Dep.Weigel

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Hey there....
So it’s the week of vacation after surgery (oh god, YES) and I am here thinking I can relax and actually see me daughter/husband. Then after two days of ignoring my email I get this thing saying that I am eligible for the freaking AOA ballot and that I have to get my CV and this other crap to them by FRIDAY.

Let me interrupt here to say a few things: 1) I don't know how the hell I became eligible for this - I have only gotten grades back for Med and OBGYN this year (both honors), but my first two years placed me solidly, perhaps exactly, in the middle of the class (with near-fails and a few honors). 2) I have NO EXTRACIRRICULARS - unless you count my daughter, who, though she does have a SS#, apparently does NOT count as an educational experience/ community outreach project. 3) I have not done any research. 4) I want to do pathology... so lets say that I am not exactly the gunner hypercompetitive derm type, although... 5) I did do well on Step one, but what does that count for other than residency applications anyway?????

So I guess my question is.... I know that out of "eligible" applicants (which I think is 25% of the class), only some get elected (no more than 1/6th of the class). Elections freak me out. I don't like the idea of popularity contests, my cv cannot compete with those of my class mates (I am more of the non traditional, liberal arts, procreating, tattoo wearing student who has both Dora the explorer and Da Ali G show saved on her tivo). Furthermore, I have always been suspicious of organizations named with Greek letters. I wonder if there is an AOA spanking paddle..... but I digress

Oh yes - MY QUESTION IS - should I even bother to bust my butt to write up a cv and collect the other crap for an organization that I am at best lukewarm to? Or am I naive, and more importantly lazy, and should just go ahead and give it a shot. Is pathology getting so competitive that this is a must??

Sorry for the rambling. Coffee kicked in. Congrats for making it this far. I appreciate any responses!!
:confused:
 

normalforce

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Good luck is when preparation meets opportunity. Hands down you should prepare a CV and hope for some luck. Hands down, do not even think twice. Path is moderately competitive overall and very competitive for the top programs.

NF
 

b&ierstiefel

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Definitely put in a CV and the nomination materials together. Congratulations on being considered. If you do get elected to AOA, that will be a big boost to your application. And you will not regret the work in preparing your application materials. You have nothing to lose except a bit of time in doing this. Go for it!
 

med2B

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Dep. Weigel, a message: GO FOR IT.

Spend a whopping 30 mins or less prepping you cv, and turn it in. Agreed that it's kinda re-dick-you-less that they award AOA this late in the game, as it's only reason for existence is added competetiveness for residency applicants (yes i know...bitter am i?? - see below..).

But even though ROL entry day is long and gone, i'd agree w/everyone else in saying why the hellz not just go for it. Disregard that your going into Path; though it may or not actually help land a competitive fellowship and/or job after 4 years of residency training, i still think it'd be a nice lil' addition to you probably-already strong cv. Plus, like a said above, It's JUST paperwork, not like you have to go into a patient's room, LISTEN to them "talk" (all the while thinking to yourself: blah blah blah, words words words...), wondering just how much time you're wasting when you could be reading blueprints for the clerkship exam, contaminate your non-gloved hands by doing a physical exam, and then proceed to order lab tests/films anyways irregardless (i know, not a word) of your medically intuitive "hunch" of what the hell is going on....
i.e.,
not like you've gotta do any real work or anything :scared:

I applied for AOA my junior (yay!!! i was a junior candidate!! -->garbage)., got rejected, got invited again senior year, again got rejected.
And I found out about just how political the admission process truly is too...

"oh yah, i really thought John Smith was a nice guy on our rotations...he totally is like, um, a good candidate, man."

In reflection, i'm confident that my non-acceptance into All obsequious Association (obsequious -go ahead and look it up if you're not sure.. ;) ) won't hurt my chances for the upcoming match results. If I was going INT MED, diff story altogether.

my bitterness aside, go for it. why not??? And if and when you DO get accepted, be sure and give 'em hell from all of us regarding just how political the process has become.

Cheers
 

stormjen

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I would absolutely apply for AOA if I had the opportunity. It's up there with a high Step 1 score and a PhD in terms of making you competitive, especially for Path. Even if you don't think you have a chance, do it anyway. The worst that can happen is you lose a couple hours and don't get it.
 
