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uwash resident type of person

Discussion in 'Surgery and Surgical Subspecialties' started by medfriend, May 27, 2008.

  1. medfriend

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    I have a few questions/concerns about the uwash surgery residency program. Ive have heard that its malignant, but many people have argued that this is inaccurate or maybe used to be true but it has changed. Can anyone tell me the current climate in the program, particularly for women, I have heard that female residents had a hard time, at least in the past. I have a friend who is a female who may wish to apply there¬óbut does not fit the aggressive, sports fan surgeon stereotype. Will that cause any problems for her in that program?
    Also, on a related note, I noticed that thenavysurgeon mentioned that when he was there the residents took interviewees out to drink and then voted on whether they liked them. Did that disqualify potentially good surgeons who did not happen to fit in? And does coming from a mid-tier med school pose any problems, or would that be true only at places like mgh, Hopkins, etc? (or does a 230+ board compensate)
     
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  3. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic!
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    I cannot comment specifically on UW but the bolded statement is true everywhere. Regardless of whether or not you are a potentially good surgeon, if you do not fit in, then it is not the right program for you/your friend.
     
  4. airplaneboy

    airplaneboy Junior Member
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    Hi,

    I interviewed there for this year's match. I heard rumors that it was malignant from various people but I decided to check it out for myself anyways. I ended up having a good interview, so much, that I went back for a second look and liked it even more. I ranked it really high and would have been very happy to match there.

    If I can offer some advice for your friend, it would be not to put so much weight on rumors. There were a number of places that I was interested in but hastily crossed off the list because I heard this or that about it. I made myself crazy looking for the "promised land" and it doesn't exist, but there are some places that came really close for me and those went high on my list. Like others said, in the end, you want the place that fits you the best and that you fit them the best.

    Don't worry about being from a mid-tier school...I was from one as well and didn't have problems getting interviews at places like UWash. And if your friend is really interested in the place, an away rotation might be worthwhile.
     
  5. filter07

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    I think during interviews people lose sight of the fact that they are applying for surgery residency. This is not a place to get pampered or coddled. This is surgery. There is no surgery residency utopia. I know interview days make it seem like you will be "happy" at certain places, but get real. At best they will treat you with respect. But any place that tries to present itself as a "happy" place full of shiny happiness is misleading you. Surgery residency is tough, demanding, and at times heartbreaking. Never lose sight of that fact. To me it is still worthwhile. Just a reminder that rumors and interview day impressions mean very little. What does being malignant really mean? I mean we all know the really malignant programs, but for the most part surgery has softened up a lot. No one is going to make you feel like you're a genius all the time, nor should they. Just a thought.
     
  6. SLUser11

    SLUser11 CRS
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    Well, I would argue that any program can make itself look good for 1-2 days, thus the interviewee is equally if not more likely to be fooled by that than by the program's bad reputation.

    There are tons of programs across the nation that provide excellent training. And, despite the yearly comments that "no, SERIOUSLY, surgery is more competitive than ever," it is still a buyer's market.

    Competitive US seniors should use all available tools to help them make a decision about where to go, and I see no problem screening programs out based on a malignant reputation. I believe that with few exceptions, where there's smoke, there's fire. (This, of course, only applies to people who specifically want to avoid "malignant" programs).


    There's a big difference between being coddled and being in a healthy learning environment. I would urge students to open their eyes a little wider, cast their net over a larger geographical area, and have faith that there are places to train that don't produce the above-quoted negative attitude.

    Filter: Maybe you've already said in the past, but what area of the country did you do your med school in?
     
  7. DrDre311

    DrDre311 Makaveli
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    Do away rotations! If you do 2 aways plus your core surgery clerkship and your AI at your home program, then you have more angles to look at different programs. Your questions will be more intelligent on the trail, and you'll have a much clearer idea of what you really want in a program. Much better to do that than to have your view restricted by only using the lens of your home program.
     
  8. SLUser11

    SLUser11 CRS
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    Agree 100%. I've argued with Pilot Doc in the past about the values of away rotations. Where is he BTW?

    Anyway, I did 2 aways, 1 at an academic center and 1 at a straight community program. I ended up disliking both of them, but they taught me exactly which subtle details that can be glossed over during the interview are extremely important. Most importantly, they helped me realize what I didn't want in a program.

    Here is an old thread where it is discussed and both arguments are well-represented.
     
