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inside scoop on the University of Hawaii TY

Discussion in 'Internship' started by kidhaole, Oct 17, 2007.

  1. kidhaole

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    Hello,

    I wanted to post some information on the University of Hawaii Transitional Year Program. I know that when I was applying for internship, I had a hard time finding opinions on this program that were founded in fact. Nobody from my school had matched there previously, and there is only so much available on their website.

    Let me preface this by saying that I think it is an incredible place to do your internship, so I know I'm not without my own bias. To be sure, the place isn't without its weaknesses, just like any internship program out there. However, in my opinion, the positives outweigh the negatives by a considerable margin.

    So the year essentially breaks down to about half a year of call months, and half a year of electives/call free months:

    I know that when I originally looked into the curriculum, I was a bit turned off about the 3 required surgery months. However, if you request the right hospitals for your rotations, it is a breeze. In fact, depending on where you are, surgery call is known to be considerably easier than medicine call. I think the max amount of patients admitted during overnight call is 1, maybe 2. You can pretty much count on 5-8 hours of sleep. You are out of the hospital early in the morning post-call. OR time is usually optional, as you will be with categorical surg interns who are anxious to operate. However, if you are into operating and want the experience, you can easily show interest and be first assist or even primary surgeon with the attending assisting. Apparently the surgery program was known to be pretty malignant a few years back. However, they have had some pretty major changes in their leadership and I was told that things have improved significantly since that time. TYs are definitely not abused by senior residents or attendings. Many people end up really enjoying their surg months.

    As far as medicine goes, it can be painful(the nature of beast anywhere you go) but overall it is not bad. You are Q4, and you are always on with an upper level resident, even in the ICU. The IM program is very resident friendly and has a great atmosphere. Again, if you request the right hospitals for your medicine assignments things are very manageable. Also, everyone gets to do about 2-4 weeks of night float/cross-cover, which is extremely chill (usually covering 15-20 patients, much less than at many other hospitals I interviewd at). Educational activities are plentiful but often optional for TYs. You can get your work done and get out, or you can show up for Xray rounds, EKG conference, board review, etc. I think it's a great balance of work/education.

    Electives are flexible and abundant, and you can work if you want or take ones that only require 20-40 hours of work a week. The program also offers an incredible away elective in the country of Palau (google it if you haven't heard of it) where you work with a primary health care dispensary providing medical care to remote locations on the islands. You also scuba dive/surf/camp/enjoy an amazing south pacific island. There is no jeopardy during electives, weekends are off and there is no call (unless you choose to do a rotation with call, like OB or peds).

    ER is low impact, requiring that you work a little over half of the days of the month with no conferences or additional didactics. Typically, you can stack your shifts a bit and more or less have an extra week of vacation that month. Ambulatory medicine is also low impact, with half-days sprinkled in here and there. You see a good variety of sub-specialty clinic patients, which is interesting and in my opinion superior to the same old DM, URI, HTN, chronic pain patients you'd see in a general primary care clinic. Again, weekends off, no jeopardy call.

    Finally, and in some ways most importantly, there's Oahu and the outer islands. This place is absolutely fantastic. Every day off, every afternoon off, every post-call day, it's like you're on vacation. The weather is perfect and the beaches are gorgeous. On my days off I surf/windsurf/hike/dive/snorkel. There are outstanding restaurants, shopping and nightlife. I have gone to see the broadway show Lion King and I have seen The Shins play at a dive bar. I went to see the Lakers play the Warriors last week, and I plan to see the Pro Bowl. I have spent time on the islands of Kauai and Maui. People are friendly and extremely attractive here. Quite simply, your out of hospital time will always be full of opportunities, whether you're married or single, into the outdoors or not. There are many IM and surg prelims also, and they came here to experience Hawaii as well. This makes for a very social and supportive environment.

    Overall, I would recommend this place without hesitation. It's mildly more demanding than some places in terms of required call months, but the positives easily counterbalance this in my opinion. Sure, I could have done my TY in Akron or Roanoke and not lifted a finger all year. But then I'd be in Akron or Roanoke. I interviewed all over the country and likely could have scored an internship at any number of places, from the two above to ones in chicago or san diego. I unequivocally do not regret where I ended up...

    Hope this helps some of you who may be considering writing that little PS addendum that UH requires, or those who may be wondering if it is worth it to come for an interview. Trust me, if you interview/match here, you will NOT regret it.

    I'll be happy to answer any questions if anyone's curious. Sorry for the length if you could care less about this program, but hopefully someone will find it useful this year or in the years to come...
     
