steadyhand

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Feb 20, 2016
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Looking for some serious advice..so currently a M3 at a DO school interested in IM and fellowship afterwards. Average student in terms of class rank with subpar Step 1 slightly below average. I have 5 co-author publications in both clinical research and basic science and 9 presentations on my CV. M3 grades were mostly high pass mainly because of shelf exams and some honors. My MSPE comments have been great so far. Other than improving on Step 2 CK, how can I strategize my residency applications if I am interested in matching at an academic institution during this cycle? Concerned especially because I won't have the chance to stand out with away rotations.


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bobow98

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Apply to the low-mid majors and hope your application sticks at one of those places. Highlight your research work and things that make you unique compared to standard applicants. Don't bother applying to places that haven't taken a DO in the last 5 years.
Of places I interviewed at, midwest seemed to have the most DO residents.
As you said, Step 2 CK should be an above average score. Get your mentors to call someone on your behalf. Beyond that there's not much else i can think of.
 

steadyhand

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Feb 20, 2016
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Apply to the low-mid majors and hope your application sticks at one of those places. Highlight your research work and things that make you unique compared to standard applicants. Don't bother applying to places that haven't taken a DO in the last 5 years.
Of places I interviewed at, midwest seemed to have the most DO residents.
As you said, Step 2 CK should be an above average score. Get your mentors to call someone on your behalf. Beyond that there's not much else i can think of.


Thanks for the response! Any recommendations for programs I should be looking at applying? Hoping to match in the west coast


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EmergDO

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I think Cleveland Clinic had quite a few DOs actually.

They do, someone from my school matched there this year.

As for what programs to target, the west coast is a tough sell for DOs trying to get academic programs but it can't hurt to apply to the ones that have taken a reasonable number of DOs (I believe OHSU has, and UCLA Harbor and Olive View each take one DO a year). The midwest and south will have the most DO friendly academic programs and I would apply there even if the location is not your favorite. The Northeast has a reasonable amount of programs that take DOs but some require high scores. The Philly area programs (Temple, Einstein, Cooper, Jeff ) all have at least a few DOs, SUNY Downstate has a bunch, as does Penn State. Georgetown takes some but I think they have high score cutoffs.
 
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Thanks for the response! Any recommendations for programs I should be looking at applying? Hoping to match in the west coast


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The West coast programs in IM that are DO-friendly are incredibly difficult to match competitive fellowships from (Cards/GI).

I would highly recommend going to the best Uni IM program in the country you can get into. Cleveland Clinic for example takes DO's and that program will significantly increase your chances more than a place like Olive View UCLA/Harbor UCLA.
 
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Lu_Xun

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But would you need above-average Step 1 to match at a place like Cleveland Clinic? I wasn't planning to apply there because I thought you'd need to be an exceptional applicant to match.
 

shouldigomd

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Outside rotations (especially for IM) are not that important and don't really help much imo. Regardless it is the COVID era so it probably doesn't apply to your cycle regardless.

Your "strategy" should be to make your application as good as possible. That means grades, step 2, ECs. Far and away the most important things you can do. Really focus on STEP 2 to show you have improved.

As far as applying goes.... Now isn't the time to "strategize." Apply big and broad (obviously with common sense). You spent 250K on med school essentially to get a residency so it makes no sense to worry about saving $1000-2000 for the most important step in your career (especially if you want to do a competitive fellowship). There is an element of luck involved in the system so you will never know how the chips may fall. Spend the money now and you can develop a strategy when the interviews roll in and you decide where you will interview at.
 
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tantacles

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But would you need above-average Step 1 to match at a place like Cleveland Clinic? I wasn't planning to apply there because I thought you'd need to be an exceptional applicant to match.

CCF largely does not post their resident lists because their doximity ranking belies the caliber of applicants (purely from a statistical standpoint, I'm sure they're all great physicians) that they get. In terms of the applicants and matched residents they get, a large percentage of them are IMGs and DO's. It is a solid residency, and while I admittedly did not rank them highly because I was not a fan of the program and my perceptions of the program on interview day were less than rosy, they do match to some respectable fellowship spots. My understanding, however, is that they do not favor their own residents for their own (often quite prestigious) fellowship spots, which makes them much less desirable for residency training. By contrast, University Hospitals right across the street is usually thought of as the superior program for medicine (disclaimer: I trained at one of these two programs, and you can probably guess which one.).

That being said, application time is not the time to strategize beyond applying to places you might have a chance at. If you're looking to match at a place that is academic and they have taken a DO in the last couple of years, just put in an application. These apps are much less expensive than applications to medical school.

If anyone who trained at the clinic would like to chime in, I would love to hear your perspective as well.
 
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