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Are the last 2 years of med schooL more important

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1max2nv

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i've heard before that the last 2 years of training in med school are more important than the first 2 years. If this is so, a schools rotations play a major role. Is it safe to say then that rotations in NYC are probably unparalled by any other location in the country, hence making nycom a very good school to go to as compared to say lecom and nsu?
 

Dr JPH

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Your clinical years in school do play a major role in getting residency positions, moreso than your first two years. This is where you prove yourself in a clinical setting and that you can apply what you learned in classes. This is also where your best LOR will come from.

As far as certain geographical areas meaning more or one school being better than another regarding rotations, that is really locale dependant.

For example...a Philadelphia residency is more likely to be familiar with philadelphia hospitals. So, students doing rotations in their facility and locale facilities, particularly with LOR from well known attendings, will gain attention...maybe more than a student who does equally well in great hospitals somewhere else. DMEs and programs have to stick to what they know.

Just keep in mind that you can do elective rotations anywhere you want...and those are often the ones that count because you will be doing them (or should be doing them) at hospitals which have residency programs to which you intend to apply.

So choosing a medical school solely based on the rotation list would be a poor move. But it should be consider. As should the number of electives and freedom with electives that the school offers.

Also, don't forget, variety is good too. Some schools may be affiliated with a great hospital, but 6 of 8 core rotations in the same hospital may not look that appealing to some DMEs who like to see that you can adapt and do well in a variety of settings, as many residency programs may put you through a few different sites.
 

bigmuny

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you are correct, your last two years are far more important than your first two years. NYCOM does seem to have the best rotations in the DO world. It is important to get the best/adequate clinical experience you can during years 3/4 and at most DO schools that means taking some initiative(don't get stuck doing core clerkships in some docs office).
 

sophiejane

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I have NO connection to the Iserson fortune...however, the guy did write a great book with lots of really relevant information. It truly is the residency applicant's bible..."Getting Into A Residency" by Iserson. It's worth owning.

It will answer all your questions and then some. My only criticism is that some of his stats on DOs are really out of date and don't reflect the current distribution of DOs in the diffferent specialties, residencies, and fellowships.
 

DunkinDOnut

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Along those lines, the number of free electives vary from school to school.
 

Dr JPH

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Isersons book is interesting, but there are far better resources out there if you have an Idea of what you want to do.

EMRA puts out a great books for students interested in EM and its only $3 if you are a member.

Looking into the flexibility of rotation schedule when it comes to a school is very important. PCOM give you 1 elective 3rd year and 5 4th year. Plus a few selectives where they give you a good bit of latitude to do what you want within certain parameters.
 

dollarbincommon

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Originally posted by JPHazelton
So choosing a medical school solely based on the rotation list would be a poor move. But it should be consider. As should the number of electives and freedom with electives that the school offers.

JPHazelton,

In your own opinion, is it better to go to school A which has many path electives (I'm interested in Path)

or

school B which doesn't have many path electives but makes you take the USMLE (since there are no DO path residencies)?

Thanks in advance.
 

Dr JPH

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Originally posted by dollarbincommon
JPHazelton,

In your own opinion, is it better to go to school A which has many path electives (I'm interested in Path)

or

school B which doesn't have many path electives but makes you take the USMLE (since there are no DO path residencies)?

Thanks in advance.

OK...since I'm on Spring Break I have the time to help you out. Plus, you got me in a good mood so I will ditch the sarcasm that usually preceded a response of mine...here we go.


1. The is NO way to be 100% sure of what field you will end up in some day. I realize that there are things people enter medical school wanting to do and no matter what they will do them. But many, many people enter medical school with some idea and change it often as they meet new professors who have an impact on them, have both positive and negative experiences in rotations and meet residents who can give them the clearest idea of what they are to look forward to.

2. Electives are a great thing. I love the fact that our 4th year at PCOM we can basically do what we want. But I also love the rigid structure they have us in 3rd year. Better quality control of rotations. They also make sure you spend a good amount of time learning urban medicine, as you are in Philadelphia. This, alone, allows you to see some interesting pathology.

3. Taking the USMLE is not, not, not needed to match into an Allopathic residency. Especially Pathology. Pathology, right now anyway, is low competition for residency. And high demand in jobs both clinical and academic. You can do well in a DO school, take the COMLEX, bypass the USMLE and still match into a great Allopathic Path residency.

Here is a link to FREIDA wher eyou can insert your interest of residency and it will give you all the locations.

http://www.ama-assn.org/vapp/freida/srch/

SO...what's the take home message?

- Go to the school that fits you best
- Make sure you can do adequate elctives at hospitals to which you intend to apply
- Make sure you hook up with a good advisor, preferably the pathology professor at your school
- Work hard in medical school (but dont burn out) and then get on the right track to matching into path
- http://www.studentdoctor.net/guide/medstudent/specialties/pathology.html


By the way...I assume one of the schools you speak of is VCOM because they make you take the USMLE. PERSONALLY, not saying anything bad about the school, I would be leary about being the first class to attend. I would rather attend a school that has some backing as far as a name and isn't still testing the osteopathic waters. I am sure that VCOM will be a great school. They are associated with a strong university. But Allopathic residency directors have never heard of it and they will look at you and wont be able to say "oh yeah, we have a VCOM grad come through here...he was good." It can never hurt you to go to a school witha solid reputation.

Any other questions, let me know.

Remember...this is all MY opinion...but seriously...when am I ever wrong?
 

Dr JPH

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