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Old 01-30-2016
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Show Teeth Advice on plan for 2017 match?

Hi! I am an IMG from the Philippines. Graduated 2015 from a reputable school. Here's a basic rundown of what's happening with me:
  • Need visa
  • will sit step 1 around early March
  • Plan to take CK and CS hopefully before September
  • Not sure about Step 3
  • Plan to go into IM
  • USCE so far is 2 months clerkship (but with Surgery)
  • No LORs (poor student-attending interaction at hospital I rotated in)
  • No research experience

I only decided to go into IM while in clerkship, and we had to arrange our clerkship schedules before we went into clinics and my previous plan was surgery. That's why I didn't get an IM USCE.

At this point, I'm sort of panicking whether I can squeeze in more USCEs, but I reckon I need to, having no LORs. It's taken me 9 months so far studying for step 1, hopefully step 2 will be a lot faster.

But at this point, can anyone advise me on what else I need to be considering?

Thanks!
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Old 02-16-2016
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An externship in IM is a good option seeing that you are trying to match in IM. Having more USCE in the specialty you want to match in and a LOR is beneficial when trying to match.
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Old 03-13-2016
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Hi bjman,

I just applied this cycle. A couple of points:

1. You need LOR, preferentially from US attendings and IM; no LORs will kill your application from the start
2. You need to have Step 2 CK and CS passed by mid September, that means passed and results available in ERAS to have a shot (CS reporting takes a lot of time, i.e. up to 2-3 months, so you will need to plan on taking it June-July), take it before CK as those results come in quicker
3. USCE in medicine will help a lot (you may not have the option, but try)

Your timeline as of now is not going to work out to match successfully, so adjust it or plan on applying the year after. Just some advice, I know this can be very stressful, but studying 9 months for Step 1 is too long, you should take Step 2 after 4-6 weeks.
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Old 03-13-2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by osleramus View Post
Hi bjman,

I just applied this cycle. A couple of points:

1. You need LOR, preferentially from US attendings and IM; no LORs will kill your application from the start
2. You need to have Step 2 CK and CS passed by mid September, that means passed and results available in ERAS to have a shot (CS reporting takes a lot of time, i.e. up to 2-3 months, so you will need to plan on taking it June-July), take it before CK as those results come in quicker
3. USCE in medicine will help a lot (you may not have the option, but try)

Your timeline as of now is not going to work out to match successfully, so adjust it or plan on applying the year after. Just some advice, I know this can be very stressful, but studying 9 months for Step 1 is too long, you should take Step 2 after 4-6 weeks.

Hey, thanks for the feedback.

Tbh you're right. 9 months is way too long. I realized I've been way too inefficient (eg. did system-wise, took me a month to cover neuro). I also realized i could have been more efficient if i limited my per-system review to just a couple of months then do the rest by question banks on random mode (helps space out items per topic so you remember more in the long run)

Also, early in my studying I would give up after 6-8 hours, thinking that there's always tomorrow.

On the other hand, the way I studied for step 1 is so much different than it is for my med school (subject-based), which basically relies on your ability to memorize a huge amount of information without good integration. It's applicable for the boards in my country but definitely not for step 1. So my review is basically like re-doing med school all over again for me, so in that respect I appreciated taking time to digest it.

I'll definitely step it up for step 2. I'll try to apply for the July CS dates (latest ones you can take to make it for September results), but in the meantime study for CK. I'll cut my CK studying in-between to study for CS when my date is coming up. Go back to studying for CK after, take it hopefully early august. Hopefully around august-september I can get an observership (if not an externship) to get an LOR.

What do you guys think?
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