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Hobbies on your application...

Discussion in 'Pathology' started by docbiohazard, Mar 26, 2007.

  1. docbiohazard

    docbiohazard Highly ranked amateur 2+ Year Member

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    Biocontainment
    It's a slow Monday, so I thought I'd toss this out. I've heard there is a spot on the application to list your hobbies. One of my bigger hobbies is homebrewing beer. :) I asked a few PDs at a panel discussion and none of them thought listing it woudl cast me in a negative light... I know at least one Pathologist who homebrews, and I suppose I wouldn't want to go someplace run by a bunch of teetotalers.... Just wondered if anyone else had experience listing a hobby like this, or any other "interesting" hobbies, on their apps, and how it turned out. I know here they interviewed a guy who listed miniature golf, and the PD thought it was "interesting"... not good or bad, but unique.

    Just curious...
    BH
     
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  3. djmd

    djmd an Antediluvian 7+ Year Member

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    It is unlikely to hurt you much. And odds are it would be possible "interesting" thing about you that makes someone remember your application.
     
  4. mlw03

    mlw03 Senior Member Physician 10+ Year Member

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    that's awesome!! i'm actually a home winemaker, and you bet i'm gonna list that as one of my hobbies. i'm very proud of the wines i make and i can't imagine anybody looking down on me for it. in fact, when i move for residency next summer i'm going to need to basically start over, since the equipment i use now is here in tampa and is owned jointly by the group i do the winemaking with - so i'm hoping to find 3-5 other people at the program i end up at to join me. i'm sure that home beer brewing, like home winemaking, is much more fun when you do it with a group of friends. plus, this way you can get a lot more variety by making different types and splitting them up amongst the group. very cool stuff!!
     
  5. docbiohazard

    docbiohazard Highly ranked amateur 2+ Year Member

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    I'd been curious about homebrewing in college, all the chemistry grad students that TA'd my classes did it. Then in grad school I met a post-doc who was in a local club. He happened to have a lot of surplus gear he got from someone who left the hobby, so I got set up for free... I didn't brew for all of third year until I got into Internal Medicine, since then I've brewed an American Pale Ale and an Imperial Stout... it's a fun hobby.

    Winemaking seems a bit more tempermental ... homebrewing beer, the biggest hurdle is a good grasp of microbiology & sterile technique to avoid contamination... I find it a tangible product of my years of lab skills that all my friends and family can enjoy (far more than, say, a journal article reprint... :) )

    Any other homebrewers? The bulk of the guys in my club are engineer types, but I hope to find more like minded Pathologists. :)

    Prost,
    BH
     
  6. mlw03

    mlw03 Senior Member Physician 10+ Year Member

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    you're definately right that beer making is a more technical hobby than winemaking. i had a roomie as an undergrad who made beer and i know he had a tougher task than i do making wine. in addition to the sterility issues, there's also the issue of carbonation, which i don't deal with since i don't make sparkling wines. truthfully, the main reason i do wine instead of beer is because i like to drink wine more... but home beer making is a sweet hobby too and something i'd also like to get into sometime down the road. i raise my glass to shiraz to you, good sir!!
     
  7. fun8stuff

    fun8stuff *hiding from patients* 10+ Year Member

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    I started making wine last september. I was also thinking about whether I should mention it when it comes to interviewing... I have been wanting to get some beer brewing as well, but that seems a lot more involved.
     
  8. schrute

    schrute RoyalCrownChinpokoMaster 10+ Year Member

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    i collect stamps.
    also started trying to make ships in bottles after boards, but lacked the appropriate workspace.
    accumulated plenty of empty bottles, though, which were initially full of gin and scotch.
    i also stayed in a holiday inn express.
     
  9. pathdawg

    pathdawg Senior Member 10+ Year Member

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    Thats funny, because my hobby is drinking beer! Seriously, dude, I wouldn't put that (or frankly any personal hobby) on an application. Honestly, whenever I see someone list their hobby/personal interests on their cv (i.e. knitting, swimming, and reading), I can't help to think their kinda lame. A cv and a residency application should reflect one's professional accomplshments. No residency director or potential job gives a damn what you do in your free time. And thats the truth.
     
