In medical school, I’m having a hard time choosing among extracurricular activities. Some of the difficulty comes from the fact that our mandatory classes are hard enough for me to manage. On top of managing coursework, I feel an enormous pressure to question what I should and shouldn’t do to best plan for my future. A little voice inside my head always asks, “How will this look on my resume?” I ...

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To reach my current position as a general cardiologist, I have taken nine board exams. I have also been teaching medical students for over ten years with several colleagues who write questions for the USMLE Step 1 exam. Through this experience, I have observed a number of themes about what works and does not work for board preparation. I share these with you now in the hopes they may help ...

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Ours is a chaotic and overburdened medical system. As a senior resident, there is every temptation to seek in our incoming classes more obedient interns and junior residents who would obey my orders as their senior without question. I challenge that we must do the harder thing. The explosive growth in the health care industry has seen a shift in priorities to traumatic, urgent and emergent care. And we see profits ...

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Exhausted. Aching. Hungry. Slightly delirious. Mile twenty-four of a marathon? Or hour twenty-four of a twenty-eight-hour shift? I am a resident. I am a runner. I am also a rather tired human since, as I type these words, I'm both post-call and post-run. However, this post-call/run state of body and mind is one I have learned to love and embrace during this residency whirlwind. I'm not myself unless I'm wearing scrubs or running clothes. ...

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Even though physicians do not talk about transferring residencies, it is more common than is often believed. According to the AAMC website, about 30 percent of residents do not finish the initial program they started. Quantifying that number further, the ACGME recently reported 1,044 residents transferring from their program. There are a variety of reasons for transferring residencies: A spouse being accepted for ...

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"A moment’s insight is sometimes worth a life’s experience." — Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. Several years ago, an anxious senior medical student was preparing his application for The Match, the clearinghouse through which 37,000 candidates hope to secure one of the 33,000 available residency positions. It is a nerve-wracking time. Each student compiles documents, assembles records, creates lists of activities, summarizes research, catalogs volunteer projects, selects the perfect photo and solicits faculty ...

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I woke this morning at 3:30 a.m. My mouth was dry. I tried to urinate, but something roughly the color of quinoa came out in small quantities. So I assumed I was dehydrated. It could have been the bourbon and scotch before dinner — or the two IPAs at dinner. Or the four IPAs after dinner at trivia. Or the scotch after trivia. But something told me I was dehydrated. I ...

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After countless hours of hard work and three demanding years of medical school, it’s now time to face the spotlight! If your interview invites have started rolling in and you are feeling intimidated by the thought, follow these tips to land your first choice of clinical residency. 1. Be prompt with your responses to interview invites  Be sure to set your inbox to automatically refresh every hour during the interview season so you ...

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While riding shotgun in the family minivan on the way home from a fall break water park trip, I received the following text message:

I thought of you today! One of the residents here had done a great job with a complex (and really sad) labor and delivery patient, and the nurse was telling me how awesome she was … so I thought to myself that I should do what you ...

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Recently, I saw a photo of a slide from the American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress: “The Program Directors Guide to Implementation of Well-being Programs.” While I applaud the ongoing focus in medicine on wellness for both trainees and faculty, I am troubled by the perceived need to standardize and program wellness, creating a “checkbox” that may not improve actual well-being. As a recent graduate now living my best life ...

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