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mgoblue2017

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I am applying for a residency spot in anesthesia for the 2017 match. I was speaking to another applicant at an interview who talked to me about a program at which I had interviewed that I really liked. He said that he was also very impressed with the program, but was not going to rank it highly because the program's reputation is not good. It is a midwestern program that for many years has not had a great reputation, but recently hired a new department chair and has been spending a lot of money to bring in high quality faculty and beef up their program (including in research) with the goal of being in the top decile in the near future.
The reason I bring this up is the other applicant mentioned that he didn't want to go there because he was worried that going to program with a 'not great' reputation would harm his chances at getting a good fellowship and even hurt his chances later in life with regards to employment opportunities.
My questions are:
How much does program reputation really matter for fellowships and employment opportunities?
Is there any way of looking up/learning about different program's reputations?
 
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BLADEMDA

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I am applying for a residency spot in anesthesia for the 2017 match. I was speaking to another applicant at an interview who talked to me about a program at which I had interviewed that I really liked. He said that he was also very impressed with the program, but was not going to rank it highly because the program's reputation is not good. It is a midwestern program that for many years has not had a great reputation, but recently hired a new department chair and has been spending a lot of money to bring in high quality faculty and beef up their program (including in research) with the goal of being in the top decile in the near future.
The reason I bring this up is the other applicant mentioned that he didn't want to go there because he was worried that going to program with a 'not great' reputation would harm his chances at getting a good fellowship and even hurt his chances later in life with regards to employment opportunities.
My questions are:
How much does program reputation really matter for fellowships and employment opportunities?
Is there any way of looking up/learning about different program's reputations?

Just ask us old guys;)
 

mnbmen

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I am applying for a residency spot in anesthesia for the 2017 match. I was speaking to another applicant at an interview who talked to me about a program at which I had interviewed that I really liked. He said that he was also very impressed with the program, but was not going to rank it highly because the program's reputation is not good. It is a midwestern program that for many years has not had a great reputation, but recently hired a new department chair and has been spending a lot of money to bring in high quality faculty and beef up their program (including in research) with the goal of being in the top decile in the near future.
The reason I bring this up is the other applicant mentioned that he didn't want to go there because he was worried that going to program with a 'not great' reputation would harm his chances at getting a good fellowship and even hurt his chances later in life with regards to employment opportunities.
My questions are:
How much does program reputation really matter for fellowships and employment opportunities?
Is there any way of looking up/learning about different program's reputations?

I have a very similar concern, about what I assume (by you saying decile) is the same program.
 
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Ok, this has been discussed in various places ad nauseam but it's a complicated question/concern.

Basically, yes, reputation matters. There are places with great reps developed over many years that are trusted, sometimes incorrectly. Things can change for the negative at "reputable" places just as there can be places with bad reps that have changed and now provide great training. The "reputation" held by people is likely years behind the current training level being delivered.

The bigger issue is how this reputation is developed and who's opinion you're concerned with. Is it based off of one of the hundred "top 25 Med school/residencies" lists based off of things like fellowship match rates, hospital rating (themselves scored on things such as nursing, ssi rates, etc), NIH funding, board pass rates, etc, or is it the anecdotal opinion of a hiring partner in a private group you apply for down the road?

When job hunting sure, the reputation of the program you hail from and the biases of the person hiring you is going to matter. "Top place"? Probably comes with an implied level of training as well as the implication of the type of applicant you are/were to matriculate there. Does that absolutely mean you're a stud? Nope. We've all seen people from top academic/research heavy places that can't perform clinically (and vice versa). Has the partnership hired a few people from Residency A and had good luck with those docs? If so they are likely to trust that program and develop their own "reputation" based on their n of 3 etc. Or vice versa, if the group hired a guy from your BMS program last cycle and he was a schmuck that may hurt you.

In the end, you need to decide what's important to you, a diploma from BMS potentially at the expense of the ideal program for you vs a program you pick based on the program and not the name. For some, a regionally respected program in the area they wish to end up may trump the BMS credentials. For others not so much.
 
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Just ask us old guys;)


To follow up my post and address this even more;

Guys like Blade (experienced Hiring Partners) are likely going to base their thoughts on the top programs when they trained, i.e. what places they considered, where those they knew went (respected friends vs those they had less respect for), current subjective lists of "current top programs", or the experience of their group with individuals they've hired.

Basically everyone has their biases right or wrong and that particular bias is likely impossible to know and plan ahead for, and that is the elephant in the room that makes many people double down on "reputation".

And full disclosure, I personally don't 100% buy that you need some name to be successful in the acquisition of clinical knowledge/skill as well as employment as long as you go somewhere that can provide the experience you need. With that said, I'm not sure I'd go to a place with a mediocre rep little lone a bad one, because perception plays a significant role.
 

Consigliere

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With the increased number of medical school graduates while the number of residency spots remains the same or decreases, the focus for the future will be getting into ANY residency slot.
 
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Mman

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My brief thoughts.

1) Academic reputation matters more when applying for fellowships or academic jobs than it does when applying for a private practice job.

2) When job hunting, it's who you know that matters far more than the reputation of where you are coming from. Now most of who you know is related to where you do your residency, but it's not quite as related to the name of the place. If you want to ultimately work in a particular area, doing a residency at a program that has placed several docs to jobs in that area is your best bet.
 
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AdmiralChz

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With the increased number of medical school graduates while the number of residency spots remains the same or decreases, the focus for the future will be getting into ANY residency slot.

I agree, with a caveat (and sort of off topic as well). The increase in MD/DO applicant from the simple increase in class size as well as entire new schools will squeeze some out. Politically we have seen in our (and other) large university-based system that the group to lose out here are FMGs rather than domestic applicants. Not making a comment on fairness, it just is what it is.
 
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abolt18

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My brief thoughts.

1) Academic reputation matters more when applying for fellowships or academic jobs than it does when applying for a private practice job.

2) When job hunting, it's who you know that matters far more than the reputation of where you are coming from. Now most of who you know is related to where you do your residency, but it's not quite as related to the name of the place. If you want to ultimately work in a particular area, doing a residency at a program that has placed several docs to jobs in that area is your best bet.
This is precisely what I'm battling with right now. My top 3 consists of 2 "top" programs that I really loved, that are in the Midwest. The other one is in the location I'd like to eventually settle (more west. More mountains), but i wasn't feeling the program quite as much as the other two.
 

partydoc

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This is precisely what I'm battling with right now. My top 3 consists of 2 "top" programs that I really loved, that are in the Midwest. The other one is in the location I'd like to eventually settle (more west. More mountains), but i wasn't feeling the program quite as much as the other two.

Go with the gut.
 
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icuanesthesiology

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I hate to say it, at the end of the day it matters a lot less than you think. Unless there is some huge red flag, your best bet is choosing a residency close to where you want to practice. Even that, though, doesn't really matter. There are always questionsabout what is the best residency. What matters most is that you are a hard working resident who reads regularly, is always on time, and takes initiative. You don't want to be that lame competitive guy that no one likes, just be a nice guy that everyone can rely on. Don't complain about your hours, do not hang by the board after your cases are finished asking to go home, etc. You do that for 4 years and you will get the job that you want eventually...and you will be a good doctor no matter where you trained. The world of anesthesiology is much smaller than you think. If you are well liked by your program, someone will know someone who knows someone at the job you want. If you have the reputation of not being ready, walking into the hospital 5 minutes before the case, bad ITE scores because you don't read...even an MGH resident will have a hard time finding a job...and will still be a bad doctor.
The point is...rank every program, and even if you get your last choice, you are still going to be an anesthesiologist.
The value of a residency is up to you.
 
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