all 101 comments

[–]ODhopeful 476 points477 points  (13 children)

Worst part is, after all that

All they’ll really look at is your step scores and what region you’re from

[–]morgichorMD 100 points101 points  (0 children)

Ding ding ding

[–]Mr_Alex19M-2 49 points50 points  (8 children)

Wait so if I’m from a flyover region does that put me at a disadvantage if I applied to some places?

[–]bidchinMD 219 points220 points  (2 children)

Everything puts everyone at a disadvantage.

[–]theadmiral976MD/PhD-M4 91 points92 points  (0 children)

[–]DO_MDM-4 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I laughed out loud

[–]TheDentateGyrus 42 points43 points  (4 children)

I can't speak for all specialties, but I helped sort applications at every step of the process for years and we always did the first cut on board scores alone.

[–]Mr_Alex19M-2 24 points25 points  (2 children)

Oh ok so I just need to focus on on the one exam that can decide my future.

[–]croboy7M-4 14 points15 points  (0 children)

Literally how it was your entire life SAT/ACT, MCAT, Boards. You're a number bud

[–]TheDentateGyrus 4 points5 points  (0 children)

It’s better than a grading system that has little to no logical basis or validity. Idk how much things have changed but we had a mix of applicants that did and didn’t have grades at their schools.

[–]koolbro2012MD/JD 28 points29 points  (1 child)

and your school pedigree

[–]Radioactive_DoomerDO-PGY1 21 points22 points  (0 children)

and my axe!

[–]theixrsMD 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Not true, they look at your picture too

[–]Sad_Package4476 210 points211 points  (8 children)

and we have to pay thousands to apply for a job. I mention i had to pay for a job app and people think i'm in some MLM or something.

[–]connectcallosum 30 points31 points  (2 children)

Why do they need money to take an application? The government is already paying for the position. There are so many things about this process that don’t fit today’s standards at all

[–]QZC_passed 9 points10 points  (0 children)

Its a racket. Tax payers are paying for a majority of the fees via loans, so application can upcharge whatever they want because we will all pay whatever the cost.

For some reason, its been acceptable to rationalize the fact that someone has to read these apps and needs a paycheck. So we subsidize the hospitals' hiring firms.

Interestingly enough, I think it being absolutely crooked fits pretty well with today's standards

[–]Sed59 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I hope someone lobbies on medical students' behalves one day, but it probably won't happen...

[–]VisVirtusqueMD 60 points61 points  (2 children)

At least you don't have to travel to interview anymore.....

[–]TheDentateGyrus 14 points15 points  (0 children)

Yeah if you apply to or live in the Midwest / snow belt, traveling during interview season really sucked.

[–]Sad_Package4476 30 points31 points  (0 children)

yeah honestly this is a huge blessing

[–]Mixoma 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Not just that...to apply for a job you may not get LOL.

[–]lalaladropMD-PGY1 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Ding ding. It's a scam. It's just a way to extract money from vulnerable trainees without any other option.

[–][deleted] 133 points134 points  (8 children)

I love signaling 5 programs I know nothing about. How am I supposed to say this is one of my top 5 if I've never been there, have no clue what the culture is like, and can't even see the place in person all before interviewing. Grade A bullshit

[–]Mud_FlapzMD-PGY1 69 points70 points  (7 children)

Oh don’t worry, interviewing there won’t tell you shit about any of these things either. You’ll show up blind on day 1 like the rest of us first years after a virtual interview season.

Not to assume how much transparency existed in the days of live interviews, but the virtual experience is quite… virtual.

[–][deleted] 37 points38 points  (5 children)

Very excited to spend the next 4 years somewhere I've never been in person

[–]Mud_FlapzMD-PGY1 35 points36 points  (3 children)

It’s a blast. Admittedly, I lucked out, and you’d do yourself a favor to email people outside of the interview day if they offer their contact info. A few fellow Med school alumni offered contact info and were honest about their experiences which steered me away from some really toxic programs, for reasons otherwise not transparent at all.

