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Getting ranked after interview from waitlist?

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Mistress S

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There are 2 places I received interviews at after originally being on their "hold" list. One place sent me an invite less than a week after I was told I was on the waitlist; I went and liked it very much, feel like my interviews went well, and will probably rank it highly (although I am only halfway through my interviews so we'll see). The other place I scheduled my interview at but may not go, depends on how motivated (and broke) I am by the time it rolls around. Both programs are in the top 10-15 for my field.

Even though I liked the program I went to very much, I am not sure how likely they are to rank me since I didn't make their original interview group. This is part of why I am not sure if it is worth the money to go to the other waitlist interview I received since it will involve a second trip across the country and, again, if I didn't make the initial cut I don't know if there is a high chance of being ranked there. Has anyone heard anything about how people who got interviewed off the waitlist are treated come rank list time? Anybody get into, or know people who got into, programs that they interviewed at after initially being on hold? Thanks!
 

peerie

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Well, take this for what it's worth - meaning it's only my experience. I think that if you get an interview it's because they are interested in you. I know it sounds really simplistic but there it is. Second, I was told by my advisor (FM) that the interview is alot of the selection process.

In other words, once you're there then it's all about you and your personality and would you be a good fit for their group. On my interviews, alot of times people just schmoozed and were very low key and I realize that's because they already know my background, now they just want to get to know me. One PD even told me that on one of my early interviews. Almost no one really 'grilled' me or anything.

Also, if FM is not competitive enough for you I know alot of radiology residents and attendings and they also say basically the same thing. That it's your personliaty that will make or break an applicant. Especially in rads, you can be awesome on paper but if you are a weird person or have strange mannerisms or are arrogant, then you are not ranked. Alot of my rads friends tell me to go into rads based on my personality and brains (I guess), but I am just not a rads person on paper. In the end, they say that they like hardworking but really 'normal' people - with an emphasis on personality and social skills - which are really crucial in rads.

Hope this helps.
 

Winged Scapula

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You are assuming that you were placed in the "hold" pile because something was wrong with your application or because they weren't interested enough in you.

Programs aren't charity. For whatever reason you were placed in a hold pile, they reviewed your application and invited you for an interview because you met their requirements and they were interested in you. Plain and simple.

You should not worry about ranking or attending interviews based on some flawed perception of whether or not you were interviewed off the bat or after being on hold. Once you get to the interview, you have met the minimum requirements...they will rank you or not based on your performance and your academic traits. Nothing more. They will not say, "well Mistress S was in our hold pile, so even though we really liked her during the interview, she's tainted goods so let's rank her lower".

If you are interested enough in a program to apply there and are offered an interview you should go, regardless of whether or not you were on hold. If you feel you have enough interviews otherwise and simply cannot afford the trip, then that's a different story, but don't turn it down because of some perception that they won't rank you.
 

PeepshowJohnny

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I think it's really variable by program.

I JUST interviewed at a place that said "Basically, two thirds of how we rank is your guys numbers (Step 1, grades), a third is letters, and a third is interview". So, yeah, that's a place where even a great interview is going to make it difficult (but not impossible) to match because you're probably already behind on the numbers.

However, I've also interviewed at places that say "Really, as of today's you're all on the same page, we just want to find people in interviews we think we would like to have for 3/4/5+ years".

The issue is, you don't know what criteria they use, and there's no way to know. I'd say it's worth it, though, because even the most "numbers heavy" people have a heart.
 

Ludicolo

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I think it's really variable by program.

I JUST interviewed at a place that said "Basically, two thirds of how we rank is your guys numbers (Step 1, grades), a third is letters, and a third is interview". So, yeah, that's a place where even a great interview is going to make it difficult (but not impossible) to match because you're probably already behind on the numbers.

However, I've also interviewed at places that say "Really, as of today's you're all on the same page, we just want to find people in interviews we think we would like to have for 3/4/5+ years".

The issue is, you don't know what criteria they use, and there's no way to know. I'd say it's worth it, though, because even the most "numbers heavy" people have a heart.

That's four thirds. Not sure if you want to be there.
 

Law2Doc

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That's four thirds. Not sure if you want to be there.

As long as they dole out salary that way and not on call days, you'll be fine. But if they want you to do 4/3 of your 80 hour work week each week, I'd be concerned.:)
 

mcl

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If it helps you feel better at all, the faculty who interview often don't know that an applicant was on the wait list--all they know is that they are interviewing x number of applicants on any given interview day. I don't recall a time when wait list status became an issue at any ranking meetings I've attended. Mostly, we're just happy when the wait list works and an applicant is still available on sometimes very short notice.
 
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