peds). Off service call is per the service requirements, including 28- to 30-hour q5d overnight call at Harborview and q8d overnight call at the VA while on medicine. But I was told that that, while psychiatry interns are generally treated as any other medicine intern, medicine faculty and senior residents are very supportive, so while medicine is a busy rotation psychiatry residents talked positively about it. More or less the same with peds (busy but supportive environment; I don’t know about peds call). Didn’t hear any comments about the neuro service aside from the fact that some psych residents became friends with their neuro seniors, so they got invited to their weddings etc.

    On service requirements:
    PGY-1: 6 months in two 3 months blocks of inpatient psychiatry including 3 weeks of night float (Harborview and whether VA or UWMC).
    PGY-2: 4 months of inpatient psychiatry (either VA and UWMC, whichever you didn’t do in PGY-1), 4 months of C-L (a combination of Harborview, UWMC and the VA), 1 month of PES (Harborview), 6 weeks of night float at either of the main sites, 2 months of selective (choose from CAP, outpatient addiction, geri, outpatient community psychiatry at Harborview, or research or teaching), begin ½ day/wk of continuity clinic and start first (supportive) psychotherapy case.
    PGY-3: all outpatient including 1 day/wk of CAP for 12 months, 1 day/wk of addictions for 6 months, 1 day/wk of geri for 6 months and at least 1 day/wk of continuity clinic, the rest is elective time.
    PGY-4: all electives except for at least 1 day/wk of outpatient psychiatry (1/2 day/wk continuity clinic, ½ day/wk primary care consultation).
    Psychiatry call: 12-hour weekend shifts (day or night) from every other week in PGY-1 to less than once a month in PGY-4. PGY-3s do a combination of solo and training call, in which you supervise a PGY-1; PGY-4s do mostly training calls.

    Didactics: protected didactics time on Thursdays (1/2 day for PGY-1s and a full day for PGY-2s and -3s that also includes supervision and administrative meetings). Topics include the things that all psychiatry didactics have plus a motivational interviewing workshop in PGY-2, cross-cultural psychiatry and clinical interactions seminar (case-based discussion of doctor-patient relationship, including transference-countertransference issues) in PGY-3.

    Psychotherapy: as residents have told me, despite the prevalent notion that the East coast is all “psychodynamic” and the West coast is all “biological”, UW provides a strong psychotherapy training that starts early (PGY-2), features a weekly continuity clinic, plenty of supervision (one of the residents told me (s)he’d had to “fire” one of his/her supervisors, even though (s)he liked them, because (s)he was getting *too much* supervision) and a variety of psychotherapies to learn on top of the typical/required supportive, psychodynamic and CBT (such as DBT, family, couple, group, interpersonal, cognitive processing, hypnosis, you name it). For psychoanalytically-minded people, there is a psychoanalytic institute in town, and a number of residents completed a 2-year training there in their PGY-3-4 and went on to psychotherapy-focused private practice. There is also a psychotherapy career enrichment pathway that provides mentorship and additional opportunities for psychotherapy training. Finally, there are opportunities for psychotherapy research.

    PGY-2: at least one weekly psychotherapy case for the first 4 months and then two weekly psychotherapy cases during weekly continuity clinic. Didactics in supportive and psychodynamic therapy, CBT and motivational interviewing. At least 1 hour/wk of psychotherapy supervision. Starting PGY-2 residents are required to complete 6 months of free/sliding scale weekly individual psychotherapy or 6 months of weekly supervision focusing on how resident’s personality etc. affect their therapeutic work.
    PGY-3: at least one day/wk of continuity clinic that is supposed to be focused on psychotherapy cases, more didactics and ½ day/wk of supervision.
    PGY-4: ½ day/wk of continuity clinic. Psychotherapy electives and optional psychotherapy training courses. More advanced didactics and at least 2 hours/wk of psychotherapy supervision (but you can certainly get more, including dedicated supervisors for different kinds of psychotherapy).

    Focus on teaching: By this I mean both teaching of residents by the faculty (see below) and residents learning to tech by means of formal teaching didactics, teaching medical students, presenting at resident conferences and teaching PGY-1s on training call and a weekly didactic session.

    Pathways: an initiative designed to help residents with developing their specific interests and their career in psychiatry. Pathways provide mentorship, seminars, special opportunities for clinical rotation and electives etc. There are currently 8 pathways: addiction, advanced psychotherapy, community leadership, cultural psychiatry, integrated care, perinatal psychiatry, research, teaching scholar. Residents can participate by attending seminars etc. in as many pathways as they like, but earning a pathway certificate requires completion of a project, which means that you can realistically be fully involved with only one pathway.

    Research: neuroscience, health services and addictions. The psychiatry residency research program is supported by an R25 NIMH grant. Research track with dedicated research time, mentorship and funding accepts up to 4 residents each year.

    Fellowships: all ACGME-accredited psychiatry fellowships except forensic psychiatry, plus non-ACGME-accredited fellowships in neuroscience research, primary care psychiatry, integrative care and geriatric health services (with an option to earn an MPH). Pain, sleep and hospice and palliative care fellowships at UW are open to psychiatry residency graduates.

    Moonlighting: internal and external moonlighting is allowed after passing Step 3. We were told resident can make $150/hour for internal moonlighting at PES, and quite a few residents make a substantial amount of money doing disability evals.

    Faculty achievements and involvement: Some of the big names are Marsha Linehan (founder of DBT), Jurgen Unutzer and Anna Ratzliff (pioneers in collaborative and integrated care) and John Neumaier (research on serotonin receptors).

    Residents are happy with faculty’s approachability and with the balance between independence and supervision. In fact, I was specifically told by one of the PGY-1 (!) residents that I could let my supervising attendings know how independent I wanted to be and that they would generally work with you accordingly.
    On the attending side of things, I was told by one of my faculty interviewers that a particular strength of the program was that most of the faculty were clinical and teaching but not research faculty, which means that residents are taught by people who work in clinical practice all the time and who are dedicated to teaching, as opposed to researchers who spend maybe 1-2 months/year doing clinical work. Also, as pointed out by the same interviewer, unlike many programs on the East coast where attendings would show up for rounds for an hour or so to OK resident’s plans for the day and than disappear into their offices/private practice, attendings at UW spend *hours* on the wards every day discussing cases with residents and students.

    Location & lifestyle: The beautiful Pacific Northwest inspires outdoor activities including hiking, climbing, bicycling, kayaking, skiing etc. While Seattle is known for its rain, it’s more of a drizzle than a downpour, though winter days can be gray indeed. Summers, on the other hand, are gorgeous.
    The city of Seattle offers all kinds of things a major city does including good restaurants, music joints, theater, art. Seattle is a dream for a coffee-loving bookworm like myself with its many independent and used book stores and atmospheric coffee shops.

    Capitol Hill, a funky LGBT-friendly neighborhood, is the most popular among residents (about ¼ of them live there; the rest are scattered all over Seattle and surrounding areas). It’s fairly expensive ($1900/month for a one-bedroom apartment is considered a bargain) but offers a convenient public transport commute to training sites and easy access to entertainment. Apparently residents spend quite a bit of time with each other going to restaurants, outdoor activities etc. Despite working hard and the aforementioned call, they say they have a good work-life balance on psychiatry, especially in PGY-3-4 and have plenty of time to pursue hobbies etc.

    Salary & benefits: University of Washington Psychiatry Residency Training Program
    2017-2018 salaries (presumably there will be a small increase next year): PGY-1 - $56,520, PGY-2 – $58,728, PGY-3 - $61,140 and PGY-4 – $63,768. Of note, there is no state tax in WA.
    - 21 days of paid vacation;
    - 17 days of paid sick and health maintenance leave;
    - 5 days of professional leave;
    - medical, dental, life and long-term disability insurance;
    - UW retirement plan;
    - Professional development fund of $350/year;
    - WA medical licensing fees and Step 3 exam fee paid.

