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Where did you have a *great* student EM rotation?

Discussion in 'Emergency Medicine' started by IlianaSedai, Apr 9, 2004.

  1. IlianaSedai

    IlianaSedai Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Nov 9, 2002
    As stated in subject, I see lists and lists of EM electives, but I know very little about each one. I'd like to take one at home and one away.

    At this point, I really want to know what you found to be a good place with good teaching and student support -- not necessarily Top 5/famous/most respected. If you had a very positive EM student elective at a given institution, can you please share?
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  3. DrQuinn

    DrQuinn My name is Neo Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Dec 6, 2000
    I did a rotation at a EM residency in Philadelphia, as well as the University of Maryland.

    UM's student rotation is topnotch IMHO. They have student lectures, separate from grand rounds, where it is just an attending and all 5-6 students rotating that month. They also have splint labs, cadaver labs, etc JUST for the students. Every month! Their Grand Rounds are great, their attendings are awesome...

    It was a GREAT month. I ended up ranking UM #2.

    Cannot say enough about the student rotation and their program!

    Q, DO
  4. double shot

    double shot Junior Member

    Mar 5, 2004
    I would suggest doing an away rotation somewhere that you are interested in doing residency. I found that doing an away rotation at a program really helped. I did 4 EM away rotations this year and enjoyed all of them. I don't know if any of the places I went are places you are interested in, but I will give you a quick blurb on each.

    UT southwestern (Dallas)- I loved being in the Parkland ED. It is very busy and students get to do a lot. Most days there is a 3rd year resident on a teaching rotation who is there to see patients with the students and teach students. The faculty were excellent and very eager to teach and help you in any way. My medical school does not have an EM program so the faculty at Parkland were great as advisors. During the rotation, students do 12 -12hr shifts and attend student lectures once a week.

    UC Davis (Sacramento) - I also enjoyed UC Davis. THe ED there was not as busy as Parkland, but the faculty were great. During the student rotation there are 14 shifts (some 12, some10, some 8) and you rotate in the main ED, urgent care, and pedi ED.

    UC Irvine (EM ultrasound) - great rotation for learning US. I did not do a regular ED rotation there, but I highly recommend the ED US rotation. The US faculty (Chris Fox) is great and I learned a ton about doing ultrasound in just one month. This rotation is also more laid back than a core ED rotation.

    THe other place I rotated was the Pedi ED at Kosair (university of Louisville's childrens hospital). It was a good rotation, but it is put on by the pedi department so is not the best rotation for getting letters and meeting residents and faculty.

    One last thought. I didn't rotate at Christiana in Delaware, but I was very impressed by the program at my interview and heard that they provide housing for rotating students.
    frosted2 likes this.
  5. IlianaSedai

    IlianaSedai Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Nov 9, 2002
    Whoa... isn't that sort of a lot?

    Quinn, where in Philadelphia did you do your rotation, and did you have a good experience there?

    I may be interested in rotating in San Francisco area at Highland and/or Stanford, but I've read the reviews at and they seem to say that Highland at least may not be friendly to students. Can anyone who's rotated there share their experience?

    Thanks a bunch, guys. Keep it coming. I'll read up on those you mentioned.
  6. Dr. Cowboy

    Dr. Cowboy Member 7+ Year Member

    Apr 13, 2003
    I did a month in Charlotte and think it is a great student rotation. You work about 15 shifts in one of the 3 areas of the ED. Student classes/procedure lectures ~3x/week. Everyone gets a letter from the med ed director. You get to fly if you want to. Charlotte is a great town with something always going on. I would recommend this rotation to anyone because the attendings are incredible (esp. Marx) teachers and like to teach "on the fly" while checking out your patients.
  7. NinerNiner999

    NinerNiner999 Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Nov 4, 2003
    Where it's at.
    Christiana was incredible. There are 45 residents there to help you, they are all super cool and friendly, the ED is top notch, and the attendings are great. 150k+ patient volume between 2 ED's and just about as much trauma as you could ever want. Excellent pathology, high acuity. They put you up for the month in the Hilton, free of charge, and at then end, you will get a letter from Christiana, which will help you immensly anywhere you apply. 18 8-hr shifts in all areas of the ED, no nights, no end of rotation test. Can't say it enough - a great month as a student.

