Phrasing

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I am an M1 and feel like I'm doing something wrong. It seems as if all my classmates want to be "involved." They sign up to be class liaisons or are attending various events like public health presentations or interest group meetings for things like nutrition in medicine. I have zero interest in these types of events. Am I wrong for skipping this sort of stuff? I will be involved in research as soon as I get my feet a bit more under me but want no part of what seems to me like slightly grown up undergraduate clubs. My goal is to crush my classes in order to do well on the boards and to get some publications under my belt. Am I just a cynic or is my view perfectly reasonable? I only ask because I feel as if I am the only one like this at my school
 

TypeADissection

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Med school like anything else in life is what you put into it. If various social clubs, intramural sports, etc. doesn't suit your fancy then that's you. Don't worry about it. Don't forget to have fun along the way. Cheers.
 

armybound

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Some might not be out of the pre-med mindset that you need to constantly be doing things to build your resume.

I went to several interest meetings at the beginning because they offered free lunch and I got to meet more of my classmates.

If it's something you're not in to, don't do it. Adjust to med school first.
 
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mcworbust

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I am an M1 and feel like I'm doing something wrong. It seems as if all my classmates want to be "involved." They sign up to be class liaisons or are attending various events like public health presentations or interest group meetings for things like nutrition in medicine. I have zero interest in these types of events. Am I wrong for skipping this sort of stuff? I will be involved in research as soon as I get my feet a bit more under me but want no part of what seems to me like slightly grown up undergraduate clubs. My goal is to crush my classes in order to do well on the boards and to get some publications under my belt. Am I just a cynic or is my view perfectly reasonable? I only ask because I feel as if I am the only one like this at my school
You should count your lucky stars you don't have the urge to get involved. I was the guy who had to do all the things you could do as an M1, when I should've been the guy who wanted to crush classes to do well on boards lol. You are more reasonable than many of the ppl who are still in pre-med mode, like I was. Totally fine...
 

TheaterOfTheme

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I have been experiencing the same exact sentiments, OP! I plan to get heavily involved in an interest group for the specialty I intend to pursue (actually 2). I think the benefits of all of these positions people seek are to be more high profile in the eyes of admins and all. Whether or not that's beneficial in the long run, is questionable. It certainly can make you stand out to some people that matter. I honestly care most about networking with physicians in my area of interest. Therefore, I don't care too much I'm not class president or class wellness ambassador or whatnot. Also, boards are life so there's that as well :bookworm:
 
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You should only do those things if you enjoy them. Sometimes interest group stuff can lead to networking, which can help with other concrete goals (research, summer employment etc.)
 

Styrene

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I am an M1 and feel like I'm doing something wrong. It seems as if all my classmates want to be "involved." They sign up to be class liaisons or are attending various events like public health presentations or interest group meetings for things like nutrition in medicine. I have zero interest in these types of events. Am I wrong for skipping this sort of stuff? I will be involved in research as soon as I get my feet a bit more under me but want no part of what seems to me like slightly grown up undergraduate clubs. My goal is to crush my classes in order to do well on the boards and to get some publications under my belt. Am I just a cynic or is my view perfectly reasonable? I only ask because I feel as if I am the only one like this at my school
MS2 now. I don't do any of that stuff. I hate clubs...would rather watch movies and play guitar. I just do research that I set up with my department of interest on my own -- i.e. not even in the formal "summer-after-MS1" thing. The research provides opportunities for networking, letters, publications, and intellectual stimulation. Just choose one thing you enjoy that can double as a networking opportunity in a specialty that interests you. Check the AAMC program director surveys to see the critical residency applicant rating metrics.
 

SunsFun

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Misleading title... I am disappointed

PS. OP, do you. In my class junior AOA/board scores did not seem to correlate to how much people "got involved".


Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile app
 

rrxr

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Unless you have a major leadership position, research is the only EC that "helps". I did a lot of volunteering because I enjoyed it, but I did research too. Now that we're applying to residency, my friends regret faffing about organizing dinners (which they actually found time consuming, frustrating, and annoying) while I was churning out data for a senior attending in my eventual specialty. If you enjoy ECs, do them for fun, but don't do it out of obligation. Research is better for networking anyway - you build deeper relationships and have a genuine chance to impress.

But one important caveat: if you're gunning for AOA, at some (many?) schools this is political so you might have to "get involved".... If you have your heart set on AOA, find out from upperclassmen.
 
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ACSurgeon

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Getting involved in an interest group or two might help expose you to some fields you might be interested in and help you network. This shouldn't be a time consuming thing though
 

Syncrohnize

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I am an M1 and feel like I'm doing something wrong. It seems as if all my classmates want to be "involved." They sign up to be class liaisons or are attending various events like public health presentations or interest group meetings for things like nutrition in medicine. I have zero interest in these types of events. Am I wrong for skipping this sort of stuff? I will be involved in research as soon as I get my feet a bit more under me but want no part of what seems to me like slightly grown up undergraduate clubs. My goal is to crush my classes in order to do well on the boards and to get some publications under my belt. Am I just a cynic or is my view perfectly reasonable? I only ask because I feel as if I am the only one like this at my school
Get involved in one longitudinal thing (M1-4) that interests you and commit to it. It'll help you gain more exposure to a field or keep your leadership/creative skills around. There'll be plenty of time to find something and even some time at the beginning of 2nd year so if you don't want to now, focus on your classes. It's not a dichotomy between being a "gunner" vs. getting involved. I don't think there's any association, but senate members had great matches at my school because even those activities don't require a ridiculous time commitment as some people think and you can still kill your boards while being in a class leadership position.

Come ERAS time, it will look kind of bad if you've done absolutely "0" school-affiliated leadership, volunteering, etc. activities. It won't hurt as badly as a traditional red flag or even as badly as having no research but it may raise an eyebrow. It doesn't take much, just sign up to be the leader of your specialty's interest group or find something minor down the road your interested in. I get how stupid it looks that everyone's in pre-med mode again, gunning each other down for positions that mean nothing. You're right to roll your eyes towards it because there'll be plenty of time to get it done later.It's just that's right now, it's easy to sign up for things so people are doing it.

Lastly, remember to have fun along the way!
 
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libertyyne

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Leadership qualities are ranked higher than AOA , but does organizing a yodeling club once a quarter constitute leadership in PD's minds? I dont know.
 

rrxr

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Come ERAS time, it will look kind of bad if you've done absolutely "0" school-affiliated leadership, volunteering, etc. activities. It won't hurt as badly as a traditional red flag or even as badly as having no research but it may raise an eyebrow.
Even though (as seen above) I'm generally against doing premed type fluff as a medical student, I actually agree with this. Everyone should probably have something of some sort, hopefully something they actually like. I just look at the people around me who did waaaay too much stuff for the express purpose of putting it on their CV, which is a bad idea opportunity cost wise, and I want to tell underclassmen not to do that... You only have so many hours in medical school. Either enjoy what you're doing or do something more useful.
 
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guytakingboards

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As someone who interviewed residency applicants very briefly last year and will do so more extensively this year as a chief resident, I personally couldn't care less about most med school-related extracurricular activities. Though that's probably because I'm still so close to the application process (just did fellowship interviews) and hated worrying about that stuff when I was a medical student.

Grades and board scores will get you in the door and keep you high on a rank list.
 
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Phrasing

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I figure I'll suck it up and apply to be a liaison for the specialty I am interested in just to have something plus it's a small field so networking in it would be good.
 

libertyyne

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Is a 4.1/5 vs 3.9/5 on a 5 point Likert scale meaningfully different? (Or even statistically significant?)
I dont think so, but we are all reading tea leaves at this point. Did make me pause and think maybe I should get involved with something. Most of the EC's seemed contrived and silly like they were formed by people who wanted to add fluff to their applications and propagated by the next batch of people wanting to add fluff.

