As Match Day for the Class of 2012 quickly fades into the background and residency applications for my class begin to appear on the horizon, I find my classmates starting to disappear from Facebook and other socially-oriented websites.
“Are you taking your blog down for application and interview season?” someone innocently asked, “I mean, some program directors just may not appreciate the social media involvement as much as you do.”
The question, while valid by many accounts, irked me a bit – of course I’m not taking down Mind On Medicine for residency applications.
Why? Let me give you a few reasons.
1. I have nothing to hide. If I were to take down my blog for residency applications and interviews it would imply I have written something here that I need to hide from my “higher-ups.” I don’t write about patient specifics, in fact I can think of only one time I’ve even written vaguely of a patient interaction, and I don’t write negatively about classmates or residents or attendings. I write about medical school, about my life, about funny stuff, about serious stuff. I just write. This is my hobby and I enjoy it, why would I hide that from anyone?
2. It seems a bit dishonest. If I did take it down what would happen when I started residency? I’d put Mind On Medicine back up and eventually someone would ask why it conspicuously disappeared for the period of time I was applying and interviewing?
3. It’s sort of on my CV. Not explicitly, but in a round-a-bout kind of way. I was recently published in one of my school’s magazines and the article mentioned the blog. So, if someone were to read my lone “publication” and attempt to visit Mind On Med from that reference only to find I had deleted it…well, that’d be a little weird. I’ve also received some opportunities from this blog that are included on my CV – being a founding medical student of Health Tap University, working with Doximity, a job writing reviews for iMedicalApps, attending and participating as a panel member at an upcoming Doximity Leadership Summit – and I’m sure at some point in my interviews it will come up how I stumbled upon at least one of these awesome, non-traditional opportunities. These are seriously amazing things I’ve had the chance to be a part of all from being involved in social media. I really just want to paste it everywhere so people can see how much benefit this involvement can harvest.
4. I’m proud of my writing and involvement. I consider my involvement in social media more than just a haphazard manner of sharing what I had for breakfast, it’s a way for me to learn. I have gained so much from being involved in social media, more than just cool opportunities. Not only are the people I meet teaching me as much as the people I interact with “in real life,” they’re helping me network, expand my career and, maybe most importantly, open my mind to ideas, lifestyles and beliefs I wasn’t previously familiar with. There are so many people on Twitter who have taught me how to be a better physician in the future and I am so grateful – these opportunities have been overwhelmingly valuable to me.
5. What a freakin’ hassle! I’m not entirely sure what all would go into making this blog disappear for a certain amount of time, but I am confident I do not want to deal with that! I worked too hard creating a blog, moving it to WordPress, designing a header, organizing, changing, adding, subtracting and editing to make this thing disappear. It’s a work of art.
A while back my internet friend and Mind On Med guest blogger, Allison from MD2B, wrote a post called “My Social Media Manifesto” in which she, much more gracefully and intelligently than I, described some fabulous reasons for keeping her internet presence around during application and interview season.
So, there you have it – the 5 reasons I am not using the Abracadabra dust to make me Internet-invisible come September.
Danielle Jones is a medical student who blogs at Mind on Medicine.
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