Toadkiller Dog

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Allright, I'm reviewing the CAS process for the early match, and the recommended date to have all of the ophtho materials in (for this past year) was Sept. 5th.

Is this a realistic date, or is necessary to get everything in earlier to be considered by most programs? (or can we get it in later and get away with it?)

Since we have *no* ophtho faculty at our school, I am really feeling the pressure to get a letter from an ophtho faculty at an away rotation. Since we can't even start these until July at my school, it seems I am quite under the gun to do a single away rotation in July, do whatever it takes to get a letter, and hope it rocks!

I guess I will try to get my other 2 letters from other departments, or perhaps a community optho who is a preceptor for our school.
 

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I think you should aim for August for LORs.
 

eyefan

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Another question regarding LOR's.......
Do all of our LOR have to be ready when we submit our application to CAS?
I planned on getting my app in by mid August, but I also want to do an away (and hopefully get a LOR in Aug-Sept). Will I be able to send in this LOR after I have submitted my app?
 
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Andrew_Doan

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Originally posted by eyefan
Another question regarding LOR's.......
Do all of our LOR have to be ready when we submit our application to CAS?
I planned on getting my app in by mid August, but I also want to do an away (and hopefully get a LOR in Aug-Sept). Will I be able to send in this LOR after I have submitted my app?
I checked the SF Match site and you must gather all supporting documents except the Dean's Letter and submit it as ONE PACKAGE. Better get your LORs before August.
 

ruptured globe

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You must submit 3 LORs with your application initially. You may also submit a fourth LOR late (i.e. after you have submitted your application to CAS) if it is an ophthalmology LOR.
 

dammit2

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Along these lines...

I have been looking around for away rotations, and interest has been somewhat low. :( One professor did mention that he had time in Sept or Oct. While I think I may enjoy the experience, would that be too late for a LOR, if I end up needing it?

Also, none of the ophtho clerkships I have planned so far are clinical, insomuch as they're technically labeled "research" or "preceptorship"-type rotations. Will it look strange/hurt me that I never did an ophtho clinical clerkship (i.e. month that rotates through a bunch of services), or should I try to sign up for a clerkship month somewhere?

Any input would be appreciated. Thanks!
 

ckyuen

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Dammit,
Call my program, I know they take a lot of students for our rotations and we have had third years come by all the time. May or June would be a great time as the first years are all well greased by now. Also you have less competition to make it more difficult to shine. We had a lot of away students double digits and up to six students on at a time. This is a great time of the year before the july rush. A lot of students who did rotations with us were also able to publish a case report if they are agressive.
 

GeddyLee

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One of my classmates who matched for ophthalmology got their application in late in September. I guess being a late applicant doesn't hurt.

Anyway...considering the number of problems that can arise with LOR's, I would at the latest request them by early July. I sent my application in at the first of August and was more than early for most everyone's deadlines. Interview offers started trickling in during mid September.
 

dammit2

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ckyuen said:
Dammit,
Call my program, I know they take a lot of students for our rotations and we have had third years come by all the time. May or June would be a great time as the first years are all well greased by now. Also you have less competition to make it more difficult to shine. We had a lot of away students double digits and up to six students on at a time. This is a great time of the year before the july rush. A lot of students who did rotations with us were also able to publish a case report if they are agressive.
Unfortunately, July and August are basically the only months that I can do away rotations -- I think that's why it's been difficult to find a rotation. It seems that a September or even August rotation would be too late, as you would not really get an LOR until a month or so later.

Thank you for your input. Do you have any insight as to the type of clerkship? (i.e., should I try to arrange a clinical rotation?)
 

guttata

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I just read your initial post. Generally speaking, be aware that private practice optho with a community doc (less time with patients, less pathology, less teaching) will be a lot different than at a university clinic (more time with patients, more pathology, more autonomy as a student). Personally, I would try to schedule a clinical month at another institution. While your preceptor may be good at teaching, I think you can better hone your skills/knowledge if you have more time with patients and see a wider variety of pathology.

If your school allows it, I would try to move any rotations/clerkships at the end of your 3rd year, so that you can be more flexible with your scheduling.
 

dammit2

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Thanks again everyone (guttata, ckyuen, GeddyLee) for your insight. The one away preceptorship in ophtho I have scheduled is with a doc at a university center, and we've talked how i'd like to see patients as well as pursue some research -- more likely clinical in nature -- as well. Although the details have not been worked out fully, it sounds like I will be in clinic at least 2-3 days a week, and working projects the other times. However, the rotation will show up as a "Research" elective.

Would that be reasonable? Should I try to schedule another "clinical clerkship" away?
 
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