As I watch a few hundred students come into Jamaica Hospital for residency interviews, I realize how little opportunity there is for feedback to improve performance. For instance, the US graduate who did not bother to shave. Perhaps he had not re-filled his prescription for psychoactive pharmaceuticals.
Or the applicant who did not like being interviewed by a resident and an attending. We do it to show partnership with residents and real authority in the program. The applicant was stupid enough to actually say out loud ‘why am I being interviewed by ONLY someone as low as a resident’. ON interview, even if you do not like what the program is doing, do NOT say it! Unless you have not interest.
Or the guy last week who bit his nails CONSTANTLY through the whole process. Here is what to DO:
1. Look interested
2. SIt up straight
3. Always have some ‘safe’ questions like ‘what do you like best about your hospital’ or ‘what unique opportunities are there here’or “How is the teaching’
4. Never tell a faculty member or interviewer if you are applying in two specialties and the program is a ‘safety’ for you. They cannot handle the ambivalence. I hear it from attendings ‘he has no direction’ . this is AMAZINGLY unfair,but unfortunately, do NOT tell them
5. come early. Leave late. Ask to come for a ‘second look’
6. Smile and make eye contact
7. NEVER NEVER NEVER criticize ANYTHING.
So, each year I get comments like ‘so you are telling applicants to LIE!!!” actually..,,, yes, withold your real feelings. Do NOT be completely honest about things you see as negatives.
If you don’t understand, you are an idiot.