beary

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Hey all,

Are AP, CP, and combined programs separate residency applications? Or do you just apply to universities and then discuss specific paths during interviews?

I won't have my pathology electives done until after residency applications are due, and I am not sure I will know what I want to do without having experienced it at least for a month.

Thanks! I am sure all you studs and stud-ettes that matched today can offer brilliant insight. :thumbup:
 

yaah

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Most programs you apply in one fashion. There are a couple in which the application on ERAS asks you to pick one of a few tracks (like AP/NP, AP/CP, or CP only). Some programs will ask you your plans when you call them to schedule the interview (because if you are applying AP only they don't want to set you up for interviews with CP folks). And everyone will ask you at your interview.

I would try to have it figured out by the time you submit your application, because it is good to mention something about what you are applying for in your personal statement. Personal statement should also include some idea of career plans, which thus includes your plans for residency.

CP only is a bit different though - they kind of have separate schedules and such. There are only a handful of programs (the big ones) that really do this though. But you can always call and ask if they offer this.

But hey, you can always change. Drop one or the other, or go combined. It can be a hassle, but it can be done.
 

b&ierstiefel

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beary said:
Hey all,

Are AP, CP, and combined programs separate residency applications? Or do you just apply to universities and then discuss specific paths during interviews?

I won't have my pathology electives done until after residency applications are due, and I am not sure I will know what I want to do without having experienced it at least for a month.

Thanks! I am sure all you studs and stud-ettes that matched today can offer brilliant insight. :thumbup:
Usually you don't have to decide too early, except CP only. Programs usually have separate spots for CP only trainees so if CP only is what you want to do, you want to be upfront about that. For AP and AP/CP, the far majority of places don't distinguish between these two tracks when registering their open slots for the Match. For instance, Brigham, MGH, Hopkins, UCSF, Penn, etc. don't make any distinctions between AP and AP/CP in terms of NRMP residency position quotas.

AP vs. AP/CP...I don't think it makes much of a difference especially if you're looking at bigger programs. At these bigger programs, people switch quite a bit from AP to AP/CP and vice versa and because there are lot of residents, they can accomodate this in terms of rotation scheduling with relative ease.

Personally, I was upfront about AP only when I applied. However, I did ask at all the places I applied, "How easy is it to switch into AP/CP?" Some places where they intermix AP and CP rotations right from the first year of residency I can see switching from AP to AP/CP to be a bit tougher.

Irregardless, at a lot of places, I was told that I didn't have to make a firm decision regarding AP vs. AP/CP. However, I was advised that once I made a firm decision, I should let them know sooner or later, especially after the Match. This is so that the chief resident who makes the schedule can know exactly what he/she is dealing with in terms of incoming resident schedules.
 

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Yeah, not to repeat what's already been said, but you should probably decide at the time of application what you want to do. It can influence where you apply because only a limited number of programs have AP only and a very limited number have CP only. AP only and CP only folks are usually pretty research oriented and looking for academic/research careers, so their application is going to look different than most AP/CP folks and their interviews are going to go along those lines. That said, I was one of the ones who applied AP/CP with a research background and academic goals. It was kind of a pain trying to explain my reasoning and convince people that yes I'm interested in academics but yes I want to do AP/CP. I guess AP/CP means private practice to some research-oriented places, and saying "I'm not entirely sure what I want to do yet" sounds kind of wishy-washy even if it is reasonable at this point. Depending on the openings in your program (provided you go to a program with AP only and CP only tracks) like Andy said you can sometimes drop the AP or CP part midway through as you clarify your career goals (more common to drop the CP part)...but in an ideal world it would be nice to go through the application process able to clearly articulate exactly what you want to do.
 

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cytoborg said:
I guess AP/CP means private practice to some research-oriented places, and saying "I'm not entirely sure what I want to do yet" sounds kind of wishy-washy even if it is reasonable at this point.
I think this is changing though especially with this whole shift in emphasis on molecular diagnostics. Many interviewers were asking me why I was doing AP only (see, I had buttonholed myself into AP only application inadvertently in my personal statement when I ended my essay with the two words, "anatomic pathology."). Some people got mad when I said AP only was synonymous with academics whereas AP/CP was synonymous with private practice. Some people agreed. Well, I guess you can't please everyone. But do realize that there is some difference of opinions here so when asked about this on interviews, try to stick with a conservative answer that will please everyone, but at the same time, as Wheels pointed out, don't give a wishy-washy type of answer either. It's tough.
 

cytoborg

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AndyMilonakis said:
I think this is changing though especially with this whole shift in emphasis on molecular diagnostics. Many interviewers were asking me why I was doing AP only (see, I had buttonholed myself into AP only application inadvertently in my personal statement when I ended my essay with the two words, "anatomic pathology."). Some people got mad when I said AP only was synonymous with academics whereas AP/CP was synonymous with private practice. Some people agreed. Well, I guess you can't please everyone. But do realize that there is some difference of opinions here so when asked about this on interviews, try to stick with a conservative answer that will please everyone, but at the same time, as Wheels pointed out, don't give a wishy-washy type of answer either. It's tough.
Yeah, you can't please everyone, and it's true that the whole "AP only being synonymous with research" thing may be changing. It will depend on each program's philosophy. The place that told me not to bother with basic science research as an AP/CP person fell lower on my list because of it. It's good to be as honest as possible during interviews and get everything out in the open even if it means discovering a program isn't the best fit. I had a few reasons for doing AP/CP (molecular being a big one, plus IMO a broad education inspires creative ways of looking at research questions, plus I'd like to keep my options open for private practice) and I did say all of those things on interviews. Perhaps it made me look wishy-washy at a few places, but it was important to me that the programs understood where I was coming from and vice versa so that it would be a good match.
 