  10. mlw03

    mlw03 Senior Member Physician 10+ Year Member

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    i hope PDs care about what applicants do in their free time - it's a reflection of who they are. you don't think that an applicant who says they have no hobbies or outside interests raises a red flag? people that have no lives outwide of work are probably not the kind of people you'd want to work with. i'm not saying everyone has to have an assigned hobby like making model cars or something like that, but sports, cooking, spouse, kids, dog, whatever - i think having a good answer to "what do you like to do in your free time?" is at least as important as a lot of the other standard questions that are a part of any residency or job interview, not just in pathology.

    as for whether those hobbies belong on a CV, i dunno. i'll defer to whatever the people in student affairs tell me is appropriate. but if there's a spot explicitly for hobbies on ERAS, why not list them? maybe a PD will glance over it, of maybe they'll see a particular hobby and think, 'hey, that's kinda neat'. in any case, i don't see it hurting an applicant.
     
  11. djmd

    djmd an Antediluvian 7+ Year Member

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    I agree that it can be kind of lame, and I would never devote more than 1 line to it, somewhere at back of the CV.

    But I think that some program directors and certainly job offer people might be interested in well rounded people. You do have to work with them...
     
  12. pathdawg

    pathdawg Senior Member 10+ Year Member

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    Lets not confuse someone having no hobbies/no life (and belive me there are a plethora of those in pathology) with simply not listing one's hobbies. Honestly, the weirdo with no life is very easy to spot during an interview. In fact, that personality type is very easy to spot on a cv even without the silly hobby section. Even so, the very fact that so many people in pathology are like that should tell you that being a dork isn't going to hamper one's application.

    I review applications all the time. I have reviewed residency applications/cv's. Believe me when I say that nobody cares about an applicants' hobbies. We're not selecting a bff or someone we'd like to hang with. The point is selecting a good resident or employee. If you want to include your personal interests/hobbies on an application or cv, go ahead. Many do. It won't hurt you. But don't think that the reader is interested in your mystery novel reading or crochetting or harpsicord playing or whatever.
     
  13. djmd

    djmd an Antediluvian 7+ Year Member

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    :smuggrin: Ok ok... I agree that odds are it will have no effect.
     
  14. mlw03

    mlw03 Senior Member Physician 10+ Year Member

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    heheh :laugh: ... ok, you made your point pathdawg. perhaps the better question is why pathology draws so many of the weirdos that you describe below? you say the point is the select a good resident or employee, and as djmd says, you gotta work with these people for 4 years. we have some weirdos in our med school class that people don't like working with, but in residency it's a lot harder to avoid someone you don't enjoy working with simply because there's only 20-30 path residents at most places, not 120 med students.

     
  15. docbiohazard

    docbiohazard Highly ranked amateur 2+ Year Member

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    Ok, just to clarify, I wasn't trying to shoe-horn a line onto my CV w/ my hobbies and such. I was under the impression that there was an explicit field for it in ERAS - someone told me something to this effect... if there's not, then I'll just keep it to myself as an interesting answer to the age old "What do you do for fun?" question.

    And winemaking always looked harder to me. Carbonation is easy - just a little secondary fermentation in the bottle (add some sugar at bottling, residual yeast grow & carbonate it up good), or force carbonate a keg (pressurize w/ CO2, chill down, mix... it'll get in there)...

    In any case, this is all far more interesting than studying for my medicine shelf :scared:

    BH
     
  16. fun8stuff

    fun8stuff *hiding from patients* 10+ Year Member

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    yeah, but you can make wine from juice, yeast, and sugar... technically. heck, you can even use juice & bread yeast from the grocery store and put it in a 1 gallon plastic jug... not that it will taste the best. What are the minimum supplies you need to make beer? i am thinking doing it soon, but have not looked up any info about it.
     