    South Florida was fun. New program with eager residents and awesome faculty. 14-18 8 hour shifts, all hours. High volume, great pathology, high acuity. The city of Tampa can't be beat during the down time. The end of rotation test there was very tough in my opinion and the reading material they give students is a 2-inch thick book of journal and textbook articles, but no hint as to where the questions will come from. No student lectures. Teaching was great there and I really had a blast.
    YNWA777 likes this.
  8. SewerRat

    SewerRat Member 7+ Year Member

    Nov 27, 2003
    I rotated over at Highland and loved it. Very active residents and I have friends in S.F. However, two of my very good friends rotated over there around the same time I did and absolutely hated it. I think they clashed with some of the personalities there. I ended up being the only one out of the three of us to rank them in my top 5. Good program, apparently just not for everyone.
  9. beyond all hope

    beyond all hope Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 18, 2003
    Jacobi in NYC was a great first EM rotation for me because they pretty much let you care for your patients by yourself. Great pathology, volume, trauma as well. The teaching was average because there aren't many attendings and too many patients. The letter I got was incredible - every interview I got they mentioned by letter from Jacobi.
    quickfeet likes this.
  10. Hercules

    Hercules Son of Zeus 10+ Year Member

    Jul 25, 2000
    Mobile, AL
    Has anyone done an away rotation at Vandy?
  11. southerndoc

    southerndoc life is good Physician Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Jun 6, 2002
    Yep, it was awesome. You'll receive about 100 hours of lecture during your month there, including several labs (casting, suturing, procedures, etc.). Wrenn and Slovis are awesome. Both will give a daily lecture or two (the rest of the lectures are given by other faculty members).

    You'll be handed "the phone book" and will be expected to read it. Basically it's about 600 pages of lecture notes printed on both sides of the page. An EXCELLENT thing for someone considering EM. In fact, I'm rereading the stuff prior to the start of residency because the stuff in there is that good.

    You'll work only 12 8-hr shifts if my memory serves me correctly. The majority of my shifts were in the peds ED. I only had one night shift, but none of the other students in my group had any night shifts. You're given the option of riding with EMS or LifeFlight for one shift (so you'd only do 11 ED shifts). LifeFlight only accepts riders during a certain time of the year (I think October through April?).

    The away rotation there was very good. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Unfortunately, Vandy does NOT provide housing. I spent nearly $2,000 to lease a furnished apartment for a month. Do keep that in mind when you sign up for the rotation. It's a jamup rotation, but expensive to find housing.
  12. palmettobay

    palmettobay Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jan 10, 2004
    A good rotation experience is obviously key, but I would also highly recommend doing an elective at one of the programs you're most interested in. For the most competitive programs, of which Highland is one, having rotated there will definitely help your chances of getting an interview/matching.
  13. FoughtFyr

    FoughtFyr SDN Lifetime Donor Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Mar 19, 2003
    Resurrection in Chicago.

    I loved it!!!

    I didn't expect to, but there are several things that make that ED great to learn in. The acuity is very high (I had more than a few shifts with multiple intense ICU pts. at one time including one shift with 2 separate PE patients given TPA in the ED), the nursing and support staff are fantastic, and the attendings love to teach. It was GREAT!

    The bonus is their residents are all happy, which to me is always a good sign! :thumbup:

    Anyway, just my $0.02 (actual cash value $0.005),

    - H
  14. Virion

    Virion Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    May 19, 2003
    Rotated at Denver Health Medical Center. Great experience. Students get at least an hour of small group education with attendings every day you work a shift! That does not count the student lectures, or grand rounds. Good student labs, suturing, splinting etc. Good amount of autonomy. Lots of lacs, splints etc...

