Pre- and Post-interview dinners

Discussion in 'ERAS, SOAP, and NRMP Match' started by Stillwell, Nov 3, 2002.

  1. Stillwell

    Stillwell Member

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    How much weight do these carry? Should I go thinking that the residents that are there will report back to the admissions committee, or are these really just casual get-togethers to learn about the program? Is it usually useful to go? I thought it was a good idea at first, but it kind of puts a crunch on my schedule considering some interviews are back to back.
    Thanks in advance-

    [I posted this in the IM forum, but there were no replies, and seeing as interviews are coming up, thought I would repost it here. Sorry for the redundancy]
     
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  3. womansurg

    womansurg it's a hard life...

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    I don't know about IM in particular, but at my surgery program the residents have total veto power over any applicant. We also have ranked people highly who had average type stats, but who had made a great impression on us during social events (like the dinners).

    A lot of the interview has to do with convincing them (staff and residents) that you will be fun and easy to work with. If you are a social person, these events could really work in your favor.
     
  4. ApacheIndian

    ApacheIndian philomath

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    Yeah, I've been wondering about these too. In particular, how are we supposed to dress for these? Not in suits right?
     
  5. Andrew_Doan

    Andrew_Doan Doc, Author, Entrepreneur
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    Listen to Womansurg. This is true for almost all programs. Act proper and be curtious. The dinner may not help you much, but it sure will hurt if you're a total imbecile. Casual dress is okay, but it's best to ask. I've known instances where people were not ranked because they were not very nice during the dinners. For instance, one person was completely inebriated and was very loud and obnoxious. The residents made sure this was known and the applicant was not ranked.
     
  6. ljube_02

    ljube_02 Senior Member

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    That sounds unfortunate. Assuming you all drank together at the dinner (it's obviously not a bar), he probably got drunk because he drinks very rarely!
     
  7. Andrew_Doan

    Andrew_Doan Doc, Author, Entrepreneur
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    If you drink rarely, then the take home message is don't drink. :)

    The dinner is a time to ask questions and get acquainted with residents. It's not a free dinner to party. If your hosts and hostesses are not getting drunk, then don't do it.
     
  8. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic!
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    The nature of these events varies from program to program.

    With regard to dress, it depends on the program, but is always better to be overdressed than underdressed and anecdotally, on all of them I went on, everyone was in interview attire. Moral is: ask the residency coordinator, but plan on wearing a suit.

    We don't formally "report back" to the PD after our dinners with candidates, but if someone really is outside the realm of acceptable (or the corollary, really is fantastic) we would make it a point to let the faculty know - so, someone who drinks inappropriately (as said earlier, just because the drinks are free doesn't mean you should treat the event like a fraternity party, ALWAYS drink less than your tolerance and ALWAYS drink less than the residents/faculty around you. There is nothing wrong with being a teetotaler - if you sense that this will be brought agianst you, question whether this is really the program for you if you are unlikely to engage in such activities with regularity.), acts offensively or is just plain insufferable would be more likelt to be "tattled" on.

    The evenings are designed to let us and you get to know everyone more informally, relax a little (hah!). A modium of social skills is all these events take - those who are uncomfortable with small talk, cocktail party type of stuff (as you might be asked questions about YOU in general, not YOU the residency applicant), might be well advised to practice a little before the events.
     
  9. Stillwell

    Stillwell Member

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    Thanks! That helps a lot-
     
  10. SomeFakeName

    SomeFakeName Banned
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    In other words you're supposed to go to these things and act all saintly and perfect, and once they let you in then you can revert back to being your usual self. Sounds like the med school admissions process all over again...
     
  11. Andrew_Doan

    Andrew_Doan Doc, Author, Entrepreneur
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    However, remember one thing. If you become too obnoxious during your residency, then the program may simply not renew your contract. Here at Iowa, contracts are only 1 year long. Unlike medical school, you can be fired. :)
     
  12. Winged Scapula

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    Hmmm...well I for one would be turned off by someone acting "saintly and perfect". However, just like at any other social event, it is improper to drink to excess, eat like you've been NPO for 2 weeks, or discuss your own bodily functions. There ARE social proprieties and to ignore them isn't being "saintly and perfect" but rather simply a polite member of society.

    I don't expect any more or less of residency candidates than I do guests in my own home. I DO want to get to know you, so prefer the candidate who can relax a little, tell interesting stories about themselves, etc. I can read your application for information about your academics and career choices.

    But in the end, it IS like medical school admissions except I'd say that the interview is MORE important for residency - after all, we have to work closely with you, and must depend on you for the next several years (medical school is by design more independent) and as noted above, if we're wrong, your contract can be terminated after 1 year.
     

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