In Applicant Questions, Uncategorized

What advice or tips do you have for applicants interviewing for residency?

This is a timely question as interview season is about to start. Also, I spoke about this at the ASA medical student residency panel in San Diego a few days ago.

The following are things you should do:


  • Say or imply that you are interested in the residency program because it leads to outstanding training.
  • Show positivity/excitement about the specific residency. That energy will fuel a better evaluation.
  • State exactly how the faculty and experience at that program and that might only be available at that program will help you meet your long term career goals.
  • Arrive early and stay late. This will let you get a feel for the culture and atmosphere in the department before and after the formalities of the interview day.
  • Study the faculty in the residency program and see who matches with your interests and ahead of the interview day ask to meet with them.
  • Wear conservative clothing (you don’t want the interviewers discussing your attire when they should be focused on your potential as a physician in their residency).
  • Even though you may be fatigued because you are on your twelfth interview please look alive and interested during the presentation by the chair or program director or others.
  • Send a thank you note by email. There is a movement nationwide to reduce the after interview day communication to a minimum but one thank you email is fine.



Please avoid these mistakes:

  • Be really nice and communicative to the faculty interviewers and then when they are not around be rude and short with administrative assistants or other people you run into.
  • Be late (may require checking out how to get there the night before).
  • Not talk with other applicants while waiting around for your interview time.
  • Say negative things about your med school, college, or past employers.
  • Have your eyes on floor or ceiling when speaking.


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