    Enough time off to enjoy CO as well.
    Good Luck,
  15. aliraja

    aliraja Troublemaker 10+ Year Member

    Oct 18, 2001
    UNC - an amazing month! The attendings were great teachers, the city is a lot of fun during your off time (and there's more than enough of it), and the other students and residents totally took me in. And, even though I didn't get one, I heard another guy got a rec letter from Tintinalli... which probably came in handy :)
  16. Flipchick

    Flipchick Member 7+ Year Member

    Mar 13, 2003
    I'd highly recommend Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, MN. It's one of the best EDs in the country. The attendings and residents were great, you'll see a ton of trauma, plus, a good LOR from the attendings there carry a lot of weight.
    DrDrummer likes this.
  17. RnB

    RnB Junior Member 7+ Year Member

    Nov 5, 2003
    Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis

    Top notch! This was the rotation that made me decide for sure I wanted to do EM. Awesome faculty, diverse and well respected in the field. High volume, great variety, lots of trauma, diverse patient population. Residents are also fun to work with. Not a lot of hand-holding. Get to do a lot of hands on if you're comfortable. Great conferences.
    DrDrummer likes this.
  18. Nof55

    Nof55 Member 7+ Year Member

    Mar 23, 2003
    Hennepin County

    Was not even thinking about EM until I rotated there. The Thursday conferences are exceptional as is the acuity, probably one of the best stabilization rooms in the country. You get to do a ton as a student, even the "very sick " patients that at other programs I was told to let a resident handle. Great procedure experience. Interesting to be in a place that you look something up in R&H or Rosen's and you find out a staff from that institution is the author and you can go talk to them about it.

    DrDrummer likes this.
  19. Jeff698

    Jeff698 EM/EMS nerd 15+ Year Member

    Aug 11, 2000
    Salado, Texas
    I'm trying to sign up for a 4th year rotation in Albuquerque. Does anyone have any thoughts/experiences with this program they'd like to share?

  20. Joejitsu

    Joejitsu Member 10+ Year Member

    Jun 6, 2000
    I absolutely loved my ED rotation at Kern Medical Center. All the residents and attendings were really fun to work with. Since it was a smaller county hospital I got to do a lot of stuff that I probably would not have had the opportunity to do elsewhere. Also, it was cool to try to bone up on my spanish. Too many people crap on the program because it's in Bakersfield (despite the fact that 99% of those people have never even been to bakersfield for more than 1 day). After my great rotation I ended up ranking it #2 on my list.

  21. Andy Kahn

    Andy Kahn Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    May 2, 2003
    Dallas, TX
  22. manny99

    manny99 7+ Year Member

    Oct 7, 2009
    Very helpful thread...anyone else wanna share their rotation experiences?
  23. Akail

    Akail 2+ Year Member

    Sep 30, 2012
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012
  24. QuaerensIntelle

    QuaerensIntelle 5+ Year Member

    Apr 13, 2007
    Advocate Christ and ORMC were both absolutely fantastic student rotations.
  25. e30ftw

    e30ftw peace 5+ Year Member

    Feb 23, 2012
    this is either delightfully brilliant sarcasm or a level of devotion to didactics and student loans beyond my understanding.

    $2k housing.. 12 8h peds shifts (lol?)... 600 page phonebook? 100 hours of lecture?? sweet merciful crap, shoot me now.
    medzealot likes this.
  26. Iride28


    Oct 22, 2012
    Although it sounds pretty crazy, it is actually the exact same month that the interns do for their orientation month. You learn an unbelievable amount, and I honestly doubt that there is a better rotation in all of medical school across any specialty than this one for a 4th year student. Of course this last comment is extreme, and subject to lots and lots of argument, but my point is that it is an unbelievable month.

    ONLY negative about it is that you actually do 11-12 6 hour shifts, which means its slightly difficult to get a great SLOR.

    By the end of the month for the final you are managing a standardized and/or simulation patient that crashes while you get the history. You are responsible (and fully prepared) to run a full resuscitation on them starting with figuring out whats wrong and then treating accordingly. Not something I think many 4th year students can do.