    Program strengths:
    1) Clinical areas of strength: collaborative/integrative care, community psychiatry, C-L, addiction, geri.
    2) Research areas of strength: mental health care delivery, technology in psychiatry, addiction, dementias, TBI.
    3) A great variety of training sites that will give you exposure to just about any population and psychopathology you can think of.
    4) Supportive program administration and faculty who are really invested in teaching and helping residents find their career paths.
    5) Plenty of quality psychotherapy supervision.
    6) Psychotherapy training and continuity clinic starts in PGY-2.
    7) A great variety of electives to choose from and plenty of elective time; a very flexible program. Great for self-directed people and/or people with broad interests in psychiatry.
    8) The pathways initiative designed to help residents with their career development.
    9) Friendly, down to earth residents.
    10) A liberal LGBT-friendly program in a very livable, liberal and LGBT-friendly city.

    Potential weaknesses:
    1) No forensic psychiatry fellowship on site, though there are definitely opportunities for involvement/exposure to forensic psychiatry at Harborview and Western State.
    2) Seattle weather may not be for everyone (though not an issue for me).
    3) Possibly not the best balance between salary and cost of living, though the same is true for most programs in major cities.
    4) Having to commute to multiple training sites. Surprisingly, quite a few residents don’t have cars or only use cars for trips outside of the city. Apparently Seattle has a decent bus system and the commute has improved significantly with the recent introduction of a new light rail line that goes from Sea/Tac airport to UWMC. Most residents drive to the VA because parking is free there but take public transportation to UWMC and Harborview because parking is expensive there (something like $9/day).
    5) Residents say the program is relatively call-heavy (see above), though a lot of psychiatry calls are training or home calls, and while medicine calls are indeed intense, inpatient medicine is only 1-2 months.

    Personal conclusion: a great program with a big heart that makes me seriously reconsider my geographic preferences.
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2017
  23. raisinbrain


    Sep 12, 2017
    Another complements of anonymous:

    UMass - Worcester, MA

    Ease of Communication
    Offer through ERAS; remainder of communication via email with coordinator, who was efficient and nice. Also had out-of-the-office replies when necessary, which can be helpful. A resident reached out via email for questions before the interview.

    Accommodation & Food
    Provided a list of local hotels with UMass discount. Slightly confusing about pricing for the hotel they recommended (does have an extra discount on top of UMass one), but it was nice and close (walkable if desired). Dinner the night before at local hip pizza place, well attended by residents. The breakfast on interview day was more of a snack – while tasty, I’d recommend eating a bit before arriving.

    Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Started at 8:30 with quick meeting with program coordinator and breakfast/snack/tea time. Guided tour of the hospital and medical school area. Four interviews spread throughout the day, and everyone met with the training director, Dr. Benjamin. In terms of interviews and questions, nothing seemed out of the ordinary. Associate training director also seems great. Had a few 30 min breaks between interviews, presumably from scheduling necessity.

    Program Overview:
    PGYI: starts with a month of psychiatry with all interns, to get some class cohesion and psychiatry refresher. 5 continuous blocks of medicine (or peds for those in child track); then 3 blocks neuro, and 5 total blocks psych in the spring. 8 hours protected didactics per week (full day, all years). All PGY1 call is with an upper level.

    PGYII: more psychiatry, including starting outpatient psychodynamic psychotherapy with supervision, and a year-long psychotherapy seminar. Weekly experiential training group (group therapy for residents?). One block night float. 8 hrs protected didactics. 9 x 24 hrs call (can do as 12hrs).

    PGYIII: lots of outpatient longitudinal experiences. PGY III-IV share seminars in psychotherapy, child psych, administration, and transition to practice. 6 x 24hrs call.

    PGYIV: more outpatient, and tons of flexibility in the curriculum (research, teaching, subspecialty, or administration). No call. Can do chiefdom stuff.

    Options for adult/child psych (can transfer in at PGYIII if space available) or neuro/psych, and a research/career investigator track (1 position per year, takes 4 yrs for clinical, 5 for lab-based). Also have psychiatry for the deaf, psychiatry for the homeless, women’s mental health, and forensics exposure. Part of addictions month is inpatient consults.

    Psychotherapy: residents proclaim it to be really good training, anywhere from 3-5 hours of supervision per week.

    Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    Of note, Dr. Benjamin is currently the interim chair of Psychiatry, but he expressed that he is not seeking to be the chair long-term, and he intends to remains as the training director. Also, since Dr. Benjamin is big in the neuropsych field, the program does have a bit more of a neuro angle than many programs. Good administration responsiveness to resident concerns (even supplied an example sheet or recent programmatic changes). Residents can serve on institutional committees. Mindful physician leadership program is kinda cool

    Location & Lifestyle:
    Worcester, MA – stated to be the second largest city in New England. Definitely a quieter feel than Boston, but Boston is very accessible if that’s your thing. Occasionally people will reverse commute. Very livable and affordable surrounding areas. Worcester proper mostly underserved, school district is similar. Surrounding areas have good focus on education. They provide a pretty great list of surrounding communities, housing costs, taxes, school info, etc. Residents said they have plenty of time for outside activities and don’t feel overworked at all. Report having a good amount of autonomy when they want it.

    Salary & Benefits:
    Salary 57,976-65,694 PGY1-4. Health insurance premiums covered 75%. 3 weeks paid vacation, 3 weeks sick leave, 3 personal days, 5 conference days. Free meals on call. Residents are state employees, so get off all state holidays (or have comp days instead), and state retirement system. $750/yr professional expense allowance. In house moonlighting starting PGYII – power shift things – “surges” in early evenings, a few hours, maybe 125/hr (?), basically admission h&p’s. Other moonlighting starting PGYIII when licensed.

    Program Strengths:
    - Strong focus on psychotherapy training; could even start with 1 patient PGYI if desired.
    - Good amount of elective time and ability to structure the curriculum to career goals
    - Only psychiatry residency in the city, so opportunities not saturated by other programs
    - Strong neurology training compared to a lot of other psych programs (PD neuro/psych trained)
    - Full day protected didactics with interaction between all 4 years

    Potential Weaknesses:
    - Less research than the top dogs; maybe a little old school?. Was told residents could pick essentially from the 5 research groups residents do research with (less variety).
    - Less consultation liaison exposure; currently no CL service room, but said to be creating one. Otherwise residents now use general on call rooms over in medical school.
    - Full day didactics

    Overall Impression:

    - Call seems very reasonable, but enough to get experience.
    - Residents seem happy, get along well, think that they get enough training and didactics and supervision and general oversight but in the context of autonomy
    - Seems like they have really good community programming, interventions, making sure patients get connected to the next level of care
    - Several hospitals, but still pretty easy to access.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2017
  24. splik

    splik Professional Cat at Large Physician Faculty 7+ Year Member

    Nov 30, 2009
    nice review. just want to clarify UW psych residents only get 15 days off (since you cant take weekends off) for vacation and 12 days of sick leave per yr. Also psych residents usually can get alot more than 5 days of professional/educational leave a yr, it's just that 5 days per yr is the minimum. they have been very flexible in finding creative ways of allowing (senior) residents to have maternity/paternity leave.

    also while the residents might regard it as a call heavy program (and there are plenty of programs with cushier schedules) the call schedule is lighter than many top programs especially when you take into account they don't really have a "short call" whereas a lot of programs additonally have short call to 9 or 10pm in addition to overnight call.

    as for moonlighting, this would practically only be possible from the PGY-3 yr onwards (not simply after you pass step 3)
    aim-agm, Amygdarya and DrSatan like this.
  25. raisinbrain


    Sep 12, 2017
    Saint Louis University
    (Anonymous review)

    1. Ease of Communication:

    Very easy. The PC (Connie) is very nice and was available by both phone and email. The initial invite came via ERAS, with a "please call or email which of these dates you prefer." Very quick responses during business hours in my experience.

