robotsonic

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I recently interviewed at a competitive program that I really like. I had two faculty interviews, but my only interaction with the program director was at the beginning and end of the day, when I shook his hand. I know that the PD personally interviewed candidates.

Were the candidates who got to interview with the PD determined to be better candidates before the interview? The interviewers were all decided beforehand. If a PD were going to interview candidates but couldn't interview all of them, it seems like he/she would want to really get to know the candidates who were determined to be the strongest prior to the interview. Is this how it works?
 

cyanocobalamin

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robotsonic said:
I recently interviewed at a competitive program that I really like. I had two faculty interviews, but my only interaction with the program director was at the beginning and end of the day, when I shook his hand. I know that the PD personally interviewed candidates.

Were the candidates who got to interview with the PD determined to be better candidates before the interview? The interviewers were all decided beforehand. If a PD were going to interview candidates but couldn't interview all of them, it seems like he/she would want to really get to know the candidates who were determined to be the strongest prior to the interview. Is this how it works?
Sometimes I get the PD, sometimes I don't. At one place the people who didn't get the PD talked to her briefly after lunch to be 'fair.' I wouldn't put too much stock into it. Sometimes the people you perceive to be impt are out of town on your date.

Besides, there's nothing you can do about it, so no use pontificating on it.
 

sacrament

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I wonder about this too. I've been to seven programs so far, and at five of them I've interviewed with either the program director or the chair of medicine. That seems a litte too frequent to just be the luck of the draw.
 
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southerndoc

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When I was on the interview trail, I sometimes interviewed with the PD and sometimes the assistant PD. Where I ultimately matched, I interviewed with the assistant PD and not the PD.

We now have a new PD who has the philosophy that everyone should meet her. So instead of 30 minute interviews with her, she schedules everyone with a brief 15 minute interview. Seems to work well.
 

cyanocobalamin

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sacrament said:
I wonder about this too. I've been to seven programs so far, and at five of them I've interviewed with either the program director or the chair of medicine. That seems a litte too frequent to just be the luck of the draw.
Yeah, I guess you're just awesome.

Many times when I don't have the PD I have interviewed with the chair.
At NJMS-Kessler (I am doing PM&R) the PD and chair had the same batch of people whilst 3 of us had neither of them. I did a rotation there so that was fine by me since they already 'knew me.'

Some programs interview a ton of people on a given day (some places just interview on 1 or 2 days) so it is not feasible for everyone to see the chair or PD - whether there is an active movement to move those super-stellar candidates to see the movers and shakers of the program probably varies from place to place and seems random.
 

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sacrament said:
I wonder about this too. I've been to seven programs so far, and at five of them I've interviewed with either the program director or the chair of medicine. That seems a litte too frequent to just be the luck of the draw.
In sacrament's case they probably read his personal statement and wanted to see for themselves if anyone could actually be that much of a pompous ass. :smuggrin:
 

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If you are a top candidate, you interview with the cahair, middle tier with the pd and rest with other interviewers
 

Poety

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BKN can you clarify all these statements? :oops: I've interviewed with the PD at every place and will be interviewing with the chair on Friday :eek: Should I be more nervous now? :scared: I actually just think it depends on whos available that day, and as someone else said, some of the PD's have said to me "I like to meet everyone thats why you're interviewing with me" so I don't think it was becuase I was a top candidate :oops:
 

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I think ultimately it would come down to whether your interviewers are willing to go to bat for you in the ranking meeting and do they have clout to push you up the rank list. :idea:
 

Orange Julius

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Poety said:
some of the PD's have said to me "I like to meet everyone thats why you're interviewing with me" so I don't think it was becuase I was a top candidate :oops:

Yes, in some places the bigwigs meet everyone. In that case it means nothing. It's still probably your most important interview. I think what we're talking about here is when candidates get two or three 'random' interviewers and not everyone sees the pd/chair. ;)


I'd be willing to bet that in BKN's program the pd meets everyone. Just a hunch.
 

Poety

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ahhh, ok well in that case - even the one big boy interview I went on a. wasn't that big of a boy :oops: and b. the pd met with all of us :oops:
 

robotsonic

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So if I don't interview with the PD or the Chair, does that mean I'm just a safety applicant for them? :(

Now I'm sort of paranoid about my interviews coming up, wondering whether I will interview with the PD or not.
 
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BKN

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Poety said:
BKN can you clarify all these statements? :oops: I've interviewed with the PD at every place and will be interviewing with the chair on Friday :eek: Should I be more nervous now? :scared: I actually just think it depends on whos available that day, and as someone else said, some of the PD's have said to me "I like to meet everyone thats why you're interviewing with me" so I don't think it was becuase I was a top candidate :oops:
I'm on the road and my computer is actin up. If i don't answer successfully, Ill finish itup Sat when I get home.
 

BKN

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Orange Julius said:
Yes, in some places the bigwigs meet everyone. In that case it means nothing. It's still probably your most important interview. I think what we're talking about here is when candidates get two or three 'random' interviewers and not everyone sees the pd/chair. ;)


I'd be willing to bet that in BKN's program the pd meets everyone. Just a hunch.
I try to interview everybody, but will miss 2 days this year because of trips OOT.

