Night Float: Finding Mentors, Being a Mentor

Mentorship–both giving and receiving–is a crucial part of being a resident

Keenan Laraway
Keenan Laraway

Keenan Laraway, MD

Short Coat Podcast veteran Keenan Laraway, MD (CCOM ’15, Internal Medicine), returns to the microphone to give his insights into one of the most important parts of residency–finding and being a mentor.  As you listen, note how much credit he gives to his mentors for their influence on him, and how much emphasis he gives to teaching medical students himself.  Medical residency (and undergraduate medical education, partially) operates on an apprenticeship model, in which the experience and advice of one’s colleagues is integral to one’s own development.  Seeking out those relationships is therefore vital. Continue reading “Night Float: Finding Mentors, Being a Mentor”

Student Loan Repayment Strategies for Medical Professionals

repayment strategies

By Dave Rathmanner

Unless you’re one of those people who wins every scholarship you apply for, you’ve likely had to take out student loans to pay for your medical degree. In fact, if you’re like most doctors or medical students, you’ve likely had to take out many, many student loans. After all, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges, doctors graduate with an average of $190,694 in student debt.

That’s an overwhelming amount of debt to be carrying and, like most medical students or graduates, you’re likely worrying about your repayment. But despite having large amounts of student loan debt, most doctors don’t default on their student loans since their degrees allow them to earn high-paying salaries which make student debt easier to pay off. Continue reading “Student Loan Repayment Strategies for Medical Professionals”

What To Expect: Intern Year


By Amy Rakowczyk, SDN Staff Writer

You’ve likely heard the rumors about the dreaded Intern Year. It’s the worst of the worst. Say goodbye to your partner and hello to lonely days and nights. But are the rumors really true? And if they are, what can you do about it?

I remember when my husband was a few months into MS3, and we were feeling the med school blues. Third year was particularly challenging for my family, so I already felt like my life and relationship were struggling. One day, I happened to attend a “Baby and Me” yoga class with my nine-month old, and the mom sitting next to me started a conversation by asking me what my husband did. I replied “he’s in medical school,” and she just laughed and shook her head. She replied, “My husband is an intern. I wish someone had told me how horrible it was going to be. If you think it’s bad now, just wait. It gets so much worse.” Continue reading “What To Expect: Intern Year”

How to Work with a Recruiter to Find a Job


By Monya De, MD MPH

In your second or third year of residency or fellowship, your smartphone will suddenly start buzzing at all hours of the work day. When you answer, a hyperactive-sounding millennial will chirp at warp speed: “HiDr[yourname]! IjustwantedtoknowyouravailabilitycauseIhaveanamazingopportunity60milesfromChattanooga….”

This has the potential to happen 20 times per day, while you are trying to study for your in-service exam, text-pologize to your partner [again] for missing his birthday party, and answer pages. It is not the most ideal way to job-hunt coherently, and worse, can distract you from your main job—being a trainee. Continue reading “How to Work with a Recruiter to Find a Job”

Changing Your Mind—And Your Specialty

changing your mind

By Brent Schnipke, SDN Staff Writer

I’ve written about choosing a medical specialty throughout the third and even fourth years of medical school, but further discussion is warranted regarding the students who don’t choose a specialty in this “typical” timeframe. It is worth mentioning first of all: many people change their minds for many different reasons. I continue to be impressed by the students, residents, and attendings I meet who took circuitous and sometimes truly fascinating routes to become physicians. The same is true for finding one’s niche as a certain type of physician. Many students feel like everyone else has things figured out, but the truth is the path is not always clear cut. Even when the majority achieve a certain stage (e.g. practicing physician) by the standard route, there are always exceptions, and students may be surprised and encouraged at the myriad ways they can reach their career goals. Continue reading “Changing Your Mind—And Your Specialty”

What To Do If You Did Not Match Into A Residency Position

not match

By Monya De, MD MPH

Medical students who did not match into a residency position have a difficult, stressful, and uncertain time period ahead of them, thanks to overzealous funding of new medical schools, an influx of international medical graduates and specialty-switchers competing for positions, and above all a shortage of government-funded training positions.

Here are ten things to do for students in this position.

Continue reading “What To Do If You Did Not Match Into A Residency Position”

So You Didn’t Match. Now What?

didn't match

Last year, over a thousand American senior medical student, failed to Match into a residency to advance their training. That’s almost 6% of all senior students. Over eight thousand total applicants failed to obtain a residency by the Friday of Match Week. If you are one of those thousands then now what? You may be in shock, disappointed in yourself. Maybe ashamed to tell other friends and colleagues. And you’re probably wondering: is my career over before it even took off? Continue reading “So You Didn’t Match. Now What?”

What Really Matters When Choosing Your Medical School

choosing your medical school

Many students don’t realize that residency match should be top of mind when choosing their medical school. Even though residency is several years away, your time spent as a medical student will determine the fate of your residency. This is because residency directors have various criteria that they look for in their future residents, and this criteria comes from specific factors acquired in medical school. Continue reading “What Really Matters When Choosing Your Medical School”

How To Manage A Cross-Country Move


The medical journey offers many opportunities to make some big moves, whether it’s to start medical school, residency, fellowship, or for that first “real” job. A move, especially one across the country, requires a good deal of planning. You will undoubtedly have many questions. How do I move my stuff? How do I find a place to live? What about my cars? The list goes on and on. Continue reading “How To Manage A Cross-Country Move”

Q&A with Dr. Priya A. Rajdev, Grey's Anatomy Communications Fellow

grey's anatomy

When did you first decide to become a physician? Why?
I was a little late to the game, honestly—I only made up my mind a year after I had graduated college, and, if I’m being perfectly honest, I went medicine on the gut feeling that I’d enjoy it. I always was kind of a science nerd, but had majored in government in college and spent all my extra time playing music and being a cartoonist. After college, I decided to take a couple of years to explore a career in art and entertainment. By the end of my two years off, I was a production assistant at The Onion News Network. It was incredibly fun, but I missed the world of science and academia. I’m lucky enough to have several family members who are doctors, so it felt natural that medical school could fulfill that missing piece. Continue reading “Q&A with Dr. Priya A. Rajdev, Grey's Anatomy Communications Fellow”