    2. Accommodation & Food:

    Didn't get a list of discount hotels or anything, but St Louis is a pretty cheap city to stay in. I had no trouble finding convenient, cheap, nice accommodations. Pre-interview dinner was at a nice restaurant with really good food. Lunch on interview day was tasty.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):

    Via email I received a schedule outlining the day. Came well in advance, and was updated right before the day of interview. The day started with a welcome and a light breakfast. Proceeded to grand rounds, which featured an interesting and engaging speaker. Orientation/overview of the program. A set of morning interviews with faculty members, a tasty lunch, a tour, and then afternoon interviews. Was thanked for coming and given a nice little goodie bag at the end of the day.

    4. Program Overview:

    Available online. Key points to me - Intern year IM and Neuro are at the VA hospital, not the SLU hospital - less demanding, more reasonable hours. Outpt starts in PGY2 to give more longitudinal experience.
    Other notable things - lots of ECT if that's your jam. Opportunity for involvement with neurosurg stuff like DBS. Opportunities with Psychoanalytic Institute for added training in psychoanalysis.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:

    Info about faculty available online, seems like the chair is pushing for more publishing out of the faculty. They hired a bunch of forensic psych people recently. Added some child psych faculty and look to be gearing up to create a child psych fellowship.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:

    St Louis is a great city, pretty low cost. Lots of things to do, nice weather generally, lots of outdoors stuff to do. SLU and the psych offices are downtown at SLU's campus, with other sites scattered around the city.

    7. Salary & Benefits:

    $52290 for PGY1 up to $56248 for PGY4. Additional info on their website. GME Benefits : SLU

    8. Program Strengths:

    Nice people. Young faculty that seem engaged, interested in teaching. Lots of charity work / low SES population / community work if you're into that. Strong ECT. The VA might make IM and Neuro easier. I liked the people I interviewed with, and at one point did say to myself "If I matched with these people, I'd be happy."

    9. Potential Weaknesses:

    They are expanding and building out. To me it sounded like they were adding lots more beds without adding new residents - so workload will increase. They did some hand waving about locums filling that need, but frankly I am concerned about that if I match here. The Chair seems well respected but also seems to take a lot of money from Pharma - so I'm unsure which reputation people will think of when you say SLU (unprompted I had a faculty member at my home institution several states away say "Oh, their chair is in Pharma's pocket").
    The facilities were not nice. One tour group saw a giant cock roach, to which the residents just shrugged and said "old hospital."

    10. Overall Impression:

    I wanted to like this program, but I don't think I do. The people generally seem like a strength, but as outlined in the "weaknesses" above I'm just concerned about the whole picture.
    Coupd'Cat likes this.
  26. doggums

    doggums 5+ Year Member

    Oct 25, 2012
    East Carolina University

    1. Ease of Communication:
    Via email. Kind of meh. Coordinator is brand new and sent a lot of not super friendly seeming emails that weren’t particularly relevant. The school required all kinds of paperwork before they’d give us our interview info that included documenting everything you’ve done since the beginning of high school. One applicant’s paperwork, including SSN and all personal info, was sent to the entire group by mistake.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    Hotel was provided. Dinner was at an Italian restaurant that was pretty good, 2-3 residents attended. Light breakfast was provided on interview day, but no one really had time to eat any of it. Lunch was in the hospital cafeteria and kind of chaotic.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Day started in their outpatient clinic at 7:30. We arrived and were shown to a room where we were given a clinic vignette short answer type quiz. We were told we could work on it throughout the interview day, but that was a lie. There was no time between interviews and none of us actually returned to this room until we were about to leave. We basically sat in silence and/or worked on this quiz until 8:30 when interviews started. There were six 30 min interviews all back to back, 3 of which were with residents. These interviews seemed excessive since we met the same residents at dinner, lunch, and on the tour. Interviews with residents were more structured/tougher, but it probably depends on who you interview with. They seemed to have a list of classic interview questions they went down, whereas faculty were very laid back and more conversational. Overall the interview day was organized, but came across as disorganized because applicants weren’t given much information about it. i.e. told to meet for dinner, but not how we’d get to the restaurant, to meet in the morning for interviews, but not that we’d be driven to a different site later, that we’d have time to do the quiz between interviews when we didn’t, etc

    4. Program Overview:
    It’s all listed online. Sounded lighter workload and call wise than other programs, no night call after PGY-2. Lots of emphasis on going to 2 different VA sites. They do have a med/psych unit and a developmental disabilities unit, which is unique. Chair was super into tele psych. Doesn’t sound like there’s any research going on. No child unit. Opportunities for TMS and ECT.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    From what the residents said faculty is all very approachable and into teaching. PD is awesome and probably one of the biggest draws to the program. They have a lot of very new faculty just out of residency.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    Greenville is in the middle of nowhere. Easy life, nice weather, only 1-2 hours to larger cities and things to do, but if you like the city life, Greenville is not for you.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    Both sounded pretty average. 15 vacation days plus either Christmas or New Years off. $100 per month stipend for food. Free parking.

    8. Program Strengths:
    -Awesome PD that everyone raved about. Seemed very invested and approachable.
    -Low cost of living, nice area, no traffic, nice weather.
    -Supposedly a diverse patient population, TMS, and ECT
    -Lighter workload/call schedule (sign out is at 4:30, day call ends at 7:30PM)
    -Huge hospital ~1000 beds with children’s hospital and children’s ED

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    -Psychotherapy is a weak point and there is little to no emphasis on it
    -Greenville is in the middle of nowhere
    -PC is new
    -Little to no research going on

    10. Overall Impression:
    I was offended by their excessive paperwork, sending out someone's personal info and not apologizing or acknowledging it, and being given a quiz. That aside, I would probably end up ranking this program higher if not for it being Greenville. If research or therapy is your thing, you won’t find that here, but the people seem nice, the PD is great, and it would be a great lifestyle if you’re going for work life balance and/or a family oriented program.
  27. When is graduation again?

    When is graduation again?

    Aug 12, 2017
    I agree with this review, so I won't post my own. I'll add that I thought the PD was great. I got mixed messages about the workload though. Some of the residents made it sounds like they were pulling crazy amounts of work. I was finally able to pin down that it's not that they work long hours per say, but more so that when they're on the clock they go nonstop covering a 64 ish bed unit with 4 residents or monitoring multiple units while on call. In terms of call, they have 2 months of night float PGY2 and 2 months PGY3, which seems excessive. I also felt a certain way about the paperwork and the quiz, though the quiz wasn't difficult, it just felt weird to have to do one at this stage. Kind of makes you wonder about the quality of some of their past residents that they have to take such a precaution.
    doggums likes this.
  28. DrSatan

    DrSatan 2+ Year Member

    Apr 16, 2014
    (provided by anonymous)

    1. Ease of Communication:
    Set up interview via phone. Friendly coordinator. Interview schedule provided morning of interviews.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    Dinner night before with good mix of residents from all years. ~5-6 applicants & ~5-6 residents from PGY1 to PGY4. Restaurant was nice with great food. Residents drank. We ordered whatever food we wanted & shared appetizers & desserts. Offered discounted hotel nearby hospital (~$110+/night). I stayed in an air bnb for very cheap nearby instead. Breakfast was coffee, pastries, & Greek yogurt. Lunch with residents was catered from Qdoba. Parking is free, but you have to leave soon after you validate your ticket (oops!).

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    I had 4x 30min interviews (1x PD, 1x aPD, 1x faculty, & 1x PGY3). I also had 1x 15min interview with the department chair. I had no trouble finding where to go, but it looked easier to find from where I parked (South Garage). Started at 745am with program overview by PD. Lunch & tour followed by final interview for some applicants. Most of my interviews were back-to-back, without breaks (minus an initial 30min break). I was brought to each interview by a coordinator. I had several interviewers just ask me if I had any questions to start off the interview (including the PD). Someone asked “tell me something about yourself that you’d like me to know or wasn’t on your resume.” Had a “tell me about yourself,” “where do you see yourself in 10yrs,” & “why psychiatry.” Can’t recall any other brain busters. Nothing inappropriate. Mostly very casual. Heard that if you want extensive training in psychotherapy, do not rank WashU high. aPD told me they essentially had no weaknesses when I asked (hmmmm) because they respond to concerns quickly. All of my interviewers read up on me (besides the chair), which was nice.

    Lunch was another opportunity to talk to different residents & get other perspectives. After lunch, a resident gave a janky-looking powerpoint on the pluses of St. Louis, but it was good. Tour was nice, but I was a little drained by that time, & the hospitals are pretty big (the outpatient clinic is at the opposite side of the hospital).

    Faculty were all very nice. Didn’t feel like I gelled with them all, but can imagine working with them & being happy. I thoroughly enjoyed my resident interview. All residents seemed very candid & wanted us to ask questions. But I could tell they really loved their program & were happy. I would definitely enjoy working with them. I met 2 residents who really loved psychotherapy & some others who were research-oriented.

    4. Program Overview:
    A lot of this information is on their website.

    12 residents accepted per year (I think). PGY1 looked typical: 4mos medicine (can substitute 1mo ER or peds), 2mos neurology (1mo general, 0.5mo consults, & 0.5mo stroke [may change this in future]), & 6mos inpatient psych. Most residents take Step 3 after their 2nd stint of medicine. Residents treated as IM residents during medicine rotation. PGY2: addiction/“chemical dependence” 2mos (split at VA & other hospital), 1mo patient safety/quality improvement (act as backup for call/sick residents), 1mo eating disorders, 2mos consult, 1mo ER psych (consultative role for tough cases), 1mo inpatient, 1mo gero, & 2mo “selectives” (autism, child, forensic, sleep, community, TMS, neurology consults, or research). During PGY1 & 2, residents can join PRREP to start/continue their research careers; can become full-time researcher (1 resident/yr tend to do this) or be more of an academic psychiatrist involved in research. It is mostly mentorship during these years to determine whether you want to continue more intensely for PGY3 & 4. PGY3: outpatient +/- research if PREPP. PGY4: 2mos consults supervision, 2mos inpatient supervision, & 8mos electives. They are flexible with electives if not offered: people have done sex therapy, studied pedophiles, neuropathology, & I think someone may have actually done neurosurgery. No call or nights PGY3 or PGY4.

    Obviously this is a biologically-heavy program. They emphasized that they teach evidence-based psychotherapy (CBT, DBT, interpersonal, etc.). No psychodynamic it sounds like, but you could find someone to mentor if you put the effort in. There is a psychoanalytic institute nearby. Psychotherapy practice doesn’t really start until PGY3, but didactics start early. PD emphasized that motivational interviewing is effectively taught in PGY2 & motivational interviewing during eating disorders rotation (also PGY2). Supervision seems to be discussion after the fact or recordings, depending on your supervisor. Lots of interviewing techniques are learned through didactics or direct attending observation (or can be supplemented by online courses I believe). Attending will interview tough patient in front of class to teach.
    Can do 1x supervised patient during PGY2 (if motivated). They have 1 psychodynamic psychotherapy supervisor. You can also take courses at the St. Louis Psychoanalytic Institute. PGY3 elective in psychotherapy. Psychotherapy supervisors. Psychotherapy training in CBT, ITP, supportive, DBT, group, family/couples, & child.

    Research opportunities are stellar. PD emphasized that most residents are not starting/completing their own research projects, but are just jumping on other’s work & hopping off when their research elective time is up. Research is mostly to prepare residents for the future changes in psychiatry & help residents learn how to better gauge the legitimacy of research papers.

    Emphasized no elective tracks because they want you to have flexibility & not be trapped in a track (if that really makes sense or not, up to you). Lots of emphasis that it is resident-interest geared. Sounds like they make changes frequently from resident input (as well as faculty input). For example, they just started a process group due to resident interest & now have a “pizza rounds” once a month with attendings & residents to eat pizza & drink beer. Didactics are every day for 1-2hrs. Sounds like everyone who wants to do CAP fellowship at WashU are accepted. 80% of fellowships residents do are in CAP. 1-3 residents/yr go into forensics. Required ECT in PGY2 that can be done in PGY4; sounds like most hospitals would consider you sufficiently trained if you do it in your PGY4 year. Extensive consult experience, so most residents do not enter fellowship unless necessary for specific job (per faculty obviously). Lots of mentoring available (from residents & faculty).

    Inpatient unit is currently under construction, so part of it is done at a separate site some miles away. Should be done by next winter. Apparently this makes night call much better, so I would hope to do nights while it’s under construction.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    Obviously extremely accomplished. Also so many faculty. Everyone I met was very nice & easy to get along with.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    St. Louis is a good-sized city with lots to do. Great music scene, food, parks, zoo, museums, bars, breweries, sports, etc. Crime maybe? Cost of living is really cheap for a city. Sounds like they are building a lot of new restaurants, bars, museums, etc. throughout the city. The Rams are gone (that’s a plus). Residents sound like they have time to live their lives (minus PGY1 medicine & neuro). Inpatient psych sounded reasonable. PGY3 & 4 sounded pretty laid back. Residents go out together. They will have happy hours with attendings sometimes. I almost got in 3 car accidents during my trip, if that means anything to you. Good mix of single & married residents. Several residents own homes. Parking is free but at a garage that’s a little further than where patients park (10min walk, or can use shuttle). Food voucher for call days. Cafeteria food described as “cafeteria food.” Can pay directly from paycheck with ID badge. Subsidized gym/weight room access connected to hospital (I think) with a locker room; sounded pretty typical.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    Look it up. Nicotine is not allowed.

    8. Program Strengths:
    - Research opportunities.
    - Faculty.
    - VA experience.
    - Flexibility.
    - Great disease pathology.
    - Career preparation.
    - St. Louis (depends on you).
    - Supervision in PGY4 (could be a weakness)

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    - Limited psychotherapy, if any psychodynamic possible.
    - Few home fellowships.
    - St. Louis (depends on you).
    - Supervision in PGY4 (could be a strength).
    - Big hospital, requires some decent walking after parking.
    - Fixation on evidence-based psychiatry.

    10. Overall Impression:
    I was impressed by WashU. I do think I want a more well-balanced program, but I will say they do a damn good job of selling it. Flexibility & diverse opportunity are big factors for me. They have a vision for the future of psychiatry & are sticking to it. Residents are happy & faculty are kind. St. Louis is probably pretty great. I’d be happy & grateful to match here.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2018
    Coupd'Cat likes this.
  29. Coupd'Cat

    Coupd'Cat Caught in Life's Washcycle

    Sep 17, 2017

    Accommodation & Food: Pre-interview mix & mingle at a resident’s apartment. Wine and cheese. Well-attended by residents & informal--come & go as you please.

    Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences): Starts with PD Carol Bernstein and APDs Christina Ahn and Rebecca Lewis giving us a rundown of clinical training and the whole family of training sites at NYU. I can see why some past residents have called Dr. Bernstein “Mama Bear”--she’s larger than life.

    Applicants were split into morning or afternoon interviews, which were three 30 minute interviews. Ranged from typical interview questions to "why NYU" to very probing questions about my activities in medical school--down to the research protocol we used and my stance on health policy issues and colonialism.

    Most well-arranged clinical tour so far. Led by one of the chief residents. As we went from unit to unit, a faculty member or resident was given a heads up to meet us and give us a spiel. Common themes: NYU residents are well-trained and leave with no clinical blind spots, the medical and non-medical staff love it and have been here for ages, and you’ll see anything and everything under the sun.

    Day ends with a 15 minute one-on-one meeting with one of the PD/aPDs. Chat with other applicants/residents more as you wait, watch some “propaganda” (YouTube clips of NYU-affiliated faculty in the news, on The Daily Show). Cookies.

    Program Overview: This place is a shiny behemoth. NYU’s clinical training is probably unbeatable, in terms of diversity of training sites and sheer patient volume. Very intrigued by the CPEP (Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program), which residents rotate through for 6-8 weeks during PGY-1.

    Strong forensics--long history of working with state prisons to treat patients who are brought from Rikers for treatment or have been deemed not guilty by reason of insanity. Mental Health court as well as a secured unit inside Bellevue itself. Additionally, can rotate at Kirby, a max security state forensic hospital (193 beds).

    If you’re interested in community or public psychiatry, Bellevue is a gem. It’s the flagship of NYC’s public hospital system and has 40% of its ~1000 beds devoted to inpatient psychiatry. Has a long history (100+ years) of treating the city’s sickest and most in-need, which is large source of pride for those who work there. On top of that, residents can also choose to rotate at the Manhattan Psychiatric Center, a state-owned facility for patients w/ long-term persistent mental illness, as well as its outpatient branch on 125th in Harlem. Additionally, PGY1s rotate through Rockland--NY's largest state hospital (370 inpatients, 3500 outpatients). Two language-based clinical sites (Mandarin/Cantonese(?) and Spanish). A large center for survivors of torture.

    I think the phrase “workhorse residency” gets thrown around a lot about NYU. My impression at the end of the day is that residents may have felt overwhelmed and under-supported a decade or so ago (per a junior faculty who trained there). Currently, attendings staff the units (e.g. CPEP) around the clock so you always have direct supervision and support. Residents have a 7-patient cap on inpatient units. Several attendings said that they try to share note-writing and administrative work with residents so as to allow them more time with patients/didactics. Perhaps higher patient volume is a necessary tradeoff for the breadth of training.

    Psychotherapy -- Residents seem pleased with their psychotherapy supervision and appreciate being able to pick supervisors who match their schedules PGY-3 year rather than the other way around.

    Didactics -- Around 2 hours per week.

    PGY1: 2 weeks elective, CPEP 6 weeks (12 hour overnight call, split night & day shifts w/ another PGY1), inpatient (10-14 weeks), HCC (voluntary patients), VA, Rockland.

    PGY2: Inpatient (4-8 weeks), HCC (4-8 weeks), VA (4-8 weeks), Manhattan Psychiatric Center, Child/Adolescent, CL. Call 6-8 weeks of night float in 2 week chunks + weekend call.

    PGY3: Outpatient. Call ~2x/month. 3-4 weeks of night float + weekend call.

    PGY4: Outpatient. No call.

    Faculty Achievements & Involvement: Up the wazoo.

    Location & Lifestyle: Midtown Manhattan. Residents coming in as interns from outside Manhattan get preference for resident housing near the campus (which might end up being as expensive as finding your own place anyway). Some live in NJ and commute around 30 minutes on the PATH, some live in Brooklyn and Queens which are doable commutes as well.

    Salary & Benefits: $65,676 to $75,829. Moonlighting available.

    Program Strengths:
    • Strong clinical training and wide breadth of settings
    • NYC is NYC.
    • High-energy
    • Many residents stay w/n NYU or go on to other respectable placements post-graduation.
    Potential Weaknesses:
    • Many different clinical sites each with their own EMR and workflow; need to be flexible.
    • Large-ish class size (14) and big program; easy to fly under the radar.
    • Must scrabble for research time (there is a Research Track wherein you have 2 weeks to meet with mentors and, once a project is chosen, apply for protected time). That being said, NYU has a dedicated Psychiatric research center (Kline Institute), so perhaps the resources are there at least.
    • NYC is NYC. $$$.

    Overall Impression: Residents graduate as very well-prepared clinicians. Interests in research/advocacy/teaching will probably be on hold until PGY3-4 years. Many high-energy, hard-working, and friendly residents. More do-ers than contemplators.
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2017
  30. doggums

    doggums 5+ Year Member

    Oct 25, 2012

    1. Ease of Communication:

    Via email. Took forever to get date confirmed, but after that easy enough.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    No accommodations provided. Dinner was at an Italian place downtown. Took longer than expected to get there with traffic and students everywhere. Food was good. Program ordered appetizers and wine before we got there, so it was brought out promptly. 3 residents and 8 applicants attended.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Day started at 9AM in the neurosciences hospital. Breakfast with the residents, overview by program director, then three 30 minute interviews. All were very laid back and conversational. PD asked the most direct questions. We were each given a room and the interviewers actually came to us so we didn’t have to wander around finding rooms, which was nice. Then we had lunch (delicious) with a bunch of residents coming in and out, a tour, and a talk with the chair of the department who went on a tangent about multiple personalities disorder being real (apparently he always does this). Overall super chill day.

    4. Program Overview:
    They’ll go into it in depth and it’s probably on the website. Big points— Medicine is all family medicine at UNC and at the state hospital on a med-psych ward. 2nd year is all outpatient. Seven different specialized inpatient units you rotate through 1st and 3rd year. Neuro is split up into 1 month inpatient intern year and 1 month outpatient third year. Minimal research/scholarly activity requirement. They have a research track and a clinician educator track for those who are interested. No VA exposure. ED sounds super busy. They don’t have anywhere else they can send patients for placement so everyone just waits in the ED.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    Huge faculty, someone estimated 50-70 psychiatrists, but only about 20 you work with directly. Unclear how involved faculty are with residents, but they all sound very involved in research. Huge research studies going on, thousands of participants, neuroimaging, clinical trials, drug trials, etc.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    Chapel Hill is a cool area. Low cost of living, close to Durham and fairly close to Raleigh if you want a big city. Traffic seems to only be bad during rush hour, otherwise pretty minimal. (Took 40 minutes for me to get out of the parking garage at 4PM). About half the residents seemed to buy houses and half rented. Those who bought did so in different areas of Durham and commuted 15-20 minutes. Supposedly the schools are good and there’s a lot to do in the area. Tons of restaurants and shopping around.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    Neither were really mentioned. Salary (~52k) seems to be average. Benefits weren’t mentioned, but are somewhere in the folder they gave us. Residents pay for parking.

    8. Program Strengths:
    -Large program so less call 3rd and 4th year and one person being sick or pregnant doesn’t mess with the call schedule.
    -Research. If you’re into research, this is obviously one of the best places to be. Tons of diverse patients, lots of NIH funding, huge faculty, all the resources of a major university
    -Biologically leaning. Everyone will say the program is balanced, but I didn’t meet any residents who were particularly into psychotherapy and a lot of neuroscience research is going on.
    -Nice facilities, everything (except state hospital) in one place, including outpatient offices.
    -Early outpatient and child exposure if you’re trying to determine what you want to go into.

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    -No VA exposure
    -Large program with a lot of faculty, there seemed to be less emphasis on tailoring the program to individual interests and more “this is the way we are, take it or leave it”
    -Psychotherapy. No matter how much they told me they valued it, it seemed like an afterthought.

    10. Overall Impression:
    Very strong program. Excellent for research oriented people. PD said multiple times “this is who we are” so I’d question how much input residents get on things. Didn’t feel as warm and fuzzy as some programs, more ‘throw you in the fire and you’ll learn fast and be fine.’
    Coupd'Cat likes this.
  31. doggums

    doggums 5+ Year Member

    Oct 25, 2012
    Virginia Commonwealth University

    1. Ease of Communication:

    Via email. Easy enough.

    2. Accommodation & Food:
    No accommodations provided and I skipped the interview dinner so I can’t comment much on that.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Day started at 8AM in the hospital with an overview and tour by the PD. There were five 30 minute interview blocks during which you had 3 interviews and 2 breaks. You kind of just awkwardly hangout with the PC during this time. I don’t remember my interviews particularly well, one faculty member had to answer a lot of pages during the interview and the PD was quirky. He asked some really direct questions and I felt like I was being psychoanalyzed, but not in a bad way. He was fun and approachable. Lunch was typical boxed sandwiches and 2-3 residents showed up. It felt like fewer residents than other programs given their large size. After lunch was a tour around the hospital. It was a little disjointed and our guide got lost a few times. After that we were sent out on our own to find the outpatient clinic and meet a resident there. We got a brief tour of the clinic and then had a wrap-up session with a stand-in for the chair (who normally does the wrap up, but wasn’t there).

    4. Program Overview:
    I don’t remember how the program is structured. It’s on their website and they’ll give you a handout. I remember thinking call sounded sub-optimal. There are 8 weeks of night float and then short call and weekend call as well. The VTCC is opening soon (state of the art child/adolescent unit) and will likely be amazing. The PD made a point of telling me how they’re trying to get more residents involved in research via the research track and they’re trying to take fewer IMGs. In fact, when I interviewed they said they hadn’t even reviewed any IMG applications yet and may not do so at all this year (sorry IMGs -_-).

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    I only got a chance to meet one faculty member who didn’t really work with residents. People said faculty was approachable and some were more into teaching than others. Their C&L attending wrote the book on C&L psych and is a huge name in the field.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:
    Richmond is a nice smallish city with a relatively low cost of living. Lots of art, culture, and music stuff going on. Lots of stuff to do outside. About half of the residents rent and half have houses a little further out of the city.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    Both sounded pretty average. No one could tell me how much money they get for food, but someone said a small stipend.

    8. Program Strengths:
    -I like the PD, seemed very approachable.
    -Low cost of living, nice weather, Richmond is a decent (and getting less dangerous) city
    -Supposedly a diverse patient population, TMS and ECT training. Everyone said the support staff is good.
    -Huge hospital, strong C&L, new outpatient facility, new child facility.
    -Plenty of psychotherapy supervision and all sessions can be recorded and/or videotaped.

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    -Not currently strong in research or QI projects
    -Large program, potentially easy to fly under the radar
    -Lack of resident cohesion? (hard to tell from 1 day)

    10. Overall Impression:
    Up and coming program, beginning to get more competitive and more research oriented. Not sure if the residents are that close and/or happy, it was hard to get a feel for them. I was turned off by the fact that past the PD, no one I interviewed with knew anything about the program or worked with residents.
  32. Coupd'Cat

    Coupd'Cat Caught in Life's Washcycle

    Sep 17, 2017
    Cambridge Health Alliance
    Cambridge, MA

    Accommodation & Food: Pre-interview dinner at a resident’s apartment with an admirable take-out spread. About 4-5 applicants and 4-5 residents (PGY1s, 2s, and PGY4). Informal and cozy--we sat around a dinner table and chatted as a group.

    Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences): Starts with PDs Amber Frank and Marshall Forstein chatting with us about the mission of CHA (UW model of integrated care established in a city hospital, largely driven by and centered around the Psychiatry department). Liked both of them. Dr. Frank is sharp & funny. Dr. Forstein strikes me as a salt-of-the-earth skeptical ship captain/teddy bear. I trust that they run a solid program with high expectations of their residents. Each part of training sounds well-thought out and justified. Both of them have backgrounds as educators, I believe even before their respective medical training--and it shows.

    PDs drove us around to a separate outpatient site for our first two interviews (~one hour each). Note: Cambridge driving is maddening. All these tiny narrow one way streets that take you on a giant loop to get where you actually want to be...gotta embrace it. Interviews were interesting--one with a psychotherapist who got me to open up about some very personal things, but was so skilled and warm about it. Would love to have them as a supervisor. Another was with a resident--conversational, discussion about some work we had in common, the family atmosphere among residents, etc. Really liked them, too.

    Lunch with residents in a sun-filled conference room back at the main hospital. Paper lunch bags w/ wraps, fruit, and chips. Haven’t laughed this much in a while with residents. PD says he tries to recruit with a “low narcissism index”, and that shows as well. Clinical tour led by a deadpan PGY3 lol, more on the sites below.

    Two more afternoon interviews for everyone. Everyone met with both Dr. Frank and Dr. Forstein at some point during the day (interviews were more on the informal side, mostly talking about your family, where you grew up, and how you might fit in at CHA and similar work done by past residents). We chilled in an empty office and nearly all fell asleep from our food comas as we waited. Wrapped-up in Dr. Forstein’s office (more cookies) and sent on our way.

    Program Overview: CHA itself is fascinating. Seems like it started as a city hospital about 20-30 yrs ago that was then taken over by HMS, in particular by its psychiatry department. Since then, it’s been integrating primary medical care and mental health in a way that seems to truly be working. For instance, through coordination among people from medicine, social work, and psychiatry, CHA’s patients have some of the lowest viral loads in the state (~95% adequately suppressed). CHA turns no one away for care. Diversity in terms of primary language is quite high. About ~25% of patients will request interpreters, and CHA has a robust team of in-person interpreters as well as ipad/video translation for flyby questions. There are also language-based clinics for patients who primarily speak Spanish, various Southeast Asian languages, Portuguese, and Haitian Creole. I believe Tufts serves many more patients who are Mandarin-speaking, seeing as they are closer to Chinatown, but residents in the past have been known to work in the East Asian Clinic in Boston (primary care clinic) with Mandarin and Cantonese-speaking patients. Other specialized clinics include: Health Care for the Homeless, Women’s Health Center, Zinberg HIV Clinic, Asylum Clinic, and Gender and Sexuality Consultation Service.

    Many if not all residents care deeply about social justice issues.

    In the past, people have written about CHA’s “shabbiness”. I think the hospital is not much to look at from the outside, but inside it’s surprisingly well-designed. Nearly every room we saw had big windows or plenty of sunshine. It’s definitely not dingy. There’s a clear 1980s-ish vibe going on with the pastel color scheme and wooden fixtures. It feels homey to me the way a country house filled with tchotchkes might. I also like the idea that everyone is on a first name basis. It's a hospital where by your 2nd or 3rd month you'll know most of the attendings and residents whom you're consulting over the phone and vise versa.

    PGY1: Neurology (2 mos), Medicine (3 mos, broken up), Night float (2 wks), ICU (2 wks), Addictions (1 mo), Child/Adol (1 mo), Geri (1 mo), Community psychiatry (1 mo), Med-psych (2 wks), Elective (6 wks - usually 2 wk and 4 wk block).

    Couple things to highlight:
    1) PDs noted that they wanted to have residents go through subspecialty rotations first so that it would inform their inpatient psychiatry time in PGY2 year.
    2) Check out that 6 weeks of elective time PGY1 year. Residents have done all sorts of things, from studying meditation in India to studying for boards.
    3) No call PGY1 year (“Why do we as a field think it’s a good idea to put the least experienced people in charge overnight. Why.” -- PD).​

    PGY2: Inpatient psychiatry (two 3-month blocks), partial hospitalization (3 mo), Psych Emergency (6 wks), CL (6 wks), longitudinal outpatient ~3 patients. Call starts PGY2 year. Tons of moonlighting opportunities if you want them.

    PGY3: Outpatient all year: child/adol, transitional service, integrated care psych/primary care.

    PGY4: Outpatient all year/chief residency/electives. PD also mentioned a seminar that he runs to train residents to shift into supervision roles.

    Didactics - Full day didactics on Wednesday.

    Psychotherapy - Great reputation for psychotherapy training, which seems supported by resident enthusiasm (“I get too much supervision sometimes. I had to cut down.” - PGY3)

    Faculty Achievements & Involvement: Some quick ones--Judith Herman (well-known for trauma work), Arthur Kleinman (cultural psychiatry), Edward Khantzian (addiction. ha wrote addition first). PDs are very involved. On a texting basis w/ residents, open door policy.

    Location & Lifestyle: Cambridge. Expensive. Cold winters. Good food. Can get by without a car.

    Salary & Benefits: Residents are unionized, so they have access to union reps for small & large issues as well as protection from having health benefits or work requirements changed on them without warning. Call-room food restocked weekly. Paid maternal leave (6 mos) and parental leave (2 weeks). Even with the small class size, residents say that it doesn’t disrupt the flow for someone to take leave--they just might end up making up missed elective/rotation time in PGY4 year. Five allowed conference days just for educational purposes on top of any number of additional days to present your own work at conferences. $1900 educational stipend that can also be put toward personal psychotherapy (“Most of our residents are in therapy. If I could mandate it, I would.” -- PD Forstein). 15 sick days per year, accrued year-to-year.