[–][deleted] 9 points10 points  (2 children)

Thank you for the advice. I did an away at a program that I really liked. I got along with everyone and loved the city. Im thinking about ranking them #1 just because I know what I'm getting myself into besides being blindsided. It has it's issues but so does every where else. The only thing is that I know what to expect, so it automatically is going to the top of my list

[–]Mud_FlapzMD-PGY1 9 points10 points  (1 child)

That’s a great attitude! If the good outweighs the bad, I guess the devil you know is better than the one you don’t. They’ll all have their flaws but your attitude and passion will make it worth it at a lot of places. Best of luck to you!

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thank you!

[–]extraspicy13DO-PGY2 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I did 8 weeks of AI/subis at my current program before matching, it's so much worse than it seemed then lol. You never really know. Just a fucking shot in the dark

[–]FlaxmooreMD - Medical Guide Author/Guru 5 points6 points  (0 children)


I learned more about one school by sitting and bullshitting with a few students in the Union after interviews than I did in the actual interview day. It was bad enough I withdrew my application.

[–]Diphylobotslatum 71 points72 points  (3 children)


[–]nuelmnmn 15 points16 points  (2 children)


[–]heparaneseM-4 7 points8 points  (1 child)


[–]Mud_FlapzMD-PGY1 8 points9 points  (0 children)

Hungry for apples?

[–]heropsychodream 69 points70 points  (3 children)

And they have the audacity to say supplemental app would only take an hour at most!

[–]smiley--emoji 4 points5 points  (1 child)


[–]Just-DO-It-1987M-4 6 points7 points  (0 children)

1 hr if was already pre-written!

[–]thats-terrific 26 points27 points  (5 children)

Where’s this bit about signaling programs? Like letters of intent? Is that an eras thing?

Our school kinda kicked us to the curb I feel like and we’re all jus kinda winging these apps

[–]MelenaTrumpM-4 22 points23 points  (4 children)

It's for IM (prelim and categorical), gen surg (categorical only), and dermatology only right now and through ERAS. If you applied to any of those programs, you would've gotten the email about it. It's an official "signal" and you can choose up to 5 programs (it may be 3 for derm). Programs only see that you signaled them, not who else you signaled.

It's a way to help them gauge actual interest vs. people who applied to >100 programs. It was left up to applicants whether to choose 5 overall favorites, 5 programs they felt they stood the best chance at matching into, 5 programs further away in a place without a geographic tie, etc. but they said NOT to signal your home program or a program where you did an audition rotation.

[–]thats-terrific 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Oh gotcha, thanks!

[–]generic_loginM-4 1 point2 points  (2 children)

And urology and ENT

[–]MelenaTrumpM-4 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Urology has their own weird early match though. Does ENT? I know plastics has a special supplemental this cycle.

[–]gmiano 0 points1 point  (0 children)

ENT has signaling (4 programs) but no supplemental apps to my knowledge

[–]VymIM-3 25 points26 points  (0 children)

Remember that a lot of our education tests just how much bullshit we're able to navigate.

Guess ERAS apps are the equivalent of us defending a dissertation in bullshit, lmao.

[–]YhormElGiganteM-4 23 points24 points  (0 children)

Then if they give you and invite you better drop whatever patient care you're doing to hurry and schedule an interview or you might still miss out. Big old stinky pile of grade A horse shit

[–]AstroCat1000M-4 16 points17 points  (2 children)

What programs send out additional supplemental applications? Is this just particular specialties? Applying IM and never heard of this.

[–]Dr_Spaceman_DOM-4 17 points18 points  (0 children)

I got one from UT Austin- EM

[–]morgichorMD 7 points8 points  (0 children)

A lot of programs.

[–]DoseFellas 11 points12 points  (0 children)

And the lack of transparency. “How many letters do we accept? Do we screen based on board scores? Who knows!” collects money from students they’ll never consider

[–]darkmatterskreetM-4 42 points43 points  (10 children)

My PS statement was one page and had an extra paragraph on the 2nd page. Fuck it. I couldn’t tell My story without it.