  17. mlw03

    mlw03 Senior Member Physician 10+ Year Member

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    i use kits of grape juice that i buy from a store - i wouldn't recommended fermenting welch's - yikes!! the hard part about winemaking is keeping all the "crud" out of the finished product. crud includes dead yeast, must from the juice, and then various chemicals that get added as clarifying agents. from doing the winemaking myself and watching a friend make beer, i stand by my comments that beer making is tougher. my wine from a kit comes out pretty good, while my friend made some tasty beers, but some that were downright nasty.
     
  18. docbiohazard

    docbiohazard Highly ranked amateur 2+ Year Member

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    In terms of ingredients all you need at the most basic level (for an extract beer) is malt extract, hops and yeast... you need a pot and something to boil it over, then something to ferment it in, but assuming that's true for wine too, plus bottles and caps down the line.

    If your buddy made nasty beers, they were probably contaminated - thats where the sterile technique is key. I contaminated a batch or two back in my early days, but I've been lucky as of late. Even if beers turn out slightly different than I intended (too hoppy, not to style, etc) they're still often very drinkable, so long as thy're not contaminated.

    *sigh* I have to go see ANOTHER medicine outpatient clinic patient... :p

    BH
     
  19. fun8stuff

    fun8stuff *hiding from patients* 10+ Year Member

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    how long does it take until it is ready to consume?
     
  20. yaah

    yaah Boring Administrator Physician 10+ Year Member

    There were some awfully weird "hobbies" listed on peoples' applications this year, at least the ones I saw. Beer brewing would be far more normal and less strange than any of these. I think worrying about what you put for hobbies is unnecessary, unless you are planning to put anything deviant or illegal on there.
     
  21. deschutes

    deschutes Thing Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

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    "Breastfeeding" is arguably the oddest one I've heard of yet.
     
  22. fun8stuff

    fun8stuff *hiding from patients* 10+ Year Member

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    so i wonder if she goes around breastfeeding other people's kids.
     
  23. deschutes

    deschutes Thing Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

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    Ya think it was a her? ;)

    Just sayin'.
     
  24. fun8stuff

    fun8stuff *hiding from patients* 10+ Year Member

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    hahaha... good point. i will have to remember this one for my app!
     
  25. psychforme

    psychforme Mighty horse shoe 7+ Year Member

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    any interesting hobbies this year? LOL
     
  26. SLUsagar

    SLUsagar rock chalk jayhawk 10+ Year Member

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    i've taken up reading archives of path lab med, the free journal we get from CAP, on the john. i tried bringing the CAP today thing, but it's so godd*mn big i nearly tip over trying to flip the pages.

    i used to pick up mod path, but it's gotten so over-my-head with all the hardcore basic science stuff (correlating with takeover by the Nature group a while ago), i'd end up spending WAY to long in the john trying to get past the methods&materials.

    i'd grab AJSP if i could afford it in print, thus i'm stuck with resident freebies.
     
  27. LoaLoa

    LoaLoa Member 10+ Year Member

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    I heard someone say at a CAP meeting that CAP Today is so huge so it will "be prominent on the executive's coffee table".
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2009
  28. HbyHA

    HbyHA Fellowship, take 2. 2+ Year Member

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    in every interview i've had (med school, residency, fellowship) i end up talking about my horse. i always get into that discussion because of the college i went to that no one's ever heard of because i was going to be a horse trainer when i grew up. i went from shoveling manure to stinky colons. i would much rather have the manure, btw. i think interviewers like having something else other than: why do you want to be a (doctor/pathologist/whatever) like they have to talk about with a bazillion other candidates. booooooring. as chief, i interviewed a lot of residency candidates this year. if someone put down something interesting, i definately asked them about it. if people put down the ubiquitous "hanging out with friends," i definately didn't. (i mean come on people!) i don't think it will necessarily help or hurt you, but if you have an interesting hobby and you think it will give you something to talk about, go for it. you may make a connection, and people like people they have things in common with.
     
  29. Napoleon1801

    Napoleon1801 10+ Year Member

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    I put down hunting, fishing, and backpacking, but from my interviews it didn't seem like very many path folks are into that sort of thing.
     