    Salary: $60,806 (PGY1) - $70,103 (PGY4)

    Program Strengths:
    • Very clear public mission
    • Fun group of co-residents, close-knit (8 per year). Very active in and dedicated to social justice issues. And oh-so-happy.
    • Solid clinical training, as deduced from post-grad surveys of residents who say they feel as or more prepared compared to colleagues from other residencies (psychopharm was pointed out in particular b/c I think that’s been a worry in the past). Also as deduced from the fellowships/appointments residents go on to which are pretty bomb.
    Potential Weaknesses:
    • No VA or tertiary care center
    • Smaller program, if that’s not your thing.
    • Housing in Cambridge is expensive. Also winters are cold.
    Overall Impression: Love this place. It’s the real thing. Love the residents, the work CHA does, and the PDs. To quote a quote of a quote from the packet we got on interview day, “It’s like unicorns pooping rainbows." Personally trying real hard to decide if I can stomach the winters and living in/around Cambridge enough to rank this program highly...
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2017
  33. billybb

    billybb 2+ Year Member

    Jun 2, 2015
    wow that IMG part seems very unnecessary and inappropriate in a sense considering that their 3s and 4s are half IMGs. Is that based on a sense of confidence now that he feels that he has enough AMG applicants to fill their program?

  34. doggums

    doggums 5+ Year Member

    Oct 25, 2012
    Yep, that's basically what they said. They filled all their interview spots with AMGs. They said they would start reviewing IMGs if necessary as people cancel. I was pretty amazed to hear they might never even consider them.
  35. raisinbrain


    Sep 12, 2017
    Brown / Butler Hospital

    Ease of Communication
    Simple, done through typical email. Schedule sent a day or two prior to the interview. No concerns.

    Accommodation & Food
    Provided a list of area hotels, many with a bit of a discount. I went with airbnb to save on cost. Dinner with a good number of residents. Breakfast on morning of was a standard continental spread, including muffins, fruit, yogurt, coffee, etc. Lunch on interview day was from an excellent Indian food place, with plenty to eat (apparently this is true for the entire interview season) and plenty of conversation – around 7-10 residents at lunch as well.

    Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):
    Interview day started at 7:30 at Butler Hospital with a meeting with the chief residents, followed by program overview with three more informational meetings (training director, psychotherapy director, and research opportunities). Had an excellent “van tour” that went around Providence, through Brown’s undergrad campus, by the medical school, and a walking tour of Rhode Island Hospital. The tour was led by an associate training director, Dr. Whiteley, who seems excellent. Lunch with residents, and interviews in the afternoon. No unusual questions; mostly talking about how the program could or would be a good fit, with just a couple that made me stop and remember a time when XYZ happened and how I responded, sort of thing.

    Program Overview:
    Several good training sites – Bradley, Butler, RIH, others. Residents actually seemed to like rotating through the VA as well, as apparently they recently revamped the floor where psychiatry is housed. Bradley is pretty unique as a freestanding child psych facility; lots of partial hospital programs. There’s a trans health clinic somewhere (maybe with adolescents at Hasbro?). Butler is absolutely beautiful to walk around during the fall.

    2. Psychotherapy: has a one-year group therapy experience for residents – seems like didactics+. Training in 5 types of therapy. Do TB participate? Essentially only 1 hr/week of supervision. Pretty concrete schedule for psychotherapy training in terms of didactics, and have a psychologist dedicated to running the psychotherapy training (Dr. Lidofsky). She did clarify that there is 1 hr/week of supervision; didn’t sound like many residents opt for additional supervision.

    3. Several people on interview day emphasized the institution and program’s flexibility, and Dr. Guthrie (training director), clarified to say that they still have requirements, but can work with residents to find training sites/supervisors/opportunities/research focuses that fit well with the resident, and may count as certain requirements. Still seemed flexible to me (in a really good way). Also emphasized education > service, and psych services can run without residents (as they do during didactics).

    4. Plenty of research opportunities, if that’s your thing. Either formally (R25 track, or several T32 post-grad options), or just a month elective. They provide a whole catalogue of psych-oriented research activities going on at Brown.

    5. Didactics pretty much separated by years, so not a lot of formal overlap between years – somehow they still managed to know each other, which I took as a positive sign. Administration (Dr. Guthrie in particular) seems really responsive to resident needs and suggestions, and said their curriculum and program is always changing, but just in more minor ways.

    6. Call all seemed reasonable. PGY1 some short call, weekend emergency call. Two months night float PGY2. Home call starts PGY3; teaching call with interns in PGY4.

    Faculty Achievements & Involvement:
    Lots of clinical exposure and research on the combined Brown campus. I’m not good at name-dropping, so I won’t even try. That said, it sounds like the Psychiatry department at Brown is strong enough to be well respected throughout the institution and surrounding hospitals. Just had a good feel to it.

    Location & Lifestyle:
    Though there’s talk of Providence being one of the bigger cities in New England, it still feels more like a small city: easy to get around, friendly people, a lot of green spaces, the works. Brown’s undergraduate campus is pretty cute. Surrounding areas/cities seemed hit or miss to me as I drove around – some parts of Pawtucket looked like they were 95% concrete. Residents seemed to really enjoy each other’s company, and seemed pretty relaxed and comfortable. Nobody was complaining about call schedules, which actually seemed pretty chill.

    Salary & Benefits:
    Most details on website. Salary appropriate for area for sure. No formal requirement or outlet for psychotherapy set up for residents, but apparently they keep a list of off-campus providers who sometimes give discounts to residents.

    Program Strengths:
    - Lots of faculty, plenty of research
    - “Flexibility” in making the experience worthwhile for each resident
    - Long history of being an excellent and academically-strong program
    - Friendly, warm atmosphere of the program, department, and city

    Potential Weaknesses:
    - Sometimes needing to be in 2-3 hospitals in one day (though only 5-15min travel)
    - Possibly job market for significant others (field dependent)? Seems like people go to Providence/Rhode Island and then never leave.
    - Therapy supervision 1hr/wk (+/-)

    Overall Impression:
    Strong and respected clinical department with lots of research opportunities. I would definitely be happy training here. Butler hospital’s campus is beautiful, to the point where I contemplated ditching the child psych angle in order to work more with adults just to be on that campus. Trees make me happy; your mileage may vary. A lot of Providence also seemed really fun to be around, but without the big city vibe. Perhaps it’s not the ideal training for a strongly psychotherapy-oriented applicant, but it really didn’t sound like you’d be missing any core skills after training.
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2017
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  36. OldPsychDoc

    OldPsychDoc Senior Curmudgeon Physician Moderator Emeritus SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

    Dec 2, 2004
    Left of Center
  37. Shikima

    Shikima Physician 10+ Year Member

    Oct 15, 2006
    And be sure to stand out with the same CVs and black suits with an air of over-eagerness.
  38. MrWonderful

    MrWonderful 2+ Year Member

    Aug 29, 2013
    The only time a black suit should be worn is to a funeral. (Ironic, I know, given my avatar is Kevin O'Leary who ONLY wears black suits)
  39. Coupd'Cat

    Coupd'Cat Caught in Life's Washcycle

    Sep 17, 2017
    Alternative personal strategy:

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  40. Amygdarya

    Amygdarya 7+ Year Member

    Feb 14, 2009
    Yeah, I was surprised to see so many black suits on the interview trail. I used to think people would’ve “grown out” of them into some resemblance of an individual professional style. I’m by now means fashion police, but based on my totally unrepresentative sample of residency interviewees guys tends to look sharper. And girls, seriously, (cue in *Rooooxane, you don’t have to wear that dress tonight”) *you don’t have to wear those high heels to interviews*, especially if you haven’t worn them since your medical school interviews and, therefore, instead of walking elegantly, you end up uncomfortably - and, I imagine, sometimes painfully - stumbling around. Really, there is no necessity in high heels; it’d be so much better if you were simply more comfortable.
  41. Wounded Healer

    Wounded Healer

    May 23, 2017
    I can't walk with heels. Is it possible to attend interviews with a flat shoe? Btw I love the song Roxanne! Sting rocks:)
  42. TeaAndCrumpets

    TeaAndCrumpets 2+ Year Member

    Dec 22, 2014
    You definitely do not need to wear heels - I wore flats (and occasionally boots) for all of my interviews, and was really glad I'd done it on some of the lengthier tours
    Silverhand and Wounded Healer like this.
  43. Amygdarya

    Amygdarya 7+ Year Member

    Feb 14, 2009
    Sure, as long as they look professional enough (alas no flip flops or cozy slippers!)

