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Individual Response

  • University of California San Diego School of Medicine
  • Allopathic Medical School
  • La Jolla
Overall Experience

How did the interview impress you?


What was the stress level of the interview?

8 out of 10


How long was the interview?

40 minutes

Where did the interview take place?

At the school

How many people interviewed you?


What was the style of the interview?


What type of interview was it?

Open file

What is one of the specific questions they asked you (question 1)?

"How would your friends describe you?" Report Response

What is one of the specific questions they asked you (question 2)?

"What is wrong with the US health care system today? What can be done to fix it? What about implementing universal (federal) health care coverage?" Report Response

What is one of the specific questions they asked you (question 3)?

"Do you have a realistic view of what it takes to balance a career in medicine and research?" Report Response

How did you prepare for the interview?

"SDN, kept up on research lit." Report Response

What impressed you positively?

"The faculty and research at UCSD is amazing. They have so many incredible people at the University as well as the Institutes. The MST Program seems very solid, and in good hands. The students seem passionate and well-rounded." Report Response

What impressed you negatively?

"I got a slight elitist vibe from the school. It felt a little like they were using a "you'd-be-foolish-not-to-come-here" angle in recruiting applicants on interview day, which kind of rubbed me the wrong way. (However, after seeing all the wonderful things UCSD has in store, they may be right.) The interviews (especially the informationals) ended up being too short. By the time you stated your interests/goals, etc. to the interviewer, there was not much time for them to get to into explaining their research. The cost of living in the area surrounding UCSD is really high. MSTP students said it was not uncommon to take 9 years for some graduate programs!! The curriculum seems very lecture-based and traditional (not much PBL)" Report Response

What did you wish you had known ahead of time?

"As a previous reviewer wrote, Cloud 9 is a great way to get from the airport to wherever you're going (cheaper than cab)." Report Response

What are your general comments?

"The interview day was hectic and exhausting, but I met a lot of great people (faculty and students) and got a strong sense of what life would be like there. I say it was hectic because there was a lot of commuting between interviews. While it is fabulous that such UCSD is affiliated with so many great Institutes (e.g. Burnham, Scripps, Salk), getting back and forth between them in a timely manner was difficult/impossible. Christine Moran, the program coordinator, and Natalie(?) did an amazing job staying on top of the schedules of the many applicants, and coordinating drop-offs/pick-ups at each location, but really it was too much for anyone to handle. As a result, I (along with most other applicants) was late to many of my interviews (and not just by a couple of minutes!). Being late had the additional consequence of greatly shortened the length of the interviews. I met really great people doing fascinating research, but I had to interrupt them at times to tell them that I must leave immediately to catch my ride to the next interview. It was stressful, but I got a lot out of the interviews. The interviewers knew my application well, and were able to ask focused, pointed questions. Some were a little too pointed. I found some (though not all) of interviewers to be aggressive and somewhat edgy. Again, I overall enjoyed the conversations I had with these people and was definitely impressed by the school. I would warn applicants not only to know their application, research, and goals well, but to be able to defend them against persistent (and sometimes harsh) questioning." Report Response

Tour and Travel

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General Info

On what date did the interview take place?


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