    Lots of teaching, yes, but trust me when I say I doubt there is a better way to spend a month no matter the cost.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2012
  27. Hercules

    Hercules Son of Zeus 10+ Year Member

    Jul 25, 2000
    Mobile, AL
    It's been about 8 years since I did it, but the Vandy rotation was phenomenal from a didactics standpoint. Maybe not quite as much experience clinically, but again awesome lectures. I would recommend making it your first or second rotation of 4th year and then doing a second ED rotation the month after it with a little more clinical time. It will give you a chance to put all that knowledge into practice and you'll look like an absolute stud on that 2nd rotation.
  28. bad virus

    bad virus 7+ Year Member

    Oct 14, 2008
    I'm here to join the slew of Vandy MS4 Rotation fans. This was literally the best rotation of medical school bar none. You come out leaps and bounds ahead of your pears from other programs after this rotation. I dare say that you are operating at the level of an intern in terms of knowledge or even maybe better (cuz you know how the last year goes).

    Vandy makes a work of art out of their student rotation.

    It cost me 750 for the room. 150-200 for food. 500 for plane tickets and they give you a free bike. Like the other poster said, the 6 hour shifts don't led them selves too well for a second SLOR but who needs one when they give you a great one anyway.
  29. link2swim06

    link2swim06 Physician 10+ Year Member

    Dec 14, 2007
    For those of us with below average step 1 scores, is it difficult get a spot to do an away for MS4?
  30. engineeredout

    engineeredout 7+ Year Member

    May 11, 2008
    University of Pittsburghs EM rotation was great. You are treated as a Sub-I so you see your own patients, present directly to your attending, and you get the procedures if your patient needs them. 2X a week you go to their massive sim lab where you run through cases with the other 5-6 students. I think it was 14 8hr shifts throughout the month. You make your schedule as long as you don't overlap the other students. Didn't have too many lectures or outside reading to do.
  31. Apollyon

    Apollyon Screw the GST Physician Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Nov 24, 2002
    Is that comparing apples to apples? [/gentle sarcasm]
  32. ccfccp

    ccfccp Stays crunchy in milk! 7+ Year Member

    Aug 12, 2007
    Tourist Mecca, USA
    I did my rotation's about 4-5 years ago, but I had very good experiences at both UT Southwestern and Indiana.
  33. Thoracotomy


    Feb 9, 2012
    Fresno was a great rotation! Seriously, great ED, great attendings, lots of sick patients to go around, you are part of codes, opportunities at procedures. Check it out!
  34. fiznat

    fiznat Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 18, 2004
    Just wanted to bump this back to the top to solicit experiences from this season. Anyone have any stories to share?
  35. Leonora

    Leonora 5+ Year Member

    Dec 7, 2009
    I did rotations at Christiana and Stanford. Christiana has a cool set-up where you have a certain number of "teaching" shifts along with your normal shifts. During teaching shifts, third year residents are paired with you, and their sole job is to guide you through any procedures and help fine-tune your clinical thinking. They're not supposed to see patients of their own during teaching shifts, so they chill at the computers and you can go grab them whenever you have a question or want some advice. Students don't work any overnights, and housing is provided at a nearby hotel for all weekdays and for any weekend days when you work a shift.

    Stanford had a really well-structured student rotation with a monthly suturing/splinting lab for students, daily reading assignments out of a great EM textbook that some of the Stanford attendings wrote, videotaped student lectures that you can watch on your own time to supplement resident lectures, and a required "interesting case" presentation to the clerkship director (who also writes your SLOE at the end). Final exam is made up of half a day of simulations (run by the clerkship director again) and a short exam from the readings.

    Two really great programs. Both provide departmental SLOEs at the end. Feel free to PM if you want more details.
    aguila48 likes this.
  36. CremasterFlash

    CremasterFlash Born yesterday. 7+ Year Member

    May 27, 2006
    The Mothership.
    Hennepin is amazing.
  37. gman33

    gman33 Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    Aug 18, 2007
    Another vote for Christiana.
    Great rotation on a number of levels.
    Strong teaching emphasis.