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cytoborg said:
Yeah, you can't please everyone, and it's true that the whole "AP only being synonymous with research" thing may be changing.
Doing AP only or CP only and having that being synonymous with a career mainly involving research will probably never change. The notion of AP/CP residents ending up to do more research, especially in the molecular diagnostics area, is quickly gaining acceptance. I suspect that within the next decade though, the whole AP only thing will be phased out (I think the #'s of people intending to do AP only has been decreasing over the year), which sucks for people like me.

Guess LADoc00 was right. If I don't listen to him, I'll be living in a box.
 

cytoborg

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AndyMilonakis said:
Doing AP only or CP only and having that being synonymous with a career mainly involving research will probably never change. The notion of AP/CP residents ending up to do more research, especially in the molecular diagnostics area, is quickly gaining acceptance. I suspect that within the next decade though, the whole AP only thing will be phased out (I think the #'s of people intending to do AP only has been decreasing over the year), which sucks for people like me.

Guess LADoc00 was right. If I don't listen to him, I'll be living in a box.
Hmm, yeah, I guess I was thinking of AP only people going into autopsy and doing research the rest of the time. But you're prolly right that AP only is getting less common. Maybe the growing openness to AP/CP doing research is part of why I got positive receptions at most of the places I interviewed. But I definitely had people ask, "Why AP/CP and not AP only?"
 

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cytoborg said:
BTW Andy, have you considered adding CP? Just curious.
Although I have sounded quite absolute about not doing CP here on the forums, I have debated quite a bit whether I should just add on the CP. I mean it can't hurt right? Right now though, I am AP only. I will grapple with this issue further during the first year of residency. If I get my first choice, I will have two years to ponder this and two years to observe where pathology is going.

Whether I do AP or AP/CP is not important at this point. I'm taking things one at a time. All I'm thinking about now are the manuscript revisions/rebuttals I need to polish up and the 6 gels/western blots I need to run before I leave to Vegas on Thursday night...oh yeah...then there's this thing called the Match on Thursday at 1 pm. Trust me, I'm really really trying not to think about this. But in any case, now I must think about how much money I'm gonna blow on buying champagne for the lab...we're having a little party here regardless of the results (I won't be attending the ceremony since it's uber lame and I don't really feel a part of our class of 2005 anyway). The conference room has been reserved, invites have been sent, and things are a go! Woot!
 

cytoborg

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AndyMilonakis said:
Although I have sounded quite absolute about not doing CP here on the forums, I have debated quite a bit whether I should just add on the CP. I mean it can't hurt right? Right now though, I am AP only. I will grapple with this issue further during the first year of residency. If I get my first choice, I will have two years to ponder this and two years to observe where pathology is going.

Whether I do AP or AP/CP is not important at this point. I'm taking things one at a time. All I'm thinking about now are the manuscript revisions/rebuttals I need to polish up and the 6 gels/western blots I need to run before I leave to Vegas on Thursday night...oh yeah...then there's this thing called the Match on Thursday at 1 pm. Trust me, I'm really really trying not to think about this. But in any case, I must leave so that I can buy some champagne for the lab...we're having a little party here regardless of the results (I won't be attending the ceremony since it's uber lame and I don't really feel a part of our class of 2005 anyway).
Agreed, CP or no is definitely not a critical point at the moment. :D I suppose I'm trying in my own way to distract myself from Thursday. Re. your champagne question, consider splurging a little. Cheap champagne tastes like ****.

I just returned from the ABC with an overpriced bottle of Johnny Walker Green Label to keep me company until Thurs.
 

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cytoborg said:
Agreed, CP or no is definitely not a critical point at the moment. :D I suppose I'm trying in my own way to distract myself from Thursday. Re. your champagne question, consider splurging a little. Cheap champagne tastes like ****.
Hehe...ain't that the truth. I plan to buy 4-5 bottles of champagne (we got an above average sized lab here and some people who used to work here who will be coming). I'm aiming to buy stuff that costs somewhere in the $50-$100 range per bottle. I better win this money back in Vegas :laugh:
 

cytoborg

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AndyMilonakis said:
Hehe...ain't that the truth. I plan to buy 4-5 bottles of champagne (we got an above average sized lab here and some people who used to work here who will be coming). I'm aiming to buy stuff that costs somewhere in the $50-$100 range per bottle. I better win this money back in Vegas :laugh:
Wow, I'd like to be in your lab. :thumbup: