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IMG Residency Match Forum International Medical Graduates (IMGs) discussing the residency matching process.


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  #1  
Old 04-01-2014
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Info My 2014 Pediatrics Match experience

I'm so relieved to know that I matched! This forum helped me a lot with exam preparation and application, so I hope that the future aspirants find my post helpful. Please note that these are just my opinions; feel free to correct me if I've made a mistake!
So my application profile goes like this: IMG needing a visa, 2012 graduate, Step 1: 234, Step 2CK- 230, Step 2 CS - Pass, Step 3 - 209. (Passed all exams in a single attempt), 3 electives at Universities (Peds Surgery, Peds Radiology, SubI in IM), 2 observership during the interview season, no publications.
I had applied to 131 Pediatrics programs and got 9 interviews (one was a prematch which I didn't take). The interviews were a mix of community and University programs.

Important parameters in your application that get you an interview:
1. Scores. Scores. Scores.
I cannot emphasize this enough. Scores, according to me, are the single best predictor of whether or not the PD notices your application or not.
2. Visa status
As unfair as it may appear, its true. I received emails from a few programs saying that they were not interviewing candidates who required a visa. So research these programs thoroughly and save your $26!
3. Year of Graduation
Most programs have a cut-off of upto 3 years.
4. Whether or not they have residents from your medical school
You are likely to be interviewed at a place where you have alumni of your medical school doing residency (provided you haven't been screened out already)
5. LORs
Preferably from the specialty you are applying to, from US physicians.
6. Personal Statement
Believe it or not, they DO read this stuff! They may even quote parts of your PS and ask you about it!
7. USMLE Step 3
Some H1-B programs prefer candidates who have already passed Step 3. So try to take it before the end of the interview season.
8. Apply on time
I may have missed out on 1-2 interviews because I applied to them really late. Try to apply on the day ERAS opens.

Here's what to keep in mind after getting an interview:
1. Reply to the email and schedule your interview asap! I know of a few people who missed out on interview dates just because they delayed replying to the email.
2. Thank the PC for the interview. Its okay to mention if you have any dietary restrictions (e.g. food allergies/vegan, etc)
3. Research the program thoroughly. Don't ask stuff that's already given on their website.
4. Practice common interview questions with a friend
5. Attend the resident's dinner (even if its optional).
6. SMILE
7. Arrive on time for the interview. Dress well.
8. Avoid taking notes during the interview (but do write down points on the same day)
9. Be polite to EVERYONE on your interview day - residents, PC, PD, attendings, fellow applicants, nursing staff, etc.
10. DO NOT USE YOUR MOBILE PHONE even during the hospital tour (unless its a matter of life & death)
11. Be prepared to answer any question remotely related to your CV/ PS
12. After the interview, send a thank you note or a thank you email to everyone you interviewed with, and the PC. Its okay to thank a chief resident if they interviewed you. Try to keep the email brief but personalized (not generic.) Mention what you specifically liked about your interaction.

Although I'm happy with where I've matched, here's what I believe I could have done differently to get more interviews:
1. Have better USMLE scores
2. Electives in Pediatrics
3. Electives closer to residency application (Mine were in 2011. One of the programs told me that they didn't offer me an interview because my hands-on USCE wasn't "recent enough"!)
4. Electives in IMG-friendly hospitals
5. Made contacts (not that I didn't have LORs, but it always helps when an attending is willing to go the extra mile and phone a PD to recommend you)
6. Taken Step 3 sooner. (I took it after the interview season)