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Dep.Weigel

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Ok. So I guess you guys should say I should go ahead and put my monkey suit back on now and jump though these hoops. I hate politics. I hate popularity contests. I brought a cross-dresser to my senior prom.

But I see your point: potential (though very slight) that this may actually give me some sort of academic recognition vs. lazy me wanting to spend this time drinking margaritas and cleaning the house. I'm embarrassed now that I considered slacking; it’s just that I am so EXHAUSTED and really, shouldn't just surviving through third year be enough???

Ack.

thank you all for such reasonable advice.
 

yaah

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Well, see, preparing a CV is always a good thing, especially in preparation for applying for residency. While you do this all on the ERAS website, it is nice to have a CV worked out so that you don't have to go through ERAS trying to remember everything you need to.
 

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Well, I can understand the above advice, but I'd like to bring your attention to a little underground medical society I and some others in the Great Lakes region have started, A-NO-WAY. To be a member, basically, you have to have not only avoided kissing ass, playing politics, and smiling at all times (like, after retracting for hours on a vaginal hysterectomy where you can't see squat and the attending asks, "So, how ya doin' over there?", an A-NO-WAY response would NOT be an enthusiastic smile with, "Just great, sir!" as a response...more appropriate would be, "How is this an educational experience?" or "How do you justify my paying $17,000 per semester for this experience?" or "Well, not so good as you haven't really been teaching me anything and I can't independently learn as you have effectively blocked any chance of my seeing"); you have to have proactively challenged the system where medical students are either ignored or financially abused. We don't require a CV, dues, anything. We do require personality. You can't be a member of AOA simultaneously -- unless undercover...hmmm.......

A-NO-WAY
 

b&ierstiefel

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ooh ooh can i join?

seriously dude, all that ass kissing, fake enthusiasm and contrived expression of "I actually give a sh!t" pisses me off too. i was thinking of starting up something like that here but many wussied out. students here are pretty hard core but when it comes down to standing up and saying, "Screw you guys, I'm going home" we're spineless.
 
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Dep.Weigel

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I actually said "screw you guys, I'm going home" to my residents once. Oh yeah, and I called my intern Sasquatch. (sp?)

Seriously, if I had known that there were secret agent AOA members who would get together and vote me in or out, I may have been a bit less... um... colorful. I always laughed at the students who wanted to do derm or plastics because they were without personality, just little plastic figures whose head bobbed up and down if you bumped into them. I think my honesty, while refreshing, may not quite make it when it comes to this....

ok, whatever. Can I join that other club?
 

b&ierstiefel

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Dep.Weigel said:
I actually said "screw you guys, I'm going home" to my residents once. Oh yeah, and I called my intern Sasquatch. (sp?)

Seriously, if I had known that there were secret agent AOA members who would get together and vote me in or out, I may have been a bit less... um... colorful. I always laughed at the students who wanted to do derm or plastics because they were without personality, just little plastic figures whose head bobbed up and down if you bumped into them. I think my honesty, while refreshing, may not quite make it when it comes to this....

ok, whatever. Can I join that other club?
OMFG don't even get me started on the derm-wannabe's here. Watching them work their magic was absolutely hilarious. "Oh I looooove internal medicine." "Dr. V, I brought in this article. I was wondering if I can share this with the team." 3 months later, "Oh I looooove OB/GYN, I think this is what I wanna do with my life." 2 months later, "Oh just working with you is making me have orgasms. I looooove surgery!"

Andy: "Hey derm-wannabe, what you going into?"
Derm-wannabe: "Oh I dunno. I loved EVERYTHING. I can't decide."
Andy: "Cut the sh!t...seriously what are you going into?"
Derm-wannabe: "I'll make a decision sometime in the next few months."

Few months go by...

Andy: "So what did you end up applying to?"
Derm-wannabe: "Oh, dermatology."
Andy: "Haha! I totally knew it! Somebody owes me $20!"
 

PairODocs

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Few months go by...

Andy: "So what did you end up applying to?"
Derm-wannabe: "Oh, dermatology."
Andy: "Haha! I totally knew it! Somebody owes me $20!"[/QUOTE]



Oh, so true, so true! I have 2 surgeons in my class and people were pissed at me 1st year for calling them out. (1 future CT, 1 future orthopod= VERY OBVIOUS!) I actually like some surgeons but I also call them like I see them.