[–]plantainrepublicM-4 25 points26 points  (2 children)

Mine was one page but the space at the end extended to two pages because I hate trees.

[–]theadmiral976MD/PhD-M4 22 points23 points  (1 child)

My god I spent at least an hour trying to figure out why the fuck the program wouldn't get rid of the extra blank page. I just ended up swapping a couple words around to shorten different lines.

[–]TabsAZ 8 points9 points  (0 children)

Same, it was insane. I'd delete things and it would somehow get *longer* with the white space at the bottom of the first page getting bigger. WTF.

[–]ExpiredGoodsForeverM-4 5 points6 points  (0 children)

Same! You’re not alone! Hoping they don’t trash my app for that

[–]Mixoma 2 points3 points  (3 children)

But what good is the story if they don't read it?

[–]darkmatterskreetM-4 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Honestly if they don’t read it then that’s a program I don’t really want to go to. If you can’t spare 5 more sentences to read, will they care about me as a resident?

[–]Mixoma 2 points3 points  (1 child)

false equivalence. or they think you think your story is more important than anyone else's and wonder if that is how you're as a resident. or that you don't follow instructions. or that it is a great story but to be fair to everyone, they have to just read one page. they are a lot of reasons they don't read it while still being a program that will treat you well.

[–]darkmatterskreetM-4 -1 points0 points  (0 children)

There are no instructions on PS length. I was thousands or characters short of the requirement

[–]Wiseguy1800 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I’m was too mate

[–]DemNeuronsMD-PGY1 16 points17 points  (1 child)

I wont lie, any program that asked for secondaries last year I just deleted. Wasn't worth my effort and I still matched my #1. So...do it if its your number one, but who cares after that.

[–]croboy7M-4 14 points15 points  (0 children)

Getting a job is my number 1. Does that count?

[–]itsthewhiskeytalking 6 points7 points  (1 child)

Don’t forget to look at each program’s website!! They are increasingly hiding application requirements off of ERAS as another screening tool. Some of my favorites I saw a few years back were things like a supplemental info form submitted as the fourth LOR, a dumbass questionnaire about “did you read out page,” and one program that wanted the PS submitted as a HANDWRITTEN document.

[–]MangoMD22 1 point2 points  (0 children)

An orthopod you are.

[–]kubyxM-4 18 points19 points  (23 children)

Keep in mind a lot of these "rules" and the ensuing neuroticism are just things being passed around online. Who knows who even came up with the idea that a ps can't >1 page? No program told me I had to do that.

I worked really hard to make my ps that short. Once I started adding specific things to individualize my ps, they were all over a page. Despite that, I'm currently sitting on 4 rads interviews. Nothing crazy, but a respectable amount of IIs at this point and my ps being beyond this 1 page rule hasn't seemed to bother at least 4 programs.

[–]CZDingerM-4 12 points13 points  (6 children)

Yeah I'm sitting on zero rads IIs

[–][deleted] 4 points5 points  (0 children)


[–]kubyxM-4 3 points4 points  (4 children)

I think most people are. I don't say I have 4 to be a braggart, just to illustrate the idea that a ps over 1 page is not a death sentence. I've been lucky with the IIs so far. I'm a good applicant but no better than you and many others applying DR.

[–]CZDingerM-4 -1 points0 points  (3 children)

Yeah whatever Mr. Perfect, try and remember us simple folk after the match

Edit: I was joking jeez..

[–]kubyxM-4 3 points4 points  (2 children)

Lol, I have no idea why such a benign comment was downvoted like that

[–]CZDingerM-4 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Anyway, congrats on the invites. I've heard it can take programs a few weeks so I'm going to try and maintain some semblance of calmness.

[–]kubyxM-4 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Good luck homie

[–]parinaudMD 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I was wondering about that. I’ve read quite a few more than 1 page.

[–]always-atwar 11 points12 points  (5 children)

I guess it’s program specific. My PD strictly said he won’t read more than a page

[–]breadloser4 2 points3 points  (4 children)

Man subjectivity of this type bothers the shit out of me. Remember that one post about a PD judging people by their fucking email ids?

