Medical Training Hierarchy: Your Role as a 3rd or 4th Year Student

surgical specialties

I’ve just started my fourth year, and while it’s a relief to be done with all of my medical school exams, I’m finding that there are plenty of new responsibilities to take on! I’m no longer the lowest member of the medical food chain, which also means that I partially have the responsibility of taking care of my M3 classmates. I am currently rotating on a surgical service where this dynamic is especially prevalent. It comes into play when scrubbing in to surgeries or doing other “higher level” tasks. I think this hierarchy is important to discuss for those M3s just beginning their first clinical year.

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Fourth Year: A Chance To Explore

surgical specialties

By Adelle, Medical Student

The process of applying to residency can surely be daunting. I’ve compiled a list of programs that I am interested in (as a quick refresher, I’m applying to OB/GYN programs), whether that be in terms of geography, the size of the program, proximity to family, etc. Many, many factors go into just deciding on a list of programs, and then there’s the process of actually completing and submitting applications. I feel like my life thus far has been a series of applications: college, medical school, residency . . . when will it end? Apparently not yet, because there is yet another application process: one for “away” rotations, or those away from your home institution that (usually) take place during the fourth year of medical school. They are a unique opportunity to explore medical specialties and settings in a way you will never have again.

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Choosing a Specialty: Taking a Second Look

fourth year

By Brent Schnipke

As I have spoken with physicians, residents, and other medical students about the process of choosing a medical specialty, the near-universal reply has something to do with the fact that third-year rotations barely offer enough exposure to each specialty to make an informed decision. Third-year medical students move quickly between specialties, and are often granted only a few weeks to examine a given career choice and decide whether they like it or not. Because of this, major decisions about how a medical student will practice as a doctor are largely based on brief experiences that can be easily biased by particular patients, residents, attendings, hospital systems, and even external life factors. To control for these variables, most students will finish their third year and use the first part of their fourth year to take a “second look” at the specialty they are planning to apply for and to help those students who remain undecided.

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The Undifferentiated Medical Student Podcast: Your Virtual Mentor for Choosing a Specialty

What is the Undifferentiated Medical Student podcast? Give us an intro.
TUMS is an interview-based podcast about choosing a medical specialty and planning a career in medicine. Many medical students feel lost when it comes to picking a medical specialty and planning their careers (myself included). There are many reasons for this (and some I personally faced):
-they are overwhelmed by the number of options
-they may feel they don’t understand enough medicine yet to start the discussion
-they don’t have a mentor

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Advice for 4th Years: Creating Your Best Residency Application

The residency application process is winding down for the current cycle. As this is my second season reviewing applications to my residency program as a resident, I’ve across some insight that I wished I had as a fourth year medical student applying to residency. Being on the other side of the fence, I gained a deeper appreciation for the process and the care my program invested in selecting this year’s applicants. I will share some insight along with examples from current residents at various programs in the country. Here are five tips for 2017-2018 cycle applicants and beyond.

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