Do socially awkward med students have trouble getting residency?

Jun 22, 2010
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I admit that I certainly don't have a way with words..I often find myself having trouble expressing what I want to say and sometimes even forget WORDS that aren't used all that often! Furthermore, I have a bad habit of smiling when I'm nervous, which can make for a lot of awkward situations. I KNOW when I'm doing it, but it kinda hard for me to stop....its like trying to stop yourself from breathing. Alcohol tends to dull my social awkwardness, but that obviously isn't going to come in handy as a doc lol

Anyways, I'm MS-II but I'm already worried about the interview process for residency. I had immense trouble getting into medical school. I had a 3.8gpa from a good school, a 31 MCAT and all the expected extracurriculars (volunteering, research, clubs, blah blah blah). I applied to around 15 schools and got around 10 interviews. Most rejected me and I was waitlisted at 5 or so....I got off one waitlist the DAY before orientation started!!

I'm certainly not thrilled with the school I ended up with because I desperately wanted to remain in NYC, and now...I'm in a serious relationship with someone who lives 4 hours from me, in New England. If we're still together come 4th year, I want to move near him (or move in with him) and start a life together, but I'm afraid I'll screw up my chance if I'm given the opportunity. To add insult to injury, I'm not doing very well in my preclinical years, but I'm hoping I can pull off a stellar step 1 (somehow??) and do well 3rd and 4th....

UGHHHHH :(
Why did I choose this career again?
 

smq123

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Moved to allopathic.
 

peppy

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If you're a good enough at interviewing to get into med school, you're good enough at interviewing to get into residency. Just practice ahead of time and prepare good answers for the standard questions. By the end of my interviews, it was basically acting out a script for the most part since most people ask similar questions.
As for worrying about your future with this dude, don't borrow trouble. Just take it easy and see where life takes you. :)
 
OP
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Jun 22, 2010
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If you're a good enough at interviewing to get into med school, you're good enough at interviewing to get into residency. Just practice ahead of time and prepare good answers for the standard questions. By the end of my interviews, it was basically acting out a script for the most part since most people ask similar questions.
As for worrying about your future with this dude, don't borrow trouble. Just take it easy and see where life takes you. :)
well...that's the thing, I was obviously NOT very good at interview for med school....did you read the rest of my post??
 
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Don't sweat it right now-- you have a ways to go. More than interviews you need to concentrate on doing well 3rd year-- that will determine WHERE you get interviews and then you can deal with the interview. ARe you one of those people who does well once you've been in a situation with people you know for a while? Then it might serve you well to schedule a sub-I at the institutions you're most interested in in your chosen field, so that you have a month to shine. But the catch 22 there is you HAVE to shine. Good luck.
 

McGillGrad

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The only way to create a change in your behaviour is to numb your senses to the situation. That means pushing yourself into social situations until they are no longer causing stress hormones to be released...which usually make you act awkwardly.

Interview as many patients as you can and eventually you will get over feeling weird talking to strangers.
 
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Residencies tend to have very like-minded people there.

What this means: you will not match the same place I will, where I strongly favor interpersonal relationships, and don't give a damn about didactics - as I can read on my own.

What this also implies: there are a TON of people like you, and you will find the group of them in a residency and be happy.
 

Dral

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It really depends on the specialty. For the most part, once you get an interview, your personality plays a big part. Think about it...for med school, you're one of generally over 100, vs in residency you're one of...well, maybe 1 or up to maybe 30 or so (generally less than 10 or 15 for specialties). Fewer people means personality is more important. So, in a field like Rad Onc with two residents and five faculty...really important. In a field like Rads with 15 residents...a little less important since personalities can be 'diluted'.
 

2012mdc

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just don't be an ass or a douche and you will be fine
 

MCAT guy

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I admit that I certainly don't have a way with words..I often find myself having trouble expressing what I want to say and sometimes even forget WORDS that aren't used all that often! Furthermore, I have a bad habit of smiling when I'm nervous, which can make for a lot of awkward situations. I KNOW when I'm doing it, but it kinda hard for me to stop....its like trying to stop yourself from breathing. Alcohol tends to dull my social awkwardness, but that obviously isn't going to come in handy as a doc lol

Anyways, I'm MS-II but I'm already worried about the interview process for residency. I had immense trouble getting into medical school. I had a 3.8gpa from a good school, a 31 MCAT and all the expected extracurriculars (volunteering, research, clubs, blah blah blah). I applied to around 15 schools and got around 10 interviews. Most rejected me and I was waitlisted at 5 or so....I got off one waitlist the DAY before orientation started!!

I'm certainly not thrilled with the school I ended up with because I desperately wanted to remain in NYC, and now...I'm in a serious relationship with someone who lives 4 hours from me, in New England. If we're still together come 4th year, I want to move near him (or move in with him) and start a life together, but I'm afraid I'll screw up my chance if I'm given the opportunity. To add insult to injury, I'm not doing very well in my preclinical years, but I'm hoping I can pull off a stellar step 1 (somehow??) and do well 3rd and 4th....

UGHHHHH :(
Why did I choose this career again?
You made it this far. I believe you can do well in your future interviews.:)
 

skatertudoroga

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Given the number of socially awkward residents I've come across, this cannot possibly be the case.
is that in competitive specialties? from what i've seen "personality" carries you far in life.. i bet Bill Clinton would get into some MD school even if he had below average stats and he would match any specialty that would give him even 1 interview.
as for OP, at least you are in a long-term relationship.. if someone doesnt mind you you can't be that bad. and smiling all the time is not as bad as not smiling all the time.
 

skatertudoroga

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The only way to create a change in your behaviour is to numb your senses to the situation. That means pushing yourself into social situations until they are no longer causing stress hormones to be released...which usually make you act awkwardly.

Interview as many patients as you can and eventually you will get over feeling weird talking to strangers.
what if you got nothing to say to them/ask them if it's not relevant to their disease? certainly talking about medicine is not a real social activity..
 

Danlee07

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no... I've gone to some really awkward doctors.

everyone can do talk well on the internet...Kind of have to think about it though. You're taking from a pool of really driven people that study a boatload-of-info area; most likely you're picking out the ones that can speak fairly decent in conversations but not well/above average... Because of that, you find others that are like you which in turn isn't a new situation... it's just talking about classes/useless stuff. Pretty sure you can get anywhere in life if you speak very well.

Only rarely are you gonna find someone that speaks well that has that talent. For those others that you see are those that practiced and were in multiple situations. Common sense to me is basically how much experience you've had with different situations. it's a stereotype that's pretty true but you find the introverts that don't experience many things. that's why many really smart people are one of the dumbest people you'll meet.
 

TheLoneWolf

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At my University, we have many socially awkward students; you really cant tell if its the stress, little sleep, and malnutrition; or if they were always like that. Everyone in medical school has their own quirk.
 

McGillGrad

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The best part about this thread is that no one in it believes that he is the awkward one...lol
 

Deferoxamine

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If you have major social awkwardness issues, it'll be apparent in your feedback during third year at some point, long before you even have to apply for residency.