The time has come to apply for residency. Which means I will soon be graduating medical school ... and soon be "a doctor". I have to say this moment crept up on me a little quicker than expected. It is now time to write another personal statement, harass more faculty for letters of recommendation, and make a laundry list of my accomplishments. I am starting to depise this process since I feel like I've been doing it non-stop year for the past several years.
Back to residency applications, since the process is a little different from college or medical school applications, I shall describe the steps here in brief:
Step 1: You first submit your filled-out application to a centralized service, who then sends it to all the residency programs you've selected. The earliest you can submit is September 1, and as usual, the earlier the better (I just realized Sept 1 is quickly approaching).
Step 2: Programs may then choose to interview you, and interview season usually runs November to February. Only if you get interviews, may you proceed to the next step. If not, please start over -- next year.
Step 3: This is when it gets a little hairy for most people (at least non-medical people). At this point in the process, applicants rank the programs they interviewed at; in other words, they state that their #1 choice is Program X, #2 is Program Y, etc. Similarly, the programs go through and rank all the applicants they interviewed.
Both of these lists are then submitted to that same centralized service again and are run through a computer, which takes the lists and matches every applicant with a program. Theoretically it creates an optimal list of matches (matching applicants and programs), whereby no two people could be happier if they were to switch with each other.
Match Day: This is the day when people find out where they've matched. It takes place in March, and it is a significant day in the lives of every medical students, since it is when they find out where they've been assigned for the next several years. For most people it is a day of happiness. On the other hand, don't like where you're going? Tough.
. . .
Anyway, September 1st is quickly approaching, which really means I should finish preparing my application.