Interviews while abroad- tips?

This forum made possible through the generous support of SDN members, donors, and sponsors. Thank you.

Lost In Transcription

reports of my assimilation are greatly exaggerated
2+ Year Member
Apr 2, 2016
Reaction score
Hello all. I have come yet again for the advice of the pre-allo people.

I am in a position where I am finishing up applications to do research abroad, and am trying to think ahead. The program is 9 months long, and I can start it at any point between July of 2017 through the end of the year.

How can I schedule interviews reasonably? I get 2 weeks off out of my country for certain, and anything more than that has to be approved by a committee (though as long as I stay a bit longer, I have been told that interviews will most likely be acceptable for another week off). I have read some past threads on this, but I feel that they were very old threads/stats not comparable to mine. The country is NOT someplace I can easily just drive back from (think Africa..)

1) I will absolutely apply by June xth next year, as soon as AMCAS opens..if I wait until September to go, and I submit my secondaries lightning fast, would I have a shot at August interviews? Or do those literally not exist?
2) I have a 3.80 cGPA/3.77 sGPA/513 balanced MCAT
3) I do have an IA on my record, but it is for a dorm mishap that I have been previously mocked on the forums for freaking out about
4) Probably going to apply as disadvantaged, since I would count as such, but I hate the idea of doing that.

Would it be best to start as early as humanly possible (like leave my job here earlier in july, which might not be awesome) to start on my international work, then return for spring interviews altogether?
Or would it be best to wait until September to go and then hope that by submitting secondaries and AMCAS quickly I can work around it?

I'd ideally like to get into Duke, Udub (I am from the NW and was born in a state that does the partnership), USC, Mayo, and my east-coast state school, of course.

Ideas? If you need more personal info, let me know, I can PM it.
Last edited:


the evil queen of numbers
15+ Year Member
Mar 7, 2005
Reaction score
Look at the threads for your target schools and determine if they have already started interviewing this year. There may be a few schools that do August interviews but that requires being read and invited and there is always the chance that no one will put eyeballs on your application until September given that from Day #1 there is a month long backlog of applications and the backlog only becomes greater as the days go on.

I would not wait until Spring for interviews as some schools finish up in mid to late Winter. Again, look at last year's thread for your target schools to determine when they stopped doing interviews.

Here's my best advice. Pick your target schools. Make your applications and in the application and in a separate email to each school, explain that you will be in Africa from date to date and date to date but will be in the US from date to date and available for interviews. You could even say that you will be trying to make travel arrangements to the States for interviews not later than date (about a month in advance of your planned arrival date for your home visit.) Then you should be able to line up a hopscotch across the country for your interviews within a two week period. This should work if you have six interviews or less and might get complicated if you turn out to be a hot commodity.

Most schools don't interview during AAMC Annual Meeting. Go to aamc.org to find out when that is (first or second week in Nov). Most schools don't interview toward the end of Thanksgiving week and most don't interview between 12/23 and 1/1 so don't figure on making your 2 week visit to the states during those times.


Full Member
Dec 22, 2015
Reaction score
UW does their regional (WWAMI minus Washington- WAMI?) interviews at very specific dates in January-February, usually about 5 days of possible interviews per state. Depends what state you are from but here's their regional schedule this year, and I think it was similar last year.

WYOMING: January 9 - January 12, 2017 (in Laramie)

ALASKA: January 30 - February 2, 2017 (in Anchorage)

MONTANA: February 13 - February 16, 2017 (in Bozeman)

IDAHO**: January 23 - January 26, 2017 and February 27, 2017 - March 2, 2017 (in Boise)