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End od rotation- gift for preceptor and staff?

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BATiger

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Tomorrow is my last day at a rotation I loved. I am writing a personal thank you to my preceptor and to my favorite resident who both helped me a ton. Should I include something small like a starbucks gift card? Is it inappropriate to give a small token to someone who will be grading you? What about the office staff? Should I bring doughnuts or something? What have you guys experienced in the past? (This is not about looking good, I sincerely appreciate how wonderful everyone was and just want to say thanks)
 

DrThom

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I wouldn't. That's gunning.
 

domer621

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Thank them in person.

The only time that giving a gift would even be remotely necessary is if they were writing you a recommendation letter.
 

MonkeyRalph

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seriously...
During 2nd year, we had preceptors for the entire year who we worked with weekly. At the end of the year, I gave my preceptor a small gift and card.
But I would never gift an attending on a clinical rotation! That really is gunning.
 

treasurefull2

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what is all this freakin' "gunning" bull**** you guys are talking about. she appreciates what they did for her and she wans to show it!

i think a card is a nice thing, if you want, you can wait till after evaluations are in... but chances are that you're probably getting a good review anyway...
 

KidDr

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Tomorrow is my last day at a rotation I loved. I am writing a personal thank you to my preceptor and to my favorite resident who both helped me a ton. Should I include something small like a starbucks gift card? Is it inappropriate to give a small token to someone who will be grading you? What about the office staff? Should I bring doughnuts or something? What have you guys experienced in the past? (This is not about looking good, I sincerely appreciate how wonderful everyone was and just want to say thanks)

A card is fine & will likely be appreciated, but I'd definitely stay away from giving individual gifts. Never a bad idea wait to give a card until after evaluations are in, either.
 

FutureInternist

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I think at a minimum students should give their preceptors a thank-you card, specially the ones in private practice who are not being "forced" by the hospital to take on students. For anyone who has trained a new employee at work, just imagine doing that month after month. A nice thank-you at the end would be appreciated.

As for gifts, I generally wait till after my LOR is in. Obviously I am only giving gifts to those preceptors that went beyond what was required, and taught me more than their fair share. However to ask for LOR and then give a gift may put your sincerity in doubt.

I did a rotation with an IM doc in Feb of this year, asked for and got a LOR. Now when I go back to do another rotation with him I will be giving him a tie, since he is famous for wearing weird ties at the hospital. This way he knows I appreciate what he did and he knows its sincere since the LOR is already done.

On another rotation all the students chipped in to buy a 1GB drive for a doc since he was always complaining that he had lost his. Buying something together takes the "gunning" stigma out of it.
 

BATiger

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Wow, thank you for your responses, you guys are tough! First, I was the only student on the rotation, so I'm not trying to get ahead of anyone. (Which is why I especially want to say thanks, I got individualized attention the whole time) Second, people drink coffee! Since when is starbucks too much? Like $10? Anyway, just wanted to see what the general rule was...

Thanks
 

DOctorJay

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did you buy gifts for all your professors in first and second year? if the answer is no, why start now?
 

jdh71

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Tomorrow is my last day at a rotation I loved. I am writing a personal thank you to my preceptor and to my favorite resident who both helped me a ton. Should I include something small like a starbucks gift card? Is it inappropriate to give a small token to someone who will be grading you? What about the office staff? Should I bring doughnuts or something? What have you guys experienced in the past? (This is not about looking good, I sincerely appreciate how wonderful everyone was and just want to say thanks)

What's your motive? If you can find any - and I mean ANY - selfishness, fear, resentment, or dishonesty associated with the gift card, then your motives are not pure. Sans that . . . I think it is a nice gesture, but wait until evals are done to avoid any perception of conflict of interest - your attending has a reputation and so do you, keep them free of controversy.
 

Droopy Snoopy

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...wait until evals are done to avoid any perception of conflict of interest - your attending has a reputation and so do you, keep them free of controversy.

I think this is key. However pure your intentions are, you don't want to come off like you're trying to buy an LOR. Especially with a gift card; might as well palm a $20 when you go to shake the guy's hand for the last time.
 

t33sg1rl

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I sent thank you cards to private practice attendings that I worked with closely for a week or longer.
Doughnuts/cookies/brownies are always nice gifts, and they're even nicer if they're home baked (don't know how to cook? ask Betty Crocker for some help) but gift cards are beyond crass. If you can think of something that costs less than $10 that would be a unique, personal, and well thought out gift, then that's OK. But definitely NO cash, checks, gift cards, or money orders... because they're all the exact same thing. A good rule of thumb is NEVER give a gift card in a situation where you wouldn't want to write the person a check.
 
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oldManDO2009

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thank you cards after a rotation have 2 functions; Thanks the preceptor for their interest in teaching AND reminds them that they need to complete your rotation review. The thank you card is much nicer than multiple phone calls and may prompt immediate action on your paperwork since you took the 2 frakin seconds to fill out a card.....
 

Celestron2000

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:thumbup:If you want to give a thankyou gift, your best bet is to bring in some sort of food thing (especially home baked goods as someone mentioned) for you attending and all the staff. That is fairly common, and appreciated.
 