One M2 literally started a project that the underclassmen have to sit through now and when interviewed she stated we need things to differentiate ourselves from other applicants. I wanted to scream : "Thats what Step is for!". The local AMA rep stated by joining you can get "publications".

I dont know if the sentiment on SDN of STEP + research=success remains true or if this fluff should be taken seriously.

I know if I was a PD i would pay attention to step, LORS, MSPE, aways rotation performance at home institution, and clinical grades the rest seems kinda silly.

It would be nice to know what some of the people on the other side such as yourself take seriously.
 
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rrxr

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Well... playing devil's advocate... average people have average step scores and that doesn't differentiate them. I still would recommend research over all other ECs, though. It would be ideal to do everything, but that's hard. I'm just starting the application season, so far I have no regrets about sinking a thousand hours into research and letting everything else rot. I guess we'll see where I match... People who are pro- ECs are welcome to bump this in march and gloat haha.
 
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libertyyne

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Well... playing devil's advocate... average people have average step scores and that doesn't differentiate them. I still would recommend research over all other ECs, though. It would be ideal to do everything, but that's hard. I'm just starting the application season, so far I have no regrets about sinking a thousand hours into research and letting everything else rot. I guess we'll see where I match... People who are pro- ECs are welcome to bump this in march and gloat haha.
Then i would say average people tend to land average residencies. I sincerely doubt that being the president of medical therapy pets is going to ingratiate you with the PD of dermatology enough to get you a derm residency. I feel like people who have connections that would lead to conversion into a coveted residency already have them in place through family or previous professional affiliations. If you are actually generating quality research for urology that would make some PD's want to take a chance on you. I doubt being the president of the Urology Interest group would make the PD want to interview you with an average step score.
 
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Gurby

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Leadership qualities are ranked higher than AOA , but does organizing a yodeling club once a quarter constitute leadership in PD's minds? I dont know.
This is a bit off topic but I'm surprised to see "interest in an academic career" at the bottom of the list... Is that because PD's from academic and community programs were lumped together in this report? I would think a strong interest in research and teaching would be an important factor for more academic programs.
 

rrxr

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This is a bit off topic but I'm surprised to see "interest in an academic career" at the bottom of the list... Is that because PD's from academic and community programs were lumped together in this report? I would think a strong interest in research and teaching would be an important factor for more academic programs.
Personally, I think you're right. This is extremely anecdotal so take with a grain of salt, but in a certain specialty I've seen research ranked as 14 out of 16 in importance in one paper. But at my school, this residency actually has PhDs on the admissions committee (somewhat against their will lol) so I don't think there's any way research doesn't matter at this particular program. n=1.
 

libertyyne

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This is a bit off topic but I'm surprised to see "interest in an academic career" at the bottom of the list... Is that because PD's from academic and community programs were lumped together in this report? I would think a strong interest in research and teaching would be an important factor for more academic programs.
Personally, I think you're right. This is extremely anecdotal so take with a grain of salt, but in a certain specialty I've seen research ranked as 14 out of 16 in importance in one paper. But at my school, this residency actually has PhDs on the admissions committee (somewhat against their will lol) so I don't think there's any way research doesn't matter at this particular program. n=1.
I took this to mean that <=28% of all programs are academic programs where this matters. By the time those places are done with their screens I assume it is easy to tell who is interested in academic medicine anyway.
 
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Lannister

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I sincerely doubt that being the president of medical therapy pets is going to ingratiate you with the PD of dermatology enough to get you a derm residency.
OK but come on, who wouldn't want to be the president of a club where you get to plays with cats and dogs all day?

On a more serious note, I'm fairly involved outside of class, but all of the activities I participate in are things I do because I am genuinely interested, and not because I think they'll make me look good to residency programs. Medical school is my number one priority, but my extracurriculars give me the chance to feel like more than just a medical student. And if the time I spend on those activities means I score a few percentage points lower on my exams, then fine. As long as I'm in no danger of failing, then I'm very happy to sacrifice some studying time for things that are important to me.
 
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