PhakeDoc

Mudder Phudder
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For all you MD/PhD types applying for neuro residency this year, how's the process going? Are you guys/gals getting the interview spots you wanted? Conventional wisdom is that if you are a research type, you should have no probs getting interviews at the top academic programs. Is this, in fact, true still?

Any comments regarding this are appreciated!
 

Amos

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I got an interview at all 20+ programs I applied at.

However this is the case with many applicants regardless of if they have an advanced degree, so I'm not sure how much the PhD played a role.

I do know that other MD/PhDs have also had success getting interviews.

Hope this helps.
 

Amos

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One more thing to the OP, although having a PhD certainly helps make a compelling case that you are invested in academic medicine, it is not a "golden ticket" for interviewing at a top program. I’m sure you know what I mean, but occasionally students will think this.

I have met a lot of really great MD only applicants out there that are super accomplished and seem fun to work with. In addition, programs seek balance and don't usually want to end up matching a class of 8 MD/PhDs that all want to go into basic science research.

In other words, make sure the rest of your application is strong. That starts from day 1 as an M1 and includes lots of things in addition to your research such as volunteer work, test scores, leadership positions, teaching, and examples of clinical skills.
 
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PhakeDoc

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Sorry, this is what happens when I start a thread over a major holiday...I get caught up in everything else and forget to check the old threads.

Thanks Amos for sharing your thoughts. I just wanted to make sure that especially at the research-heavy programs that there weren't any major surprises with lack of interview invitations. Sure, a PhD is not a ticket through every door; hopefully it just opens more doors that otherwise might have been closed.

Onco - not sure what you are referring to. Grant money? From what I hear with respect to K08s, K23s, and even R01s, MD/PhDs have a higher percentage getting funded than just straight PhDs, especially within certain institutes such as NEI and NIDCD (not sure of specifics with the others).

Any other MD/PhD wisdom that anyone would like to share, especially with respect to the current application season?

Thanks!
 

Vader

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For all you MD/PhD types applying for neuro residency this year, how's the process going? Are you guys/gals getting the interview spots you wanted? Conventional wisdom is that if you are a research type, you should have no probs getting interviews at the top academic programs. Is this, in fact, true still?

Any comments regarding this are appreciated!
I agree with Amos--having the PhD is definitely not a golden ticket. I doubt there will be many MD/PhD students here that will admit that they failed to get interviews at certain places.
 

Amos

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Phakedoc-

Continue to work hard and you will do well. Having the PhD helps and gets your foot in the door at high powered programs, but work especially hard once you are back seeing patients to highlight your clinical skills as well.

One particular tip is to start thinking about letters of recommendation sooner rather than later. As an MD-PhD you have the chance to build some long terms relationships that cover both your research and clinical interests.

Having a close connection with well known physician scientists can be particularly helpful since relatively few applicants have long standing relationships with outstanding neuroscientists that are also practicing neurologists. Coupled with letters by mentors, department heads, and clinicians you can present an extremely well rounded application.

Even with all the economic stuff going on these days it's an awesome time to be interested in the science of the brain and using that information to help patients. Overall the future is extremely bright.