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  3. That's a great summary of their transitional year! Makes me homesick too... :(
     
  4. Hawaiian Bruin

    Hawaiian Bruin Breaking Good
    15+ Year Member

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    Seriously. If only UH had an anesthesia program...
     
  5. Or any surgical fellowship besides Critical Care... :(
     
  6. Canrenone

    Canrenone Senior Member
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    Could somebody answer the following questions about interviewing for the Hawaii TY and prelim position?

    Where is the best place to stay (lodging) near the hospital? What is the interview day like?

    Where do most of the residents stay (long term lodging) for the year?
     
  7. Bernardo_11

    Bernardo_11 I like Popeye's Chicken.
    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    Man, we must've scared a bunch of you guys out from rotating with the Peds program. We used to see you guys like once a month, now it's a rarity to see a transitional at Kapiolani these days. Wish more of you were choosing to rotate with us again, you guys were always solid.

    Nardo
     
  8. kidhaole

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    The interview day at UH for the TY program is pretty standard. You get a folder of info, you interview with 1-2 faculty, and you go to lunch with an intern. If you have time you get a quick look at Queen's Medical Center (which is the same as nearly every other hospital out there).

    As far as where to stay, I think I stayed in Waikiki when I came to interview. It's just a few minutes from Queen's, which is where you'll go for your interview. Now I live in Ala Moana, accross the street from the Ala Moana Beach Park and a just a few minutes from downtown and waikiki. Other interns live all over town(waikiki, downtown, Manoa, makiki). Some actually live out of town in Kailua on the windward side of the island.

    Let me know if you have any specific questions about areas to live/stay here or the program in general. I'm happy to help.

    As far as not rotating in peds at Kapi'olani, I think there are two reasons why the TYs tend to stay away. Number one is that it is not required and it is not a selective option. Instead, we would have to use an elective to rotate in peds, and this elective would require frequent and busy call nights. It's hard to pass up a month of 40 hours/week, no weekends and no call when you have the choice! Also, and I have no idea if this is substantiated or not, but we all hear that the peds program is pretty malignant. Seems like a bit of an oxymoron to me, as I thought most peds people were pretty happy.

    Anyway, let me know if you guys have any questions. I'll probably be seeing some of you when you come to interview, as I'll definitely be trying to take advantage of the free lunch we get with you on interview day! UH actually pays for a pretty nice restaurant...

    hope interview season is going well for you all so far...
     
  9. Bernardo_11

    Bernardo_11 I like Popeye's Chicken.
    Physician 10+ Year Member

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    Yeah, we always had that malignant reputation for awhile. Seems to be a little more resident friendly these days. There's a patient cap, 80 hr work week, and more patients being admitted to the hospitalist service (ie. more teaching).. so I'd say it's changed a lot for the better since I did internship.

    Nardo
     
  10. DTFluorescein

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    .
     
    #9 DTFluorescein, Oct 21, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
  11. BlankSlate

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    I interviewed here this year.

    The program formerly had 9 residents, but is cutting down to 7 TY residents next year.
    The program seems competitive but actually only has few people interview.
    According to the coordinator, they invite about 60, but many don't actually show up.
    Mostly only university of Hawaii students to, and end up matching there.
    They give a 2000$ relocation reimbursement. This seems like a lot but consider that transporting your car there costs 1000$ each way.
    The cost of living is high and so is the cost of housing. Don't expect to make much money.

    Hawaii was cool. I really enjoyed it there. But it's tough to move an entire family there.
     
  12. HASassin

    7+ Year Member

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    Hello, I am wanting to apply to UH for a TY year . (I am a MS3 in Texas currently)
    Are there any tips that anyone has for how to become as competitive for this program as possible?
    How likely is it to get a one year spot here for either a TY or prelim year? My stats are relatively competitive and I am going for optho.

    Additionally, my Husband and I are going to Hawaii (Big Island and Maui) for a vacation in a few months and are wondering if we should maybe ask for a tour or something like that to show how serious we are. We would only do that if this might actually increase our chances because it would cut short our vacation flying to Oahu

    Thanks in advance :)
     
  13. rokshana

    rokshana Member
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    speak japanese...had a friend that applied (many many years ago) and he had no love from them until he let them know he was fluent (was in the JET program for 2 years) and voila! got the interview.
     
  14. Suture15

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    There is no TY program a UofH anymore (Current resident).
     
  15. Apollyon

    Apollyon Screw the GST
    Physician Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

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    There won't be, you mean? They haven't kicked you out onto Kalakaua Avenue or Punchbowl Street, have they?
     

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