  9. SocialistMD

    SocialistMD Resident Objectivist
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    Doing away rotations can help, but (as PilotDoc has said) you must be wary of doing it at the program you want to attend. My med school program director told us to "date" programs we liked rather than "marrying" them. His philosophy was that it is easier to do damage than to help yourself (and from what I've seen of our visiting students, I'd say it holds true; we've matched one person/year since I've been here who has done an away, but have marked many more off the list after their rotation because of personality issues/work ethic, etc...). Instead, do an away rotation at a program to get a nice letter of recommendation by busting your butt to be the best student they have ever seen and working harder than the intern and then do an away at a program you like, but in another department (like medicine, anesthesia, radiology). Then, you still attend their surgery conferences and make yourself and your interest known without actually being on their service. That way, you only look like a star, going above and beyond without falling short of expectations on the floor service.

    Again, in the end, doing an away rotation at a program will ensure you end up there if you belong. The catch is, while you may feel you belong, the program may have other ideas, and they know best who fits in.
     
  10. DrDre311

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    This point can't be emphasized enough. I'll never forget how rosy a picture my home GS program painted on interview day--completely unrealistic. We only toured a newer hospital that was NOT the main teaching hospital (the main hospital is an outdated, rusty old county hospital in the middle of the inner city), the people giving the tour were lab residents and not the overworked, ass-kicked residents, and all the rough edges were completely glossed over. I was so glad I knew how things actually work there; I just sat there thinking "This is total BS" when the well-rested lab resident swore that our program strictly adhered to the 80-hour rule and "trauma really isn't that bad." Horse****.

    Just like interviewees try to put on a face for interviews to hide their shortcomings, programs try to hide their inadequacies on interview day. And programs have been interviewing prospective residents a lot longer than those prospective residents have been trying to fool programs.

    Away rotations are best way to see through the smoke and mirrors and assess if you still want to be with a program the morning after when all its makeup is off and it smells like stale cigarettes and cheap perfume.
     
  11. medfriend

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    Thanks to all, this has provided interesting food for thought and concrete advice. I would, however, appreciate any uw specific insight that thenavysurgeon can offer--if he is still a forum member.
     
  12. Jonkst

    Jonkst Senior Member
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    What if I like the smell of stale cigarettes and cheap perfume? Any program recs then?
     
  13. DrDre311

    DrDre311 Makaveli
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    GS where I went to med school comes to mind. Or anywhere in the South. Or Vegas--especially Vegas. Or anywhere I happen to be, since I chainsmoke even while I'm operating; I also make and sell a variety of affordable perfumes.
     
  14. medfriend

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    I realize this is not directly related to residency matches, but I do wonder about uw (and similar programs) if anyone knows what typical mcat scores may be for people who matched. I am assuming there would be a lot of 35 to 38 range scores at mgh, penn, etc, but uw or similar places might be more like 32 to 34. I ask because I know there is a correlation between these scores and iq scores--the questions are worded in a way that does more than just ask you to display knowledge. I am wondering if there is a tendency for certain places to attract a certain level of intellect, or if qualities such as perseverance are more important.
     
  15. SLUser11

    SLUser11 CRS
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    How dare you try to keep this thread on topic!!!!

    Thank you for clearing things up for me. I'm sorry we were giving reasonable advice that applies to current US Allopathic seniors. I will try to cater my response to the tunnel vision of the overly-researched premed:

    You will need at least a 39 on the MCAT to match at UW surgery 6-10 years from now. If you don't do at least that good, then likely you have a low IQ, and you will be forced to go to a surgery program that doesn't have a Dr. McDreamy.
     
  16. filter07

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    Very few programs care about your MCAT. The ones that do are probably not the ones you would want to go to, unless you like being around hard-ass jerks in bowties.
     
  17. Kubed

    Kubed Mostly Harmless
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    :laugh:
     
  18. DoctaJay

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    When you start medical school it is a whole new ball game. The MCAT stops mattering as soon as your first year starts. What is most important in getting a good residency is Step 1 scores, increasingly Step 2 scores, clinical evaluations, research, AOA, etc. And that gets you an interview...you also need to have a good interview. Focus on getting in to med school first, and then when you get in, focus on doing well, then after that, focus on getting into surgery at UW.
     
  19. DrDre311

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    This entire post is something Tired would say.

    To the OP: Chill out. Get into med school first. And when you do, take out your official copy of your MCAT score, wipe your ass with it, and set it on fire.

    The MCAT is dumb and no one cares about it 5 seconds after you're admitted to med school.
     
  20. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic!
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    He has noted posted in over 7 months; I would not hold my breath.
     

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