    The more I think about it, the more similarities I find between residency interviewing and dating. It really is about a mutual fit. So go ahead and be yourself (only less weird), ask about your must haves and deal breakers and keep your eyes/ears open for red flags. Also, being genuine, comfortable and confident goes a long way in both.
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  44. smilepinki

    smilepinki 7+ Year Member

    Jun 12, 2009
    Also couldn't pull the trigger on a black suit, but to each his own.
    I found (and bought) two pairs of black leather flats that did not lean business casual, and they were both less comfortable than my heels. Admittedly, the heels were designed with walkability in mind, but you can't tell that from looking at them. Some of the flats I have seen on the trail I felt were too casual for the impression I was hoping to convey. Fair or not, way easier for a guy to put together an outfit. I spent a long time looking for a non-frumpy, non-see through, non-low cut professional blouse.
    The people I am confused about are the ones who wear barely business casual. I won't go into detail, but I have seen a couple now.
  45. Amygdarya

    Amygdarya 7+ Year Member

    Feb 14, 2009
    Women can wear button down tailored shirts, too. Non-frumpy, non-see through, non-low cut professional :)
  46. SmallBird

    SmallBird 7+ Year Member

    May 3, 2010
    No need to give up the child psych angle to be at Butler - we have an adolescent unit!
    Coupd'Cat likes this.
  47. tellme_areyoufree

    tellme_areyoufree 2+ Year Member

    Dec 11, 2013
    Rush University, Chicago IL

    1. Ease of Communication:

    Standard email communications, got a reminder email with details about pre-interview dinner and interview day. Got contact info for a resident for the pre-interview dinner, too.

    2. Accommodation & Food:

    Chicago can be an expensive place to visit, but you can find a few cheap airbnb spots around.
    I couldn't actually attend the interview dinner unfortunately, but the other applicants raved about it.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences):

    The interview day was pretty laid back. PD and Associate PD delivered a brief overview of the program, with the chair present. Was very informative and focused on highlights that were actually very useful. 5 interviews, 30 minutes each. These were pretty laid back, with a few of the conversations feeling really very engaging. I liked all the faculty I met with. No unusual questions or experiences, everyone was talkative and friendly. I liked the tour, their hospital is beautiful - the tour might have been just a tad bit long, but it's a big hospital so that might be unavoidable. Residents were nice - had a very nice lunch and they were pretty talkative. I liked the co-applicants as well, which hasn't always been true in every interview day.

    4. Program Overview:

    A lot of the details are readily available on their website. Things I noted: Option for moonlighting in PGY2 in house. New community psych opportunities with some of Chicago's non profits. Balance of psychopharm / psychotherapy approach. Flexibility in PGY1 - can substitute peds or ED months for some IM months. Resident work/life balance seemed genuinely important. Very diverse population. Option for a master's degree research thing to be completed during residency. Interesting new thing with telepsych for veterans not getting care through the VA. The rest you can see on the website.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement:

    See website. One note important to me was that they've received awards for commitment to LGBTQ care, which may matter if you are LGBTQ or an ally.

    6. Location & Lifestyle:

    Chicago is a great city. I lived there before medical school, and it is a fantastic place to live. Not cheap per se, but not as expensive as many other major cities. A city of neighborhoods - with a very diverse population.
    Rush itself is located on the near W side of town, easily accessible by public transit or driving. Free parking if you drive, a ~2 minute walk if you take the El.

    7. Salary & Benefits:
    Mid 50s to start. Moonlighting available starting PGY2 in house, at good hourly pay. Good benefits package. All details given on interview day.

    8. Program Strengths:
    I loved this place. They will be very high on my rank list, if not at the top. So I may be biased/hyped, so take what you will from that.
    I'll start with the city. You can't beat Chicago, in my opinion. The Second City will always be first in my heart.
    The institution seemed to value psychiatry (it's named after the founder of American psychiatry, after all - who fun fact also signed the declaration of independence).
    Internal moonlighting to supplement a good salary.
    I liked every person I met, which matters a lot to me.
    Fellowship opportunities, including a new fellowship in community psych.
    Well established program
    Chair seems focused on making research opportunities available (without forcing them on people)
    Beautiful facilities
    Small class size
    Connection to Chicago Psychoanalytic Institute
    Starting some new telepsychiatry stuff that sounded very interesting.

    9. Potential Weaknesses:
    Honestly not seeing a lot that I consider weaknesses. It does seem like you'll work pretty hard intern year, which isn't a weakness to me but might be a negative if you want a more cush residency. Small class could be a negative, depending on you.

    10. Overall Impression:
    This will be near or at the top of my rank list. I loved this place.
    If you're looking for a see everything, do everything, work hard program with great people, that's what this one looks like to me.
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  48. DisorderedDoc417


    Dec 15, 2016
    Men: Charcoal gray or a darker navy blue. Don’t overthink it.
    DrSatan likes this.
  49. PsychApplicant18


    Oct 10, 2017
    NYU - sorry if this is less detailed, my interview was a while back but wanted to write this out before I forget.

    1. Ease of Communication: Called in to schedule my interview. It was nice to talk with someone over the phone instead of email back and forth.

    2. Accommodation & Food: No accommodations provided; however, there was a nice event the night before with some snacks and drinks with residents and a great lunch.

    3. Interview Day (Schedule, Type of Interview, Unusual Questions, Experiences): The group was divided into two, with half interviewing in the morning and half in the afternoon. Pretty straightforward interview questions, more about getting to know you and your life. Very warm and welcoming and not stressful at all. The chief residents were really helpful in structuring the day. My interviewers knew my application very well and clearly read through the application and letters in detail.

    4. Program Overview: Seems like a very strong clinical program and that you would leave able to handle anything after going through this residency. You get such a broad range of clinical experiences with all of the sites and you basically can do any sort of elective you could ever want (so many choices almost overwhelming!). There is less of an emphasis on research, but it definitely seems like something you could pursue if you wanted to.

    5. Faculty Achievements & Involvement: Top faculty with incredible experience. Program Director is wonderful. All my interviewers were really bright and seemed like they would be wonderful mentors.

    6. Location & Lifestyle: NYC is awesome, but very expensive. It seems like residents can live anywhere though, so you don't have to be right in the middle of the busy city. In terms of lifestyle, the residents definitely work very hard, but they seemed happy. Several residents/interviewers brought up the reputation of being "overworked" and didn't necessarily say it wasn't true, but described the immense benefits of having such strong clinical training.

    7. Salary & Benefits: To be honest, I don't remember, but it seemed doable to be able to afford living in the city

    8. Program Strengths: So many!! Lots of incredible sites, particularly Bellevue, which has a huge amount of psychiatry inpatient beds in many different types of units. You get such a strong foundation in forensics and ability to do any type of elective you want to do. The residents seem to have their choice of career options after residency, whether in fellowship or in getting jobs. The residents seemed happy and very supportive.

    9. Potential Weaknesses: Lots and lots of call. Again, this can be seen as a positive because of the depth of training, but it is definitely something to be aware of. Its unclear how much of the call or extra hours revolved around administrative work or actual number of patients. Many different hospital systems you would have to get used to.

    10. Overall Impression: Top program. Excellent clinical training. Supportive residents and mentors. VERY hard working, which as I've said is a pro and a con, depending on who you are. Definitely attracts a certain type of person. Overall, really liked the program!
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  50. syvian.


    Aug 21, 2017
    If anyone has a review or any insights on University Hospitals - Cleveland Medical Center, please share!
  51. raeka


    Mar 23, 2017
    Anything in particular you were interested in hearing about?

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