Since I participated in the couples match this year, I figured I would give my two cents on the process now that we received both of our results. For starters, my significant other is going into pediatrics and I’m going into internal medicine. We both ended up matching at Brown University for our respective programs. Based on the NRMP data that was put out this match, looks like couples had a record high match rate this year!
At the outset, both of you have to apply to significantly more programs than most of your classmates. I believe I ended up interviewing at 22 programs and she interviewed at around 19. I would recommend being strategic about where you decide to interview. While it would be great to end up at the same program, try to interview at hospitals within a geographic area. For instance, apply to numerous programs in the Philadelphia area.
The other piece of advice is to negotiate with programs. Programs within an institution tend to talk to each other. So if your significant other receives an interview at a program, and you haven’t heard from that program, don’t hesitate to reach out. That definitely came in handy this season.
Creating a duel rank list can be difficult. Make sure to discuss with your partner what you value in programs and what your future goals are. That way you can prioritize specific programs. There are websites that you can use that spit out all the combinations you can rank. After all, you’ll have hundreds of combinations; in our case, we had nearly 480 combinations!