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I can't always make it to the interview dinner: kiss of death?

Discussion in 'Dermatology' started by scumbagderm, Dec 20, 2008.

  1. scumbagderm

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    I have missed a few interview dinners because of other interviews or traveling issues. I feel bad about not going but in some cases it unavoidable.

    How important do you guys think these dinners are? Do they affect the rank list? I know that one program I recently interviewed at said that residents have a say in the rank list. Since I missed the dinner I had less opportunity to meet and greet everybody. I definitly felt my chances there were close to zero.

    It is also hard to find out the nitty gritty details about the program if you miss the dinner.

    Is anybody else forced to miss dinners? Would you possibly cancel another interview just to make to a dinner at your dream program?
     
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  3. dermie09

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    I think it's important, but not the kiss of death if you don't go. Like you said, you can really get the nitty gritty from residents..and IMO, the most important..really get a feel if you fit in with their program. I've noticed that every program tends to take a certain kind of resident...and I definitely do not fit in with every program! At the same time..I'm not sure I'd actually cancel an interview to attend a dinner..but I guess it depends..I don't have so many that is a problem personally.

    Now, why don't you start canceling some interviews for the rest of us ;).
     
  4. DwightKShrute

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    some interview dinners are "required"

    i'd ask around to see which are more important than others
     
  5. dermRus

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    I have definitely canceled interviews to make it to dinners at some programs...especially programs that are high on my wish list. As for how you find out if dinners are "required"...it might be helpful to ask other residents that may be in the know about the interview process.
     
  6. scumbagderm

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    I have. It was painful to do but I recently canceled 2 and won't be accepting another 2 all due to scheduling conflicts. I hope some people get invited to these places in my stead soon. The hardest part is canceling a program you are sincerely interested in.


    I get what you mean by "required" dinners. I think I've already missed one of those. oh well.
     
  7. Cheebs09

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    Please share if you know that a particular dinner is "required" -- it doesn't make sense for us to fly all over the country to make as many interviews as we can if we're shooting ourselves in the foot by not attending the dinner.

    I'm sure others would appreciate this information as well.
     
  8. rolling wheal

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    I would say a "required" dinner is one where residents are doing some of the interviews the following day. First of all, clearly that program values resident input. Second, having met the interviewer the night before will make you look more favorable (and hopefully not less). If you don't attend the dinner, when it comes time to rank list, the residents aren't going to have much to say except, "I don't know them very well, they didn't go to the dinner." They will naturally rank people they "know" and like over people they don't know but think they might like. I wish I could be more positive, but that's my observation from programs that have residents do some of the interviewing.

    On the other hand, an interview I went on had attendings do all the interviews. Also, only a few residents showed up to the dinner, unlike the previous place where almost all the residents showed up to the dinner. Maybe those few residents put a little input down on a piece of paper they will take into consideration come time to rank, but I don't think it will factor in much.

    Bottom line- it would be nice to know ahead of time if residents will be doing some of the interviews, and if those same residents will be at the dinner the night before.
     
  9. DwightKShrute

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    there are dinners the night before where attendings attend

    obviously, you should not miss those
     
  10. DermMatch

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    Not kiss of death but let the residents know the next day why you couldn't make it. It might make it harder to interact with them socially during the actual interview day. I missed a dinner at a top program and I felt it hurt me. Certainly, it wasn't the death knell (my interviews were, ugh) but it didn't help.
     
  11. Dermocrat

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    What if the reason is simply that I had another interview that day, and couldn't get into town in time for the dinner? I feel like that might be interpreted as a lack of interest in the program, when really i'm just trying to interview at as many places as possible.

     
  12. DermMatch

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    That's fine, but no one is going to get hung up parsing the personal reasons why a particular applicant didn't make the dinner. Things just translate into, "I know this person, I don't know this person, I felt good about that person, I have no clue about this other person." And then people draw conclusions, as imperfect as they are, about how they feel about certain candidates. That's it. Not physics; just psychology.
     
  13. goodies

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    sounds like the residents have a huge say in the process... do they?
     
  14. DermMatch

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    Yes, residents have a significant say for the most part, because good programs and good program directors value their residents. At our program, residents interview candidates. At other programs, residents are the first screen for applications.

    If programs don't care about resident input, they sure are doing a good job hiding it.

    Anyone else who's a resident want to comment?
     

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