Dep turn in the CV. People lie ( a lot!) about their grades and you are probably ranked higher than you think. I remember a guy pitching a fit about his "first B" during 2nd year. Turns out he was really lying. (We eventually find out the top 15 because they Marshall at graduation.) Me, with my MULTIPLE Bs and not too many honors, was ranked #15. (One guy actually sent me an email saying he had no idea I was "smart"... guess the non-gunner personality fools a lot of people!) so I guess I'm just a nice med student who occasionally works hard and occasionally drinks instead of studying.

Oh yeah, Hi,all, I was lured here by the message from AM a while back "I farted." I guess it says something about me that that was the funniest thing I'd read in a long time. I occasionally lurk now, for comic relief, and to keep me from thinking about March 17. Thanks!

Could some of you visit the Peds board some day? It needs a little livening-up! Keep up the good work!
 

b&ierstiefel

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PairODocs said:
Few months go by...

Andy: "So what did you end up applying to?"
Derm-wannabe: "Oh, dermatology."
Andy: "Haha! I totally knew it! Somebody owes me $20!"



Oh, so true, so true! I have 2 surgeons in my class and people were pissed at me 1st year for calling them out. (1 future CT, 1 future orthopod= VERY OBVIOUS!) I actually like some surgeons but I also call them like I see them.

Dep turn in the CV. People lie ( a lot!) about their grades and you are probably ranked higher than you think. I remember a guy pitching a fit about his "first B" during 2nd year. Turns out he was really lying. (We eventually find out the top 15 because they Marshall at graduation.) Me, with my MULTIPLE Bs and not too many honors, was ranked #15. (One guy actually sent me an email saying he had no idea I was "smart"... guess the non-gunner personality fools a lot of people!) so I guess I'm just a nice med student who occasionally works hard and occasionally drinks instead of studying.

Oh yeah, Hi,all, I was lured here by the message from AM a while back "I farted." I guess it says something about me that that was the funniest thing I'd read in a long time. I occasionally lurk now, for comic relief, and to keep me from thinking about March 17. Thanks!

Could some of you visit the Peds board some day? It needs a little livening-up! Keep up the good work!
Hi PairODocs, welcome to our silly world.

I remember posting once or twice in the Peds forum...but it had nothing to do with my bowel habits are farting. It was actually a serious post, believe it or not.
 

geddy

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PairODocs said:
(We eventually find out the top 15 because they Marshall at graduation.) Me, with my MULTIPLE Bs and not too many honors, was ranked #15.
So here's my question... how do they evaluate MD/PhDs for AOA, since our grades fall into 2 classes?
 

stormjen

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geddy said:
So here's my question... how do they evaluate MD/PhDs for AOA, since our grades fall into 2 classes?
You're a PhD too? Geez...
 

b&ierstiefel

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geddy said:
So here's my question... how do they evaluate MD/PhDs for AOA, since our grades fall into 2 classes?
Here this is what they do and it works similarly to how the histograms of our grades are tabulated for the Dean's Letter.

We are given Pass/Fail grades for the first year. Then for M2 year we have Honors, High Pass, Pass, and Fail. Then for the histograms, the % of students who get these grades are tabulated. However, for us mudphuds, our grades from M2 year stays the same. However, the histograms from the current class (i.e., the folks who did M2 year only 2 years ago) are used in our Dean's letter. This becomes a potential problem if over the years, the M2 year exams have gotten easier and more proportion of students get honors over successive years. So for example, who ends up getting screwed if your year (let's say 2000), only 20% got honors, 60% got high pass, and 20% got pass and you got a high pass for that sequence. Now compare this distribution to that of your current classmates who did M2 year just two years ago. Let's say of these peoples, 50% got honors, 40% got high pass, and 10% got pass.

Given the above scenario, you used to look like you were in the middle of the class. Now, you look like you're at the bottom half of the class because your grade stays the same but the histogram/distribution has changed.

Hopefully this is NOT how it works at your school since this could have implications for your AOA candidacy. Personally, the way it works here bothers me very little since I was never in contention for AOA anyway :laugh:
 

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doctah jp said:
Well, I can understand the above advice, but I'd like to bring your attention to a little underground medical society I and some others in the Great Lakes region have started, A-NO-WAY.
I'M IN! Oh wait, I don't live in the Great Lakes region. But I'm with you in spirit. I would clearly excel in such a society. Oh wait, I said excel - that's gunner-speak! (pounds forehead with fist)
 

cytoborg

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AndyMilonakis said:
Here this is what they do and it works similarly to how the histograms of our grades are tabulated for the Dean's Letter.

We are given Pass/Fail grades for the first year. Then for M2 year we have Honors, High Pass, Pass, and Fail. Then for the histograms, the % of students who get these grades are tabulated. However, for us mudphuds, our grades from M2 year stays the same. However, the histograms from the current class (i.e., the folks who did M2 year only 2 years ago) are used in our Dean's letter. This becomes a potential problem if over the years, the M2 year exams have gotten easier and more proportion of students get honors over successive years. So for example, who ends up getting screwed if your year (let's say 2000), only 20% got honors, 60% got high pass, and 20% got pass and you got a high pass for that sequence. Now compare this distribution to that of your current classmates who did M2 year just two years ago. Let's say of these peoples, 50% got honors, 40% got high pass, and 10% got pass.

Given the above scenario, you used to look like you were in the middle of the class. Now, you look like you're at the bottom half of the class because your grade stays the same but the histogram/distribution has changed.

Hopefully this is NOT how it works at your school since this could have implications for your AOA candidacy. Personally, the way it works here bothers me very little since I was never in contention for AOA anyway :laugh:
Dude, chill! Your excessive knowledge of grades could jeapordize your induction into A-NO-WAY. ;)
 

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yaah said:
I'm not sure I do either.

Either way, AOA sucks. It's like Phi Beta Kappa. Once you start residency nobody gives a crap.
Did I tell you about how I threw the Phi Beta Kappa letter away? Then my friend calls me and says, "Dude, did you get the Phi Beta Kappa invitation?" I'm like, "Uh yeah, rushing frats is so yesterday, I threw it away." ...
 

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yaah said:
Well, I am in the Great Lakes region and I did not make AOA even though apparently my grades were good enough and I did an extra year for educational purposes. So go figure that one out.
WOW!!!! Yaah, if you can't/didn't get into AOA with your USMLE numbers, then it must be a group of gunner wannabes. Likely, your numbers were so amazing that said gunners shunned you in order to stroke their own uber egos. After all, if they had allowed you admittance then they would have been continually reminded that they were less than perfect.

You know what is really sad? Our gunners are never satisfied. They can make all A's, and still be stressed that someone else did too. I think that it is tragic really.
 

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mosche said:
WOW!!!! Yaah, if you can't/didn't get into AOA with your USMLE numbers, then it must be a group of gunner wannabes. Likely, your numbers were so amazing that said gunners shunned you in order to stroke their own uber egos. After all, if they had allowed you admittance then they would have been continually reminded that they were less than perfect.

You know what is really sad? Our gunners are never satisfied. They can make all A's, and still be stressed that someone else did too. I think that it is tragic really.
Dude, when somebody else gets A's, it devalues your work!! Suddenly you're not better than them anymore!!
 

yaah

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mosche said:
WOW!!!! Yaah, if you can't/didn't get into AOA with your USMLE numbers, then it must be a group of gunner wannabes. Likely, your numbers were so amazing that said gunners shunned you in order to stroke their own uber egos. After all, if they had allowed you admittance then they would have been continually reminded that they were less than perfect.

You know what is really sad? Our gunners are never satisfied. They can make all A's, and still be stressed that someone else did too. I think that it is tragic really.
Actually, it wasn't because of gunners. My school wasn't very gunner heavy, and the grades weren't really inflated. AOA was basically awarded based on "intangibles." Like leadership activities, lots of volunteering, etc. Of course, those of us who had these activities but didn't blab about them constantly were SOL when it came to AOA. But it's fine, I got the residency I wanted. But I always thought AOA should be an academic honor society, not a social honor society.
 

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AndyMilonakis said:
Hopefully this is NOT how it works at your school since this could have implications for your AOA candidacy. Personally, the way it works here bothers me very little since I was never in contention for AOA anyway :laugh:
I was never in contention either. I was a little miffed - they asked us to send our resume to them this year so they could decide and then never sent out a mass email saying who got in. I suppose they only sent congratulations emails to the fortunate few and left the rest of us feeling humiliated and abandoned. I'm a little surprised, too - I thought listing "an unhealthy obsession for self-criticism" under hobbies would make me a shoe-in!
 

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geddy said:
I was never in contention either. I was a little miffed - they asked us to send our resume to them this year so they could decide and then never sent out a mass email saying who got in. I suppose they only sent congratulations emails to the fortunate few and left the rest of us feeling humiliated and abandoned. I'm a little surprised, too - I thought listing "an unhealthy obsession for self-criticism" under hobbies would make me a shoe-in!
I was never even asked to submit my resume :laugh: . Seriously I remember after getting into MSTP several years ago that the research phase would agree with me much more than the medical school years. So for me, the fact that AOA didn't want to touch me with a 10 foot pole was neither humiliating nor disappointing.
 
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Dep.Weigel

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OK. CV is finished, turned in, and martini is chilling in the freezer until the little one goes to bed. Am I the only one who finds putting together one of these things intensely stress provoking? Partially because I spent some years after college doing weird stuff, and also because my original cv for med school was cremated with my old computer's hard drive but mostly because I can't help but feel .. I don't know bitter??? Like I am supposed to have all of these awards and extracurriculars and **** and instead I just want to take a red marker and scribble across it - "stop laughing you bastards - I'm just trying to keep my sanity and family together!!!!!".

Everyone I know has some award or another. They are giving them out like mints in the hallway, though I've never gotten one. I never applied for any for one, but also I would rather just focus on the job in front of me and keep my nose clean of fecal matter. I prefer to hang out with the students/housestaff/physicians I enjoy than checking for polyps in the rears of the big name guys. God help me maybe I am not cut out for medicine - is this the only way to get ahead???
 

yaah

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Yeah, resumes suck because things which are of very little time commitment and importance can take up prime position on a CV (like a certain volunteer experience) while something extensive and vital (like a job) gets the same billing and space on the page. And plus, some people just accumulate awards for various nonsensical things and scholarships.
 

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I was too busy trying to survive med school to even consider applying for any awards. And considering that a large portion of my class doesn't know me, I wasn't nominated for the more "popularity"-type awards. I think it was yaah who said that if you don't ram your activities down people's throats, they aren't aware of the activities and thus you don't receive recognition for them.
 

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Dep.Weigel said:
Everyone I know has some award or another. They are giving them out like mints in the hallway, though I've never gotten one. I never applied for any for one, but also I would rather just focus on the job in front of me and keep my nose clean of fecal matter. I prefer to hang out with the students/housestaff/physicians I enjoy than checking for polyps in the rears of the big name guys. God help me maybe I am not cut out for medicine - is this the only way to get ahead???
I think there are a lot of us who choose not to "play the game" but still manage to do fine.

Like stormjen said, I was too busy just trying to survive med school. I didn't even really do all that many activities, just wanted to chill with the people I care about at the end of a long day...so I don't have any reason to get any awards, and would bet money that I won't. That's OK by me. Our senior awards banquet is like a flashback to high school anyways...we literally give out "most likely to...." awards! :rolleyes:
 

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Well, I served on the selection committee for my school during fourth year, so I can tell you a little about the selection process. Mostly it seemed to be a formality for those with all honors, they were all in. For the folks with some honors and then some near-honors/passes, things began to sink to the popularity contest level. The nerds on the selection committee basically decided your AOA status based upon whether or not you were 'cool' in their eyes. So that was laughable.

I found the whole process rather abhorrent since I'm an anti-game, keep-your-head-down-and-your-grades-up sort of guy (not surprising that I chose path, huh?). I really didn't like being on the committee either since I did not like nor respect most of the nerds I went to school with.

But then again if you thought med school was a joke, and owned all the tests and rotations you deserve to be able to fill out that stupid little box on ERAS.
 

yaah

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Yeah, the senior awards are a complete joke. Most of the awards are for something peripheral to the academic part of school, like community service or being part of an underrepresented group or simply for going into a certain field. My school gave awards to people going into surgery, pedes, psych but not other fields.