MedEdits | Medical School Admissions Consulting

Monday, February 8, 2010

Residency Rank Day

Most residency programs are having their rank day meetings by the end of this week. Why is this significant? Applicants want to send letters of intent before these meetings occur. While the 2008 NRMP program director survey indicates that follow up does not influence rankings, letters of intent stating that you will be ranking a program #1 can influence your position on a rank list. Residency programs, especially those that are affiliated with prestigious medical schools, don't like to "go too far down on a list" because this looks bad in the eyes of medical school deans and administrators. The need to scramble is especially harmful not only to a program's reputation but also to the medical school of which that program is a part. Therefore, to stay on the good side of medical school deans and administrators, programs like to report that they did well in the match, matched with outstanding candidates and "did not have to go too far down on the list."

By the same token, this is why programs may send "love letters" or make phone calls to applicants they will be ranking highly. Remember that persuasion is a violation of the match participation agreement and you are not obligated to tell programs where you are ranking them. Respond to these communications respectfully and gratefully and say something like, "I would be honored to train with you." Do not allow these phone calls and letters to influence the order in which you will rank programs.

Read my previous entries on letters of intent.

Now is the time to start working with me on your residency candidacy for 2010/2011!

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