Futuredoctr

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I was curious how doable it is to NOT take anytime off for interviewing. I would REALLY like to save my month of "vacation/elective time" the school gives me for a month of vacation before I graduate.

Thanks
 

Law2Doc

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I was curious how doable it is to NOT take anytime off for interviewing. I would REALLY like to save my month of "vacation/elective time" the school gives me for a month of vacation before I graduate.

Thanks
Not sure this really belongs in the general residency board, since it's not of particular interest to folks already in residency.

That being said, your real job in 4th year of med school is to line up that residency. The goal isn't to have an easy fun time. If you can do both, fantastic. But I sure wouldn't forego more interviews and risk not matching just to have another month off. Your flexibility in electives vs vacation is given to you for the following purposes, in this order, (1) interviews without disrupting rotation schedule, (2) study for Step 2, and (3) vacation. Now, plenty of folks managed to take easier electives and study for step 2 while doing so, and that freed up some time. Others took electives which had some time flexibility which allowed them to interview without taking time off. But barring those options, you pretty much have to do what you need to to get that residency, and if that means you have to go on 20 interviews during a vacation month (as some going into competitive things had to do), then so be it.
 

Futuredoctr

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I should mention that it isn't ONLY for vacation, but I am also preparing a backup and exploring another area of interest forresidency. Thus have my entire fall filled with electives
 

Law2Doc

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I should mention that it isn't ONLY for vacation, but I am also preparing a backup and exploring another area of interest forresidency. Thus have my entire fall filled with electives
You don't tend to have very many months of electives before you need to make some sort of decision. The usual schedule is this (although schools may differ). You do the core rotations in third year. Most schools don't give electives this year. Then 4th year starts in June/July. So that gives you July elective, August elective. ERAS opens in Sepetember, so many will already be applying then. You can do a September elective. Interviews can start as early as October, and run through early February. Not such a good idea to still be "exploring" possible areas of interest at this point (October), and for some specialties, you will want to be doing away rotations by this point. So I'm not so sure you have as much play to explore another area of interest for residency in the "entire fall". You basically have two to three months to explore and decide during 4th year before you need to hone in on a field or fields and line up away rotations and get ERAS in before you start interview season. It's a flaw of med school that they "force" you into the core rotations at the expense of some other very good and popular fields that you won't get any exposure to unless you "burn" one of your very few electives in the start of 4th year. Since you have to figure out what you want to go into, apply, interview, do away rotations, at many programs do "sub-I"s, and take Step 2 during 4th year, it tends to be a fairly congested year until match day. If you have a vacation month you can use to interview or study for step 2, that is often beneficial. Saving it to the end to vacation is well and nice but if that's your biggest goal, your focus is misplaced. Better to have no vacations left at the end of the year and have everything lined up than the other way round. Besides, once you have matched, your electives are pretty much a vacation anyway. The expectations of attendings are low and you are just taking things that interest you.
 

Futuredoctr

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You don't tend to have very many months of electives before you need to make some sort of decision. The usual schedule is this (although schools may differ). You do the core rotations in third year. Most schools don't give electives this year. Then 4th year starts in June/July. So that gives you July elective, August elective. ERAS opens in Sepetember, so many will already be applying then. You can do a September elective. Interviews can start as early as October, and run through early February. Not such a good idea to still be "exploring" possible areas of interest at this point (October), and for some specialties, you will want to be doing away rotations by this point. So I'm not so sure you have as much play to explore another area of interest for residency in the "entire fall". You basically have two to three months to explore and decide during 4th year before you need to hone in on a field or fields and line up away rotations and get ERAS in before you start interview season. It's a flaw of med school that they "force" you into the core rotations at the expense of some other very good and popular fields that you won't get any exposure to unless you "burn" one of your very few electives in the start of 4th year. Since you have to figure out what you want to go into, apply, interview, do away rotations, at many programs do "sub-I"s, and take Step 2 during 4th year, it tends to be a fairly congested year until match day. If you have a vacation month you can use to interview or study for step 2, that is often beneficial. Saving it to the end to vacation is well and nice but if that's your biggest goal, your focus is misplaced. Better to have no vacations left at the end of the year and have everything lined up than the other way round. Besides, once you have matched, your electives are pretty much a vacation anyway. The expectations of attendings are low and you are just taking things that interest you.
Thanks for the reply...I know what your saying. I am 100% sure on what I want to do, but just wonder what to do if I don't match (I'm a DO-participating in both matches). I didn't know if I took, Nov off if that would be a waste of time if all my interviews are in Oct or Dec...I was just trying to find out if other people have done the interview trail without taking time off. I also have this dream of traveling internationally for a international rotation, and that is where my vacation hopes come in becuase the travel and arrangements are such a hassel for international it would just be great to do a clerkship and then have some vacation time to travel ect... Thanks again for your insight-I know that my main goal is to obtain that residency...
 

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I was able to interview without taking vacation. My school's rotation policy was helpful because they only require that you show up for three days of rotation each week as long as the preceptor approves the absences. Some students took full advantage of this policy, but I was able to manage with 4 days/wk. I scheduled interviews on Saturdays whenever possible and tried to spread them out over several months. I had scheduled 1 interview in late October, 4 in November, 6 in December and 3 in January. I would always try to show up to my rotation the day before the interview and leave around noon so that I could make it to the pre-interview dinners (with one flight exception, my interviews were no more than a 6 hr drive). My preceptors were understanding about letting me leave, and my evaluations were not negatively affected.
 
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An outpatient or consult month is probably going to be much more amenable to taking time off. Your sub-I probably won't give you any time off, and an inpatient month might give you a small amount of time off. Your best bet is to talk to the M4s at YOUR school, because this thing is highly school-specific.
 

BobBarker

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I saved my two months vacation for the last two months before graduation. I spread my interviews from mid October to early February. I had 3 required rotations in that time but no one cared about my occasional absences.