Aug 25, 2017
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Hi everyone, I am still an undergrad student pursuing two MD schools as possibilities (two DO's as well). My questions are more about residencies, however. I am mostly interested in psychiatry and neurosurgery. I am wondering...how difficult is it to land a spot in a neurosurgery residency? How hard for a psychiatry residency? Also, is there any specific things I can be doing this point (an undergrad student) to help my chances? Also, is there anything specific I should look for or seek out when deciding on a med school based on these two specialties as my top picks?

Thank you.
 

Prometheus123

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Hi everyone, I am still an undergrad student pursuing two MD schools as possibilities (two DO's as well). My questions are more about residencies, however. I am mostly interested in psychiatry and neurosurgery. I am wondering...how difficult is it to land a spot in a neurosurgery residency? How hard for a psychiatry residency? Also, is there any specific things I can be doing this point (an undergrad student) to help my chances? Also, is there anything specific I should look for or seek out when deciding on a med school based on these two specialties as my top picks?

Thank you.
I'm not the best person to answer your question, but I can tell you that the data you're looking for can be found at Main Residency Match Data and Reports - The Match, National Resident Matching Program. My poorly-informed general impression is that psychiatry is one of the less competitive branches, while neurological surgery is pretty competitive (it also seems to have relatively few seats available). It depends on a lot of factors though, including which states you apply in and whether you go DO or MD.
 
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peridotthecat

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Neurosurgery is quite competitive, psych less so. At this point, though, the best thing you can do to set yourself up for either specialty is to focus on getting into med school.

Why are you only pursuing 4 schools?
 
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Med Ed

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Also, is there any specific things I can be doing this point (an undergrad student) to help my chances?
Make yourself an appealing candidate for admission to medical school.

Green22 said:
Also, is there anything specific I should look for or seek out when deciding on a med school based on these two specialties as my top picks?
Getting into a medical school with a neurosurgery residency program would be good. Bear in mind that neurosurgeons essentially spend their careers living in the hospital, so you should find it appealing to work 70-80 hour weeks in perpetuity. I do know one part-timer who only does 40/week.
 
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Aug 25, 2017
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Neurosurgery is quite competitive, psych less so. At this point, though, the best thing you can do to set yourself up for either specialty is to focus on getting into med school.

Why are you only pursuing 4 schools?
In the state I'm from, there are 4 schools. I've never really thought about out of state med schools because they have less seats available for out of state applicants and are typically more expensive. However, I would be alright with going to one if that was what was best for me.
 

Lannister

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In the state I'm from, there are 4 schools. I've never really thought about out of state med schools because they have less seats available for out of state applicants and are typically more expensive. However, I would be alright with going to one if that was what was best for me.
It's typical to apply to 15-20ish schools for medical school. Only applying to 4 would be a huge gamble. It is also not true that out of state medical schools have less seats available for OOS students. Private medical schools do not give preference to in-state students.
There is a lot you should be doing right now. You will need to aim for a 3.7+ sGPA/cGPA, clinical and non-clinical volunteering, shadowing, research, etc.
 
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It's typical to apply to 15-20ish schools for medical school. Only applying to 4 would be a huge gamble. It is also not true that out of state medical schools have less seats available for OOS students. Private medical schools do not give preference to in-state students.
There is a lot you should be doing right now. You will need to aim for a 3.7+ sGPA/cGPA, clinical and non-clinical volunteering, shadowing, research, etc.
Thank you for that insight. I currently am in the first semester of sophomore year. I have a 3.87 overall GPA. Also, I have volunteered for 56 hours as a counselor for kids with JRA. Is that good progress for being in first semester of sophomore year? Or do I need to be doing more? Any advice is appreciated. Thank you.
 

Lannister

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Thank you for that insight. I currently am in the first semester of sophomore year. I have a 3.87 overall GPA. Also, I have volunteered for 56 hours as a counselor for kids with JRA. Is that good progress for being in first semester of sophomore year? Or do I need to be doing more? Any advice is appreciated. Thank you.
GPA looks good! Do you have any other ECs? If not, that's a little lacking. You'll want about 200 hours of clinical volunteering, as well as ~30-40 hours of shadowing (I think that's usually the recommendation). When are you planning to take the MCAT?
 
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GPA looks good! Do you have any other ECs? If not, that's a little lacking. You'll want about 200 hours of clinical volunteering, as well as ~30-40 hours of shadowing (I think that's usually the recommendation). When are you planning to take the MCAT?
I am currently of in the process of shadowing some doctors at a local hospital. Well, I plan to take MCAT in spring/summer of 2019.
 

Lannister

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I am currently of in the process of shadowing some doctors at a local hospital. Well, I plan to take MCAT in spring/summer of 2019.
Sounds like you're on the right track!
 
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Lannister

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Thank you for the advice. One more question, this is kinda odd and specific lol but would volunteering at a cat rescue/adoption place be worthwhile?
It wouldn't count towards those 200 clinical hours I mentioned (which needs to be your #1 priority) but you could definitely volunteer with cats too! Sounds fun haha.
 
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