  30. Cloaca

    Cloaca 2+ Year Member

    In our residency committee meetings, interesting hobbies definitely came up as we considered applicants. Ok, it wasn't a make it or break it kind of a thing but it was definitely a talking point. And when I was on the interview trail, people were just as likely to ask me about one of my hobbies I listed in ERAS as they were about my application. So it's kind of a nice little icebreaker for people to see what you're into and talk to you about it. I think homebrewing is a cool hobby that people would be interested in hearing more about and would help remember you by. Also it has all the microbiology aspects that are ever so pathology-oriented!

    But I agree, if all you can come up with is "hanging out with friends, going to movies, and reading" then don't bother.
     
  31. Autopsy101

    Autopsy101 Physician 7+ Year Member

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    My husband and I are big into home brewing both beer and wine. Admittedly, my husband has the chemical engineering background. I mostly contribute with sterile technique.

    I would not see that as a negative aspect of your application. Although, it might be better saved for discussing during your interview, as you can tailor the type of information you divulge based on the individual program.

    It probably depends on what types of programs you are interviewing at, but I usually talk more about personal interests, living in the area, commuting, and lifestyle issues during the interview. I figure you can see our academic program on our website, and these are the real issues applicants are concerned about.

    Everyone selected for an interview has the required academic credentials evidenced easily by their CV, but we are looking for candidates who fit with and want to be a part of our culture. I think knowing about hobbies and other activities outside of work allow you to get to know the applicant more personally and see if they might be a fit with the other residents and staff at the program. Because if you are miserable in your program due to a poor personality fit, then most likely others working around you are affected by your attitude.
     
  32. green mantis

    green mantis 5+ Year Member

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    I agree w/ the above. Knowing someone's hobbies just gives you something to talk about. I think the most interesting hobby I've seen is juggling. Unfortunately, I couldn't get the applicant to provide a demonstration.


    ----- Antony
     
  33. Pathologic T

    Pathologic T "green behind the ears"

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    Its all in how you describe the hobby.
    I have traveled to numerous primary rainforest areas and even done some research on rainforest plants....so.....I listed "ecotourism and biodiversity" as a hobby. I was asked about it numerous times during interviews and felt it made me more memorable in a couple. I doubt "traveling" would have garnered the same interest.
     
  34. deschutes

    deschutes Thing Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

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    One of my med school housemates who applied to another specialty listed "juggling" as a legitimate hobby. Went into an interview room and they had set out some Evian bottles for a demonstration. She got the job.

     
  35. 2121115

    2121115 7+ Year Member

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    Ok here is my perspective from reviewing and discussing with colleagues many, many residency applications. The hobbies section on the ERAS application rarely helps an application, however, it often times hurts an application. In other words putting something on there that makes you sound overly dorky or socially reclusive can very much hurt an application, while putting normal sounding stuff on there just makes people read over it and not notice the hobbies section (which isn't necessarily a bad thing). Remember, this is not an undergrad or med school app and nobody is playing mind games with you or is going to ask "if you were a fruit what kind would you be" or crap like that. You are applying for a job as a professional and you should treat it like that. Let your application speak for itself and let your personality shine on interview day, not on the ERAS hobbies section. We've had people put "playing dungeons and dragons" in the hobby section and trust me that is a game killer. Likewise, we've had people put creepy sounding stuff like "closely observing people in public", which is also a deal breaker, or even "chasing girls and drinking beer", which may mean you're cool to hang out with but the ERAS application is not the time for that sort of thing. My advice is to put something generic and let your personality come through during the interview day. Anything you write on the ERAS application can be taken out of context and misinterpreted so don't take that chance.
     
    DrHitchcraft likes this.
  36. KluverB

    KluverB New Member 10+ Year Member

    I must have done a different interview circuit then, 'cause I sure did get asked carp like that.

    As for professionalism, especially on the academic circuit, puh'lease... these people's hobbies are "playing dungeons and dragons", "closely observing people in public as well as in private", "I don't give a carp about anything but my own research", "having peons kiss my ring", and probably quite a few would be "chasing girls and drinking beer", if they weren't so socially and professionally inept.

    :rolleyes:
     

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