OldPsychDoc

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Much as I might prefer a plain white envelope stuffed with $20s and $50s
($10s and $20s just don't go as far as they used to:D), a sincere thank you (written, spoken, or emailed) is really more than enough.
I wouldn't turn down a cookie, though...:oops:

(And the nurses are still talking about the med student who brought in a pound of starbucks to break the Hills Bros/Folgers/Maxwell House monotony for the staff coffeemaker.)
 

Lion-O

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If I ever heard of a classmate doing this, I'd talk behind their back mercilessly. Very strong language would be used, most likely involving a multitude of dirty adjectives to describe said classmate.

Seriously. Your attendings are in the upper 5% of earnings. You are in the negative. Under no circumstances should you buy them a gift. Your intentions are not noble no matter how hard you try to convince yourself they are.
 

katiedid919

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In a slightly different situation I gave 2 of my favorite profs from undergrad gift cards for a restaurant after they had completed writing me numerous LOR for med school at the end of my senior year. One prof was extremely grateful...the other very unexpectedly told me that it was like me bribing him and he was unwilling to accept it and told me it was completely inappropriate. Let me make it very clear I was already in at my med school and made the decision to go there and there were no more LOR's to be sent out from him. Regardless, it was extremely embarrassing and overall I felt awful about the whole situation. I was just trying to show him how much I appreciated his help and I think in the long run a heartfelt thank you note would have been a better move. I learned the hard way...stay away from gift cards.

People (regardless of how well you know them) can interpret things differently...so despite the fact that you're being sincere it may be come across differently. So I would say a genuine thank you note is the way to go....though I can't imagine people would misinterpret some delicious cookies.
 

RockShox

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:thumbup:If you want to give a thankyou gift, your best bet is to bring in some sort of food thing (especially home baked goods as someone mentioned) for you attending and all the staff. That is fairly common, and appreciated.

I recommend staying away from soft cheeses or creamy desserts...nothing says how much you are appreciated like a good case of gastroenteritis. Of course I have listened to several residents make fun of students who baked them things (esp. surgeon types) so gauge your audience.

To the OP, I think that you are really overthinking this situation and overestimating how much of an impact you have really had on your attendings life. Just write a thank you note and try not to be futile. For the love don't get a gift. It will be totally tacky and may kill your reputation among fellow students and residents.
 

DebDynamite

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In a slightly different situation I gave 2 of my favorite profs from undergrad gift cards for a restaurant after they had completed writing me numerous LOR for med school at the end of my senior year. One prof was extremely grateful...the other very unexpectedly told me that it was like me bribing him and he was unwilling to accept it and told me it was completely inappropriate. Let me make it very clear I was already in at my med school and made the decision to go there and there were no more LOR's to be sent out from him. Regardless, it was extremely embarrassing and overall I felt awful about the whole situation. I was just trying to show him how much I appreciated his help and I think in the long run a heartfelt thank you note would have been a better move. I learned the hard way...stay away from gift cards.

People (regardless of how well you know them) can interpret things differently...so despite the fact that you're being sincere it may be come across differently. So I would say a genuine thank you note is the way to go....though I can't imagine people would misinterpret some delicious cookies.

Please learn from her mistake. The appropriate thing to do is sit down AFTER your grade has been finalized and hand write a short note of appreciation. If you cannot do this, then sending the attending (again- after your evals and grades are finalized) a brief email would bet he next -remotely the next- best thing.
 

PeeWee137

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i brought bagels for the staff at the end of my favorite rotation. i was genuinely appreciative for how nice they all were to me. and it was funny cause my attending brought in donuts for everyone on my last day.
but i just thanked my attending in person (privately) when i was leaving.
i think thank you cards are lame, there was one hanging on the bulletin board during my ob rotation, and it made me want to vomit a little.
 

efex101

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I have to say that it seems a little bit over the top...to give anything more than a "thank you" (either e-mail/spoken) to anyone.
 

Top Gun

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If you're with a group of students, bringing in food as a gift can be appreciated. It doesn't look so much like gunning if the gift is brought in as a group. On our last day of OB/Gyn, my classmates and I brought in doughnuts for the residents. The residents seemed to appreciate them.
 

Final

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wait til after your rotations since you "truly" are not trying to gun or gain an advantage. :rolleyes:
 

jiy76

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This doctor i follow keeps giving me books he gets for free from the numerous organizations hes a part of. These are some high quality expensive books that are useful in my medical career. He gets them for free and has doubles or triples of them so he is looking to get rid of them. I am extremely appreciative of what hes doing on top of that hes an excellent preceptor. One of his personal books is old ratty and out of date...should i buy him a new one just out of appreciation and because although these books are free to him and he wants to get rid of them i feel guilty sometimes walking out with hundreds of dollars worth of books sometimes.(he explains to me repeatedly he would get rid of them regardless) I do plan on getting a letter from him but this gesture has absolutly nothing to do with the reason i want to do this. I just want to thank him for everything.
 

LoveDO

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Doughnuts or a basket for the office is a sign of gratitude and is not gunning at all in my opinion!
 
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