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Torn- Deciding how to rank programs

Discussion in 'Emergency Medicine' started by ergal, Jan 1, 2009.

  1. ergal

    2+ Year Member

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    Okay- I know that this is a little early but was wondering if you experts can weigh in on ranking programs.

    Personally, I have been agonizing over two programs (maybe this will change as I finish my interviews but I doubt it). One is my home program and another is a fairly prestigious one far away from where I reside now. My home program is really the stick by which I measure others.

    Location is irrelevant to me. My main issue is that I bought a condo when I started med school and with the way the market is, I doubt I would be able to sell it. I am not sure if I can rent it and that would put me in one hell of a financial bind. With respect to the programs, both are very good wth slightly different focuses (home is bit more community and the other a bit more academic). I felt like I would fit in slightly better with the residents at the non-home program and there are more international and research opportunities at the away program. There is a lot to be said about knowing the system at my home program though and knowing all the personalities. The perks (vacation, money) at the away program are much better but it seems silly to make a decision based on this.

    Anyone else feel like it would almost be easier to throw darts at a dartboard? And yes, I know I am lucky to feel like I could be happy at two programs.
     
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  3. TysonCook

    TysonCook Senior Member
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    i posted an excel spreadsheet adapted from isersons getting into residency. search and it should pop up.
    Tyson
     
  4. TysonCook

    TysonCook Senior Member
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  5. theKirk

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    IMHO, it sounds like your "growing pains" would be much more mild at home, naturally. You know the system so work will run smoother faster, your mind wouldn't be elsewhere with home issues and living situations, orienting to a new area: where's the good places to eat, affordable shopping, where the stinkin' post office is, etc. etc.

    However, there is something I just recently learned about with folks who stay at their home place (and in some case stay further as attendings): there is a stigma that homegrown folks are "institutionalized" and only know that system with no other perspectives. Some are seen as not being able to function elsewhere bc they only know that place's style of medicine. How abundant or even how true this stigma is, I have no idea. I'm just a simple 4th year. Someone more experienced than I may have some perspective on this phenomenon. Or if it even really exists.


    BTW, I'm a DO student, so naturally I am ranking programs based on how many residents are ripped on HydroyCut.
     
  6. lucky_deadman

    lucky_deadman Working Class Hero
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    Laugh now.

    But when it comes down to the middle of the pack programs on your ROL, darts is one way to help you maintain your sanity.:bang:
     
  7. dotcb

    dotcb ---------
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    It sounds like you really want to go to the farther program but it will be a hassle in start-up. You'll get over the hassle. Go the program you think will give you the best training in a setting where you think you'll be happy.
     
  8. roja

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    Spreadsheets, etc can help some.

    However, I find the tried and trued 'coin toss' (I believe someone wrote about it a while back on sdn as well) to be the best way.

    Take a coin, program a =heads, program b=tails. close your eyes, toss it up. before you open your eyes to see:

    What program are you hoping it will be?

    That's your first choice
     
  9. arctic187

    arctic187 Junior Member
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    Yes, go where your think you will be happiest overall. My observation also is that you are leaning towards the away residency. Your gut reaction is a good judge. I remember making a very complicated spreadsheet and I kept adjusting it until it came out how I wanted. So the spreadsheet basically becomes the much more complicated version of the coin flip. A coin flip would have been much easier.

    I would talk to a real estate agent, get recent comps for your area. See what rental rates are going for. If there will be a significant financial strain and you are torn between the 2, it may make sense to stay. You do not want to add financial stress into the residency mix.

    If during your research, you are finding you really want to be able to make the move work, thats your gut talking. Take the loss on the condo and maybe take a relocation resident loan (if they still do them) to help offset. Or rent to some incoming med students/residents, even if it is at a slight loss.

    Either way, dont do anything drastic until Match day.
     
  10. Tiger26

    Tiger26 Senior Member
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    I had actually started med school with the hopes of matching in daytime supplement infomercial medicine--a dream which stood until I found out that such a career is closed to anyone without a D.O. degree. It was a sad day when I had to give up the hope . . . :D
     
  11. docjolly

    docjolly On Cloud Nine, Once Again
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    hey all,

    to the OP, I feel your pain (allbeit, for different reasons). I'm having a very, very difficult time ranking my EM residency programs. Because 90% of them are all in the same area, location is not an issue. I'm beginning to feel quite overwhelmed with having to make the rank order list, and am just hoping that I make the best decision, in the end.
     

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