university vs. community programs

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Sep 17, 2003
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When selecting programs, did you apply to only university based or community hospitals? If you applied to both, what was your rationale? I've been advised by the chair of medicine at my school to stick with university programs because of my interest is in oncology. Yet I'm not convinced that this will matter so much since oncology isn't a competitive specialty (shrugs) and my aptitude/interest in research is minimal. How did you guys weigh in on this matter when making your selections? ;)

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Even if you had no interest in research, and heme onc is relatively non-competetive right now, I'd still highly recc doing your residency at a U program over community for the following reasons:
1. No need to risk not being able to match into the heme onc program of your choice, or not even being able to match into heme onc at all
2. Even if you don't like research, you shouldn't make that obvious in your fellowship application as all fellowships involve some degree (oftentimes signficant degrees) of research
3. Teaching and learning evidence based medicine is oftentimes superior at U programs, making you a more competent physician overall
4. Your colleagues are often higher tier medical school graduates. Always nice to work among competent colleagues
5. You may choose your mind about which fellowship you want to do
6. Heme onc could suddenly become very competetive
Would the UCLA-Olive View or Christiana Care programs be considered community programs, and thus be less ideal for those with fellowships in mind?
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That is a good point. What about community hospitals with University affiliations. I applied to a couple of programs with big name affiliations, UC (Weiss) and (Georgetown) Washington hospital, to name a couple. How are these and similar programs, like UCLA Olive View, viewed by applicants, fellowship directors, and people in general? My selections in residencies was primarily geographical, so I applied to most if not all the programs in a given locale.
Originally posted by chicamedica
Hello??? Anyone have an answer to these questions?

In general, yes, they would be less competetive then most university programs. There are many exceptions, I'm certain that you can find many community programs that match residents into more competetive fellowships then some university programs, but in general, university>university affiliated community>community. There are some university affiliated programs that match pretty well, but for the most part, they are still considered at best "B" tier programs compared with the top university programs. Another source of information would be to search the programs website or contact the program director to find out where past residents have matched. Of course, the best source would be to ask the interns/residents how many students that wanted to do GI/cards/etc got into GI/cards/etc programs of their choice on your interview day as program directors and publications can be misleading regarding their resident's fellowship placement successes.