A couple of months ago, I wrote a piece on social media in medicine here on Merck Manual Student Stories. In the post, I discussed how I was planning on displaying my social media when it came to residency interviews. [Background: I currently have a medical/lifestyle blog, CoffeeandScrubs, with an associated Instagram account.] I decided to make both of these outlets private because I wanted to err on the side of caution since social media is a relatively new concept in medicine and it has quite the negative association.
So how did social media end up being a topic of discussion in all of my interviews?
As a tip, be cautious as to what you put in your hobby section on your residency application because even though it is one tiny part of the application, it can be the thing the sets you apart from other candidates!
The only telltale sign of my social media came from putting “blogging” down as one of my many hobbies in my application. It came as a surprise when I was asked about it in all of my interviews despite having other hobbies I deemed more worthy of discussion (photography, cooking, baking, etc.). The first time it came up, I was nervous to discuss it but when the program director was genuinely enthusiastic about my blog, I knew that it wasn’t such a scary topic after all. The whole basis of starting my blog stemmed from my innate desire to help premed and fellow med students while also throwing in a couple of DIY and baking tutorials. I think portraying it at its root like this was beneficial to my overall interview (I am assuming). I was asked twice what my blog was called and several interviewers stated they might “Google” it later. I have to admit, that is nerve-wracking to hear.
But, I am proud of the work I’ve done throughout my social media outlets. I am so appreciative of the opportunity to write here on Merck Manual Student Stories to share my journey with all of you! It’s allowed me to communicate with so many in the medical field and I feel that I’ve learned things about medicine that I couldn’t learn in the classroom.
On my subsequent interviews after that first one, I felt very confident and proud of my blog regardless of what happens on Match Day. If you feel passionate about something, don’t let that stop you from telling the world!