After being on a decent amount of interviews, I’ve been reflecting on what factors I’m going to use to rank all of these IM programs. At the outset, I quickly realized that program structure doesn’t really mean much to me. Most programs have the X+Y structure (X weeks of inpatient, Y weeks of ambulatory), while only a minority just do blocks. The admission and call schedules vary from program to program. At the end of the day, intern year is going to be hard, so I don’t think program structure is going have any weight on my ranking.
One factor that I’m taking into account is the availability to do research. Since I’m interested in cardiology, getting into cardiology programs requires a decent amount of research. So ideally, a program I would rank highly would be one that provides opportunities to do research in my intended subspecialty. Another factor that I’m weighing highly is how well the program matches their residents into the subspecialties. Though I’m interested in cardiology, there is always a chance that something else may change my mind. So being in a program that has a good match in my intended subspecialty as well as the others is a factor that means a lot to me.
Finally, the other large factor that I’m weighing program is culture. It may sound cliche, but finding a program where I feel that I fit in is really important. As I said earlier, intern year is hard everywhere, but being at a program where I enjoy my fellow coworkers is important to me.
To summarize, I’m basically ranking programs based on:
- Research opportunity
- Subspecialty match
- Overall culture
Have any other tips?