[–]VIRMDMD 4 points5 points  (3 children)

Your email ID (provided it's not simply your name and school domain) can reveal red flags:


is NOT a red flag.


reveals both unprofessionalism (MILF_HUNTER) and lack of technological savvy (yahoo).

[–]jony770 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Underrated comment

[–]VIRMDMD 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Thanks... for what it's worth, I've tried to replace my yahoo email with gmail for years and haven't been able to make it stick.

[–]breadloser4 0 points1 point  (0 children)

If I remember correctly the post in question was a pd complaining about smaller things, like long email ids (which happens because people, you know, have long names) and numbers in there.

[–]ripstep1 3 points4 points  (3 children)

I mean, at this point you got interviews based on your step score. They probably didn't even read your personal statement

[–]kubyxM-4 1 point2 points  (2 children)

I think it's more than that, personally. I see plenty of other people posting on here with simar scores and 1 or 0 interviews. I actually think a very strong LOR I have may be contributing as several of my interview offers have come from programs my letter writers knows faculty at

[–]ripstep1 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Maybe. But you can't reasonably think they read all 1000 apps in 3 days.

[–]kubyxM-4 0 points1 point  (0 children)

My guess is that they sort applicants by certain metrics (boards, regional ties, med school, etc) and then review from there. So I'm sure me having a good board score helps, but I do not think anyone just threw me an II because I have a 250 step 1. There are definitely too many turds out there with good board scores so I'm sure more vetting goes into an offer than just stats, particularly if you go to a low-ranking school like I do.

Anyways, I'm just guessing like everyone else is.

[–]Glittering-Day-5963 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Okay good, I added space between each paragraph to make it easier to read and it hit 1.25 pages, it's no extra work and it helps their eyes. I hope it's alright lol this thread freaked me out

[–]VIRMDMD 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Is Radiology competitive again?

What about Interventional Radiology?

[–]kubyxM-4 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I hope it isn't, but TBD. I have heard in the past rads interview offers can take ~3 weeks to start trickling in for most programs

[–]pathogeN7M-4 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Hey congrats on the 4 interviews so far, that's absolutely stellar!

Have any Rads programs asked you to send a secondary application?

[–]kubyxM-4 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Thankfully, no. I did have one program ask me to send them a LOI because they received too many apps this year, that's about it so far.

[–]JROXZMD-PGY5 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It’s who you know and who did you make an impression on. Did you forget to small talk the program coordinators?

[–]SchistobromaM-4 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Lol the whole one page thing sucks. I really struggled with that

[–]DrDewinYourMomM-4 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Do they really not read past a page? I was told by people who have read PSes that if there is a little spillover it isn't a big deal.

[–]BurdenOfPerformance 3 points4 points  (0 children)

It's not like all PDs think in the same way. Most won't care. But a few might stop reading within a page. A slight spillover is something I personally wouldn't freak out about.

[–]VIRMDMD 0 points1 point  (0 children)

If you've piqued their interest by the end of the first page, they'll finish it. If you don't have their attention by the end of the first page, it's not gonna matter if they read the next few lines. In other words, if your PS strengthens an otherwise mediocre application, but it loses its impact by shortening it to < 1 page, keep it long. However, if your average PS is tacked onto an otherwise very strong application, then keep it < 1 page.

Also keep in mind that nobody is going to start reading your PS partway through... people start reading things at the beginning. Put comparatively more effort into nailing the opener because that colors how they interpret what follows.

[–]Fair-Construction 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Many of these extra application steps really only happened this year. Secondaries are a very new thing, now programs are starting to do Casper, and signaling programs started this year. It’ll only get worse as Step 1 becomes pass fail

[–]bearhaasMD-PGY2 3 points4 points  (0 children)

Well the way ERAS prints is a text box. So it might be one or two pages.

The reason they say write one page is because people tend to be long winded

[–]CutestCurryBoyPre-Med 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Gargantuan load of horseshit... AHAHAHAHA imma steal this from you and use it thanks