Monday, March 16, 2009

Match Day

TODAY is "Match Day", a very important day for many medical students everywhere. Many of our cohorts will be getting the much anticipated email/letter this morning/afternoon to find out if they "matched" with a Residency Program. Note they only find out the if part, not the where part, which comes a few days later....UGH! March 17th, 2008 was a day filled with much anxiety for us.

The "catch" about Match Day is that the Program Directors are not allowed to say "Yes, we are ranking you in our Top XX". So you have to decide your rank based on how you felt the program fit with your future goals as a physician and how well you felt your rotation/interview went....and then pray that the Program Director felt the same way about you. So, after much praying and constructing a benefits/disadvantages chart, we decided to rank Valley Baptist #1, and prayed that they ranked us in their Top 5 (they only accept 5 Residents per year). And here we are! Praise God! (I don't think I could have gone through the process had we not "matched"--see below).

Of course, there is the very real possibility that you don't "match" with a Residency Program at all, which is why all of this is such a BIG DEAL. If a student doesn't "match", they end up participating in what we call "the scramble", where the medical student scrambles to find a program that didn't fill up all of their available slots (in the same specialty), ask for an interview, and if you're blessed, start your Traditional Rotating Internship there to keep from getting a year behind (this whole process can just make you sick to your stomach). Every medical student completes a Traditional Rotating Internship, and it doesn't have to be at the same place where you finish up Residency. In fact, many 1st Year Residents change location after the first year is over and finish up their training somewhere else...and certain specialities even require it.

Okay, I may have shared a bit TOO much information...but it's such a BIG DAY today for many medical students, just as it was for us one year ago. My friend, Bea, posted this article if you're interested in reading more about "Match Week" might help make things a bit more clear. ;-)

And another friend, Joy, posted about how there is SO much that goes into becoming a physician....MCAT, applications, med school, Board exams, Residency, Board exams, fellowship, Board exams......does it ever end???

Best wishes to our future fellow Physicians In Training....hope today is filled with exciting news!


Melisa said...

We didn't match way back. Made me sick to my tummy. I am soooo glad we are past that stage!

Bea said...

Funny! We are all thinking about it. Thanks for mentioning me :)

I like how your post captures why this is such a big day for medical students. Match day is crazy important, but today is probably a bit more nerve wracking. I can't believe this was happening to us last year. What anxiety!

Trisha said...

Such an exciting time! We found out ahead of time so we missed out on all of the anticipation. We were still anxious for match day though because that's when it's a for sure thing. Can't wait to hear where some will be spending the next several years!

Bev said...

This is why I never pursued med school. That, and I probably wasn't smart enough. But how incredibly nervewracking.

Robertson's said...

We officially matched! We'll find out where on Thursday - can't wait!!

Christie O. said...

Wow! What a big day!! I never knew about this -- thanks for sharing!

Leidy said...

Match day 2006 was such a stressful day for us but thank God everything worked out for the best at the end.