5+ Year Member
Jan 21, 2010
Medical Student
let's say your interview schedule is already full or you have second thoughts about the program and you get an interview invite email/message

do you have a go-to response? "thanks for the opportunity however after consideration....blah blah"

should you say you don't think the program is a right fit? the location doesn't work?
how can you phrase this in a way not to burn any bridges especially in a smaller knit field?

or do you just withdraw your application without saying anything (this doesnt seem like the right answer)


SDN Lifetime Donor
Lifetime Donor
7+ Year Member
Sep 20, 2010
Resident [Any Field]
"Dear (Program coordinator),

I no longer plan to attend my interview on ____. I wanted to let you know as early as possible so that another candidate may have the opportunity. Thank you!



Don't make it complicated. Also why would you be cancelling interviews 4 days after ERAS opened? I thought most programs hadn't even really begun offering interviews yet..


7+ Year Member
Sep 16, 2012
Attending Physician
Just be honest with the program--definitely don't lie/tell a white lie. Be honest and respectful. The honest truth is most programs could care less if you decline the interview--they don't actually know you, and they have lots of others they can invite if you cancel, so it's not the same thing as say, canceling a date where you know someone is really interested in just you.

I declined a few interviews because I had others scheduled (if your schedule is full--say so!) and cancelled one or two because I got late offers from top choices. I was able to reschedule one--most coordinators are really nice and helpful--I was honest with one I was really interested in their program as well as a program that gave me an interview offer for just one specific day, and she was happy to reschedule me so I could attend both interviews. Coordinators know that for logistical reasons, some people may need to shuffle things around and/or just not be able to make things work.

If you cancel a week or less in advance, CALL the coordinator--they will greatly appreciate it and so will whatever fellow applicant that's been waiting for an interview offer for that program.

22031 Alum

At the baby factory.
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Jul 12, 2008
Attending Physician
It's awfully early in the cycle to be declining interviews. If it's a scheduling issue, it may be worth contacting the program to see if other dates are available. But if you've just decided you'd rather not go there for some reason, a quick email withdrawing yourself will suffice.


Infernal Internist / Enigmatic Endocrinologist
10+ Year Member
Apr 25, 2008
Attending Physician
I sent something like
Hi Ms. Coordinator,

I wanted to follow up. Unfortunately, I have some conflicts and would like to cancel the scheduled interview.

I appreciate the time taken to review my application and wish you all the best in recruiting an excellent class for the coming year.

Thank you,
Alternatively, if I hadn't scheduled it yet, i'd just change that first line to "Unfortunately, I am unable to schedule the interview at your program at this time."