    That was probably the only rotation in med school when I was sad that it was over.
  38. trackrunner321

    trackrunner321 5+ Year Member

    Mar 8, 2011
    Cook County has a great student rotation.
    I also rotated at the University of Illinois in Peoria as well. The ED is brand new. The attendings are great and want to teach. It was a great experience.
  39. namethatsmell

    namethatsmell 7+ Year Member

    Sep 16, 2010
    Mayo was terrific, way better than the two "powerhouse" EM places I rotated at. You're given a tremendous amount of autonomy as they let you place orders without needing a cosign but there's also a ton of bedside teaching that goes down. I got to do a good amount of procedures (reductions, crash intubation, lacs, etc) and there are also med student sim sessions which were extremely well run. They see crazy rare stuff (obviously) but also a ton of bread and butter stuff since its the only level one for a huge area. The faculty and residents are smart, friendly, and extremely down to earth without any pretensions. Learned more in my month there than in any other in med school.
  40. joeDO2

    joeDO2 7+ Year Member

    May 18, 2010
  41. namethatsmell

    namethatsmell 7+ Year Member

    Sep 16, 2010
    Should have clarified: you can place orders for labs, EKGs, imaging, etc but NOT meds.

    Obviously you're running your plan by your attending/senior resident, but most were fine if I ordered labs to get things rolling when it was really busy and they wouldn't be able to hear about the patient for a while.
  42. winkleweizen

    winkleweizen 5+ Year Member

    Apr 10, 2011
    Uc Davis was awesome.
  43. EMer2014


    Sep 25, 2013
    Cook County was like this...
  44. Belleza156

    Belleza156 7+ Year Member

    Jan 21, 2009
    St Lukes Hospital/Roosevelt Hospital in Manhattan, NY was great. They treat their residents and their med students really well. You aren't bogged down with too much academic lectures, and the ones you attend are really worth it. There is one on one attending time on every shift. They definitely dont just shoo you off with a resident and then leave you in the predicament of having to have an attending who you never presented to write your evaluations. You can get bedside teaching similar to IM rotations or you can have a lot of autonomy and do most things yourself (after you run it by the attending of course). It's basically what you are comfortable with. If you feel confident then you can do a lot, and if you need hand holding, then there are definitely attendings there who will walk you through slowly. It's basically a great place to go whether it's your first EM rotation or your third.

    I wrote all this in comparison to the program I am currently rotating in (I obviously won't name it here). Now that I am doing a second rotation in EM, I had no idea how good I had it at SLR. Definitely, do a few rotation (2-3) so you can see how the students and residents are treated. You will see vast differences among programs.
  45. MSmentor018

    MSmentor018 Hooah! Physician Faculty SDN Advisor 10+ Year Member

    Jul 9, 2007
    it's always hot!
    yeah teaching shifts are the way to go. we had a lot of good feedback so now at USF we're incorporating it into the curriculum. the seniors do an 8 hr shift 1:1 with MS4's. mainly running around the ER peeking in on cool cases and doing procedures. it's nice to teach and be free from patient responsibilities !

    also the ultrasound fellow does 1:1 ultrasound MS3 or MS4 teaching shift
  46. The White Coat Investor

    The White Coat Investor AKA ActiveDutyMD Physician Partner Organization 10+ Year Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    SDN Partner
    As a general rule, your away rotation isn't about finding a great educational experience. It's about getting an honors, impressing the people there so you can match there, and getting a great SLOR. The sad, but honest truth. So when you're looking for an away, that's what you need to concentrate on. It's an audition, not a class.

    So the best place for you would be one of the places you expect to rank within the top 3 or so of your list. It helps if it is a great program you might not otherwise get an interview with, since it is often easier to rotate at a place than to interview there.
  47. fiznat

    fiznat Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 18, 2004
    How should current current 3rd year students take this advice in the context of the reviews we've seen about Vandy? It seems rotations at that program are praised for being exactly what you suggest they shouldn't be: an educational experience.

