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aProgDirector - Are Repeat Applicants at a disadvantage ?

Discussion in 'General Residency Issues' started by ron2006, Sep 20, 2014.

  1. ron2006


    Aug 15, 2013
    I have read that applications are downloaded on first come first served basis and people applying late get less if no interviews. Due to various reasons I won't be applying until Oct 30. Assuming that I don't match this year - if I apply for the next Match season, is that a considered a red flag by PDs ? Again , based on what I have read on various forums, programs have filters to remove previous applicants or maintain data of the previous years applicants .

    I would really appreciate if someone could please clarify this, specially aProgDirector . Are Repeat applicants at a disadvantage ? Do they get lesser IVs ? Its important for me to know so I can decide if I should apply this year or apply next year ?
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  3. aProgDirector

    aProgDirector Pastafarians Unite! Moderator SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

    Oct 11, 2006
    Repeat applicants are not at a disadvantage because they are reapplying. They are at a disadvantage because 1) whatever caused them not to match this first time is still a problem, and 2) they are one year farther from their year of graduation. Programs do not keep lists of whom applied each year. If you do interview at a program and then don't match there, that's because you're too low on their list to match, then it's anyone's guess as to whether they would interview you again the next year. The longer you're away from clinical medicine, the bigger problem it will be.

    Oct 30 is quite late to apply. Your chances of getting any interviews that late are not good, especially if your application isn't competitive to begin with. But your chances of matching next year are no different whether you apply this year or not.
    ron2006 and Winged Scapula like this.
  4. ron2006


    Aug 15, 2013
    Thank you for clearing things up, aProgDirector. Appreciate it !
  5. voicesinmyhead

    voicesinmyhead 2+ Year Member

    Jul 21, 2013
    Mariana Trench
    for an IMG who has not applied before, how many years post graduation would be 'less interesting' for most program directors, even if the candidate has got clinical experience post graduation?
  6. aProgDirector

    aProgDirector Pastafarians Unite! Moderator SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

    Oct 11, 2006
    Many programs have a 3 year cutoff. More than 5 years is very likely to be a big problem.
    voicesinmyhead likes this.
  7. Gastrapathy

    Gastrapathy no longer apathetic Physician Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Feb 27, 2007
    Don't you think that being a reapplicant has some stigma attached regardless of the reasons since we assume that the reasons are bad.
  8. aProgDirector

    aProgDirector Pastafarians Unite! Moderator SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

    Oct 11, 2006
    There isn't an easy way to know if someone is a reapplicant. I can't tell if someone applied last year or not, unless I bust out last year's ERAS program and search for them. And honestly, unless something piques my interest, that's just too much work.

    Don't get me wrong: being a reapplicant is not a good thing. That means that the person didn't match the prior year, and there's usually a reason for that and that reason remains. They are one year further from graduation. And they may not have anything to show for a gap year. But overall the main problem with being a reapplicant is whatever made the person not match in the first place.
    keifernny2 and Winged Scapula like this.
  9. lordman

    lordman 5+ Year Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    May you explain more please? I thought it can be known from "Token". I also heard that there is an item that can tell the program if applicant is repeat
  10. mcl

    mcl 7+ Year Member

    Sep 6, 2008
    Programs don't see the token, and there's no part of the application that indicates an applicant applied to that program before. The only way I'd remember without checking is if we'd invited the applicant the previous year or if the application stood out in some very positive or very negative way.
    lordman and Winged Scapula like this.
  11. aProgDirector

    aProgDirector Pastafarians Unite! Moderator SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

    Oct 11, 2006
    Agreed. There is no way to know except to remember, or check last year's lists.
    lordman and Winged Scapula like this.
  12. Over9000


    May 7, 2014
    Sorry bro, but medicine doesn't like anyone that has anything out of the ordinary like time that's unaccounted for, or going unmatched. The thought is that "something must be wrong with them, otherwise they'd match the first time around", which is pedestrian thinking but still prevails. You're best off to make your first shot the big one.
  13. patch28

    patch28 Aerial Doc 10+ Year Member

    Aug 17, 2005
    aProgDirector, what would be your advice on how to best attenuate the effect of the time since graduation? I did 3 years of residency training and two of medical practice since graduating in 2010, but I am attempting to re-specialize now. It does not matter how good my letters and personal statement are if I never make it past that filter.
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2015
  14. gutonc

    gutonc No Meat, No Treat Administrator Physician PhD 10+ Year Member

    Mar 6, 2005
    A fibrotic stroma
    The YOG thing is more of an issue with IMGs who graduated and didn't come to the US for residency immediately. Assuming you've completed your residency and practiced in the US, you've already minimized it to the extent possible.
    Winged Scapula and patch28 like this.
  15. aProgDirector

    aProgDirector Pastafarians Unite! Moderator SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

    Oct 11, 2006
    I agree. Programs may still worry about the situation, wondering if you're really ready to go back to being an intern/resident. But since you've been practicing continuously, you';ve done all you can.
    Winged Scapula likes this.
  16. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member Physician Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Dec 20, 2004
    If someone got interviewed previously, came to the pre-interview dinner, interview day etc, someone at the program will almost certainly remember them.

    More so for the smaller programs. And especially if there is anything memorable about your looks, personality or background. I still run into people years later at conferences that I recall from pre-interview dinners.

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