I wish each of you all the very best. Work hard and believe in yourself!
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The above post was thanked by:
ba.sofia1987 (04-02-2014), berryblues225 (08-31-2015), camella.ben (07-02-2014), cearamor (04-01-2014), col_slade (04-01-2014), deariederaa (05-22-2014), dr rookie (04-01-2014), dr.Zh (04-03-2014), DrPam (04-13-2014), drsrb (06-20-2014), fat1iscool (05-23-2014), geo82 (04-01-2014), hemali_hpk (04-02-2014), jwalicia (04-02-2014), mdsoon (04-01-2014), MedicalExaminer (04-07-2014), neelmed (05-23-2014), r0ck_s0lid (04-03-2014), rockstar88 (04-02-2014), sanju_241 (05-30-2014), seemaCMC (04-07-2014), sharmi_das (04-04-2014), tamta (05-23-2014), usmled10 (12-23-2014), usmlemontreal (05-27-2014), usmlerun (04-07-2014), Volkmann (12-21-2014), Xaquake (04-01-2014)


  #2  
Old 04-01-2014
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Many congratz!!!

I cannot stress how crucial and accurate your words are! My experience and the experience of several successful FMGs that I met who matched this year were similar to yours.
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  #3  
Old 04-03-2014
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Hi Vitamin K and Ceramor,

Thanks for spending the time in doing this. It shows how great Pediatricians you are.
I want your view please, My YOG is 2010, I have step 1 and CK scores in 250s and CS 1st attempt, and 1 year research in radiology. However I have big passion for Peds, and to a lesser extent m=Med.
I wannt do observerships in the next couple of month in peds and apply to peds only. I hear how important it is to have a CV oriented to one speciality. You mentioned 3 years as grad cut off, so do you think I should do meds observeship and apply to med as well? Or do you I have a good chance in peds?

Thanks a lot
Awaiting your reply.
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  #4  
Old 04-07-2014
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Congratulations!! I am aspiring for Pediatric residency as well. Could you please lemme know if I'd b an old graduate for this or the next IV season, I graduated in Dec 2012. Also how late did you apply?

Thanks!!
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Old 04-07-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aghapy1 View Post
Hi Vitamin K and Ceramor,

Thanks for spending the time in doing this. It shows how great Pediatricians you are.
I want your view please, My YOG is 2010, I have step 1 and CK scores in 250s and CS 1st attempt, and 1 year research in radiology. However I have big passion for Peds, and to a lesser extent m=Med.
I wannt do observerships in the next couple of month in peds and apply to peds only. I hear how important it is to have a CV oriented to one speciality. You mentioned 3 years as grad cut off, so do you think I should do meds observeship and apply to med as well? Or do you I have a good chance in peds?

Thanks a lot
Awaiting your reply.
Congratulations for your scores!
Firstly, try to decide on one specialty. I know people who applied to 2-3 specialties and ended up being unhappy with the specialty in which they matched! Remember, its not just about the 3-4 years of residency, its an entire lifetime!
Its important to have a CV oriented to one specialty, but no need to sweat if it isn't. You can do observerships/externship/research before the next ERAS season begins.
Based on your scores alone, you have a very good chance of getting a good number of interviews. However, the 3 years graduate cut-off isn't limited to Pediatrics alone. Many IM programs too have a cut-off. But they may make an exception for candidates with excellent credentials. It never hurts to email the coordinator about this.
All the best!
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  #6  
Old 04-07-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steps_8186 View Post
Congratulations!! I am aspiring for Pediatric residency as well. Could you please lemme know if I'd b an old graduate for this or the next IV season, I graduated in Dec 2012. Also how late did you apply?

Thanks!!
Many (not all) programs have a 3 years graduation cut-off. So you can still apply to such programs this year.
I had applied to most programs on September 15th itself.
All the best!
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  #7  
Old 04-08-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aghapy1 View Post
Hi Vitamin K and Ceramor,

Thanks for spending the time in doing this. It shows how great Pediatricians you are...
Dude, I applied and matched to IM..
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  #8  
Old 05-21-2014
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Default Observership

Would it be okay for you to share where were you able to get your observerships? I am an IMG, currently having a hard time looking for observership opportunities.

Thank you.
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  #9  
Old 11-27-2014
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Hi,

could you please specify, how in the world did you get so many electives and observership? It is almost impossible to get a U.S. elective, unless you are very rich and lucky....
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  #10  
Old 11-27-2014
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Such a helpful post. Will serve us a lot.
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