    There are several, but here is one example from this thread:

    I'm genuinely curious. I was thinking about trying to get an early rotation here so I could benefit from their training.
  48. TimesNewRoman

    TimesNewRoman 2+ Year Member

    May 14, 2013
    Per the residents at Vandy on interview, most people who rotate at Vandy end up lowering their stock w/r/t rank list. Might be educational, but you probably don't want a average/poor SLOR.

    You'll learn what you need to learn in residency. Go somewhere you would want to go for residency.
  49. The White Coat Investor

    The White Coat Investor AKA ActiveDutyMD Physician Partner Organization 10+ Year Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    SDN Partner
    Well, first of all Vandy is only going to take a certain amount of people rotating with them from July to October. Maybe what, 5 or 10 a month. So you can't all go there anyway.

    Second, I have no problem with you learning a lot on an EM rotation. My suggestion is you take the mindset that you're going there to show what you already know, not to learn. Of course you're going to learn something too, but it's an audition. Everyone you interact with is looking at you and saying to themselves "Do I really want to work with this chump for the next 3 years?" Show up early, stay late, be social, be a strong student (what's that House of God rule?) etc. More than anything else, you need an honors out of that rotation. Because even if you don't go to Vandy, everyone else gets to see what Vandy thought about's in the grade.

    I'll tell you what I did. I did 3 EM rotations, one in the Spring of my third year at a community hospital/trauma center in the same town as my medical school. I learned a ton and cemented my desire to do EM. By April of 3rd year I knew what I wanted to do, which helps a lot compared to not knowing in September. I worked hard and must have impressed someone because I got an honors. The competition for honors, however, was lower than anywhere else because they just don't get that many students interested in EM. My second rotation, August of my fourth year was my home institution which at the time didn't have an EM program. This was primarily to get an honors and SLORs. My last rotation in September was at an away program. It was purely an audition rotation. It was a bit weird because it was a program I didn't want to go to, but because I had to go through the military match, I had to convince some military folks that I would be a great person to match into EM, even if I wanted to do a civilian program. The competition among students at this rotation was far higher than anywhere else. We knew we were going head to head and we hadn't known each other for 3 years already. In the end, I got honors in all 3 rotations and when combined with what must have been okay letters and stellar board scores, I could pretty much write my own ticket for interviews (I was invited to interview at 28/30 places I applied- screw you UNC and Madigan!) I had a friend, same school, similar background, similar board scores who got a "high pass" out of his rotation at the home institution. He was turned down for an interview by many places I got an interview at (basically every 3 year program out West) and ended up matching at a solid, but not particularly competitive, program in the Midwest. I think I ranked the program he went to 12th or something.

    If I were a more typical med student, I'd do the same order, but replace that last rotation with someplace I really wanted to go, but thought I might not get an interview at. Then I'd bust my tail all month. A "high pass" isn't a death sentence, but don't pretend it doesn't matter.
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2013
  50. SleepyMeerkat

    SleepyMeerkat 2+ Year Member

    Apr 11, 2013
    I rotated at Penn State and had a good experience. Residents and faculty were great. Pathology was great. Best part was med students always check out directly to attendings and call consults.
  51. joeDO2

    joeDO2 7+ Year Member

    May 18, 2010
    Busting your tail on rotations is a bit of a mystery to me. I've heard advice to do this in the past but I'm really not exactly sure what it means. I'm certainly willing (and want to) work hard, however as a med student there is little that you can do to help the residents. Haven't been on EM yet so thats probably a little different but I feel like most everything medical students do actually creates more work or is at least neutral. I also feel like trying to do more than what is asked just ends up being annoying. My current strategy is just to do what I'm told to do and do it well. About maybe 2-3 times a shift I might ask if there is anything I can help with but beyond that I feel like there is not much more work to be done. I definitely do not feel like I'm being worked hard on any rotation so far.

    Also, my school grades on a traditional letter system. Not sure how that will factor in with matching.

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