In our shop the PD and chair interviews have the same weight in the ranking score as others. When we have the match party, however I thin we have more influence. That's appropriate since we have about 50 years of interviews between us.

I imagine at places where the PD cant interview everybody, that the process is usually random. There may be some places where the PD looks at the "best" candidates, but that's not how I would do it.

I'd look personally at the folks "on the bubble" and not the high ranking or low ranking ones. In terms of matching it's only for those on the bubble that the precise rank matters.
 

ShambhalaRed

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I interviewed with the assistant PD at a program that I thought I'd be really excited about. He started off the encounter by asking me if I had any questions. I did, and spent about ten minutes asking my questions. Then I paused and asked him if he had any questions for me. His response (in a semi-kind, but rather apathetic way) was "no, not really". :mad:

I have to say this really turned me off, and made me pretty annoyed that I had come all the way across the country to look at this program only to have the PD shrug his shoulders at me and send me on my way...I found myself wondering, "Has he already written me off?" or "Am I such a strong candidate that he doesn't need to know anything more?" - I have to say the latter is extremely unlikely...

Does anyone else think this is weird? Or rude?
 

neilc

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i think it is program dependent. i find it hard to believe that i was on anybody's short list simply from my application, yet i interviewed with the pd at all but one program. and, at the one program i didn't interview with the pd, he was on vacation.
 

BKN

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ShambhalaRed said:
Does anyone else think this is weird? Or rude?
I don't think it's either. I usually ask why the applicant's interested in EM and what they want to do with it. Then I point out that I have already read a book about them and that the interviews are more about helping them with their match list than informing me. Then I turn it over to them. I'll learn something from the questions they ask and that's about all I can expect to get in 30 minutes.

I'll say it again, try not to read to much into interviewing techniques. People do it in different ways and since physicians are trained to keep a straight face when patients say some really extraordinary things, the same nonreactivity may creep into interviews.
 

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I have a follow-up question - on a few interviews at places I am really interested in I didn't get a good feeling from the person I interviewed with and really got no response when I said I would rank them highly and wanted to go there. These are all programs that I really want to go to and am wondering whether I should do a second visit, get more rec letters, or should I just look elsewhere?


Thank you very much in advance!!
 

BKN

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vacation said:
I have a follow-up question - on a few interviews at places I am really interested in I didn't get a good feeling from the person I interviewed with and really got no response when I said I would rank them highly and wanted to go there. These are all programs that I really want to go to and am wondering whether I should do a second visit, get more rec letters, or should I just look elsewhere?


Thank you very much in advance!!
Perhaps call the PD and talk about it. I wouldn't spend the money on a second visit unless he encouraged you to do so.
 

medlaw06

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robotsonic said:
So if I don't interview with the PD or the Chair, does that mean I'm just a safety applicant for them? :(

Now I'm sort of paranoid about my interviews coming up, wondering whether I will interview with the PD or not.

crap....I second the notion...at majority of the places i have interviewed @, they were by faculty....and 1 place by a fellow, and another by chief residents....

so Dr. BKN, IS there a difference in terms of WHO interviews you? I know that you said that we should stop analyzing what the interviewer said in the interview or what gramatical context and style they used in their response to our emails to them, but I am wondering now if WHO interviews us is indicative of our relative strength as an applicant....

I wonder if a committee gets together and says "applicant B is pretty crappy, so why not have him get interviewed by 1 of the fellows or chiefs or something, while applicant A I relly like, so I'll (the PD) interview him personally."

HELP BKN!!!!!
 

BKN

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medlaw06 said:
crap....I second the notion...at majority of the places i have interviewed @, they were by faculty....and 1 place by a fellow, and another by chief residents....

so Dr. BKN, IS there a difference in terms of WHO interviews you? I know that you said that we should stop analyzing what the interviewer said in the interview or what gramatical context and style they used in their response to our emails to them, but I am wondering now if WHO interviews us is indicative of our relative strength as an applicant....

I wonder if a committee gets together and says "applicant B is pretty crappy, so why not have him get interviewed by 1 of the fellows or chiefs or something, while applicant A I relly like, so I'll (the PD) interview him personally."

HELP BKN!!!!!
Read post #15 above. I suspect that it's random most places, depending on who is free to interview that day.
 

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I sneak a recording device into my interviews so I can analyze the voice tones on the lie detector I built in my tool shed out of crashed UFO parts.

For the sake of sanity, either everyone should interview with a PD/assistant PD or no one should. At one program, the PD went around shaking everyone's hand and that made me EXTREMELY nervous because they were very obviously sizing people up by this brief interaction. Ugh.
 

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robotsonic said:
So if I don't interview with the PD or the Chair, does that mean I'm just a safety applicant for them? :(

Now I'm sort of paranoid about my interviews coming up, wondering whether I will interview with the PD or not.
Don't read too much into it - it very likely doesn't mean anything. At some places it's standard practice that every candidate meets with the PD and/or chair, at other places it just depends on the scheduling. Scheduling so many interviews into busy faculty schedules is probably complicated enough without trying to stratify candidates into "safeties" and "desireables" and then scheduling them with certain faculty and not with others.

Just focus on getting your interviewers, whoever they are, to like you enough to advocate for you at the ranking meetings.
 
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